Summer Nights and Outdoor Rooms

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Hey Everyone,

I hope that you’re all loving your summer so far. We are definitely in the thick of summer and the heat reminds me of that daily. I think that being 6 months pregnant at this point makes me feel about 10 degrees hotter all the time, but one of my favorite parts about summer, especially in California are the great summer evenings we have.  I love to dine outside in the summer and I absolutely enjoy just relaxing on the patio and enjoying the cooler evening breeze on my face.

I’ve said many times that when you live here having a patio is equivalent to having another living room. It’s a wonderful place to gather with family and friends and enjoy a great meal. Or sometimes at my house we’ll even set up a projector out on the patio and enjoy a movie. Part of the experience of enjoying your patio is of course in my opinion a great design. I’ve picked one of my favorite designs that I put together for a client recently. It’s a modern black and white patio design thats easy on the eyes, and black and white is always classic and chic. I’ve included links to the sources below and I hope that it gives you some outdoor inspiration for those summer nights :)

Enjoy!

Black and White Rug

Ceramic Stool

Black and White Umbrella

Black Acapulco lounge chair

Horizontal Stripe Pillow

Solid Black Pillow

Black and White print pillow

Black and white abstract pillow (request from seller)

String Lights

Black and White Directors chair (no longer available online, but may be in store)

Hammock ( similar style here)

Black and White striped pouf

White coffee table (similar style here)Black Tray

Lanterns

Lattice Design Planter

Square succulent planter

Bench Cushion

 

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Nursery Design Prep!

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Hey Everyone,

I know its been a while since I’ve posted. New Years eve to be exact. Well a bit has happened since then. I’m now almost 5 months pregnant and for almost the first 4 months, I was pretty sick, pretty tired and sometimes just felt a bit pathetic. I remember after throwing up profusely for about 3 days and then waking up to that again first thing in the morning, just having myself a really good cry to which all my husband could do was rub my back and tell me it would get better, and of course it did:) Don’t get me wrong, we feel extremely blessed to be expecting parents, I guess I just never knew one person could throw up so much!

Once the morning sickness started to subside and I started to get some of my energy back, of course I turned my energies to what the nursery design is going to be. Now at this point in time we do not know the gender yet, so of course I had to come up with 2 different designs. One for a boy,and one for a girl. The designs above are just a first draft and I’m sure they will continue to transform, but I wanted to get an idea of the direction I wanted to move in. I have been fortunate enough to have already been gifted a crib from my parents, but we will be adding the rest of the furniture and decor to complete the room. These are my dream designs and I am sure that based on budget some things will change, but overall I’m happy with the first drafts. I would say that my design style is a bit eclectic overall and I love to mix modern and vintage styles, and I feel that came across in both boards.
I hope you enjoy my nursery designs as much as I do!

Below are the links to the shopping sources for the boards:)

Boys Nursery
CribWhite Crib

WallpaperPolka Dot Wallpaper

RugJute Rug

SheepskinSheepskin Rug

ChairRocking Chair

DresserGray Dresser

Chandelier: Similar one here  Beaded Chandelier

ArtWoodland Art Prints

MirrorRound White Mirror

CurtainsPom Pom Curtains

Baby MobilePom Baby Mobile

Bear RockerBear Rocker

BasketsCloud Baskets

OttomanRattan Ottoman

PillowIndigo Pillow

Floor lamp: White and Gold Floor Lamp

Throw blanketTassel Throw

Changing padWhite Changing Pad

ToysKnit Stuffed animals

Girls Nursery
Crib: White Crib

WallpaperRose wallpaper

RugShag Moroccan Rug

ChairLavender Rocking Chair

DresserWood Dresser

ChandelierModern Chandelier

ArtWoodland Art Prints

MirrorGeometric Mirror

CurtainsWhite Curtains

Baby Mobile: Lamb Baby Mobile

Horse RockerHorse Rocker

Baskets: similar one here Woven Baskets

OttomanCream Pouf

PillowSheepskin Pillow

Accent table: similar one here Arrow Accent Table

LampTurquoise Lamp

Throw blanket: Cream Throw Blanket

Changing PadWhite Changing Pad

ToysBunny Stuffed Toy

Deer Stuffed Toy

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Last Minute New Years Party

New Years Blog

 

Hey Everyone! I hope that you had a Very Merry Christmas and that you’re looking forward to a very Happy New Year! We had a great, and busy Christmas, but it was fun catching up with Family and friends. The time went by so fast that we all realized that New Years eve is just around the corner, its just a couple of days away in fact. It’s so exciting to think of Celebrating the ringing in of the New Year!

