These Charming Country Homes Capture The Magic Of Christmas
Country homes, cottages and cabins are especially enchanting during the holiday season. A retreat set on snow-blanketed fields or overlooking an icy lake is picturesque, especially when all the windows are lit up, and the fireplace is freshly stoked inside. Get inspired by these rustic holiday getaways that will make you want to spend Christmas in the country.
With its stone walls and rustic beams, this space is a perfect stand-in for the quaint U.K. cottage in the popular Nancy Meyers’ movie, The Holiday. A few feathery fir branches cut from the property, oversized pine cones, and simple floral arrangements suit the pure and simple country vibe, and are all that’s needed to dress up this space.
A lush Douglas fir is the fitting focal point in this room. The tree is simply adorned with white lights, and homeowner Andraya Frith makes the traditional dried orange slice ornaments herself for an eco-friendly take on holiday decorating.
Learn how to make Andraya’s DIY: Dried Orange Holiday Ornaments.
A garland harvested from nearby trees embellishes a doorway. An evergreen velvet pillow is a subtle way to introduce a holiday vibe on the neutral sofa, and the roaring fire makes it hard to leave this room in winter, Andraya notes.
There’s hardly any chance that Santa is going to skip delivery in this charming attic bedroom. Metal baskets hold gift-wrapped pyjamas that every child gets to open on Christmas morning, while a row of wooden nutcrackers keep watch from the windowsill.
A guest room fireplace is given a Scandi spin with a pretty blue and white palette. Bookshelves were removed to accommodate stores of chopped wood, and a charming garland of dried citrus slices adds a note of seasonal cheer.
Learn how to make Andraya’s DIY: Dried Orange Holiday Garland.
In the principal bedroom, a cedar garland is casually draped across the rustic headboard. A cozy plaid toss pillow enlivens neutral bedding.
It’s always a nice touch to pull out family heirlooms around the holidays, such as this hand-painted set of tiny houses on the sill, depicting a North Pole scene. Simple homemade wreaths decorate purposely bare windows in the living area. “I like a natural look, and nothing I could add is better than the view,” says Andraya.
The interior of former fashion designer Lorren Leveille’s Prince Edward County home was inspired by a magazine spread of a 17th-century stone house in England, decorated exclusively in chalky white tones.
Accent colors look even more vibrant in a envelope that’s as pure as the driven snow. A spruce wreath dresses up the bare windows of the salvaged 19th-century barn doors, while the frosty look of velvet pillows and a seeded eucalyptus arrangement enhance the cabin’s winter wonderland vibe.
On Lorren’s tree, candy-colored vintage ornaments, a pressed-tin star garland and gifts tied with wide bows add festive color in the white-on-white cabin. Muted turquoise and pink gift wrap, topped with a luxe, old school velvet or grosgrain bow, is a soft, unexpected combo under the tree.
The mellow, battered, thrift-shop furnishings impart a gentle warmth and ease to spaces. Humble, patinated pressed-tin ornaments strung on rustic twine are a low-key alternative to tinsel. A sprinkling of mercury glass and greenery adds sparkle and life to a table.
In designer Grace Castaneda’s weekend home in on the Niagara Escarpment, she gravitates towards battered surfaces and rough-hewn reclaimed furnishings. Rustic burlap stockings and plenty of greenery — including a tree, wreath and long boxwood garland — inject some Christmas cheer while maintaining the home’s neutral, clean palette.
A dense pine cone garland defines the railing, while an evergreen tucked in a corner and simply adorned with white lights suits the spare decor of the home.
To give her dining room a holiday vibe, Grace topped her table with warm metal flatware, and a teal burlap tablecloth trimmed with gold bullion fringe for a luxe touch. A magnolia leaf wreath hung by a swath of burlap creates a quiet Belgian country house look.
This country home has a bit of a pedigree: it was designed by prominent 20th-century architect B. Napier Simpson Jr., a heritage conservationist who designed noteworthy houses in Toronto and Caledon, Ontario. An elaborate spray of boxwood boughs mixed with other greenery accents is featured on the fieldstone fireplace.
A lush evergreen wreath is a natural accompaniment to barnboard wall sliding and hand-hewn ceiling beams in the dining room.
There’s no better spot to schedule a long winter’s nap than this principal bedroom. A luxe throw and velvet pillows keep things cozy.
This Southern Alberta farmhouse is located in the heart of horse country, but still has a bit of a French twist. A grouping of potted Amaryllis livens up the French country table, while greenery pops against the hearth of the large wood-burning fireplace.
Greenery takes center stage in the living room thanks to a soaring Christmas tree and stuffed wicker basket overflowing with sugar pinecones, as well as Scotch pine and cedar boughs on the coffee table.
When a staircase is this spectacular, it makes sense to dress it for the occasion. A white oak staircase welcomes guests at the entrance of the home with a lush, merry garland that runs the length of the bannister.
Not all Christmas trees have to be huge, as this guest bedroom proves. A rustic fir wrapped in burlap is a cheery addition to this equestrian-themed room. Candy-cane striped bedding and a basket filled with gifts and reindeer stuffed animals amp up the holiday feel.
Bring outdoor planters in: these grapevine baskets have an impressive scale in the den. Branches are an inexpensive way to amp up the volume, and the symmetry frames the pretty French doors to perfection.
Set on 98 acres of rural farmland near Rosemont, Ontario, Pheona Wright’s storybook farmhouse belongs in a snow globe. White-painted brick walls provide a clean backdrop for Pheona’s towering, 13-foot Christmas tree. A mix of organic textures and time-worn furnishings honor the home’s historic architecture.
Hits of green — a cozy emerald plaid throw, cedar bough and a battered green chair — ring in the holiday cheer in the main room.
A giant chandelier by Paul Campbell made with ’70s Italian glass links over the dining table and has an enchanting, ice castle effect. A simple oversized Scandi vase and antlers underscore the Nordic vibe.
The family that owns this Muskoka cottage spends Christmas eve in front of the fireplace while the snow swirls outside. Spruce-toned velvet pillows, a compact tree and lots of evergreen accents make this living room Christmas-card perfect, and there is nary a bauble or tchotchke to be found. “It just doesn’t suit the environment,” explains designer Tim Johnson.
A floor-to-ceiling stone fireplace is the soul of the dining room. Use sentimental objects or mementoes, like pewter plates or an heirloom throw, to help holiday decor feel more special. To create a simple yet striking look on a long dining table, extend rows of brass candlesticks and crocks down its length.
In this home’s principal bedroom, bushy, unadorned pine wreaths and stacks of firewood feel festive, but don’t look out of place in the rustic rooms. A wintry crystal chandelier and Gothic-style mirror add a touch of glam against the room’s rustic wood envelope.
Handsome striped ribbons give kraft paper-wrapped gifts preppy charm. Choose timeless patterns for gift wrap, like plaid, which gives a classic Christmas feel. Paper tags tied on with twine feel appropriately rustic in country digs.
Add sparkle with subtle metallics: this cottage kitchen’s burnished pendants and copper range hood add warmth and character on cold days. “In my own home, I use a lot of gold and brass for the holidays,” says designer Tim Johnson.