Work With What You’ve Got {For the Christmas Table}

Several years ago, an aquaintance of mine was showing me around her beautifully decorated home.  It was decorated in a style (shabby chic/eclectic ?) that I loved.  As she showed me around she pointed out how items were currently being used in ways other than their originally intended use.  They were renting and had just moved in a few weeks before.  Because the number of windows in this home was different from their previous home, she had repurposed a window curtain into a shower curtain. This was more than 15 years ago now, but this was really the beginning of me thinking about how items in my home can be used in different ways. As we talked about some of her decorating ideas, she encouraged me to always “shop” my own home when beginning a new project.  As a one income family, while decorating our home was something I really enjoyed, it hasn’t been something I could spend lots of money on.  It has been fun over the years to see how I can make something new with repurposed decorative elements.

This particular project was inspired by my friend, Heather, who was telling me that she was had been putting together an arrangement of mason jars and greenery on her mantle.  My wheels started turning.  I was tired of what I had used on the kitchen table the last several years.  I had already added some other Christmas decorations this year, so no money to spend on something new for the kitchen table.  Hmmm. I have lots of mason jars, different shapes, different sizes, and I love them.  The tray underneath the jars I earned for having a Pampered Chef party several years ago.  It’s almost always in use in my kitchen in some way.  I’ve used it a bajillion different ways over the years.  I’ve used it like a fruit bowl/tray, to serve food, with candles on it, for other Christmas displays.  I love the natural basket texture and the clean white ceramic tray.  It makes a perfect backdrop for so many other choices of layers.

Ok, so I started with these three jars.  I later decided to change out the one in the middle to one that matched the other two.  When “shopping my home”, looking for different objects to use, it can change many times before it ends up looking the way I want it to.

I started to add in some greenery.  Ok, this greenery 🙂  It once was an entirely different floral arrangement.  It originally belonged to my mother in law.  When she no longer wanted it, I decided that while I didn’t like the way it was put together, it had good bones. There was plastic fruit in the original arrangement that I didn’t want to use with Christmas, but I saved it for another possible project as the fruit was pretty real looking.  I’ve used this greenery a couple of different ways before, on the mantle or the piano.  I started just filling in with greenery. Some were smaller pieces and some were larger so I just had to work with it to get it the look I wanted.  It would have been nice if I had a couple more of the smaller pieces, but I made do with what I had as I didn’t want to take the larger pieces apart.

The berries were in bigger clusters than what was working for me so I took them apart into smaller pieces.  On one of the berries the red was scratched off so I just hid that berry, turning it upside down.


Some of the greenery was in small, individual pieces.  That was helpful.  I wish I had a few more smaller sprigs, but it worked out ok.

Tada! I added a few of the smaller pinecones and white tea lights.  I may pick up some votives to try later, but till then, tealights it is.  I LOVE these little jars.  I bought 12 of them them at a thrift store for 10 cents each.  Before I left the store I googled to see if I could find lids for them.  It turns out they were selling with lids on Ebay for around $30.  I paid for those things quick before they could change their mind!  I just love them for many different uses.  My original intention was pudding/dessert cups.  I think they’re totally precious.

We had this runner that was used in my daughter’s  wedding.  I decided I didn’t want the lace side up so….

I just flipped it over to the other side 🙂  Does it look like something professional? Prolly not.  But, it was FREE, I like it, and its something fresh/different for the Christmas kitchen table.  Next year I will buy something new, but for this year, the table feels freshened up a bit.

If you like repurposing items in your home, please share one of your favorite projects/ideas in the comments!

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