I love the cozy lived-in feel of lake (or beach) cottage style decor, especially during the holidays. When I think of Cottage style I imagine crisp whites mixed with sandy tones and furnishings that are cozy and a little bit funky, rooms with lots of texture and sunlight streaming through charming windows.
Nowadays, I rarely decorate a Christmas tree since, as empty-nesters, we often snowbird
escape to warmer weather and it seems like one more thing to have to take down and store before leaving. This year I have a replacement (sort of) – I’ve decorated a vintage cottage window to light up the room where our Christmas tree would normally be placed if the kids or guests come for the holidays. The vintage window was only recently given to me…thanks, JC aka: Travel Buddy! Lucky me, it already is painted a nice shabby dark green & white.
I hung it in front of the big sliding glass patio door in our living room overlooking the backyard and lake. That area is where our tree would always go. The patio door has a good view but its style has no character. I would love to have replaced it with a french sliding door but, for that size, a beautiful patio door is not,
and wont be anytime soon, in the budget. When I placed this old window in front of the ugly builder-grade sliding door it was and amazing transformation to the window and to the entire feel of the room. The room suddenly has the charm of a well-lived in cottage! The shadows the window reflects on the walls is so pretty. Have you ever put something in a room and find yourself going back to look at it…over & over?
Decorating the Window
To do the lettering, I Googled “Christmas Chalkboard Images.” I did a Save Image of a couple of chalkboards and printed an enlargement that fit my window’s glass panes. Positioned and tape the text to the backside of the glass pane and traced the letters on the front-side of the glass. I used a thin tip white liquid chalk pen to trace & fill the letters.
I let the chalk paint dry before retracing my letters a second time, for more opaque lines and fill. The next day I decorated the window with a faux greenery/pine cone swag, gold Christmas balls and two bows made with ribbon that matches this year’s Neutral Christmas color palette.
I also added some streamers of gold glittery ribbon for sparkle. The swag is not attached to the window, I just bent the wire branch and laid it on top of the window, it is secure though. Once the swag was on the window, a string of tiny snowflake lights was tucked into the greenery (I love these new super-tiny lights!) and the battery pack hidden behind the bow/pine cone. That’s it! After the holidays the white chalk lettering can be wiped off with a damp rag.
Hanging the Window
The window weighs 15+ pounds (un-decorated) so my thought was to hang it with hardware that could support a car…that’s me, Better-Safe-Than Sorry : ) But once Captain got involved I entered a more realistic world, of my still 20-lb (times 2) wall hooks sans the screw anchors, that he insisted would be safe when screwed into the studs. He was right of course, he is my expert hanger.
Initially the challenge seemed to be HOW to securely hang the window above the patio sliding window – how to attach the window to the wall where it clears the window frame, yet is secure, and not terribly visible. Solution: I bought two metal 90-degree metal brackets to attach to the vintage window from which to hang a wire. Because the window’s wood is soft and in some places rotted-out, I decided to drill a hole all the way through the window edge, and insert a hex bolt & nut to firmly secure the two metal brackets to the frame. I felt that the bolt was more secure than a screw that may not grip the soft wood. I do not want to hear a glass window crash to the floor during the night. For that reason I also added a screw at the top of each bracket. The wire that I chose is rated to hold 75-lbs, so if I do hear a crash….whaatt???
What decoration do you have that defines your home’s style?
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Thanks for Meeting Me Lakeside!