Two women who share a friendship and a passion for decorating create a holiday-ready setting in a Mountain Brook home.
Leah Hazzard, left, with homeowner and friend Pat Hiden
photography by Jean Allsopp
When Independent Presbyterian Church invited pat hiden to be a part of its annual Holiday House Tour, it was only natural that she turned to longtime friend and floral designer Leah Hazzard for help in decking the halls of her Mountain Brook residence that she shares with her husband, Billy.
“I knew that Leah would know how to incorporate classic holiday décor to complement the interiors of our home,” says Pat. “I always tell Leah that she goes into her ‘zone’ when she begins any decorating project, and that’s exactly what she did. She began by walking through each room to get a mental image of the look we were striving for. “My goal is always to make a home look personal, as if the owner did all of the decorating herself,” Leah says.
Because Pat is drawn to textures and colors, Leah had a lot to work with inside the home. “Pat has a nice balance of bold colors and more neutral pieces,” says Leah. “And she has a lot of antiques. Gold hues works well with antiques, so I used various gold tones throughout.” Leah set the holiday mood in the foyer, seen above, by tying the burnt-orange backside of magnolia leaves with gold satin midori ribbon. She repeated the beautiful folds of ribbon overhead in the chandelier. “I prefer these ribbon folds instead of traditional bows,” she explains. “And lately I have been using flat, double-base satin midori ribbon instead of wire ribbon in my decorating. This type of ribbon succumbs to the shape of floral elements more naturally.”
Just off the foyer, Leah created an eye-catching floral centerpiece for the dining room table. “The importance of your table décor is something I learned in my first job working as a special events coordinator for Estée Lauder,” says Leah. “Evelyn Lauder always emphasized the centerpiece. She would tell us to use our most beautiful, unusual item on the table to make your table stand out. In this case, I used a stunning silver tray that belongs to Pat as the base and then created a garden look on top of it.”
Overall, Leah and Pat both agree that the home’s holiday décor seemed to perfectly reflect the joy and celebration of the season. “The trend in decorating seems to be returning to a more natural, sentimental look,” says Leah. “In these challenging economic times, we seem to want to cling to that which comforts us. There is just something about decorating for the holidays that makes everyone feel better.”
62nd Annual IPC Holiday House Tour ipc-usa.org event and floral designer: Leah Hazzard LeahHazzard@gmail.com • 205.902.3635 Pat Hiden Interiors 205.870.1809 magnolia leaves in foyer: Oak Street Garden Shop 115 Oak Street, Birmingham, Alabama • 205.870.7542 Midori ribbon used throughout home: Smith’s Variety 2715 Culver Road, Birmingham, Alabama • 205.871.0841 flowers: Hall’s Birmingham Wholesale Florist 100 6th Avenue SW, Birmingham, Alabama • 205.322.4627 cedar garland and various floral items: Montgomery Farmers’ Market 9609 Montgomery Road, Montgomery, Alabama • open Saturday mornings May-October