Creating a Beautiful Holiday Mantel

I know how to put together outfits. But when it comes to putting together a room or any type of decorating, I am not your person. I wish I had that gift. I have certain friends (Katie of Mint and Courtney of Ivy Lane, I am talking about you) and no matter what the holiday or time of year, they have their mantel accessorized for the season. Especially at this time of year, it’s like you walk into their homes and it is a winter wonderland with holiday cheer in every corner.

I so want to be able to do it. My kids wish I could too. My daughter, Blair, is all about decorating. She loves it and the more the merrier – “embellishment” might as well be her middle name. So, every year I feel like a big disappointment to her. Well not 2020; I am going to blow it up! That is right – there will be decorations in every room and all the boxes marked Christmas in my very organized basement will be empty. But let’s be real; I had to call in the professionals.

My first call (I actually just went to the holiday preview sale) was to Amy Rutherford of Red Barn and Penny Post. I had missed the boat on the colored glass trees, and I was not missing it again. She helped me pick the perfect assortment.

Next up was Rachel at Helen Olivia – I needed help making all the trees work together and I love arranged flowers – another thing I wish I were good at. I called Rachel and sent her photos of the trees and my mantel and she did her magic. So, for the first time ever, I have a holiday mantel and it isn’t a week before Christmas. It looks beautiful and my daughter is pleased as punch. If you are like me and need help, I highly recommend reaching out to both of these ladies. We are all going to be spending more time than ever in our homes and we might as well make them beautiful.

Now I just have to figure out who I can con into helping me with my tree.



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I spent the first part of my career as a copy-writer who helped elected officials brag about their support for entrepreneurs. Then I decided to get off the printed page and do it myself. The Shoe Hive made a splash on the fashion scene in Washington, and was named the region’s best shoe store in its first year. Fourteen years later, I have tripled the store’s size and also opened a sister store, The Hive. At The Hive, we offer clothing lines that are sophisticated and approachable like Rag & Bone, Tibi, Raquel Allegra, Ulla Johnson and Veronica Beard. We have tried to fill our racks with clothing you will want to wear all the time, elevated basics that are worth the investment.

Heard the buzz? The Shoe Hive & The Hive are a pair of luxury boutiques in Old Town Alexandria. Featuring both big name designers like Rag & Bone and Stuart Weitzman and smaller brands like AGL and L'Agence, our unique selection and impeccable service are what set us apart.

The Shoe Hive                         The Hive
127 S. Fairfax Street               301 Cameron Street
Alexandria, VA 22314
              Alexandria, VA 22314

703.548.7105                          703.548.7110

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