Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Clove-Studded Oranges and Dining Room Pics

Happy Wednesday, my prim friends!!  Is everybody getting ready for the holidays?  We’ve been taking advantage of having warm temperatures and started putting up our outside Christmas lights.  We didn’t get very far, though, because when my hubby plugged in the icicle lights that go on the roof to check them, more than half of them were burned out. 

Many years ago, when icicle lights just came on the market and were only available in white strands, we made our ownI also didn’t like the store-bought ones because they were too flimsy-looking.  It was never a problem replacing bulbs, here and there, each year.  But this year, out of 11 strands, only 2 completely worked.  So, instead of taking the time to go through each strand, we decided to just make new ones.  I went out and bought several boxes of lights and hubby wired one strand together and hung them on the roof.  Adding it to a previous strand, you can see a big difference between the two.  The lights are closer together on the new strands and when wired together, they don’t look like icicles,  just a bunch of lights clustered together.  So. . . .those came down and he’s back to going through every strand and checking each and every light bulb!!  (Thanks, honey!!   I still love you more!)  He only has a couple more to work on and should have them up by this weekend. 

About 5 or 6 years ago, my parents quit having the family over for Thanksgiving dinner.  There just got to be too many of us (32 – give or take a couple).  My three older siblings ( I’m the youngest of 5)  have their own kids and grandkids to celebrate Thanksgiving with and Chuck’s side of the family grew apart after his mom passed away about 10 years ago. Since we had nowhere to go, we started a tradition of putting up our Christmas decorations on Thanksgiving day.  In the morning, while the turkey is roasting in the oven, we go out and put the final decorations up outside.  After dinner and everything’s cleaned up, we put the Christmas tree up and the kids decorate it.   This worked out great when my oldest daughter was in college and was home for Thanksgiving weekend to be able to participate with the decorating. Ever since my kids were little, I  bought them an ornament each year from a craft show with their name and the year on it.  They each have their own box of ornaments that they put on the tree and when they move out and have their own tree to decorate, they can take their box of ornaments with them.  We officially  “light up” the Christmas lights on Thanksgiving night.  I put the rest of my decorations out over the weekend.  Although my hubby claims I decorate all the way up to Christmas!  lol



In the past, I’ve made centerpieces with fresh pine greens and fresh fruit.  Since you need to keep the greens moist, sometimes my fruit doesn’t last until Christmas.  This year I’m attempting to use artificial fruit and thought I’d share with you how I studded mine with cloves. Don’t mind the display – I just threw this together to take the pic!  Plus I have more to make.



To make clove-studded oranges, you need:

fake, Styrofoam oranges

whole cloves

Folk Art Antiquing Medium (I use Apple Butter Brown #819) If you can’t find it, dilute brown paint with water

Phillips screwdriver or fat screw or nail

First, lightly rub antiquing medium over your orange to age it a little.  Let dry.

Take your screwdriver IMG_1866

and poke wholes in your orange.  You can be creative and make shapes, like  stars, and various patterns in it.  This step makes it a lot easier to insert the cloves!!

Finally, push a clove into the hole.  If one breaks off in the orange, take your screwdriver and push it farther in and push a new clove in.


I’ve also been working on these:



Don’t they look like a bunch of grumpy, old men?  lol  They’re going to be Santa faces.  I’m not exactly sure what I’m going to do with them, yet.  I have ideas, but I’m not sure how they’ll turn out!  I’ll share pictures with you when I get them finished.

I’ve also finished this cross stitch picture.  It’s a Pineberry Lane pattern.  Now I just need to find a frame with a 7” x 7” opening to put it in.



Finally, as promised, I have pictures of my Dining Room.  The lighting still isn’t the best – there was either too much sunlight or not enough.  When I can get better pictures, I’ll post more.

I tweaked the middle section of my hutch and still need to work on the side shelves, but I probably won’t do anything with them until after Christmas.












Please come visit me on Friday to check out a delicious recipe for Cornbread, Sausage, Apple & Pecan Stuffing.  Plus. . . .I’ll have a couple of pictures from my main bathroom.

Until Next time . . . . Kris


  1. Love your dining room, that desk is beautiful!
    And i think i will be making some of those oranges and cloves. thanks Kris!

  2. Oh my gosh Kris your dining room is stunning!....I totally love your style of decorating and I also totally love your furniture.

