christmas

Blue and Gold Christmas Shabby Chic Table

This year I was looking for for a slight twist for our Christmas table and settled on a blue and gold palate using lots of vintage pieces. This was a subtle, subdued table that looked great in both the evening and day time.

We trust you enjoy our blue and gold Christmas table.

Julie

Blue and Gold Christmas Table

The place settings included a vintage red and gold Christmas setting by Meakin and vintage champagne glasses filled with blue and gold ornaments.

Blue and gold Christmas Table - Use Vintage Champagne Glasses filled with Baubles

A vintage gold candlestick was adorned with blue birds and the centre of the table was filled with meters of gold beads, gold candles and a vintage glass blue bowl filled with chocolates.

Blue and Gold Christmas ideas

Use lots of gold beads to decorate the table

Our table cloth was made from heavy upholstery fabric, it is a subtle blue with florals and birds.

Blue and Gold Christmas - Explore upholstery fabrics for table cloths

Finishing touches includes blue and purple Singapore orchids and brass deers

Singapore Orchids can add colour

Brass deers grace the table top

While this was photographed in the evening, the colour palate works wonderfully in the day light.

Blue and Gold Christmas table decorating ideas

Nutcracker Christmas table ideas

This year we wanted a change from our traditional Christmas Table Setting, after some careful deliberation we decided on a Nutcracker Christmas table.  This table setting allows for some creative arrangements and a lot of fun.

We trust you enjoy our Nutcracker Christmas

Julie

Nutcracker Christmas Table

We decided on gold chargers and flatware and added a vintage white, gold and burgundy dinner set.  Each place setting was topped with a nutcracker.

Nutcracker Christmas table Place Setting

Our table centre piece was a very large nutcracker, we used a berry garland around the base.

Nutcracker Christmas Table Centre Piece

We used small pine cone candles to throw shadows on the table.

Nutcracker Christmas Table

Large wooden candle sticks were decorated with Christmas greenery and berries .  Small red bows were attached to the stems of our glassware.

Nutcracker Candle Ideas

Christmas Wine Glasses

We used a large selection of nut crackers in various sizes and colours.

Nutcracker Christmas table idea

A musical nutcracker was placed in a bowl of walnuts and a small nut cracker perched on the base of the candlestick.

Christmas Musical Nutcracker

Christmas Nutcracker Candle

I decided on black and gold flocked bon bons and a checked table runner.

Christmas Nutcracker Table Ideas

The table looked wonderful during the evening with a lovely warm glow from the candles.

Christmas Table Nutcracker Ideas

Christmas Table Nutcracker Ideas

Our sideboard held our favourite deer, more nutcrackers and everyones favourite chocolates

Christmas Sideboard Nutcracker decoration ideas

Christmas Table Setting Red and Gold - Christmas Decorations

We all absolutely love Christmas, a time of year to relax with family and friends and enjoy great food and company.  This year our table setting is rustic red and gold using lots of berries, pine cones and leaves.

Enjoy  Julie 

Christmas Table Setting Red and Gold Design

Table decorations include a large gold moose, red and gold pine cones, gold leaves and red berries.

Christmas Table Rustic Red and Gold

We alternated the table settings between gold and red with opposing bon bons.  This Christmas we used gold flatware.

Christmas Table Place Setting 

Christmas Table Place Setting

Small brass deers and gold tea candles were used among the foliage.

Christmas Table Setting Rustic Red and Gold Design

We decorated stemware with berries and holly leaves.  Long strands of berries were twirled around tall red wooden candles.

Christmas Stemware with Berries

Christmas Candles with Berries

The table looked wonderful both during the day and the evening when the candles all started sparkling.

Christmas Table Setting Red and Gold Rustic Design

A lovely vintage glass pedestal dish was a great option for mince tarts.

Christmas Table Setting Red and Gold Design

We decorated the sideboard with red and gold deers and a wonderful gold Christmas tree.

Christmas Table Red and Gold Design with Deers

Metallic chain and red string lights where thread into the design, this also looked wonderful during the day and the evening.

Christmas Sideboard Red and Gold

Christmas Sideboard Red and Gold

Christmas Sideboard Red and Gold

Christmas Pudding - A must have Christmas Dessert

I remember as a young child the delights of the Christmas Pudding being bought to the table with a jug of brandy custard.  In those days my grand mother used to hide her precious collection of threepence in the pudding and it was good luck to find one.  I now feel is was even better luck to find one without breaking a tooth or consuming the threepence.

This is a very old family recipe that has only received a couple of minor tweaks over the years.  It is not for the faint hearted cook as it does require a long looking time, but it us absolutely delicious.

