gmhTODAY 17 gmhToday Nov Dec 2017 - Page 53

G racie Garcia’s house on Fifth Street, according to official records, is a Pioneer style house constructed in 1875. Gracie disagrees, saying it is an Italianate cottage built in 1868. Whatever its designation, the house itself has history and Gracie’s decorating makes it truly unique. During the holidays it takes on the trappings of a classical Victorian Christmas and a chance for visitors to take a step back in time. Officially known as the Baxter House, originally built by John A. Baxter, a hard- ware store owner, the home has a detailed history of residents that Gracie can recite. It has also long been associated with merchant families in Gilroy — a tradition that Gracie continues with her downtown antique store, Gilroy Antiques. Each of the rooms downstairs is hung with corner to chandelier Christmas garlands for the holidays. A large fully decorated tree takes a place of pride in one of the front windows. For anyone who has visited Gracie’s house you know the number of art pieces, knickknacks, religious art, statues, paintings, and wall hangings that are there. Consequently, it is hard to imagine that there would be any space left for Christmas decorations, but, Gracie finds the room. And she manages to place each decoration in just the right place. Many of her decorations are antiques or, at the very least, have some age on them. However, a number of other items are newer but have that distinctive Gracie flair. Many of Gracie’s decorations and art pieces are also the fruits of her frequent travels. GILROY • MORGAN HILL • SAN MARTIN NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2017 53