Holiday On the Set

ON THE SET: WHITE CHRISTMAS

white christmas

For as long as I can remember, every Thanksgiving, there were (and still are) two things you will definitely find at my mom and dad’s house: turkey and White Christmas. I guess you could say it’s our way of kicking off the Christmas season. For this reason, White Christmas has always been near and dear to my heart. It’s my favorite “feel good” holiday movie. I know every lyric to every song, and pretty much every line in between. It’s just that good!

On the Set: White Christmas // 7thhouseontheleft.com

When Greg and I started dating in college (the second time around… it’s a long story!), we were on our way back from a day trip to Gatlinburg and Greg mentioned he had never seen White Christmas. Obviously, this was a total deal-breaker in my book, so I broke up with him. No, I’m kidding. When we got back to campus, I ran into my dorm, grabbed the DVD and my laptop, and for the next two hours, we sat in my car watching White Christmas… in April. Being the sci-fi/action movie lover that he is, I was shocked when he said he really liked it. He was a keeper. ; )

Fast forward almost six years. White Christmas is now a holiday staple in our house. Phil Davis, played by the hilarious Danny Kaye, is his favorite character, and mine is Emma, the housekeeper, played by Mary Wickes (I love her in By the Light of the Silvery Moon and as Madame Le Mond on I Love Lucy!). Like in many good films, the locations play very important roles and are almost like characters themselves. The Columbia Inn of Pine Tree, Vermont is no exception.

On the Set: White Christmas // 7thhouseontheleft.com

On the Set: White Christmas // 7thhouseontheleft.com

The first room in the Inn is the lobby. The floor-to-ceiling windows, loads of white trim, and “lodge charm” are irrefutably inviting. I absolutely love how open and airy everything is. If we were to build a house, I would definitely want to use this space as inspiration for the entry… minus the check-in counter, of course… and maybe the deer head.

On the Set: White Christmas // 7thhouseontheleft.com

Aside from the overall openness, my favorite aspects of the Columbia Inn are the high ceilings, exposed beams and stonework throughout. In the dining area (pictured above), you can see them in action.

On the Set: White Christmas // 7thhouseontheleft.com

Right off the the dining room is my favorite space in Columbia Inn – and a room I would love to have in our future dream house. There’s an extra long window seat that wraps all the way around the room, facing an awesome indoor fire pit that has a huge copper chimney right above. I realize the Columbia Inn isn’t an actual place, but I can imagine having amazing parties in a room like this. I’m also in love with the wide plank black floors.

On the Set: White Christmas // 7thhouseontheleft.com

Here’s another shot of the same room. Doesn’t that look so cozy? Fun fact: Rosemary Clooney was only 26 when White Christmas was filmed, and Bing Crosby was 51. For some reason, I’d never noticed the age difference, have you? Also, Dean Jagger (who played General Waverley) was the same age as Bing, but acted a lot older in the film.

On the Set: White Christmas // 7thhouseontheleft.com

I’ve always liked this vignette in the cast party scene… I think it might be because of my obsession with shelves and hardback books.

On the Set: White Christmas // 7thhouseontheleft.com

I love the simple Christmas decorations in the Inn. Everything in classic green and red against the white woodwork really brings home the “White Christmas vibe”. Notice the tree silhouettes on the doors in the background? That would be a fun and easy DIY project using vinyl to add another layer of “Christmas” in your own house around the holidays.

On the Set: White Christmas // 7thhouseontheleft.com

In regular 50′s fashion, the bedrooms at the Inn are small and quaint, but they don’t lack in the charm department. By the way, don’t you love how they are going to bed with full makeup and bright red lips?

On the Set: White Christmas // 7thhouseontheleft.com

Every time I see this billboard, I wish I had one to frame and hang in the house for Christmas. Down the road, I might attempt to recreate one. Matching up the fonts would be a lot of fun. Yep, I’m a total font geek.

On the Set: White Christmas // 7thhouseontheleft.com

Who knew all of that vintage early American charm and character could be captured on a sound stage?

On the Set: White Christmas // 7thhouseontheleft.com

Antique Early American Chest of Drawers / Early American Windsor Chair
Fossill Stone Fire Pit Kit / Canella & Quailbrush Wreath
Ski Vermont Wall Art / Woody Station Wagon Christmas Ornament

 So, what about you? Do you have a favorite Christmas movie you wouldn’t mind moving in to?

