At Barrington Hall, members of the Roswell Garden Club have been hard at work getting each of the rooms to reflect the theme “Dear Santa, All I Want for Christmas is…..”
Debbie Vann, who is chairing the effort, said each room has a Santa Claus, but that’s where the similarity ends.
The foyer, done in blue, silver and angels, is “all I want is peace on earth,” Vann said. “The parlor is all I want is a White Christmas, the dining room is sugar plums with bright greens and reds and fruit.”
Vintage games and toys are in other rooms, as is a red and white room with Raggedy Ann and Raggedy Andy. A little girl’s room in purple and gold features dolls and an old dollhouse.
Perhaps the piece de resistance is the upside-down Christmas tree the club has used in various forms over the past few holidays. This year, the base of the tree symbolizes an old-time record player and the top of the tree is the needle, with 45 rpm records as its decorations.
The first year the club took on decorating responsibilities at Barrington, members used flowers and greenery exclusively. Now, after four years, “we’re trying to get away from the garden clubby stuff,” Vann said. “We’re showing you how to decorate with a theme, and throwing in some flowers here and there.”
Victorian England is recreated in the rooms of Bulloch Hall this year. The classic story of Ebenezer Scrooge’s life of wrongdoing and ultimate redemption is depicted throughout the house.
“It’s going to be different from what we’ve done before. Normally we’re over the top with our decorations, but not necessarily of a certain period,” said Bulloch Site Coordinator Pam Billingsley.
To set the tone, the front hallway will be set up with nine panels of 1840 London street life painted by Billingsley’s sister, artist Candi Richards.
One room will be Scrooge’s office, another the home of the Cratchits, and the three spirits who visit Scrooge on Christmas Eve will be shown in his bedroom, Billingsley said.
Several groups and individuals helped with the décor, including Horseshoe Bend Garden Club, the Martha Stewart Bulloch Chapter of the DAR, the Bulloch Hall Garden Guild, Roswell Junior Woman’s Club and Roswell Woman’s Club.
The staff and docents at Barrington Hall handled all the holiday decorating there. The theme is “A Very Southern Christmas,” said Barrington Site Director Robert Winebarger.
“We focused on Christmas customs and traditions that are uniquely Southern,” he said.
For example, one room depicts the Pink Pig and big tree, the department store Rich’s was famous for in bygone years. Another is devoted to poinsettias, introduced to America in the south.
In Barrington’s dining room, the table is set for the traditional midnight desserts served in New Orleans on Christmas.