Enjoy

Christmas Pudding

Recipe: 

Ingredients

  • 250g raisins
  • 250g sultanas
  • 185g currants
  • 185g dates
  • 3 - 4 tablespoons brandy
  • 250g butter
  • 2 cups brown sugar firmly packed
  • 5 large eggs
  • 250g plain flour (sifted)
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon - ground
  • 1 teaspoon mixed spice
  • 200g fresh breadcrumbs (Use day old white bread)
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 - 4 tablespoons of extra flour 
  • 1 pudding cloth and tie

Method

  1. Cut the raisins and dates to the same size as the sultanas.
  2. Mix the fruit together, add brandy and stir well.
  3. Cover with glad wrap and leave overnight.
  4. Next Day
  5. Cream the butter and sugar.
  6. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well.
  7. Add the fruit and mix well.
  8. Add all dried ingredients including the bread crumbs and mix well.
  9. Boil the pudding cloth for 10 minutes and allow to cool.
  10. Fill a large boiler 3/4 with water and bring to the boil.
  11. Lay the pudding cloth on the bench and sprinkle the centre with the extra flour to approximately 35 cm diameter.
  12. Place the cloth in a large colander.
  13. Spoon in the pudding mixture.  Pull the sides of the cloth together and tie with string as close to the pudding as possible.  Make a loop in the string for easy hanging
  14. Lower the pudding into the boiling water and boil for 5 hours.  Top up the pot with extra boiling water every 30 minutes.
  15. When cooked, carefully remove the pudding from the pot with the handle of a wooden spoon.  Allow the pudding to hang, swinging freely and not touching any surface.  Note:  I do this by hanging the pudding on a broom stick over the laundry sink.  Twist, or peg the loose ends of the cloth to the string so they do not touch the pudding.
  16. Allow the pudding the hang for a few days
  17. Transfer the pudding to a plate, remove string and secure with glad wrap.  Place in the fridge until Christmas eve.
  18. Christmas Eve / Day
  19. Remove the pudding from the fridge on Christmas Eve.
  20. A few hours before the pudding is required bring a large boiler 3/4 filled with water to the boil.
  21. Retie the pudding with string, and include a good loop.
  22. Lower the pudding into the water and boil for 1 1/2 hours, topping with boiling water every 30 minutes.
  23. When cooked, gently remove the pudding from the water and suspend for 15 minutes.
  24. Working quickly, transfer the pudding to a plate, cut the string, gently remove the cloth and transfer to a serving plate.
  25. Allow to stand for 20 minutes before serving.
  26. I find this pudding is best served with brandy custard.
  27. Enjoy

Note: I try and make the pudding 4 weeks before Christmas, but it can be done as late as 2 weeks with good results

Christmas Fruit Skewers with Santa Hats

During a hot Australian Christmas, a good display of fruit skewers will be greatly appreciated and liven up your Christmas Table.

These were simple to make, I started with pressing star shapes from water melon and green rock melon then made a santa hat with a grape, slice of banana, strawberry and mini marshmallow.

The skewers were then placed in a pineapple (tip: make a hole with a metal skewer, then insert the bamboo skewer).  The pineapple was topped with a gold bow and star and the base was covered in tinsil.

Enjoy 

Christmas Fruit Skewers

Christmas Fruit Skewer

Christmas Fruit Skewer

All that Glitter - Christmas Bauble

To compliment my Gold and White Christmas Table Setting I've found an exquisite gold ribbon bauble.  These baubles are made by Emily, from All that Glitter .  The baubles come in a variety of colours and they can be personalised with a beaded name and year charm. They look great on the tree and would make a great Christmas gift option.

I know I'll be ordering more next year - enjoy.

All that Glitter - Christmas Bauble

Christmas Table traditional Gold and White Design

This year I've created a traditional Gold and White Christmas Table.  This colour combination delivers  a very sophisicated look but also lets you inject fun elements for the children.  To create this look start with a good quality white table cloth and then add design elements in various hues of gold and different heights and sizes.

This year we created free printable blank name place tents and napkin wraps, they are available for download here.

Enjoy

Christmas Table Gold and White design

The place settings have been created using gold chargers and gold cutlery, I've added gold bon bon's in a couple of patterns and a wonderful vintage gold christmas ornaments.

Christmas place setting, gold and white design

The larger elements on the Christmas table have been semetrically set to provide a more traditional look to the table.  Candle sticks, deers and mini gold Christmas trees grace each end with a wonderful tall gold christmas tree as a centre piece.

Christmas Table, traditional gold and white design

Once the larger elements are in place, use tinsel and a good combination of smaller gold christmas ornaments to add texture and interest to the table.  I've included gold glitter  battery tea lights running through the centre of the table, these look wonderful as evening approaches.

Christmas Table, Gold and White design

To complement our Gold and White Christmas Table we've created printable blank name tents and napkin rings as a free download.  

Christmas Gold and White free printables

Use small gold baubles and wire wine glass circles to decorate your stem ware. 

