I am admittedly not a very creative person. Everyone else in my family (and my husband's family, for that matter) has a natural "knack" for decorating. They just know where to place furniture, accessories, etc. I require lots of assistance. I enjoy beautiful surroundings, I just can't create them.
In the Pottery Barn catalog for the fall, there were lots of great ideas for holiday decorations. Thanksgiving, Christmas, and winter decorations were abundant and most of them were "rustic". They had lots of vessels (glass bowls, decanters, globes, etc) filled with pine cones, gourds, greens, ornaments, etc. I tried to recreate some of the looks here at our house and I'd say I was marginally successful.
Remember these clove-studded oranges circa 1982? Did your mom make these when you were younger, too? I used to love the look and smell of these and thought, "why not"? Total investment = $4.68 (bag of oranges - $2.99, jar of cloves - $1.69).
I also added some cuttings from outside of our house, inkberry branches, red berry branches, and blue spruce. I layered in some pine cones we collected at the cabin and a few mirrored ornaments.
I saw this rustic arrangement in the Pottery Barn catalog. All I did was grab a dogwood branch and hung some ornament from it. I'll be honest - it looks a little hokey (and not nearly as cute as the PB version), but it's kinda unique - and let's face it - it was almost free! All I did was buy an 8-pack of mirrored ornaments for $2.99.
Lastly, I layered some blue spruce cuttings with clove-studded oranges and pinecones in these vessels. I already owned the apothecary jar and I bought this rectangular vessel for $9.99.
Here is our mantel - like I said, marginally successful.
At least Christmas affords me the opportunity to accessorize a little bit. We do not live at Pottery Barn, but I think it kinda looks pretty around here!