Country Living Does a Clean and Simple Christmas

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I don’t usually buy Country Living Magazine—it’s not quite my style—but this month’s Christmas features are really tickling my fancy. Isn’t this vignette just phenomenal? I’m a sucker for the PK22 Easy Chair under any circumstances. But throw in a Jacobean pine floor, vintage linen pillows, and a spartan evergreen wreathe hanging in the window, and I’m a goner.

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Winter fruit makes such a striking statement both as a centerpiece and as a casual accompaniment to a banister garland. I’m reminded of ‘A Little House on the Prairie’, in which the most prized Christmas present is a piece of fruit. Of course in that book it’s an orange, but any fruit this time of year is such a treat, a vibrant sign of life in winter’s chill. (What am I talking about? I live in California and snack on juicy local grapes every day…)

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These bed linens are a perfect example of why I don’t often read Country Living: a bit too rustic meets frou-frou for my taste. But I do love that striped pillow front and center, and I just adore the baby tree wrapped in burlap on the nightstand. Plus those broad plank floors are to die for, no?

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As I child, I could never decide which I loved more: our nativity scene or our wooden Noah’s ark. If we’d had this beauty, the choice would have been clear indeed. Check out those little penguins in the foreground! Just ditch the needlepoint sampler in favour of a fine art photograph, trade in some clear glass balls for the tree, and I’d be a happy Christmas camper indeed!

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All images courtesy of Country Living Magazine, December 2008.

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23 Responses to “Country Living Does a Clean and Simple Christmas”

  1. vicki archer Says:

    These scenes are absolutely adorable – so simple but full of the spirit of Christmas. Lovely post, xv.

  2. please sir Says:

    Oh I love all these ideas – natural and simple – perfect!

  3. Julia Says:

    You’re so right..it’s country but with a streak of simple and modern. I love all the details

  4. Luphia Says:

    agree with you on the chairs Anne, they are gorgeous on their own, teamed up with some vintage pillows? almost impossible to resist!
    love the fruits too, i can just imaging myself picking up one & eating it while going up or down stairs 😉

  5. stephanie Says:

    I love that top photo.
    Country Living is such a mixed bag, but I still check it out because every so often they have something unexpectedly great.

  6. Miss Aimee Says:

    simple. love those natural cacky pillows with the reed stripe too.all so pretty!!

  7. Miss Aimee Says:

    See my blog: I would love to see your Practical Christmas Wish List! Have a great day!

  8. Georgia Says:

    pears on the stairs! i love that simple little touch that achieves so much! if i had a house like that and did that on my stairs, when family came over to visit, they would laugh me out of my own house for that maneuver. they just wouldn’t get something like that. but i do!
    and, can i just say how much i love that green industrial pendant lamp over the table? i have ALWAYS wanted one of those ever since the first time i saw one! such a great look!
    happy Monday, Anne!
    (Christmas is coming!!!!!)

  9. sushi2 Says:

    I love those pictures. Isn’t it interesting how the interpretation of Country Living is so broad. It’s country with a modern twist.

  10. Maggie @ Eat, Drink, Marry Says:

    It’s funny – my mom subscribes to ‘Country Living,’ and I’ve had more than a few “but wait, I love this living room too!” moments with her magazines. Who knew?!
    I’m in agreement, though – this holiday decor is divine.

  11. megan Says:

    wow, i adore this post and these photos. I never would have thought that clean and simply could turn out so pretty! I’m definitely starting to appreciate the understatements!

  12. Cupcakes and Cashmere Says:

    that little guest room with the red bedding looks so cozy and festive, i love it!

  13. Liz@VioletPosy Says:

    I bought Country Living here for that article too! I love the wreaths and wide floor planks. I swear I’m having flooring like that in our next house. My husband won’t let me look at/buy anything older than 300 years (only because he wants a Georgian House), but all the 500 year old plus houses have floor planks like that! But you never know I just need to find one that isn’t falling down 🙂

  14. ambika Says:

    Wow, I would not have guessed these images came from Country Living. Very clean & modern but still very homey & comfortable. Just goes to show clean & modern doesn’t have to mean cold.

  15. Joy Says:

    This is sooooooooo beautiful & wonderfully inspiring!!! I want a little loft after looking at this!!
    Glad I found your blog!!

  16. Melissa Says:

    p.s. Four Christmases was really funny too!

  17. Jackie Says:

    I saw this in the recent issue and thought it was nice. I am definitely digging simplicity lately. I too have mixed feeling on the mag, I am letting my subscription run out because it goes a bit overboard on the super “country” country look. Ha! Does that make sense? Not enough modern country for my liking.

  18. rachel Says:

    I love it. I love the simple rustic country elements mixed with the contemporary.
    And you’re right – the floors are absolutely to die for!!!!
    Isn’t it funny how sometimes you can find the coolest spreads and ideas in places you wouldn’t normally have looked??

  19. Courtney Says:

    I absolutely love these images- the floors, the pears, the greenery, the red and white stripe linens… all of it is so simple, yet beautiful.

  20. dolce chic Says:

    Love the photos. My mom subscribes to this magazine, and I’m surprised I like quite a bit of what’s in the magazine too!

  21. christina Says:

    i love this! i don’t normally go for country living, either, but this is a great story. also, i love all the uses of the vintage grain sacks {the striped pillows in the living room & bedroom and the runner on the dining room table}. i recently bought several vintage grain or flour sacks on ebay to use to make dog beds! love it.

  22. shill Says:

    i have missed so much of your wonderful posts!!! love the miniature animals, adorable!and those pears.truly inspirational 🙂

  23. liso Says:

    ooh, i agree…usually country is a leetle too country, but when it’s kept this simple, *sigh*.
    this year i’ve been loving and contemplating the super simple evergreen. love it in these pics as well. thanks!

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