At Home for the Holidays

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Interior Holiday Decorations

How do you decorate your home for the holidays? Do you do the bare minimum – or do you go all out and wrap the pictures on your walls in holiday paper and ribbons? Do you get new stockings every year, or do you use the originals and update only for new family members, friends and/or pets? Do you choose pine branches or grapevines for the mantel and stairs?

This is the time of year to bring out the Spode Christmas china, or maybe it’s your great-aunt’s Royal Crown Darby that you rarely use. Add the silver flatware. Put a festive runner on the dining table and set it with your most precious items (even the Murano goblets), then add a holiday centerpiece of pine cones, berries and candles. Maybe a poinsettia or two.

Then enjoy the richness of your heritage. Visit the table setting throughout the holidays, and use all of it on whatever your own special days are. Holidays are memories.

Multiple Living Areas

Many of us have formal and informal rooms to decorate for the holidays. Some are grand, impressive rooms and others are warmer and more intimate. Let your imagination go. The loft upstairs may inherit your first holiday ornaments for a more modest tree – holidays past – while the formal living room and family room are re-imagined for elegant and/or casual holiday décor. Suit yourself and your audience. Whether you’re having a cocktail party for colleagues or a weekend open house for neighbors, a festive look is appreciated. Different spaces offer opportunities to branch out, and a new home allows for experimentation.

Themes

Maybe you are a 100% dyed-in-the wool traditionalist, and you do the same decorations every year with only a couple of special new additions. Or you might welcome new ideas and choose a new theme each year, or for each living area. One year you may showcase The Nutcracker, the next year Home Alone. The fun is to integrate what you have with things you find along the way that fit in perfectly. Everyone can get involved … the earlier, the better.

That being said, there are a lot of professional and wholesale resources to help make your vision come to life. A 14’ tree should only be anchored and lit by professionals, never mind decorating the top. The same thing goes with chandelier swags. It’s your vision, but they know how to make it happen safely.

Colors

You might think that colors are equivalent to themes, but not so! There’s red and then there’s green. There’s blue and then there’s white. There’s Royal Stuart tartan and Hunting Stuart tartan; plaids are not all the same. Gold accents highlight different items than silver accents. Then there are piñatas, perfect any time of year. We haven’t even mentioned white lights versus colored lights! Again, there are professionals to give you tips or help pick out accessories, but a lot of the fun is in deciding what you want to try.

We also start our own traditions. A wonderful gift to newlyweds is a collection of holiday ornaments and garlands. We all have to start somewhere, and it can be a jolt to realize that family and friends will be coming to you instead of vice versa. And so it begins….

To find your perfect home to decorate for all of the holidays, visit phyllisbrowning.com.