House of the week | Mayfield West | Photos TweetFacebook House of the week | Mayfield WestThe tradition of putting up the Christmas decorations in December takes on a whole new meaning when it comes to Vicki and Brian Frankham’s Mayfield West home.
With only the bedrooms and bathroom off-limits, the house’s interior is annually converted to an Aladdin’s Cave of Christmas treasures.
The everyday decor is packed away and almost every surface between the front door and the back deck is adorned with delicately intricate and elaborately colourful Christmas items.
They range from from animated scenes to tiny ornaments and large statues.
Then there are the trees: there are five this year including a traditional green adorned with glittering lights and glass baubles, a white snowman-shaped tree and a black one topped with a Mad Hatter’s headpiece.
“If you’re going to ask me why I do this, I’m a nutter,” Vicki laughs.
“And my husband’s a nutter for letting me do this.”
Vicki and daughter Casey started the tradition about 15 years ago, with the collection growing annually.
Vicki has lost count of the number of items acquired (she owns about 80 elves alone) but has a shed full of decorations to mark her appreciation of the festive season.
“I love Christmas because it includes everyone,” Vicki says.“It’s not just like your birthday when it’s just about you.”
Vicki loves shopping for gifts for the Christmas charity wishing tree and opening her home to friends for an annual December Christmas party to showcase the wonderland she and Casey create.
Planning begins at the end of the first week in November, with decorating complete for the party on the second Saturday in December.
“It’s never the same,” Vicki says of the interior design.
She sources everything from Forever Christmas in Mayfield.
“I get to wander around the shop I call my happy place,” Vicki says.“When Brian comes home and I’m not here he says ‘I know where she is’.”
Each year Vicki challenges store owner Sandy Diamante to find her new treasures – and she never fails.
“I say to Casey ‘I won’t have to buy anything at the Christmas shop next year; what could Sandy get in that I could possibly want?’,” Vicki says.
“She always amazes me.”
This year one of Vicki’s favourite pieces is a Patience Brewster limited edition Santa statue, a birthday gift from Diamante, that is displayed in the hallway.
New this year is a Mark Roberts limited edition Mrs Claus figurine.
“I’ve never had a Mrs Claus,” Vicki says.
A returning favourite is a frog statue; he’s dressed in a green and red Santa suit, a pointy party hat, and stands on the kitchen bench.
“Well look at him, he’s just cute,” Vicki remarks on why she can’t resist putting the frog back on display.
Sparkling silver and glass pieces make the dining room centrepiece a standout too.
“I love the table this year,” Vicki says.
“I think the fact that it sparkles.
“If you have a little look around my house, you’re going to go ‘this lady likes sparkle and bling a little bit’.”
Even Vicki’s silver kitchen cupboard handles (from AJ Edden) are adorned with diamantes.
Among the largest of the Christmas decorations in the Frankham home is a Patience Brewster life-size nativity cow, which has a spot on the back deck.
The smallest pieces are Heart of Christmas miniature figurine owls and mice, displayed on shelves in the home’s central hallway.
Other highlights include Mark Roberts baubles encrusted with beads, crystals and other gems, that hang from the shelves.
“If I had heaps of money, I’d have a whole tree of these,” Vicki says.
Lemax animated village scenes include an eggnog factory and brewery.
“The eggnog is for me and the booze is for Brian,” Vicki laughs.
Taking pride of place on recessed shelves in the lounge room is a set of eight Patience Brewster ornamental reindeer.
The pieces are modelled on Clement C. Moore’sThe Night Before Christmasand each has it’s own identifying adornment: Blitzen is wrapped is a fluffy snowball-like coat; Comet is covered in little stars.
But Vicki’s biggest joy is opening her home and sharing it all with friends at the annual Christmas party.
“Everybody comes through and loves it,” she says.
“It’s just the pleasure, I guess, that my motley crew enjoy.”
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