Here at La Villa we are getting into the Christmas spirit – here’s our step by step guide to creating an impressive decorative fireplace.
We are very fortunate to have some magnificent fireplaces at La Villa, each made from locally quarried marble from either Sidobre of Caune Minervois, from where the pink marble in Louis XIV’s Palace of Versailles came from!
Even if you have smaller fireplaces (or perhaps larger) at home, you can create a stunning festive centrepiece by following our step by step guide as we get La Villa well & truly decked for Christmas.
Firstly, choose a colour scheme that suits your room, in our guest lounge we have olive coloured walls so green and red work perfectly (would suggest that two colours is more than enough) – in our restaurant (as you will see below) we use just one colour, gold. Have a variety of sizes of baubles, decorations & lights and have to hand, on an old sheet or towel, your chosen greenery. We use a variety of holly, spruce/fir (which are off-cuts of our Christmas tree) ivy and laurel.
You will need some oasis (they are very inexpensive and your florist will sell them to you if you can’t find them locally) – you also need the trays that they sit in, plus a small roll of green floristry tape too. You must make sure that the oasis are the ones that you soak in water; not the ones used for dried floral arrangements. Run some water in your sink so that you have around 5cm of water – place your oasis in the water and, after a minute, turn them over so they are completely satuarted.
Place these into their plastic trays and secure with tape; placing these on your fireplace.
To make a start, use nice sized branches of spruce/fir for both ends and then a really nice symmetrical piece for the middle (as shown below).
You then simply add more and more greenery – occasionally stepping back from the fireplace to make sure it is balancing.
When you have reached the stage as shown above, start to add some colour with your chosen decorations, as well as the lights.
Continue to decorate and fill in any gaps with greenery (aways symmetrically) so that the blocks of oasis are not visible – et voila !
Remember to top up the oasis with water every few days – you may also need to remove & replace some of the small greenery (the ivy & holly in particular) if, like us, you decorate a few weeks prior to Christmas.
Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas from us both at La Villa de Mazamet – Peter & Mark