Season of Joy

Cape Cod Life  /  November/December 2021 /

Writer: Rachel Walman / Photographer: Meghan Murphy 

Season of Joy


Cape Cod Life  /  November/December 2021 /

Writer: Rachel Walman / Photographer: Meghan Murphy 

The 15th Holidays at Highfield Hall

The 15th Holidays at Highfield Hall & Gardens is celebrated this season by event stylist Rita Pacheco and her team, George Chapman, Larry Silva, Alda Baron and Isabel Mello. The theme for this year’s décor inspiration is “Season of Joy”–with 8 different rooms throughout the Hall depicting all the aspects and variations on what brings joy this holiday season, and how we can spread that joy to those around us.

The Great Hall – Spark Joy

The golden lights and frosted pine boughs sparkle and gleam as you step through the broad doorway and enter the 150-year-old Hall. The non-conventional Christmas tree in the center of the foyer finds fresh greens from the property tucked into stacked drawers from the lady’s wardrobe. Throughout, handmade poinsettias provide vibrant pops of color, lovingly crafted by Isabel Mello.

Director’s Office – Joy of Giving

The presents wrapped in every color, and highlighted with bright silver, blue and lavender, are topped with recycled fabric strips and ruched bows to represent the gifts given by the community that keep Highfield Hall & Gardens thriving and timeless.

Grand Staircase/Music Nook – Joyful Noise

The large Mason Hamlin concert grand piano, curving staircase, a soaring ceiling (and a very concentrated cherubic choirboy) create the perfect symphony for festive acoustics. At the top of the landing floats a tree branch taken down by the latest nor’easter, repurposed to hold aloft a variety of instruments.

Dining Room – Share the Joy

The holly sprigs that hang delicately from the chandelier – the sprawling garland of perfectly dried hydrangea blossoms – the glittering mirror display – the table set for a holiday dinner – all next to the warm fireplace – there is no better place to gather with the loved ones we cherish.

Conservatory – Nature’s Joy

Recalling the past, where conservatories were commonly added to the living areas of homes to bring warmth and life during the coldest of months, the added greenery becomes akin to an oasis. Dozens of potted plants fill the intersection of food and play.

Bedroom – Comfort & Joy

Emily Beebe’s original bedroom has been converted from the old dining room to display a space for both rest and recreation. When Emily occupied this room, it became a very social place where she entertained her guests, tucked away from the rest of the house. Fit for a well-traveled and sophisticated 19th century woman with hatboxes from Europe, bundles of perfumes and art from around the world, this bedroom is emblematic of the contentment that comes from being surrounded by one’s most beloved treasures.

Kitchen – Savor the Joy

The modern commercial kitchen is brought back in time with a door trimmed with a sparkling fruit wreath, and whimsical jars full of ingredients for piping hot cocoa.

Hallway & Billiards Room – Create Joy

Leading away from the main areas of the home, you’ll find a whimsical hallway decorated in all the bits and bobs one might find in their mother’s sewing cabinet. Two separate alcoves feature fabric strips, extra trimming, spools of colorful thread, and a woolen angel. All along the wall, small pine branches and pine cones peek out of old wooden frames, and at the end of the hall, the Billiards Room has been repurposed to hold a crafts center, encouraging all to keep the spirit of imagination and creativity all year round.

The 2021 Holidays at Highfield starts today and runs Thursday-Sunday, November 26 to December 12, from 11 AM-5 PM. Find out more and purchase tickets at https://highfieldhallandgardens.org/event-calendar/holidays-at-highfield-2021/.