December 29, 2013

Christmas 2013

Christmas went by too fast this year. I've been so busy, and we truly haven't even spent a whole lot of time at our own home. It was a real go-between for all our get-togethers and holiday hangouts this year. Next year I plan to spend more time at home, and maybe try hosting our own party here. (We'll just see what my tiny 1950s kitchen will allow.) Anyway, I wanted to show you what we've been up to this year at the Howes-Tien household.
This year I decorated three trees! Well I normally do, but this year Wai helped me put ours up, which was really special. The top left is our tree of course. A purchase I made this Fall off Etsy, and I couldn't be more pleased with it. The right is my Mom's tree. I decorated this baby all by myself this year! Below is my Dad's tree. I couldn't pass up a photo of this cozy situation right here. I could cuddle up in front of that fireplace forever!
I've always had a green tree growing up, but because our cat Royal chewed our tree lights to bits last year and we had a dark tree all holiday long, I wanted to opt for something different and without lights. It took some getting used to but our first year with an aluminum tree was a real success! Not that I don't miss our old standard tree!

Bringing colour and whimsy into our home has been a goal since we moved in. Wai and I have very different styles, but we were both interested in bringing a fun and not-so-serious look to our home. That goes for Christmas too. We've been so lucky to be gifted incredible vintage christmas decorations from my Mom and Grandma. Most of our things are incredibly retro-looking, so we aimed to incorporate more pastel ornaments this year. With our home looking more and more like a 1950s/60s dollhouse every day, I wanted our house to keep its vintage fantasy look all throughout the holidays!
Last year I made this cone christmas tree. It's not quite finished and I didn't get around to completing it this year either. A definite goal for next year!

This year my mom let me take home a bunch of old ornaments I always coveted growing up. It always amazes me how careful we were around all the old christmas decorations as little kids. But I shudder when I think of the fragile mercury glass ones we broke by accident, or the ones that were swiped off the tree by the dog's tail; smashed in pieces all over the floor. 
She also found me some gorgeous ornaments this summer that were exactly right for my new tree this year! If you don't know already, she's my thrifting partner-in-crime. We constantly teach each other everything we know about antiquing and vintage-hunting. We both have such different styles, which helps us cover off a huge range of knowledge. I probably wouldn't love vintage this much if it weren't for her instilling it in me from a young age! With her new ornaments and some cute wooden ones I found at a Wisconsin garage sale, all for 25 cents in September, I decorated our tree and home in a whole new way this Christmas.
This year I was very aware of how dark our house was. Winnipeg winters are very low-light and can be quite depressing at times. To bring some much needed brightness to our home, I decided to open up our front curtains for Christmas. The cats sure agreed that it was a great idea!

This year I took part in the GoodyGoodyGiftSwap, and this was the card I made for my swap mate. I would definitely do it again next year, because it was loads of fun. The gift I received was 
over-the-top adorable! I got a pair of screw-back rhinestone earrings and long glittery-gold gloves with pearl buttons. How cute! I also took the plunge to cut off my long, dark hair to my shoulders and start bleaching it black slowly to my natural hair colour. Blonde, here we come!

Christmas is also always jammed with parties for one more reason - my little sister's birthday. She turned 22 this year! 
For us, the parties are essentially over, but I know lots of you are still celebrating away. Happy holidays to you, your family and friends. I hope Christmas 2013 was a wonderful and magical time for you and it continues on into the new year!


Marissa xo


  1. such a fabulous round-up I was hoping to thrift some vintage decorations this year but sadly didn't. Your silver tree is just amazing! The imperials look so so good as well I made a mess with my filling when I made mine:P Looking forward to blog posts in the new year.

    1. I wish I could say they were mine, but my mom made them! I didn't get around to making my own this year. Thanks so much Daphne. Hope you had a wonderful Christmas!!<3