Serving His CountryMeet the Hunt family. They are a close-knit family who is about to experience their first Christmas apart when father and husband Tim leaves for an 18-month tour of Afghanistan. Tim's wife wants to give her husband a special Christmas before he departs for service. Host Joan Steffend and designers Shayne Barsness and Kelli Kaufer are planning a holiday makeover for the living and dining rooms that will embrace both tradition and elegance. Shayne is in charge of the living room, while Kelli takes care of sprucing up the dining room.
Comfortable EleganceDesigners Shayne and Kelli created two special holiday-inspired rooms for less than $500 each and some help from host Joan Steffend and carpenter Jeff Meyer.
The living room makeover starts with a coat of vanilla paint to create a winter-white palette. Large vertical stripes painted with a mixture of glaze and silver metallic paint add some elegant glitz to the walls. The far accent wall is painted a soft, mossy green. A new chandelier is hung in the center of the room to brighten up the space even more.
A pair of old window panes is given new life with some inspiring holiday words. Frosted self-adhesive paper is applied and the words Love, Hope, Joy and Peace are stenciled onto the glass. A freeform Christmas tree is also drawn onto the paper and then cut out. Soapy water is used to peel off the paper.
Living Room Paint – $22, Lighting – $44 and Window Panes – $77
wall paint: Ralph Lauren's Aubusson Silver, purchased at Home Depot
Chandelier: Lowe's – Bijou, 130314
LoveseatA new textured rug is laid down to anchor the seating area. The homeowners' love seat is re-covered in a winter-white fabric. The cushions are covered in a washable, coordinating fabric.
Loveseat Slipcovers – $31 and Rug – $50
slipcover fabric for sofa, fusible web, silver ribbon: Mill End Textiles
Shutters and WreathsThe shutters are painted, then artificially aged with glaze and tint. Stylish holiday wreaths are crafted from white plastic ceiling medallions that were painted red and then rubbed with gold and silver to burnish the color. The wreaths are hung from the lower portion of the shutters with moss-green ribbons. On the upper section of the shutters, family photos are hung in a frames-in-frames design.
Shutters and Wreaths – $26
ceiling medallion for wall decoration: Menards
ValanceShayne creates personalized, monogrammed valances. She starts by shrinking an old wool sweater to get good-quality felted wool. Shapes and letters are cut from the felted wool and then embroidered onto the fabric-covered valance box.
Living Room Window Treatment – $61
Family Crest TrayA color copy of the crest gets cut into pieces and then the pieces are laid out in a mosaic pattern and decoupaged onto the tray.
The stockings are hung with care on a cleverly designed architectural wall hanging. A decorative coat rack is given new knobs and then fastened to the center of an old cabinet door hung on its side.
Tray with Family Crest – $5, Stocking Mantel – $8 and Accessories – $63
Side ChairsTwo chairs picked up for free from an estate sale are re-covered in winter-white fabric to match the loveseat. Holiday shapes are cut from wool felt and embroidered onto decorative throw pillows.
Ribbon tassels, handmade ornaments and family photos in silver frames make the Christmas tree sparkle. The tree is only lightly decorated, so the family can enjoy the tradition of decorating it themselves. An easy tree skirt was fashioned out of a round tablecloth, a slip and wool felt. The slip is sewn onto the tablecloth, then the wool is embroidered on top.
Sweater Pillows – $16, Chair Slipcovers – $51, Ornaments – $15 and Tree Skirt – $6
Dining TableKelli starts by sanding down the well-worn table. Two coats of red paint go in the center of the tabletop and two coats of black on the edges and legs. The table is sanded again before a dark stain is applied. Finally, a couple of coats of polyurethane and wax complete the job. When the table re-enters the room, it is placed on a new cream-colored rug.
Traditional-looking valances add even more sophistication to the room. Jeff builds scalloped valance boxes then covers them in a red and cream, almost toile-like fabric.
On each side of one window hangs family photos from Christmases gone by. The photos were blown up and transferred to black and white, which makes them really pop against the warm red walls.
Dining Table – $12, Window Treatments – $81 and Framed Photos – $18
furniture wax: Rockler – black bison
Rub N' Buff: Michaels – Amaco
red and white damask print fabric for valance: JoAnn
BuffetsTwo slightly-damaged contemporary consoles were transformed into a set of traditional-style buffets. Jeff removed drawers and doors, added new tabletops and new stain to create the set. Above each buffet hangs a black-framed mirror.
Buffets – $150 and Mirrors – $70
Greeting Card HolderScrews are inserted halfway on a piece of plywood in a grid pattern. This serves as the template to make the wire rack. Heavy wire is run across the grid and wrapped around every screw. The screws are removed and the wire rack is lifted from the plywood. The rack is hung in front of a wall mirror and holiday greeting cards are attached to the wire using little silver clips.
Greeting Card Display – $15
TablescapeAn old chandelier is repurposed into a centerpiece. The bottom of the fixture is cut off so it will stand flat on the table. Foam, moss and tapered candles are embellished with evergreens and berries. Ordinary stemware is painted with permanent glass paint for some holiday spirit.
Tablescape – $25 and Accessories – $25