The 2014 Homes for the Holidays tour, in support of Hospice Care Ottawa, kicked off the holiday decorating season in the capital. This year eight homes and three special locations offered up festive inspirations to 2,000 visitors during a three-day weekend in mid November.
The home of the Irish Ambassador to Canada graciously hosted the pop-up shop again this year and as an added bonus Orange Gallery and The Ruddy Shenkman Hospice lent themselves to elaborate table displays throughout for Tables to Dine. Under the direction of locally respected hostess Barabara Hannah, several entertaining experts created memorable tablescapes. Glamour on the table is sure to be a trend this season for anyone who attended the event. In fact, glamour seemed to be a theme throughout the tour with so many homes decked to the nines.
Tour goers were treated to inspiring ideas at every stop. Florists took direction from the décor within every residence to turn each home into a show stopping delight! A constant was the mixing of rustic and glamour to combine nature's bounty with gold, glass and glam. Table settings all included extravagant centerpieces with special touches, like the kiwi cookies at each place at a grand table set in the home of the Ambassador of New Zealand where Artistic Landscape Design respected the roots of the country within the décor. Two Glebe residences played up the kid factor within and both Flowers Talk Tivoli, with help from Ernst Hupel of 2-HDesign, and Bloomfields Florist had fun embracing a youthful side in the homes they decorated. Flowers Talk Tivoli set a table with rustic barnwood and rich red roses. Bloomfields chose whimsical and woodsy elements.
Pretty Pots in Kanata played up the country aspect in a rural setting with bountiful arrangements, along with touches of elegance to enhance the living room décor. Also, tasked with decorating for a country style home, Trillium Floral Design did a brilliant job adding quirky touches and picked up on the trending owl theme this year with a Christmas tree that combined modern elements with a traditional concept.
Tradition never goes out of style for holiday décor. Two homes in Rockcliffe were decked to perfection. One by Stoneblossom Floral Gallery, who showcased one of the cleverest ways to create a Christmas tree, without actually having a tree! Known for their unique style Stoneblossom once again ‘wowed' visitors. Mill Street Florist did their share of ‘wowing' from inside and out with a home that got the luxury treatment it deserved from dining room to bedroom, noting that no detail was too small for the highly respected florist.
The Fresh Fruit and Gift Basket Company played up on the entertaining space in a newly built home in Wellington Village, showing the importance of fine cheeses and candy treats in holiday décor. Gifting was embraced and used to cleverly block off the open stairway, showing that décor comes in many shapes and sizes during the festive season!
Each year the Homes for the Holidays Tour is run by a team of expert volunteers who create magical memories throughout the city and kick off the season in style. This year's tour raised $225, 000, which translates to 563 hospice bed days. Event chair Laura Chapman sums up the event; "we are delighted with the success of the event. A number of people have told us that Homes for the Holidays 2014 is the best one yet. We think this is because there was a wide variety of homes and because the florists each gave expression to the holidays in a way that suited the different homes. We also involved more young people, which gave the whole event a new energy."