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34 Comments

  • Reply
    Megan
    December 4, 2013 at 11:11 am

    White Christmas is one of my all time favorites too! The first Christmas after my husband and I got married, I found out he had never seen it before either! I brought it on the plane for a trip we were on and he loved it, thank goodness! It’s not Christmas time at my house without that movie either. My sisters and I used to sing “Sisters” all the time. 🙂

  • Reply
    Lora @ Craftivity Designs
    December 4, 2013 at 11:13 am

    Ohmygoodness. Love this. I’m a huge White Christmas fan too (never realized their age difference either!) and I think the idea of using some of their set as Christmas Decor inspiration is really fun 🙂 I will be trying to make that billboard too! And I like the tree silhouettes as well.

  • Reply
    Heidi
    December 4, 2013 at 11:27 am

    Confession: I had never seen this movie until last Christmas! Turns out my hubs loves it and we DVRed it to watch on Christmas last year. I’m so happy we did because it was beautiful and so nice to snuggle by the fire on Christmas and watch this movie.

    You should definitely make that sign! It would be perfect.

    http://jax-and-jewels.blogspot.com

  • Reply
    Allison
    December 4, 2013 at 11:32 am

    I have been eyeing that station wagon christmas tree ornament for months now!! Love!!

  • Reply
    Christin
    December 4, 2013 at 12:51 pm

    This is one of my all time favorite movies. I haven’t watched it yet this season and this post just got me pumped to pop it in the DVD player ASAP! I wish the Columbia Inn was a real place, I would so visit there!

  • Reply
    Sarah
    December 4, 2013 at 4:06 pm

    I love White Christmas! One of my all time favorite movies! Also, if you recreate that poster, you will have to make one for me, too! 🙂 I love fonts, too!

  • Reply
    Stephanie
    December 4, 2013 at 4:40 pm

    This, too, is one of my all time favorite movies! Like a previous commenter, your post got me psyched to run home and pop in my DVD player. I love your fun facts (I never even thought about an age difference either) and the idea of the movie as inspiration for decorating. I can still remember the first time my mom showed my sister and I this movie…we’ve been hooked ever since and have done MANY renditions of Sisters over the years.

  • Reply
    Lori H
    December 4, 2013 at 5:34 pm

    We love White Christmas and watch it every Christmas Eve. I love the two houses featured in another favorite film, The Holiday, with Carmen Diaz, Jude Law, Kate Winslet and Jack Black.

    • Reply
      Ashley
      December 4, 2013 at 5:46 pm

      Ohh, yes! Me too!

  • Reply
    Maggie
    December 4, 2013 at 5:42 pm

    White Christmas is a HUGE tradition in my family! It’s my Dad’s favorite movie (and now my favorite Christmas movie!), and we would always watch it while decorating the Christmas tree. My sister and I would always do our own rendition of “Sisters”…in fact, even these days, we’ve been known to break out in song after a few glasses of wine…doesn’t matter what time of year it is! Of course, fast forward to now, and I’m living on the opposite coast from my family, so we don’t get to watch it together these days…but I just watched it on my own last weekend, and it always brings back such warm and fuzzy memories! Anyway, if you recreate that poster would you be willing to send me the file?? Of course I’d pay you for it…but I can just as easily have it printed here. It would be the PERFECT gift for my Dad!

    • Reply
      Ashley
      December 4, 2013 at 5:45 pm

      If I get around to doing it (hopefully soon!), we’ll be sure to post the file here for y’all to download!

  • Reply
    Linda
    December 4, 2013 at 8:28 pm

    My 23-year old daughter now lives in Virginia, but will be back in Idaho for two weeks on the 14th. Our list is long: White Christmas, The Bishop’s Wife, It’s a Wonderful Life, Miracle on 34th Street, Holiday Inn, The Holiday, Love, Actually, and Christmas in Connecticut. Oh! AND A Charlie Brown Christmas. It just isn’t Christmas without these wonderful films. If we have youngsters over, we’ll also throw in Home Alone and the animated Grinch Who Stole Christmas for fun. Film, like cherished ornaments, offers a lovely legacy between the generations, and truly makes the season bright: the twinkling lights on the tree, family gathered, popcorn, cozy blankets and GREAT holiday movies (maybe snow falling softly outside)–perfection!