So the fact of the matter is, that New Years is always only a week away from Christmas  and it seems that unless you are an avid planner, parties or getting together plans are always left until the last minute. This year we actually have plans and will be celebrating the New Year in Tahoe with family and friends, but while at brunch with our friends the other day, I realized that most of us try to throw something together to celebrate the New Year at the last minute.

If you’re one of the many that don’t have plans yet for New Years, have no fear! There are many things that I’m not to great at, but throwing together a fabulous party at the last minute is my thang:) I’m here to help. I’ve got a great list of party supplies for you and they are all available in store since it’s probably a little too late to try to order online now. I’ll also include some recommendations for food and snacks as well. I hope that you find this useful and maybe it will make your last minute planning so much easier.

Here’s the list of decor supplies below;

DECOR

1. New Years eve straws 40 ct  $3.00 Target (in store only)

2. New Years Eve Photo Prop Kit
$5.00 target

3. New Years Eve Noise Makers
$5.00 20ct

4. White and gold Dinner paper plates
12 count $3.00 Target

5. Gold Metallic Chevron Baking Cups
12ct  $2.99 Worldmarket

6. New Years Eve Champagne Flutes 4 ct
$5.00 target

7. Cheers Glass Drink Dispenser $24.99
Worldmarket

8.Sugar Paper white and gold
dots gift wrap $5.00 Target ( Used as backdrop to dessert table)

9.Large Wire Brielle Hurricane Candle Holder $19.99-29.99
Worldmarket

10. New Years Confetti Balloon Kit
$16.00 Worldmarket

11. New Years Party Garland
$12.00 worldmarket

12. 24 count gold metallic favor bags
$7.98 worldmarket

This decor is great to set the mood for your party. Think of it like going to a restaurant with great ambiance, somehow it makes the whole experience better. This is what your great decor is going to do for your party. Now next on the list is feeding everyone, but who wants to do a bunch of work before the celebrating the big countdown. You’d much rather be spending that time getting yourself dressed and primped right? Well here’s my recommendation go for a one pot dish like a great pasta! Heres a recipe for one of my faves. Courtesy of all recipes.com

MAIN COURSE

shrimp pasta

Ingredients

1/2 pound spaghetti

4 tablespoons butter, divided

2 shallots,

minced 1 cup diced mushrooms

1 cup grape tomatoes, quartered

2 cloves garlic, minced

salt and ground black pepper to taste

1 pound uncooked medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
Shrimp Raw

1/4 cup white wine 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice 2 cups torn fresh spinach leaves 1/2 cup half-and-half cream 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese Add all ingredients to list

Then for snacks and dessert. Don’t worry, I gotcha covered there too. Heres some ideas that won’t take much time at all. Just remember, don’t leave your snacks in the packaging. Put them on serving platters and make them presentable. Remember, its just like going to your favorite restaurant, or favorite store. The way that things look and are presented make a big difference.

SNACKS

Heres your snack suggestions;

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Veggie platter (get prepackaged at safeway, or local grocery store) just remember to take it out of the package!

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fruit, cheese, and crackers. (keep it simple. go with an herbed goat cheese, pears, and grapes)

And for Desserts,

DESSERTS

Donut holes ( get from any donut shop)

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Popcorn ( any flavor or you can pop it yourself)

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Cookies ( you can bake your favorite kind, or if you’re not in the baking mood I recommend oreo cakesters. They’re super cute and look like whoopie pies)

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The Dessert table is where you are going to showcase your party decor. I recommend setting up a dessert table that looks something like this

DECOR SET UP

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Photo courtesy of 100layercake.com

This is just to give you an idea of the styling. Use your wrapping paper as a backdrop and place the “HAPPY NEW YEAR BANNER” over it. This will make for a beautiful dessert table and a great photo backdrop for latter. You can change out the cake for cupcakes using your cupcake holders, I would place the donut holes on a plate like the little bites are shown in the photo, place cookies on another plate or platter, and place popcorn in your little gold and white baggies in place of the parfaits. You can use your great hurricane lamps as a centerpiece, or add to a floral centerpiece as well. Finally don’t forget to finish off the table with champagne and your champagne glasses with straws of course.

Cheers to 2016! May it be a great year full of blessings for you:) and here’s to a poppin New Years Party!!!

 

 

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Christmas gift basket DIY

Hey Everyone,

Hope you’re enjoying this Christmas season as much as I am! If you still have some gifting to do and not sure what to give or are a little tight on funds, or both. Here is a homemade christmas basket DIY I have for you.

