Step-by-step holiday decorating

Seasonal Style

Unsure of where to begin when it comes to Christmas decorating? Try our easy, creative tips to get your house ready for the season in style.

Christmas Tree

Tackle the Tree

For hassle-free trimming, put ornaments and lights on your tree before scooting it into a corner, and try winding lights top to bottom. Need a fun tree skirt? Look for remnants at a fabric store or a holiday table runner at a discount home store.

Give your tree a fresh look by changing up the ornament display. Try choosing a specific color scheme, such as all red and gold, and displaying the rest of your ornaments around the house.
Finally, adorn the branches with florist vials full of fresh flowers, and tie on ribbon loops left over from last year's packages.

Coffee Table

Dress Your Coffee Table

Toss aside the TV remote and magazine stacks for something more festive! Set place mats or a table runner on the table, and then top with a flower arrangement. For the look at left, place water-soaked florist foam in an urn and fill the foam with whatever flowers, greenery, and berries you have readily available.


Red Accents

Trade the throw pillows on your sofa for ones in red silk, felt, or suede. Toss a red or green wool throw in the mix. Swap the lampshades you live with all year for cranberry-colored options. These inexpensive purchases bring classic Christmas color to your space, and you can use them year after year!

Holiday candy

Cute Candies

This year, don't just pass by the candy aisle at your local supermarket in an effort to avoid those extra sweets. Instead, let it be a source of inspiration -- seasonal candies make for great decorations!

Here, we placed colorful candy sticks in small glass vases for a delicious-looking centerpiece. If you're hosting a holiday party, hang candy canes on outdoor wreaths, trees, and garlands, and dip citrus-moistened rims of wine and martini glasses into crushed candy before guests arrive.


Window Wreaths

Who says wreaths can only accent a door? Decorate your wreath with items that have meaning for you, such as the collection of hotel silver flatware and a creamer used to decorate this wreath for a kitchen window.

Xmas Dec 101: Candles

Mantel Magic

Get a holiday glow going with this simple arrangement of candles and mirrors. Group one kind of candle, such as tea lights, tapers, or pillars, together for maximum impact, and wrap ribbon around candleholders. String ornaments from ribbon and drape them across a mirror.

Christmas 101: Stockings

Jazz Up Stockings

Don't wait for St. Nick to fill them! For a festive look, stuff stockings with a few cuttings from your Christmas tree or outdoor evergreens.

Xmas Dec 101: Stress-busters

Christmas Stress Busters

Start with what you have. Remember, you don't have to spend a small fortune to lavish the rooms of your home with holiday style. Here are some ways to use items you already have:

• Arrange flowers in pitchers and gravy boats on your table.

• Place votive candles and jingle bells in wine glasses, and arrange on a buffet or across a mantel.

• Use ribbon and fabric remnants to trim fresh garlands, trees, and wreaths with color.

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