"I do not claim that I can tell a story as it ought to be told. I only claim to know how a story ought to be told." -Mark Twain









9.25.2013

Pheasants and Fall

 Yes, I am totally aware that every single human in all of Blog-o-sphere put up pictures today of their fall mantels. Suffer through one more....(or not)! 
 This is my third fall mantel at this house. None of them were even remotely alike. Who's to say how long this one will last? Fall is a long season in Oklahoma. It just begins to cool down when others are already thinking about winter mantels. 
 But for the time being it stays. I like it because it is simple, filled with nature and although it has a lot of neutral, it also has subtle color as well. 

 I also love it because my Grandmother needlepointed the pheasant picture for me 30+ years ago. 
 At one time, in a different house, this picture and its companion were in our den. Then we (well me actually!) changed the "hunting" theme from our den and these pictures went into the closet. When we moved into this house a couple of years ago, I was reminded of how pretty the needlepoint actually is. 
 I used the two needlepoint pictures in various places in the house last fall and decided to pull them out again. This time, the lone pheasant got top billing and I placed him front and center on the fireplace. 
 I simply leaned it against the big gold frame I keep on the fireplace. Then I took my Pottery Barn wooden box and placed it right in front of the picture. 
 I filled the PB wooden tray/box with pumpkins and pinecones, feathers and fuzzy spheres. Then I took the twig ball that one of my dogs so kindly unwrapped for me and spread it out over the entire arrangement. I almost had to thank the pup, the "unwrapped" twig ball worked out so well!

 I used two rusted iron urns I got at Nell Hills on each end of the fireplace to hold pumpkins. If you will notice I turned them different directions. Yes, I did that on purpose. I wanted the ends to be similar but not symmetrical. *Did you see my arm photo-bombing the pic??
 Of course, I had to include books somewhere in the mantelscape. That is just a requirement. 
 I think a big vase full of pheasant feathers (say that three times!!) would be lovely with the picture. But for now, my three or four feathers will have to suffice. If you look at this picture from this view, you realize how many individual stitches that picture actually is. 
 So my favorite part of this years Fall Mantel?
 Not just the fact that I repurposed every single thing on the mantel....(like the "unwrapped" twig ball), but even the 30-some year old needlepoint picture my Grandmother made for us because she knew my husband loved to hunt birds. 
 I know she would be pleased that we still have the pictures she did. While we don't have it out all the time, when we pull it out, it gets top billing!
 After all, what sounds better than "Pheasants in the Fall"? 
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6 comments:

  1. Impressive! Really.
    That pheasant needlepoint is just the perfect addition to what might have been a beautiful (but traditional) autumn mantle...

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  3. I certainly didn't suffer seeing your mantel, lol. It's gorgeous! And that needlepoint deserves top billing. I love everything you did. I hope you enjoy it for a while before you change it up again. Makes me jealous that I don't have a mantel. Happy Fall!

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  4. No suffering here. Your needlepoint is a treasure. Lovely display.

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  5. I decorate with pheasants also. That picture is Gorgeous. Your grandmother is surely smiling!!

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  6. It's a beautiful mantel, I love the colors and all of the natural elements you worked in, and especially the unraveled ball :) A lot of people did go online with their fall mantels on September 25, but geez, some were decorating for fall at the end of July. I mean - really! Around here in SE WI, we hold on to summer as long as we can. In fact today I'm playing hookey from the office (don't tell anyone) because it may be the last warm sunny dry day of the season. Amazingly, this past Saturday, I could still hear cicadas buzzing in the trees! Just waiting for the heavy morning dew to dry up and then I'm out in the backyard for the rest of the day. My mantle/mantel went up last Friday night. Way more ambitious than my very first attempt in 2012. The thing about decorating is that you always (or should always) love your own efforts best :) even if others don't necessarily see the intrinsic beauty in your own particular vision... And that's not to say I don't care for your mantel, I think it's great. Just thinking about mine, and how over the top it seems now when looking at yours, ach! And so glad you have saved your grandmother's needlepoint scenes, rendered with so much love. You know, in about 300 years, probably way less because we are such a throw-it-away society now, those hand-rendered needlepoints could be worth a fortune on whatever version of Antiques Roadshow exists at the time. Cherish them, keep them tenderly and safely and pass them along to your descendants. As I've gotten older, I have come to so much appreciate and respect the few things I have from my grandparents. Not intrinsically valuable, per se, but priceless nonetheless.

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