    • Reply
      Ashley
      December 4, 2013 at 8:40 pm

      Ahh, yes! Christmas in Connecticut and Holiday Inn are our other top favorites.

  • Reply
    Staci
    December 4, 2013 at 11:38 pm

    Very cute “get the look” roundup. 🙂

  • Reply
    Tina
    December 5, 2013 at 3:35 am

    Thank you for the stills. I’ve loved “White Christmas” and “Holiday Inn” since I was a little girl and my mum would make sure that we watched them on tv on Christmas Eve while she was readying the house for Christmas Day. “I’m dreaming of a white Christmas” and the whole of Bing Crosby’s album playing on the record player whilst we unwrapped our gifts on Christmas morning. But get this…I’ve lived in Sydney Australia my whole life and the closest we get to a white Christmas is the surf at the beach!

  • Reply
    Kate
    December 5, 2013 at 8:19 am

    It’s a favorite of mine along with Holiday Inn. I recite lines from it all year long. My 2 boys (12 and16) have to watch them every year too.

  • Reply
    Erica @fortheloveofdecorating
    December 5, 2013 at 9:05 am

    White Christmas is my all time fav too! It;s not Christmas till I’ve seen it 🙂

    Erica
    http://www.fortheloveofdecorating.com

  • Reply
    Kathryndb
    December 5, 2013 at 10:14 am

    Love the movie! Have you ever noticed:
    The size of the other sister’s waist?

    • Reply
      Ashley
      December 5, 2013 at 10:23 am

      Yes, so tiny! I guess all that tap dancing will do it, haha.

    • Reply
      Stephanie
      December 5, 2013 at 12:41 pm

      I heard that she actually had a lot of body issues and starved herself to get that tiny, which is sad to hear (and to think about when watching the movie!). I remember even when I was little, being amazed by how small she was.

      • Reply
        Ashley
        December 5, 2013 at 1:22 pm

        Yeah, I remember hearing that too. So sad.

  • Reply
    Stephanie
    December 5, 2013 at 10:44 am

    White Christmas is my favorite movie of all time! My grandfather and I watched it every Christmas Eve together until he passed away 5 years ago. My husband surprised me last year by buying tickets to see the movie at the Alabama Theatre (very pretty!). I just bought tickets to see it there again this year. 🙂 🙂 🙂 PS. How does she get her foot to tap like that?!?!?

  • Reply
    Stephanie
    December 5, 2013 at 12:43 pm

    I LOVE your idea of recreating the poster! If you do get around to it, please post it on your blog! I think that would be a very fun Christmas decoration to hang up every year.

    It’s definitely not Christmas without watching some Bing Crosby movies. I think I’ve heard about the ages thing before, but every time I see it mentioned it always surprises me. It definitely doesn’t come across as unusual in the film. I guess Rosemary played mature very well, and Bing looked very youthful!

  • Reply
    susan
    December 5, 2013 at 1:39 pm

    This is my absolute favorite Christmas movie as well! I never get tired of watching it. Heck, I’ll put it on during the year and watch it. I don’t know how many times I’ve seen it but I still tear up at the end. I just adore Danny Kaye. I actually got to see him in person as the conductor of the orchestra in Ft. Worth Texas ages ago. He was wonderful. My favorite outfit of his in this movie is the all gray ensemble when he and Bing first meet “the girls”. I also LOVED Rosemary’s dress in the party scene where Danny and Vera broke the news of their “engagement”.

    The theater, the theater. What’s happened to the theater?

    Welp, I guess I know what I’m watching tonight 😉

    • Reply
      Ashley
      December 5, 2013 at 1:47 pm

      “…Especially where daaancing is concerned” haha!

  • Reply
    Emily aka The Three Bite Rule
    December 5, 2013 at 8:57 pm

    This is so great. I love that movie and LOVE that you broke-down the look of it. Great idea! Do it again!

  • Reply
    Anna
    December 8, 2013 at 11:45 am

    I love White Christmas! It’s my favorite Christmas movie & one of my favorite musicals.

