Step into Christmas

Step into Christmas


We’ve been enjoying the company of our sweet friend and honorary sister Mary these last few days and following tradition, made our way to Daylesford to get into the spirit of the season.


We fall for the cool white and silvery beige tones every time: Such a contrast to the bright, gaudy decorations everywhere else.


But taste is a curse and such minimalism comes at a price.  Still, it costs nothing to look, does it?


The antidote to rampant consumerism on “panic Saturday” came in the form of Carols on the Hour at Gloucester Cathedral and as we sat listening to the Stuart Singers do their two gigs, we admired the “knitivity” (especially the cheeky camel!)


Poor Mary looks totally cheesed off by the whole affair, don’t you think?


We stepped into an altogether different Christmas at Abbeycwmhir on Sunday.  Don’t be fooled by the sober exterior.


Inside has been truly decked with not only boughs of holly but everything else as well.


After the muted elegance of Daylesford, believe me, it came as quite a shock.  52 rooms, all decorated for Christmas…


At least one tree in every room, each individually decorated to a theme.  This is the library tree.


This one stood in the billiard room amongst a range of stuffed animals.


The craft judge in me just had to take a closer look at that trailing braid to check if it was cross stitched (it wasn’t).


There was the crystal tree, with miniature pieces of crystal glinting in the light from the window.


A tree full of timepieces.


And a tree set amongst Royal Doulton figurines.  Many of them!  This is a house owned by collectors and one half of the couple, Paul gave us a great deal of background as he showed us around his home.


Because the remarkable thing is, Paul and his wife do really live here.  Not only that, but no door remains closed – this is a corner of one of the kitchen rooms.


Quite how they live in such an abundance of decorative “stuff” is a mystery to me.  I know that I would need to paint one room white and empty it of all the clutter just as a refuge.


But they must be used to it by now and of course, it’s their choice! 


When I reviewed my photographs, I was amazed that I managed to take one which had no sign of Christmas whatsoever.  That was quite an achievement, for as you can tell, Paul and his wife do not hold back with the decorations!


There was one room which would haunt me, however.  Filled with these knitted figures which are so frequently seen at village shows, they are every WI Craft Judge’s nightmare!  Yes, loads of work.  Not easy knitting.  Tricky construction.  But no play value whatsoever and what person do you know who would like one to grace their home?


I’ll take the cute camel every time.

Almost there

Almost there