Ginny Stalker, owner and designer of Au Petit Salon, a boutique online interior decorating service, has been gathering inspiration for holiday décor since the summer (she readily admits to being the kind of person who’s busily pinning Christmas wreath inspo in July).
“My favorite part of the holidays has always been decorating,” says Stalker. “I have memories of staying up late with my parents, drinking hot cocoa, listening to ‘The Bells of Dublin’ and decorating the tree.”
“It was always so magical. I want to pass that magic on to my son and create new memories and holiday traditions with him.”
On one of these endless hunts for inspiration, Stalker came across SmithHönig on Instagram and was immediately hooked on our bold color and fanciful patterns. And the love is mutual – we adore her creativity and charm and are thrilled to partner with her on “Sugar Plum Fairy Forest,” the décor theme she has crafted for her home this holiday season.
Now, what exactly is “Sugar Plum Fairy Forest”? For Stalker, it means warm pink, orange and purple dancing against the backdrop of her lush indoor plants, which create a dramatic, woodsy element for the colors to pop against. It means vintage bits and bobbles and tassels aplenty, strewn throughout to create an enchanted wonderland perfect for hosting family and making memories.
“Most of my home has white painted walls so I use color everywhere else to jazz it up,” says Stalker. “My fabrics, wallpaper, rugs, and art are all vibrant and that’s what I love about SmithHönig’s pieces: They are full of whimsical elements.”
And for the holidays, Stalker is all about whimsy, amping up the color and layering in unexpected touches to create sprinkles of seasonal magic. She uses the same dialed up approach with greenery, bringing home a few new plants to add to her personal woodland, which is the foundation of every design. For this holiday season, her forest of greenery is layered with other natural elements like moss, dried citrus and flowers to keep things organic and cheerful.
And for those important pops of color, she has brought in a tree skirt, stockings and table runner all made with SmithHönig’s Thread Bare patterned fabric.
“I can’t even tell you how much I love it,” says Stalker. “The design has so many colors when you look up close — including orange, purple and blue — but when you stand back it reads largely as pink, which is my favorite color to decorate with.”
While pink isn’t your typical holiday color, like say red or green, you know we’re not exactly traditionalists here. We say for a more modern (and fun!) take on holiday design, switch up the colors — if you love pink or purple, why shouldn’t you use it? And anyway, according to Stalker, there are many “the more the merrier!” opportunities during the holidays — pillows, pigments, party guests, presents — which might be why she’s so excited to have the Fuchsia Luxurious Velvet Pillow in her home this holiday season.
“The color is so rich and delicious, I want to eat it,” says Stalker with a laugh. “But seriously, it’s such a high-quality velvet — I can’t stop snuggling with it.— and it has a beautiful contrasting oversized welting that adds such an unexpected gorgeous touch.”
But when it comes to unexpected touches, the stars of the show, says Stalker, are the SmithHönig tassels she has liberally layered into her home – on her tree, her mantle, and on the tablescape. She’s using both the silky and beaded styles as an unconventional way to add color and make a fabulous statement.
“I’ve had a few people over already and they all have remarked on how much they love the tassels,” says Stalker. “They are so versatile, I will for sure be using them throughout the year.”
When it comes to decorating, especially for the holidays, the delight is in the details. Capture the “Sugar Plum Fairy Forest” vibe by following these tips from Stalker:
SET THE SCENE: When decorating I always put on a festive movie (on mute), play some jazz, and drink hot cocoa — gets me right in the spirit!
COLORED GLASSWARE: One of my weaknesses is colored glassware that I find at estate sales or antique shops, I love the depth they add to my table. The glasses I have found for this years’ tablescape really pop against the vibrant SmithHönig table runner.
FANCIFUL MOBILE: I have always loved hanging unexpected pieces from the ceiling or a canopy. Last year I had a foliage-filled one and this year I have the tassels and moss over my dining table.
TWINKLY LIGHTS: I really amp up my twinkly light game this time of year. I use them everywhere and just love their ambiance.
WOODSY WHIMSY: I styled a magnolia branch over my fireplace and hung tassels and stockings on it. So simple and easy but the result is cozy and a visual surprise.