If you are planning to get into the spirit and make your home festive, we have a few tips on decorating for the holidays.
The holiday season is in full swing, and different people celebrate in different ways. You may choose to celebrate in a reserved fashion, observing the season in your own way, or you may want to go a little bit loud. There’s no right or wrong way to celebrate.
If you are interested in transforming your home, you may face some limitations based on your living space. That shouldn’t discourage you though, it just means you need to get a little more creative. On the other hand, if you do have a decent amount of space, may need to engage in a little restraint.
Regardless of your situation, we have a few tips for decorating of the holidays, regardless of your space, style, or even budget.
Don’t Over Complicate It
While it might be tempting to completely cover all your existing space with holiday reminders, a little can go a long way. That doesn’t mean you should hold back if you really want to go nuts, but just because you have a blank spot doesn’t necessarily mean you need to fill it. When you start to decorate for the sake of decorating, the whole ends up suffering and looking cluttered.
The more decorations you add, the more stress you are putting on yourself as well and that ends up being counterproductive. Decorating your house for the holidays should be fun, not a chore.
You may also want to cut down on the small knickknacks. Ultimately, this is a personal decision, but the more little objects you put out, the more cluttered it can feel. That, in turn, can draw attention away from the rest of your decorations. You should also consider replacing objects with holiday fare, rather than just putting more on top of existing decorations. There should be a balance.
Start With the Front Door
When people come over, the first thing they tend to notice is your front door. It naturally draws the eye to it, so it should be one of the first things you decorate. How you decorate is up to you, but assuming you add something to your door, you should make sure it compliments it. Start with the color and go from there.
A wreath is a traditional addition to a front door, but again, it’s up to you. If you do go with a wreath, there are a lot of options. If you go with a natural one, you have plenty of choices, ranging from twigs to berries to pieces of shrubs or leftover tree parts. If that isn’t your style, you can also look for an artificial wreath. You may even want to go a little more abstract with your wreath, it’s up to you.
Once you have an idea as to what your wreath should look like, you can either go out and buy one – everywhere from supermarkets to places that sell trees should have one – or you can make one yourself. If you need a few ideas, Pinterest has hundreds, ranging from intricate to incredibly simple in a minimalist way.
As for the rest of the front of your house, that is potentially a major project in and of itself. Approach it with thought and care, but ultimately it is a very personal decision.
Choose the Right Tree
If you celebrate the holidays with a Christmas tree, you have several coices in front of you. And given that the Christmas tree tends to be the centerpiece of a decorated home, choosing the right one is important.
The first choice is whether you should go with a natural or artificial tree. The choice comes down to preference, but your budget is usually a factor as well. Buying a new tree each year will cost you anywhere from$20- $200 based on your location and the type, size, and nature of the tree you choose. Artificial trees will cost more initially, of course, but over a few years it could be worth it. You will also have less mess and you won’t have to worry about disposing of it, but you lose the traditional look and even the smell it gives off. There’s no right or wrong answer, it is a matter of preference.
Once you have decided on the nature of your tree, you’ll need to choose the location you want to display it. Your tree is going to be the centerpiece of your holiday decorations, so you should place it somewhere that people will see it. You also need to live with that tree, so make sure it is somewhere that isn’t too much in the way – you don’t want to have to brush by it every day.
Don’t be afraid to move your furniture around to make room for your tree, and be sure to make allowances. Putting a tree in front of a window is common, but make sure it isn’t cutting off too much light. Beyond that, be creative. Your tree decorations should be a reflection of you. Some people look at their tree as a work of art, while others see it as a seasonal record holder, containing decorations that hold individual memories. Some create new traditions with their tree dressing, while others reference traditions from long ago. Others still are looking to the past for inspiration for the future – for example, a growing number of people are hanging their trees upside down. It’s a new trend for many, but the tradition dates back to the 12th century.
Choose a tree that makes you happy and the rest will fall into place.
Don’t Limit Your Color Choices
While red and green are considered traditional Christmas colors, don’t feel limited by them. Gold and silver are also common this time of year, as are blue and white. As long as the colors compliment, choose whatever you feel comfortable with.
The only real limitations should be based around your existing color scheme. Select something that goes with your current décor. Have some fun with it and just try to avoid major color clashes – not that those can’t work, but it can be a distraction for your guests.
Smells Are Just as Important as Visuals
When it comes to decorating your home for the holidays, it’s easy to overlook one of the most important senses: smell. The visuals are always the first focus, and auditory trappings tend to come second, with holiday songs and the sounds. You could even argue that taste comes in at third, as the holidays tend to bring seasonal foods with them, in the form of special meals, snacks, and sweets. These are all present when you have guests over, so why not smell?
If you have a natural tree that smell should radiate through the room it is in, but that may not be enough, and if you went artificial you will need to consider other sources for seasonal olfactory delights. One option is to leave something on the stove designed only for its scent. Create a concoction of cinnamon, pine oil, and oranges in water and it will make your house smell like the holidays.
There’s also an old trick that dates back to the mid-13th century to cover bad odors – or simply improve the smell of an area – using a “pomander.” There are several ways to create a pomander, but the general idea is to create a ball and fill it with good smelling objects. Modern takes on it can be as easy as taking an orange and adding whole cloves, or you can get a bit more intricate and add a variety of spices. Once you have created your pomander, you can hang it from the ceiling, leave it in a bowl in strategic places, or create a centerpiece around it.
Adding smells to a house is an old trick, so keep it in mind for your next holiday party.