Smithsonian Associates Streaming offers plenty of ways for people to celebrate the holidays from the comfort of their own homes. Programs provide insights into holiday traditions, studio arts workshops add a touch of nature to participants’ holiday décor and a reflective writing workshop presents new ways to contemplate the gifts of winter.
Natural Milkweed Floss Ornament
Friday, Dec. 3; 1 p.m. ET
Participants will learn to transform a milkweed pod and its floss into a whimsical nesting swan that will add a touch of nature to their holiday décor.
Holiday Card Workshop
Saturday, Dec. 4; 10 a.m. ET
Participants can create four different fancy-fold cards sure to impress the people on their holiday card list. Fancy folds can be intimidating, but this workshop will painlessly guide the participants through the steps, and detailed instructions will provide them with everything they need to create future fancy folds on their own.
Modern Evergreen Wreath
Wednesday, Dec. 8; 12 p.m. ET
Just in time for the holidays, participants can create a modern wreath design with fresh evergreens on a metal hoop. Using a method similar to floral arrangement, they can combine local textures, shapes and colors in their design.
Christmas with the First Ladies: Holiday Celebrations at the White House
Saturday, Dec. 11; 11 a.m. ET
No home in America celebrates the holidays quite like the White House, and behind each annual celebration is a First Lady who lends her distinctive style to the festivities. Historian Coleen Christian Burke, a 2014 White House holiday design partner, shares the signature holiday decorating style of modern residents from Jackie Kennedy to Jill Biden.
Winter’s Colors: A Reflective Writing Workshop
Tuesday, Dec. 14; 10 a.m. ET
Participants discover the power of reflective writing guided by the founding instructor of the National Gallery of Art’s Writing Salon, Mary Hall Surface. They will experience new ways to contemplate the gifts of winter inspired by the vibrant Winter Landscape by Wassily Kandinsky, an artist who embraced the transcendent power of color.
Italy’s Holiday Traditions
Wednesday, Dec. 15; 6:30 p.m. ET
The festivals, special foods and spectacular customs of the holiday season last a glorious three weeks in Italy. Food historian Francine Segan offers a lively presentation on the many splendors of Christmas and New Year in Italy.
America’s Favorite Holiday Movie: The Story of Its A Wonderful Life
Monday, Dec. 20; 12 p.m. ET
Everyone loves a holiday visit to Bedford Falls. But it took years for Frank Capra’s now-beloved film—a flop when it was released in 1946—to become a Christmas classic. Lecturer Brian Rose examines the fascinating story of It’s a Wonderful Life, looking at the challenges encountered during its production, its surprisingly dark portrait of small-town life and how it evolved into the ultimate portrayal of holiday goodwill and cheer.