Sunday, December 13, 2015

The Painted Christmas Cottage

Welcome.  I am so happy that you stopped by. I generally share my garden and the inspirations for my paintings with you, however, this time of year I have requests from so many of my readers to  have a peek  inside my cottage to see some of my art. So . . . . . I decided to have a little Christmas home tour just for you! My front door is always open for you to come in and sip a cup of tea while I share with you my painted cottage.

My Studio Assistant, Bentley is eagerly waiting for you at the front door.

Directly past the entrance is the dining room. I collect blue and white china and you will see it throughout my home.  It reminds me of my childhood summers spent at the family beach cottage at Wrightsville Beach, N.C - the charming cottage was filled with my Grandmother's mismatched blue and white china, old quilts, white wicker, and flowers - all the things that I love to paint.

The painted blue table is on of my favorites and displays a little Christmas painting of my red front door and Bentley. The mirror behind the table reflects the outdoors.

Bentley loves to "photo bomb" my photos!

I like to keep Christmas decoration simple using greens, berries and seas shells in keeping with my coastal cottage style of decorating. I collect vintage table cloths and have several lovely ones with reds that I save to use at Christmas time.
The living room is to the right of the dining room.  It is a large room filled with wonderful natural light and is hard to photograph due to the light. The next two photos photos were taken from the dining room looking into the living room.  I switch out the throw pillows according to the seasons and use the red and white check indoor/outdoor pillows for Christmas and Fourth of July.

The vintage white wicker chairs shows up in a lot of my coastal cottage paintings and is in the painting over the fireplace.

Bentley in the dining room looking into the living room.

The mirror is opposite the fire place and I love the way it reflects my art.

I tuck my small whimsical painting in among seas shells and plants where I can find room for them!

I bought the blue cupboard at a garage sale -it was used for tool storage and had a vice bolted on top - it has wheels and I paid $25.00 for it and wheeled it down the street to my house!!

We have a living Christmas tree that lives in the garden during the year - it is especially meaningful this year as it survived our terrible drought in Southern California. We decorate the tree with flags and sea shells and keep decorations to a minimum.  A star fish tops the tree.

The staircase has a lovely landing with a tall window that lets in lots of light and is a great place to grow ferns and Christmas plants as well as  hang one of my large paintings of a California vineyard.

The landing is also one of Bentley's favorite places to hang out.  Simple green garlands with red berries and sea shells are wrapped around the banisters.

My office and bedrooms are upstairs.  The large Flower Shoppe painting hangs in my office that is a loft room over looking the living room and side garden. I like to mix old painted furniture with primitive wood antiques as the unpainted wood tends to anchor the room.

The office is a loft room and overlooks the living room and side garden.

Another California vineyard painting of our beautiful central coast vineyards.

Our guests love staying in this room and always comment that they feel like they are in a beach cottage. It has another one of my large paintings of a local scene and porch overlooking our beautiful Newport Bay.

Let's go back downstairs. The kitchen is to the right of the dining room. It is very sunny and has a large window, greenhouse window and French doors leading to the kitchen patio where I grow herbs and some vegetables in containers.

Two of my little Rooster paintings are on the wall. I have fun painting my personal art to match my decor!  Roosters rule in my kitchen thus the Rooster art! The blue chair is a favorite place to sit and read with a cup of tea as it gets the morning sun.

The jelly cupboard and plate rack  are beside the French doors overlooking the kitchen patio. 

This shot has another of my small Rooster paintings.

Thank you for stopping by my painted cottage.  I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for visiting my blog, leaving me lovely comments, e-mails and those following my blog.

Wishing you and your family a Merry and Blessed Christmas and a very Happy New Year.  I will see you again in January 2016.  Blessings,  Erin

            " When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding joy."  Matthew 2:10

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Christmas Cottage Garden

Welcome.  I am so happy that you stopped by.  My garden gate is always open for you to come in and sit and relax with a cup of tea.  The recent rains and cold weather really helped our gardens in Southern California and Christmas flowers are now in full bloom.  Let's join Bentley, my Studio Assistant, in the garden to show you some of the plants and flowers we are growing and ideas for simple and inexpensive Christmas gifts for our garden friends as well as fun ways to add pops of color to your winter garden.

The white Campanula's make wonderful little gifts for a teacher or neighbor and bloom for a month or so in a pot - add a cute gift tag and red bow for an instant little gift from the garden.

The living Christmas tree made it through our drought and is ready to be taken inside for a few weeks.

I love to use ladders in the garden for display and to add height .

The little snowmen paintings are a fun way to add a touch of Christmas whimsy to the garden and also made fun little gifts.  There are lots of instructions on how to paint them under Art 101 that can be found on my blog header.

Bulbs planted in cute containers make great gifts and the containers can be reused.  The Asparagus Ferns are so pretty and fluffy and look so festive with a cute pick, Christmas tag or red bow tied around the pot - they are one of my favorite gifts to give and I grow lots of them this time of year. Primroses are starting to bloom and they are fun little gifts to tuck in a basket of goodies.

Vintage boxes are great to use as containers to hold potted gifts.

Containers of herbs also make great gifts.

A cute tea pot with a missing lid makes an adorable container for a small ivy plant - this one is for a teacher friend.

I bring out the red and white check indoor/outdoor cushions for Christmas.  The reindeer cushions are new and I purchased them at a discount store.
The wooden sleigh purchased from a discount store  with several pots makes an adorable gift for a garden friend

A burlap bag makes a fun container for Christmas greens - wrap greens with damp paper towel and put in a plastic baggie to keep them fresh.

Another ladder adds interest and height to a corner in the garden.  The old funnel makes a fun planter for a pot of winter Primroses.


I found the vintage bird house welcome sign at a flea market for $5.00.

Thank you for stopping by.  I sincerely appreciate your visits, e-mails, comments and those following my blog.

Have a lovely week.  Holiday Blessings,  Erin

                              "Let your good spirit lead me on a level path."  Psalm  143:10