Home & Garden

Holiday decorating tips and inspiration

Holiday decorating tips and inspiration

Author: Canadian Living

Home & Garden

Holiday decorating tips and inspiration

The holidays seem to sneak up on us every year. Once the back-to-school season has come and gone, it feels like we throttle headfirst into Thanksgiving, Halloween, then Christmas. And even though the order of events never changes, many of us are still startled at the fast and stealthy approach of Christmas.

So how can you prevent that last-minute scramble and avoid the panic that sets in year after year? A little bit of planning can go a long way to help you prepare for the holidays. That's why we figure it’s not too early to start thinking about your decor for the season. We checked in with Kendra Stewart from Pottery Barn to get the scoop on this season's trends and her tips for making your holiday decor beautiful and festive.

Canadianliving.com: What are the hot trends in holiday decorating?
Kendra Stewart:
An emerging trend for the season is anything that sparkles, as well as the mixing of contrasting elements, such as earthy wood and metallic accents. Picture a lot of layering: Big wooden candle pillars with fabulous mercury glass, for instance.

CL.com: What colour palettes are new for this season, as opposed to the traditional red and green?
A classic winter-white palette with metallic accents is big this season. Mix in accents of mercury glass to add a warm shine to a holiday mantel, or fashion a whimsical tablescape by tucking metal reindeer between natural fir garlands and paperwhite flowers in shiny cachepots.

CL.com: How can I breathe new life into the decorations I already have around the house?
Try showcasing decorations in a new way. Use extra ornaments as vase fillers or as napkin adornments on the dinner table. Try suspending a garland or birch branch in your entryway and hang special ornaments off of it at different heights to create a unique display. Or revive last year's gilded pinecones by stacking them on an antique tray to make a festive coffee table centrepiece.

Page 1 of 2 – Kendra shares her list of 5 dos and don'ts when it comes to holiday decor. Find out how your decor stacks up on page 2.

CL.com: How do you dress the perfect Christmas tree?
To dress the perfect Christmas tree, you have to start with a good-quality tree. To decorate, start at the top and work your way down to the base; and always take the approach that the tree should look beautiful from any angle – even if it's backed into a corner.

To create a clean look, use green floral wire for each ornament instead of mismatched hooks or strings. When it comes to tree decor, I believe it's always the more, the merrier!

If you don't have enough ornaments to fill the tree, a wide band of ribbon makes a great garland to take up empty space; or consider tucking small, colourfully wrapped presents in between sturdy tree branches to fill in any gaps. If you are going to splurge, opt for a great tree topper – it's always a focal point and you'll use it every year.

CL.com: What essential decorations should every home have, to create that festive feeling?
Decorative pillows and a cosy, colourful throw draped over the arm of a chair are simple ways to update a room with a festive yet comfortable vibe.

I believe that creating a beautiful atmosphere is only half holiday decorating – set the tone with a fun and festive holiday playlist, and be generous with candles in various shapes and sizes to create a warm and inviting holiday glow.

If you're ever in doubt, champagne in beautiful glassware creates an instant festive feeling.

5 dos and don'ts for holiday decorating
Stewart shares these five tips to help you make your holiday decor effortlessly beautiful.

Don't feel you have to stick to a matchy-matchy decor. Instead, decorate with a mix of old and new, silver and gold, and shiny and natural accents.

Do glam it up for the holidays by incorporating a bit of sparkle – from mercury glass to crystal accents – to light up the holiday table.

Do have fun with DIY centrepieces. Play with objects such as candles, seasonal fruit or ornaments to create a unique look for your table.

Don't forget to decorate the powder room. Small touches such as scented candles, decorative soaps or seasonal hand towels put guests in a festive mood.

have fun and remember no matter what your style is, the holidays are a time to celebrate!

Natalie Bahadur is the senior editor of styleathome.com and is a regular contributor to canadianliving.com.

This article is part of Canadian Living's 60-Day Holiday Countdown. For more inspiring holiday ideas, check out our 60-Day Holiday Countdown calendar and our 60-Day holiday giveaway contest.

Sign up for our free 60-Day Holiday Countdown e-newsletter to have the daily prize and tip delivered right to your inbox!

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Home & Garden

Holiday decorating tips and inspiration