    The projects you are working on look great, those faces are amazing!....I can't even get my husband to put up icicle lights, he did it for a couple of years and decided it was too much hassle.

    Your Thanksgiving Day tradition sounds perfect....we are having a bit of a dilemma this year and there are only five of us!....I need to come up with a solution or compromise or we won't be having a family dinner!


  3. What a wonderful tradition decorating on Thanksgiving! My family and I recently moved to Washington state and my husband will be working on Thanksgiving so next year perhaps we'll have to start that tradition as well! Thank you for sharing your beautiful dining room and your orange and cloves!

  4. Hi Kris, Nice tutorial...I will try it. Your house i beautiful and cozy. The dinning room is AMAZING. Love your decorating style and your furniture.

  5. Your dining room is just gorgeous, Kris! I think your pics turned out wonderful :) Love your stitchery too. ...and you sculpted all those olde santa faces? Great job!

  6. That is one gorgeous dining room! I like the idea of the styrofoam oranges.I'll be on the lookout for some of those. Your stitchery turned out very well.

  7. I love your dining room. It looks like my living room, we have a raised ranch and have considered moving the dining to that spot when we finish off the cellar.


  8. When I was a single mom, the twins and I had that same tradition. We decorated our tree after our turkey dinner.
    Love the orange/cloves idea, and those Santa faces are too cool! Did you use paper clay?
    Your dining room looks awesome!


  9. oh, Kris!...Thanks for the tutorial!!!...I love your x-stitch sampler and your dining room!!..As always I enjoyed my visit!!~~hugs,Jen

  10. Thanks for sharing, Kris. Your furniture is beautiful and all works together so well.
    Best wishes

  11. You must have ESP because I was thinking about these oranges just yesterday! Thanks for sharing how to put them together.

    We used to do the icicle lights too but we get a lot of wind and we valmost always had a section or turned that stopped working because of broken bulbs. I've resorted to lights in the landscaping and candles in the windows.

    I love your dining room and that hutch is amazing!

    Can't wait to see what you come up with for the little faces. They remind me of Jim Carey in the new Christmas Carol movie.

    I also wanted to tell you that I was at Wayside yesterday and they had a lantern lamp, like the one you made, for $139.00 and it didn't look nearly as nice as yours. You did good!!

    Have a great day ~ Tonya

  12. Wow Kris, everything is just gorgeous! I really love that stitchery too! Looking forward to seeing more pictures!

  13. OH MY GOSH Kris your dining room is gorgeous!!!!! You hutch is stunning, and your table and chairs are beautiful! Everything is just perfection! Such a spacious room too!
    I've never seen styrofoam oranges. I hope I can find some at ACMoore. What a clever idea instead of using real oranges. I would have sworn yours were real. The Santa faces are adorable. I can't wait to see what you're going to do with them. Hugs, Loretta

  14. Thanks for the tour. Your home is Simply Prim. It is just lovely.

  15. Beautiful diningroom Kris...I'll have to look for some styrofome oranges hmmmm, I wonder if the Dollar Store has them I'll have to check it out today:)

    Love the stitchery too!

  16. Love everything about your dining room and how it is decorated. Looks beautiful. I so wish I had a bowl rack. I have so many bowls that I have been re-finishing this week that I would love to put up there, but perhaps I will have to wait. I am still a bit nervous when it comes to the big saws so I tend to stear clear of them (lol). I was planning on trying my hand at the real oranges and cloves. A friend of my Mom's that owns her shop (Sara's Herbs and Everlastings) makes her own and said that they just harden up after time and last for a long while. I just love the smell of them!!

    Thanks for sharing everything. Looks great.

  17. Kris.............I agree with all of the above comments! Your pictures are wonderful, you have all of the right touches everywhere in your home.
    I also was thinking about doing the real oranges again this year......but now I think I will do it your way. Take care.

  18. Kris this was a great post in more ways than one. I so enjoyed your Christmas decorating story. It definitely screams family and memories made for a lifetime.

    I have one orange and one lemon that are clove studded that I bought a while back. I just love them. Where did you find your oranges? I don't think I have ever seen them anywhere.

    Your desk and hutch are beautiful. As a matter of fact, your whole house is beautiful. I'm so looking forward to seeing pictures of your bathroom. Our master bath needs a drastic makeover so I could use some ideas.

