Saturday, December 14, 2013

A Driftwood Centerpiece - Coastal Holiday Ideas

This holiday season, I finally admitted that I needed a little help with maintaining our site and customer service phone calls.  So lucky to have found Serena!  She's a beach girl that enjoys life in Santa Cruz, her specialty is creating fabulous art and jewelry from sea glass and found beach treasures from here on our Northern California Coast.

I am also lucky, because she brought me a big tin of homemade cookies this week, along with a wonderful driftwood centerpiece filled with brilliant succulents for the holidays.

Here are Serena's notes with details on how you could create your own driftwood and cactus planter. Great gift idea for people that forget to water, like me!

For the driftwood planter select a piece of driftwood that has a flat spot on the bottom or knots that will keep the piece stable, you don't want it rolling off the table once it's planted! Choose the area you want to be hollowed out and mark it with a pencil.  

I drilled multiple holes in the driftwood with my drill press to make a channel to put plants inside. Succulents, or cacti are a great choice since they don't need much watering! Don't drill all the way through the wood, leave at least a 1/2" undrilled. I used a piece of rough grit sandpaper to smooth down the edges and the inside. If you have time and you'd like to seal the inside with a waterproof stain that's a good idea. This takes several coats and needs to dry overnight. Or you can just use mini pots to fit into the channel and plant inside the pots. If you haven't waterproofed your planter then just water it outside and let it dry and then bring it inside. 

Another tip; you could use a heavy plastic garbage can liner, cut it to size so it fits just below the edge of your planter. You don't want it to show. I used some peat moss to cover the mini terracotta pots that I placed inside the planter. Another fun idea is to use some floral wire and cut it to the height that you'd like your decorations to be inside the planter and then glue some shells, starfish, sea glass, or other sea inspired treasures to your wire and poke into the planted pots. This adds another level of beachy flare to your design!

I love mine!

Friday, December 13, 2013

A Sea Shell Display for the Holidays - Coastal Holiday Ideas

I know you all have seen this idea before, but it's still one of my favorites!

Sent to me by my good friend Lynda of Focal Point Styling - a shop display in Scottsdale, Arizona.  Love the mix of seashells and vintage holiday ornaments!

(I think from Pottery Barn?)
From simple and beach rustic, to over the top glamorous, with a dash of nautical thrown in; you just can't go wrong with filling a large seashell (faux or real) with Christmas ornaments, silver and gold elements, seashells, potpourri and greenery to create something magical for the holiday season.

Here are a few of the inspiring rooms and decorating ideas that I've been collecting on our Coastal Holiday
Pinterest Board.  Enjoy!

Southern Living

From Decor Pad

 I know that I will be adding my favorite glitter sea shell ornaments to my sea shell bowl! Will show you all the results next week -

(Disclaimer: All of the other sources can be found on our Pinterest Coastal Holiday Page - none of the photography is mine)

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Caron's Holiday Bookshelf - Coastal Holiday Ideas

I am a big believer in mixing holiday elements with my regular every day decorating at our home. Makes it a little bit easier, and I can still display some of my favorite functional pieces that we use all of the time.

Here are a few peaks from our bookshelf in our 1960's era apartment! I am so lucky to have a large, built-in bookshelf that we can change up all of the time with our favorite cook books, decorating books and of course my large "found" sea glass and shell collection.

See - pretty easy!  Added a few Christmas ornaments from my former Caron's Beach Cottage collection and Christmas candles to my every day shell collection bamboo bowl and voila' - a holiday centerpiece!

The tiny glitter tree is from Trader Joe's, my go-to for small fresh seasonal floral goodies, and the salmon platter was a gift to Tom on one of my many forays into Pike Place Market.

Have a great Wednesday!

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Driftwood Holiday Decor - 20 Days of Coastal Holiday Ideas

Before we run off today to find our own piece of driftwood to use for our holiday decorations, I thought I would share some of my inspiration collection!  

 From HGTV, such a simple idea.  You could add any color of ornaments to match your decor - or this could be a really cool idea to show off your favorite ornaments that might get lost on your tree every year! 

A driftwood and white shell garland from Beachcomber Home

An adorable Driftwood Tree from our friends at The Coastal Collection

Love these driftwood hearts!  I can't begin to try and cut pieces of wood, (I would cut off a finger - ask my kids!) but how about attaching some favorite shells to interesting beachcombed driftwood? Hmmmm....

 A simple driftwood and starfish wreath with holiday elements added!

From Completely-Coastal - two fun ideas for driftwood!

Painted Driftwood Ornaments from Sea Gypsy
 A simple driftwood and starfish wreath with holiday elements added!

Possibilities are endless with a little imagination and creativity! 

Beach-washed driftwood is one of my favorite natural beach elements to bring into our home, a reminder of the sea and the day that we found it washed up on the shore....

Have a great Saturday!   

Friday, December 6, 2013

A Christmas Cocktail -Coastal Holiday Ideas

Because it's Friday (yay!), we are kicking off our 20 days of Coastal Holiday Ideas with a Candy Cane Martini. So festive, pretty and should be fairly easy to pull off to impress holiday guests!

(Recipe  and image from Coastal Living Magazine 2009 - 
Photo: Howard L. Puckett; Styling: Lindsey Ellis Beatty)


1 1/4 ounces vanilla vodka
  • 1 1/4 ounces white crème de cacao
  • 3/4 ounce peppermint schnapps
  • Garnish: peppermint candy
  • Preparation
  • Combine vanilla vodka, white creme de cacao, and peppermint schnapps in an ice-filled cocktail shaker. Shake vigorously, and strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with peppermint candy.
  • It's beginning to feel a bit more Christmassy (is that a word?) here in San Francisco! It's COLD!!   Maybe this fun little treat will warm us up tonight...
Happy Friday!

P.S.  Gives me a chance to use my Starfish Martini Glasses!  Super Festive look for a Coastal Holiday Celebration - 

Relax and Live at the Beach Every Day of the Year!

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