    I did notice the age gap, a bit. I didn’t realize it was as large as it is though, but I’m not surprised. Many older male film stars were paired with much younger females. The film does imply an age gap though. Bob Wallace has been a successful performer since before the war, then he meets the younger Phil Davis & the two of them join forces to have a successful career together. Sometime later, they meet the younger sisters of “an old pal in the army”. So I figured that the Haynes sister are in their 20s, Phil is mid to late 30s & Bob is early 40s. At least that was my guess based on character portrayals.

  • Reply
    Sarah
    December 10, 2013 at 12:22 am

    I love this also, I have to watch it over and over because I am distracted by the clothes, the props, the flat ware and table service, the tea sets!! I do love this movie, but for the holidays a new favorite one is “The Family Stone” with Sarah Jessica Parker, Dylan mcDermont, Craig T Nelson and a whole lot of others. It is pure family life and it is great.

  • Reply
    Kim
    January 4, 2014 at 7:44 pm

    I stumbled upon your blog and reading your post I was In awe…….I could have typed the same exact thing, less your husband Greg, who’s uncanny resemblance to Seth Rogan is freaky deaky by the way. I have always, always said when I win the lottery I am building a 100% replica of the house and barn ~ my favorite room is the dining room with the large windows with bench seat and the piece de resistance that I dream about is the indoor fireplace with copper hood. I too can recite every line in the movie along with every song. Just out of high school, about 25 yrs ago, I worked in a video store ~ everyday I worked, about 5 days a week, I watched White Christmas, over and over and over again~ EVERYDAY, all year long. As soon as the final credits would roll, I would start it over. Needless to say our regular customers thought it was cute, then a little wired lol. I also stumbled upon a lady in Atlanta Georgia, who did what we dream of, built a house inspired by the house in the movie ~ It’s uncanny how close it resembles ~ you can google it. Your blog made me smile ~

    Counting my blessings~ Kim

    PS – if you replicate the poster, can I be your first customer please, please, please!

    • Reply
      Ashley
      January 7, 2014 at 9:16 am

      What a fun story! I hope to have the poster available before next Christmas : )

  • Reply
    Michael J. Kouri
    April 13, 2015 at 2:55 pm

    I found your posts here by accident as I was searching Google for something else. but I have to tell you how much I enjoyed reading your thoughts on your favorite TV show and Movie Sets. I like you also love knooks and crannies, hardbound books(being a writer myself and a publisher I guess) and I like you have always loved the sets of the Columbia Inn of White Christmas, along with the Nightclub sets, as well. You’ll laugh at this, but I usually watch White Christmas in July, then again around the Christmas holidays. Sometimes I just put the DVD into my player and watch/listen to the wonderful non holiday music as I write my books. It really kept me entertained while I wrote Haunted Houses of Hollywoodland, especially the chapter on Rose Mary Clooney’s former home on Roxbury Drive, which was torn down. So sad…Thanks for entertaining me today.

  • Reply
    Danny Martin
    July 25, 2015 at 10:30 am

    I noticed that no guys had commented on the blog. Therefore, I had to!! I have the VHS version, the DVD version, the CD music only version, I have the print music to every song, I have the anniversary DVD and I have the commerative DVD version with Rosemary commentary throughout the film.

    I know every line, I noticed that every dress or garment that Rosemary had was open neck and Vera-Ellen wore turtle necks only. I loved the way Danny Kaye’s gray shoes matched his suite in the dancing on the boat scene. I noticed that Vera- Ellen could not sing. Etc.

  • Reply
    bob g
    November 12, 2015 at 4:44 am

    One of the best movies i’ve ever seen.i was 10 yrs old in the hospital just before christmas when i saw it first time .i watch it all year long.it is a good family movie. we don’t.have to many of them these days. the ending is spectacular with those red outfits and the christmas trees.

  • Reply
    CYNDI
    December 23, 2015 at 12:57 pm

    I love all the movies mentioned too, and I must add a 1940’s movie entitled “Shop Around the Corner” starring Jimmy Stewart and Margaret Sullivan (Mia Farrow’s mum) and “you’ve got mail” is a re-make of it but doesn’t end on Christmas Eve like the original does.
    I also looked at the house designed like the movie “White Christmas” and was just amazed at how gorgeous a house it is!!!

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