December Calendar for the Design Minded, Part 1

December 2, 2015

Text by Lynda Simonton

December Events concord holiday house tour

Concord Holiday House Tour Design by Katie Rosenfeld at the 2011 tour.  Photography by Michael J. Lee

December events for the design minded.

20th Anniversary Exhibition: Highlights from the Last 20 Years
Through December 13
The Center for Contemporary Printmaking celebrates two decades with an exhibit featuring artists who have shown their work at the center over the years. Norwalk, Conn., (203) 899-7999,

Christmas at the Newport Mansions
Through January 3, 2016
Indulge in the beauty of the holiday season by touring three of Newport’s historic mansions bedecked for Christmas. The Breakers, the Elms, and Marble House will be decorated for the holidays, including a display of twenty-four Christmas trees. The Breakers opens daily at 9 a.m., the Elms and Marble House open at 10 a.m. The last tour admission at all three houses is at 4 p.m., and the houses and grounds close at 5 p.m. Admission to all three houses, $29.49 for adults; closed Thanksgiving and Christmas with a 3 p.m. closing on December 24. The Preservation Society of Newport County, Newport, Rhode Island, (401) 847-1000,

Portland’s Victoria Mansion
Through January 3, 2016
Portland, Maine’s Victoria Mansion will open its doors so visitors can enjoy the historic home in all its holiday splendor. This year the mansion will be decorated from top to bottom by a dozen area designers. You can also enjoy this holiday decor at the annual Victoria Mansion Christmas Gala on December 2. Open on Monday at 11 a.m., with last admission at 6:30 p.m., Tuesday through Sunday 11 a.m., last admission at 4:30 p.m., (207) 772 4841,

The Ceramic Presence in Modern Art: Selections from the Linda Leonard Schlenger Collection and the Yale University Art Gallery.
Through January 3, 2016
This exhibit features more than 80 pieces from Linda Leonard Schlenger’s private collection. Schlenger is considered one of the premier collectors of contemporary ceramics in the country, and the exhibit presents a wonderful opportunity to see the breadth and beauty of the medium.  Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, Conn., (203) 432-0600,

December 3–9
Celebrate the holidays in style with a series of events featuring the Greenwich Winter Antique Show, Holiday House Tour, Holiday Boutique, a luncheon featuring Charlotte Moss, and other social events. Visit the Greenwich Historical Society website for full details, Greenwich, Conn., (203) 869-6899,

Fairfield Christmas Tree Festival
December 3–6
Get a heavy dose of holiday spirit at this annual Christmas tree festival. See how volunteers transform the historic Burr Homestead into a joyous celebration of the season. Trees, wreaths, and other decorative items are all for sale. Fairfield, Connecticut, Friday 10 a. m.–7 p.m, Saturday 10 a.m.–5 p.m., Sunday 10 a.m.–4 p.m.; $10 adults, $5 children and seniors;

Christmas Prelude in Kennebunkport
December 4–13
You can’t help but get in the holiday spirit at Kennebunkport, Maine’s Christmas Prelude. The nine-day event includes a series of social events, musical offerings, and art shows. Events range from a “cookie crawl” to fireworks to Santa arriving on a lobster boat. There’s something for everyone!

RISD Alumni + Student Art Sale
December 5
This annual sale features the work of more than 200 Rhode Island School of Design alumni and current students. Apparel, jewelry, fine art, glass, ceramics, and other items will be for sale. 10 a.m.–5 p.m., $7, Convention Center, Providence, R.I.,

Concord Museum Holiday House Tour
December 5
Get excited for the season and gather ideas for inspiring holiday home decor at the Concord Museum’s annual Holiday House Tour. The tour will feature some of Concord’s most beautiful private homes, each professionally decorated by local designers in a different holiday theme. Event proceeds will benefit the Concord Museum’s many educational initiatives. Concord, Mass., 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. For more information and to purchase tickets, call (978) 369-9763, or visit

Christmas in Salem Holiday House Tours
December 5–6
Salem, Massachusetts may be known for its Halloween festivities, but the Christmas season is joyfully celebrated as well. The thirty-sixth annual Christmas in Salem Holiday House Tours will feature homes in the McIntire District. A highlight of the event is a Friday evening candlelight tour. Tickets available online, and at a variety of local venues. (978) 745-0799,

The Friends of The Mark Twain House & Museum 35th Annual Holiday House Tour
December 6
Enjoy a favorite Connecticut holiday tradition at this annual holiday house tour. Mark Twain’s 19-room home, along with other Hartford, Connecticut-area historic homes, will be decorated for the season. There will be live music at the houses to further enhance the festive atmosphere. Visit for details.

CraftBoston Holiday
December 11–13
Presented by The Society of Arts and Crafts, CraftBoston is the premiere New England exhibition and sale of contemporary art, craft, and design. There will be 175 national and international artists showcasing unique and limited-edition work in furniture, jewelry, clothing, and home decor. Shop among the booths of these professional craftspeople and learn first-hand about their skill, training, and talent. $15, Friday and Saturday 10 a.m.–6 p.m., Sunday 11 a.m.–5 p.m., Hynes Convention Center, Boston, (617) 266-1810,

Custom House Maritime Museum Holiday House Tour
December 12
Maritime heritage and holiday cheer merge in the 21st Custom House Maritime Museum Holiday House Tour. The tour lets you take a peek into private residences in Newburyport, Massachusetts. 10 a.m.–4 p.m. $25 in advance, $30 day of show. Custom House Maritime Museum, Newburyport, Mass., (978) 462-8681,

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