    Enjoy your day,

  19. Oh my gosh....the best of the best! Your dining room is lovely. I can just see your whole family gathered there on Thanksgiving. Love the the oranges with the cloves...I just love your home, Kris.


  20. I love it!!! It iis absoultely beautiful! If I had a dining room, I would want it to look like that. Great job. I never thought of using stryofoam oranges before. I may have to look for some. Thanks for sharing all of your wonderful talents.

  21. I echo everyone's comment about how beautiful your home is. Your dining room is exquisite! You have such a gift for decorating and those clay faces are adorable!! The look like such lovely little old men. LOL!
    I like the idea of using faux oranges. I'll be trying this idea!
    Blessings to you~ birgit

  22. Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful, Kris! More pictures to show Dear Hubby!

    Great idea with the oranges. We do the real oranges every year but they can go from smelling great to smelling horrible in a matter of hours if you're not careful. This may be just the ticket!

  23. Kris,
    Your dining room is stunning & so is your decorating. What a wonderful Thanksgiving tradition. I am trying to hold off a little on mine ~ maybe next weekend. Thanks for such a great tutorial, now I'll be on the hunt for some faux oranges. Much better than using real ones.
    I got my stockings in the mail ~ thanks so much for sending me the link. They are gorgeous & so old looking.

  24. Kris, everything looks amazing! And thank you for the great idea of using fake oranges! Every yer I make the clove studded oranges too. My Mama always did and I love the smell of them! But I hate it whe they start to get mushy. Maybe we can find some citrus scented spray to use with the fake ones?

  25. Hi Kris,

    That dining room is amazing! You have done a great job with that space. I just love how big and open it is but still warm and cozy and inviting. I'd love to pop over and sit and have a cup of tea with you!!

    I love the pomander idea - thanks for sharing!! And I can't wait to see what you do with the faces. Now I have a question and I truly mean it in the most sincere way. Is there anything you don't do? You are so creative and talented and your lovely home reflects that too. I always love seeing what you are up to next!!

    And you already know I love your tradition. I think it is perfect!!

    Have a great weekend! See you on FB!!

  26. Morning Kris.
    I loved this post today. We always went to Dougs mother's for Thanksgiving and there were many of us as well but when she passed away the tradition stopped and we started doing it here at our home with just our family and we loved it.
    This year however with our home show the very next day we opted out - much to all our kids dismany! lol So now our middle son said he'd do it so between decorating/setting up the show we will pop in on them for the meal and then back home. Don't know where I was going with this other than TRADITIONS ARE SO IMPORTANT and I'm happy you have another one for your memories.
    Oh and your home and decorating is just beautiful Kris - you have a talent there.
    Thanks for the Orange/Cloves tips.

  27. You did a great job on those faces. That is not easy, as I have been working with clay, this year. Your diningroom looks beautiful. The family & putting up tree & the ornaments; I did that with our kids & when they left home, they had their own box full ornaments. So important, to them. A little piece of childhood, with them always.
    I look forward to your stuffing recipe,as I am looking for something different this year in stuffing.

  28. Ok where to start... The oranges are a great idea. I love using fake fruit for the holidays in bowls and as ornaments. Those faces are really cool. The stitchery is AWESOME!!!!

    Now as for the dining pics. The pictures are fabulous. I know what you mean about the lighting. My pics never look right because I face the north and don't get much sunlight so I have to use a flash which makes everything look brighter than what it is.

    I am loving the warm weather we are having here in Ohio. I am running around in short sleeves today!!!!


  29. I love your tutorial, but have a quick question, where can we get styrofoam oranges? If you have a second you could stop by my blog and let me know I would really really appreciate it. Thanks so much, Sue

  30. I love your dining room looks so comfy and cozy. And I really like your desk! It's something like that, that I would like to have.

    What a great tip on making up fake oranges. I never made any with real oranges because being afraid that they wouldn't last. But styrofoam is a great idea. I must go on the hunt for some and make some up myself...THANKS


  31. Kris~Your home is so amazing!
    I have a Pat Catan's that I visit in Sandusky. I am going to head up there and pick up some of those oranges!
    Thanks for this great idea!

  32. .; What attracts me the most in this post is your miniature Christmas tree~~ It's unique, it's pretty, this should be featured on my blog~ (^,^) Thank you~ :.


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