Holiday Decorating

It’s officially that time of year. You all know what I’m talking about…..

It’s when the current debate trending on Facebook is: “when do you decorate for the holidays?” And what’s more is that the supporting memes get better every year!

Deck the Halls

Decking the halls is a fun and joyous holiday tradition. So much so that someone even penned a song about it!! Ornaments and decorations often have special memories tied to them, from family vacations to heirloom ornaments passed down through the generations.

One of my favorite traditions was when the kids were little and we would trek out to a local tree farm to pick out our Christmas tree. We’d all be bundled up with vibrant scarves and hats, creating the perfect photo op for our annual Christmas cards!

So, whether you’re team “before Thanksgiving”, “Thanksgiving weekend” or “whenever I can possibly spare a few minutes”, I have some fun and creative ways to add some joy to your holiday decor!

Mix It Up

You don’t need to stick with the same theme throughout your home. That being said, it’s a good idea to cross reference colors from adjacent rooms. This provides a nice flow from room to room.

I also use this concept when I do my everyday decorating. I often find a color in artwork from one room and use it as the launching point in decorating the neighboring room.

This particular project focuses on the foyer and staircase. The space is grand in nature, with neutral colors and just a touch of decorating on the hutch that flanks the stairway. So basically, I had a blank canvas to work with. And let’s be honest here, a beautiful staircase like this is just begging for a major statement!!

Bring in the Boughs

In creating a foundation for the foyer, the natural choice was Christmas tree green. For the stairway, I used natural cedar boughs and for the hutch, Christmas tree candles.

I have a giant weeping cedar tree in my front yard. And every year, it provides me with a bounty of boughs! I’m able to create amazing garlands. My favorite is combining the cedar with some holly branches, oversized ornaments and felt ribbon.

I’ve always wanted to create a Christmas garland for a stairway, and this was the perfect opportunity! Here’s how you can create your own:

  • Collect enough cedar branches that measure approximately double the space that you are decorating. You can cut some from your own yard or go to your local garden spot for some fresh cedar branches.
  • I recommend securing the cedar branches below the handrail. This way it doesn’t interfere with the safety function of the handrail.
  • Starting at the top, start securing a branch to a stairway post. I used florist wire for this project. However, twine or green ribbon are also a great choices.
  • A good place to secure the branch is at approximately the top 30-45% mark (on the branch).
  • Grab your next branch and weave it under the first branch about halfway. Secure it to a post like you did with the first one. Make sure to secure other spots as needed along the way.
  • Keep repeating this until you reach the end of the rail.

The end result is stunning and the fresh greens provide the perfect foundation for all sorts of festive and whimsical decor!

Make a Statement

Wanting to make a BIG impact, I went with these large honeycomb balls. The bold use of colors literally pop off the cedar.

The variety of colors were inspired by this Pier 1 platter. This platter was actually the launching for the entire area: consisting of kitchen/great room area and foyer.


Now that the statement making stairway is complete, it’s time to dress up the hutch.

When creating any vignette, adding height and various other elements provide for great visual interest. This is the perfect time to bring out your cherished depression glass bowl that you inherited from your grandmother. I loved adding the colorful antique glass serving pieces, from Cranberry Sky Heirloom Rentals, to our vignette.

Ways to add more layers:

  • Cake stands and pedestal plates, which were perfect for the Christmas tree candles.
  • Festive bowls
  • Books
  • Candy dishes
  • Holiday plates
  • Brass vessels


Every vignette needs a standout centerpiece. Floravore, a new local florist, certainly delivered with a beautiful tiered arrangement. This consisted of berry colored spikey mums, roses and pomegranate all on a green glass serving piece from Cranberry Sky Heirloom Rentals. This really pops among the nature like setting of the tree and pine comb candles.

The holiday’s are a perfect opportunity to incorporate floral into decor throughout your home, not just your dining table. The jewel tones of this playful holiday entryway inspired the tiered floral arrangement. I wanted to incorporate fruit into the arrangement and once I saw the color of the gorgeous color of the tiered stand from Cranberry Sky Heirlooms, I knew pomegranates were the perfect choice. The color of the fruit inspired the monochromatic scheme for the floral used. Using various textures and tones of a single color made this arrangement a perfect focal piece for the entire display.

Olivia Yates O’Donnell

With these tips you, too, can create a show-stopping entryway where your guests will truly feel welcome!

Special Thanks to:

Amy Slusher Photography


Cranberry Sky Heirloom Rentals