Maybe it’s because red and green just does not ‘go’ with my living room color palette or maybe it’s because I like things that multitask, but I’ve grown tired of the same old red-and-green color combination that appears all over the place during the holidays. Don’t get me wrong, I love both of these colors, I love them together, and I do love them at Christmas, but some years I just want to go in a different direction with my own Christmas decor.
While hurrying through the parking lot of Home Depot, I spotted some bright purple-and-green ornamental cabbages that were so exquisite! The colors were vibrant and the vigorous, blooming shape of the cabbage head was so interesting and sculptural. I immediately knew that these cabbages would make a lovely casual table setting for my home.
Aren’t the colors beautiful? See what I mean?
With the ornamental cabbage as my inspiration, I decided to go with a casual, weathered sage-and-purple color palette for the holidays. I realize that it doesn’t shout “CHRISTMASTIME,” but it’s a festive whisper that I can keep through spring (assuming I can keep these cabbages alive that long). Armed with a couple of terra cotta pots, some sheet moss, some crackle paint and a few ornaments, I decided to create a garden-inspired centerpiece for my breakfast table. Here’s how I started:
I thickly applied some Martha Stewart Living Crackle Paint in Weeping Willow to my terra cotta pots. Now, the directions say to use a primer first, but I wanted the terra cotta color to show through underneath the cracks in the paint, so I skipped this step, but I will warn you, if you don’t apply primer first, the paint will chip off. But, like I mentioned before, a chipped, weathered look is what I was going for so I was okay not using primer and having the paint chip off in places to get that desired effect. I’ll also mention that like the directions suggested, the thicker the application, the deeper and larger the cracks, so I applied the paint (though it’s really more like a paste or a putty texture) on about 1/4 of an inch thick in most places. Here’s the end result.
Thick, deep cracks, and the terra cotta orange shows through in some places (here you can just barely see some warm orange at the rim of the pot). My pots have also started to chip in some places, so you can see the terra cotta underneath.
After letting the pots dry, I repotted the ornamental cabbage in each pot. (I used pots that I already had around the house, but a shorter pot with a wider mouth would look more proportional to the cabbage heads and would make a shorter table setting — feel free to take that route if you prefer).
Then, I added some moss on top of the soil in the pot, though in retrospect, I would have skipped this step because you can’t really see the soil anyway because of how large the cabbage leaves are.
Next, I arranged some sheet moss on the table to create kind of a ground cover or placemat for the pots on the table. To me, this creates a more intentional, finished look.
Finally, I added the pots on top of the moss, scattered some little ornaments in my color scheme on top of the moss, and I set my place settings around the centerpiece. Voila! Done.
Like I mentioned before, this table setting idea is by no means overtly ‘holiday,’ but the colors and shine (coupled with the Christmas tree in the next room of course) feel festive to me.
I’m also partial to this centerpiece idea because it will last me long after the Christmas leftovers are eaten and the ornaments are back up in the attic.