A Georgia Cottage Decorated for Christmas

A Georgia Cottage Decorated for Christmas

I happened across this warm, cozy cottage, delightfully decorated for the holidays. This Georgia, 2,000 sq ft. home belongs to James Farmer, Editor- at- Large at Southern Living. The curb appeal is undeniable and welcoming. Let’s take a look.

front exterior at dusk

Welcoming, isn’t it?



wood walls and ceiling add a lot of character and texture to the foyer and stairway. I like that that they introduced a Chippendale detail, a usually exterior treatment, in place of banisters. Although this is a new home, it has the character of patina already.              photo source


Magnolia decorations on the island and windows, along withlots of open shelving, wood ceiling beams and hardware floors, add warmth and lend a strong note of southern hospitality.   photo source



living room with and without James and Sampson

photo source



overall of dining area

I love brick floors. We had them in one of our homes and I loved them for ease of maintenance and the warmth they added. The trees on each side of the double doors look like cedar trees. The wreaths are magnolia. Notice that the chandelier is hung a bit higher than usual, but due to its size it looks perfect.       photo source


master bedroom

It does’ take much to make a room feel ready for the holidays. Here a small bunch of magnolia leaves add a bit of festivity, as does the wreath hanging on the exterior of the window. The room already radiates warmth, with the textured wall covering and warm colors.             photo source

front entry

A close up of the front entry, taken during the day. The siding is board and batten, and the white trim pops off the heavy white trim boards. The consistent use of greenery throughout the house helps to tie all the rooms together, especially nice in a smaller home.                 photo source

all above photos for Southern Living by LAUREY W. GLENN.

Magnolias are quintessentially southern. Below are some additional examples of how they can be used in decorating for the holidays. They are large glossy green on one side and a velvety, suede like on the underside, they allow for lots of creativity, even when used just by themselves.


I like how the white roses echo the white ribbon, somewhat unexpected for the Christmas holiday, but quite sophisticated.          photo source



Here they added pine cones to a magnolia garland. I have made many magnolia wreathes over the years, and I cannot imagine the patience it must take to do an entire garland.                              photo source



A closeup of the buckets in the photo above, with the underside of the magnolia leaves providing contrast to the small spruce tree.       photo source



Here they tied white ornaments to the garland. You could insert apples (red or green), lemons, and pine cones, bulbs as well as whatever your imagination thinks would work.                             photo source



Magnolia leaves are sturdy, and last a long time in arrangements. The stems pokes easily into a foam form.                   photo   source



A nice advantage of using magnolia is pruning has minimal effect on a large specimen. Prune, and it just comes back fuller the next year. These are fast growing trees also.                                   photo  source



Leaves placed in a bowl. Quick and easy.           photo   source

 Source for above photos.

I am having difficulty believing that Christmas is almost here, and that 2017 is around the corner. The weather here is warmer one day and crazy cold the next. No snow however. I hope that you folks that have a lot of snow can enjoy it. I would love to have a itty bit of snow for Christmas, but alas, they are predicting rain the both Christmas eve and day.  No matter, I look forward to a couple of quiet days. I find this time one of reflection for me, and I find that as I decorated, and listened to Christmas music, I was caught up in distant memories more so than usual. I smiled, I teared up, and I also laughed out loud, even though no one else was around except Whitley and Carter. Funny thing though – Whitley for the first time is not liking the decorating activity so much. She has walked around with a hang dog look, not like her at all, yet she and Carter love to curl up close to the tree every night. Go figure. I have finally completed all my decorating, and photos will be taken and posted. I am enjoying it every evening when the soft light bathes the entire house. I hope you are all enjoying the preparations as well. Thanks for stopping by. laters, charisse.




  1. Fabulous post! I adore seeing all the creative uses of magnolias! Sharing this post with friends!

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