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DIY Hydrangea Wreath

DIY Silk Hydrangea Wreath  

I decided to do something a little different for my grandmother for Christmas.  She had commented on a photo of a beautiful hydrangea wreath on my blog and I thought it would be fun to make one for her.  While she was in town for the holidays, we picked out the flowers and ribbon at Hobby Lobby and then I got to work!  I couldn't be easier to put this wreath together.  You'll need 7-8 large silk hydrangeas, wired ribbon, a wreath base, hot glue, scissors, wire cutters and wire.

  1. Lay out your basic design on the wreath to determine placement.
  2. Cut the stems off of your flowers using scissors or wire cutters.  Make sure you save the leaves and don't cut so close to the bloom that it falls apart.
  3. Hot glue your leaves onto your wreath base in a sporadic, but balanced pattern
  4. Hot glue your hydrangea blooms over the leaves in whatever color pattern you'd like.  Make sure they've evenly spaced and you leave room for the bow.
  5. Create a bow with wire or purchase one that's pre-made.   Leave "tails" that are roughly 2 feet long
  6. Hot glue your bow to the empty space on your wreath.
  7. Wrap the ribbon around the hydrangea blooms and secure with dots of hot glue.
  8. Trim the ends of your ribbon.
  9. C'est fini!

 

Garden District stunners shine bright this holiday season

PRC New Orleans Holiday Home Tour, Photo Courtesy Sarah Essex Bradley It's baaaaaack!  Each year, one of my favorite New Orleans events is the Preservation Resource Center's Holiday Home Tour.

This weekend, tourists and locals alike will grab their lattes and get their exercise, walking through the historic Garden District neighborhood, where 8 homes open their doors to the public.

If you're looking for a taste of the good life, the mansions decked out in holiday decor, will have you daydreaming in no time!

Money raised from ticket sales benefits the PRC's wide range of community programs.

A taste of historic New Orleans for your Christmas wish list

Luxury, Inequity & Yellow Fever: Living Legacies and the Story of Old New Orleans You don't have to live in New Orleans to get a bit of the Big Easy under your Christmas tree.  Check out this gorgeous new book from the folks who run the historic Hermann-Grima and Gallier properties!

Photographer and author Kerri McCaffety recounts the days of antebellum New Orleans through glossy photos and some pretty scandalous accounts.  You may recognize her photography from one of my other favorite books... Bryan Batt's Big, Easy Style (yes, THAT Bryan Batt).

Luxury, Inequity & Yellow Fever explores the worlds of those who lived in the noteworthy Hermann-Grima and Gallier homes, including the founding families, enslaved workers, Free People of Color craftsmen, ladies of The Christian Woman’s Exchange and residents of the 20th century rooming house... as well as the staff who keep the properties running today.

If you want a peek inside what life was like for the wealthiest families of the 19th century living in New Orleans' French Quarter, this is it!

Luxury, Inequity & Yellow Fever retails for $45 and is available at bookstores throughout New Orleans, at the Hermann-Grima gift shop, online at Barnes and Noble and on the Hermann-Grima + Gallier Historic Houses website.

 

Background:

Built in 1831 by Samuel Hermann, a German-Jewish immigrant who quickly amassed (and lost) his fortune in the commodities market, the Hermann-Grima House, located at 820 Saint Louis Street, is one of the most significant residences in New Orleans. Generations of New Orleans’ notable Grima family resided on the property from the 1840s until the 1920s.

The Gallier House at 1132 Royal Street was designed and built in 1857 by James Gallier, Jr., one of the most prominent architects of 19th century New Orleans.

The Woman’s Exchange purchased the Hermann-Grima House in 1924 and acquired the Gallier House in 1996. Their mission is to continue the legacy of the Christian Woman’s Exchange, established in 1881, by restoring and maintaining the houses, and interpreting their contribution to and place in New Orleans.

From blogging about homes to selling them!

St Philip Condo It's official!  I'm a licensed real estate agent in Louisiana!

I've been a lover of homes forever and have pondered selling them for years now.  So finally, I decided to bite the bullet.  I'm working with the amazingly talented Jon Huffman, who's not only my broker, but also my former co-anchor on Good Morning New Orleans.

So, if you're in the market to buy or sell a home in the New Orleans area, I'd be happy to help.  In the meantime, check out these pics of a stunner that caught my eye in the French Quarter.  The exposed brick is to-die-for!

 

Winding Down in Wine Country

Chandelier hanging in tree at Viansa Winery Summer is finally over and Joe and I just returned from our last trip of the year to sunny California.  We visited family in Sacramento and fêted our dear friends Mike and Maggie in Sonoma.  Living in New Orleans, we don't get many chances to go wine tasting, so we packed as many stops as possible into a sliver of free time!

Our wine country tour focused around the Carneros Region of Sonoma Valley.  The area is just south of the town of Sonoma, off Highway 121, and makes some of the most delicious sparkling wines you've tasted.  We began our day early at Viansa, where for $10 a person, we sampled their reserve offerings and for $45, brought home a bottle of Cabernet.  The winery is impeccably landscaped and offers sweeping views from the rustic terrace dotted with tables, chairs, strings of lights and chandeliers in the trees.  We sipped, shopped, relaxed and strolled through the vineyards before moving on.

10 minutes up the road you'll find Gloria Ferrer- an expansive estate of the famed Ferrer family, who's been wine-making in Spain since the 16th century!  You may be familiar with their largest brand, Freixenet.  Much like the family she married into, Gloria has a knack for sparkling wine.  Her Pinot Noir-based bubbly, Blanc de Noirs is their most award-winning variety and offered a tasty start to our tour of the facility.  The $20 per person tour lasted roughly an hour and explored different varieties of sparkling wine as well as the wine-making process.

Last, but certainly not least, we made our way to Cornerstone Winery for Mike and Maggie's wedding.  It was a drastic departure from our previous stops.  In lieu of Tuscan architecture, Cornerstone boasts modern art and labyrinth-like gardens.  Everywhere you look there's a sculpture or art installation, intricately woven between shrub-lined walkways.  The ceremony overlooked a modern lily pond, dinner took place inside a tent filled with farm tables, and dancing spilled out of the barn and into windmills on the large lawn.

By the time Joe and I stumbled back to our hotel room, our heads were spinning from all the excitement of the fabulous day... and maybe all that wine as well!