Christmas Table Gold and White design

I really like the use of deers at Christmas time and you will usually find one of two on my Christmas table.

Christmas table - Gold and White design

Run gold beaded string around the table in continuous loops to link in the place settings.

Christmas Table - Traditional Gold and White

Traditional Gold and White Christmas Table

Extend the gold string to all four corners and connect gold baubles.  I've used the same bauble placed at each dinner setting.

Traditional Gold and White Christmas Table

Traditional Gold and White Christmas table

The sideboard is also very gold and white.  I placed lots of gold baubles in a cake dome which has provided a lot if interest on the sideboard.

Christmas Gold and White Sideboard

Christmas cake dome with bauble decorations

Christmas Table Gold and White Design

Christmas Bauble Cookies

At this time of year I'm always looking for Christmas themed snacks to take to class parties and other Christmas events.  This year I've make Christmas Bauble Cookies, iced them with bright colours and added decorations using a mixture of gel icing and cachous balls.  The children all loved these Christmas Bauble Cookies.

Add Christmas Bauble Cookies to your Christmas recipe box.

Enjoy 

Christmas Bauble Cookies

Recipe: Sugar Cookies

Ingredients

  • 250g butter, at room temprature
  • 1 1/4 cups caster sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 cups plain flour, sifted

Method

  1. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  I use an electric mixer for these cookies with a paddle attachment.
  2. Add the egg and continue beating.
  3. Add the Vanilla, salt and about 1/2 a cup of flour at a time and mix until a ball of dough has formed.
  4. Pat the dough into a disc shape, cover with cling wrap and place in the fridge for approx 1 hour.
  5. Preheat over to 180c and line two baking trays with baking paper
  6. On a floured surface, roll about a 1/4 of the dough at a time into a circle about 5 ml thick.
  7. Use cookie cutters to cut into the desired shape.
  8. Place on the baking paper and bake for 10 - 15 minutes until the edges are slightly brown.
  9. Transfer to a wire rack to completely cool before icing.

Recipe: Royal icing

Ingredients

  • 500g pure icing sugar, sifted
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup water
  • food colouring

Method

  1. Mix the icing sugar and lemon juice in a bowl with a half of the water.
  2. Continue to add water until the icing is well combined but not too runny.
  3. Divide the icing into smaller bowls and add food colour a drop at a time until you reach your desired colour
  4. Ice and decorate your cookies
  5. Enjoy

Kerstkransjes - Wicked Wednesday

Today my children's school celebrated Harmony day.  Harmony day is a highlight of the school year and is a day to recognise and celebrate cultural diversity.  

A key part of this day is a special class lunch where the children each bring a dish that best represents their culture.  For our children they drew from my husbands family line (Dutch) and we've made some delightful cookies.  They are actually Christmas Wreath Cookies or Kerstkransjes.   We've made these a few times now, they are easy to make and loved by the children and teachers.

So this week is not so wicked, but a good harmony day option if you have a Dutch heritage.

Enjoy.

Kerstkransjes - Dutch Christmas Wreath Cookies

Kerstkransjes - Dutch Christmas Wreath Cookies

Recipe:

Ingredients:  Makes over 30

  • 160 g Butter (softened)
  • 2/3 cups Sugar
  • Grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 egg
  • 2 1/2 cups plain flour (shifted)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • Glace Cherries
  • Almond Slivers
  • 1/4 cup milk

Method

  1. Pre heat oven to 180 c.
  2. Cream the butter and sugar.
  3. Add the lemon zest and egg.
  4. Slowly add the flour and baking powder.
  5. Mix until well combined and lightly knead.
  6. Wrap in cling wrap and leave in the fridge for 1 hour.
  7. Roll out segments approx. 5 ml thick.
  8. Cut out cookies using a wreath shaped cookie cutter.
  9. Decorate with a glace cherry (I cut the cherries in half first) and Almond slivers
  10. Brush with the milk.
  11. Bake on a tray lined with baking paper for 10 - 15 minutes.
  12. Enjoy.

 

Flaschengeist Christmas Trees

Flaschengeist Christmas Tree

Flaschengeist Christmas Tree

I recently attended a Flaschengeist party, this was my first Flaschengeist party and I was really impressed with the quality of the products and the beautiful presentation.  

They have a wonderful range of liqueurs and oils in delightfully shaped bottles that you could keep for years.  I could not resist this pair of Christmas tree liqueurs in vivid red (Watermelon Vodka Liqueur) and green (Melon Liqueur).  

This pair would make a wonderful Christmas gift, or just perfect to keep.  Flaschengeist have an on-line shop but it was a lot of fun at the party, and more importantly you were able to sample the wonderful products. Enjoy.

 

Vendor Credits

Flaschengeist - Watermelon Vodka Liqueur and Melon Liqueur