We actually started this a few years back since we have so many family, friends and neighbors to give gifts to. As Andrew and I don’t have unlimited funds for the Holidays (as many people don’t) we started giving homemade gift baskets as gifts.  Whats even better is that we’ve had so many comments from friends and family saying that they love them. I usually like to give food gifts for Christmas anyhow because I know that it is something that people will use, and not just another thing that may, or may not like.

In the gift baskets this year, I included chocolate chip cookies, using the better homes and gardens recipe, Spice cookies, where I used a cake mix cookies recipe, and sugar cookies, which was a betty crocker recipe. I also included some white chocolate covered pretzels, where I used candy melts and some christmas sprinkles, and I threw some tea into the tins for a warm drink on these cold nights.

I am really happy with how the baskets came together this year and found some even better sources than last year. Below are some Pictures for you with sources!FullSizeRender[3]

 

 

Heres a christmas basket before it has any of the goodies included. The candy cane box and black homemade box I got at Worldmarket (small striped confectionary boxes at $4.99 for 10), and the black chalkboard box were ($3.99 for 6.00 in store only). The gift box, mason jar, plastic cookie bag, and tissue paper were all from Michaels. So here’s the big secret. These are supplies that are hard to find online, but are always available in store and by the first Friday, or second monday of the December they are always 40-60% off.

The gift box along with cellophane wrap and tag, comes in a pack of 3 and was on sale for $6.00. The small tin was on sale for $0.89 and the mason Jar was on sale for $0.99, along with the plastic christmas baggies that were around 12 baggies for $2.00, and last but not least I got a great big bunch of tissue paper on sale for $0.99. I’ve actually done this 3 years and a row now and you get a good product that looks nice for less than the dollar store. Which is great! Just remember, by the end of the first week in December visit your local Michaels for this great sale!FullSizeRender[2]

So heres the cookies ready to go into their packages, and the ones on the plate are for Andrew. This way he won’t cut in to my allotted Christmas package cookies:)

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Next I melted the white chocolate candy melts on the stove on low heat, then spread them over my pretzels (on parchment paper) and dust them with Christmas sprinkles. Place in the freezer for about 10 min.FullSizeRender[4]

When They come out they should look like this! Then they are ready to go into your mason jars.FullSizeRender[3]

Heres a picture of the pretzels all done in the Mason jar. It’s nice that once you take it out of the freezer it comes out more like a pretzel bark, so its very easy to handle.

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Next I packaged my cookies. The chocolate chip went to the candy cane box, the spice cookies to the black homemade box, and the sugar cookies to the christmas baggies.

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Once the cookies were packaged and the pretzels ready to go, I placed 10 tea bags into each little plaid tin. Then I put everything in the gift basket and It’s ready to be packed up and sent on its way.FullSizeRender

Here’s my gift baskets waiting for their assigned families!

Remember there is still time to put some gift baskets together for Christmas and everything is on sale at Michaels and World Market! Head over and get your supplies to make a few for friends and family.

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All wrapped up and ready to go!

It’s great to make it your own too. You can even fill these with ready made items like chocolates, packaged cookies etc.

Hope this is helpful and that I get to see some of your gift baskets too!

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My Mini Christmas Home Tour

Hey Everyone,

Merry Merry Christmas!

I meant to have my Christmas Home tour up sooner, but this week was full of projects and work. So I’m finally posting my Christmas tour. Hope you find something you like:)

Though I like to think of myself as having a little more of a modern bohemian design style, when it comes to christmas I think I always lean a bit more traditional favoring red, green, gold!

I hope that you enjoy My mini home tour and that I can pass on some Decor inspiration.

Christmas Home Tour 2015

Christmas Home Tour 2015

We got our tree from Lucky’s of all places It was only 25.00! It’s 7 ft tall and is a Douglas fir. It makes our place smell great! I love a real tree, I find the texture of the natural bristles so beautiful. I am usually pretty minimalistic when it comes to decorating the tree and just add ribbon and our ornaments. The stocking are ours and I made them myself. I used a simple straight stitch and they are made of felt.

Christmas Home Tour 2015

Christmas Home Tour 2015

One of my favorite things this year is our natural garland which we found at Home Depot. It was 18.00 for 15 feet of garland. It also has a beautiful texture and smells great. The house requires a bit more sweeping, however it’s a great trade off for the lovely Christmas smell.

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Just another shot since I love it so much:)

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I used some of the extra garland over our TV and was able to secure it to the bookcases.

Christmas Home Tour 2015

Christmas Home Tour 2015

Here’s our little snowman that I think I picked up about 4 years ago now at Target.

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The miniature Christmas tree is from Trader Joe’s and was 5.00, the Christmas straws are from World Market and were 5.00. The mini cake stand I got from Macy’s about 2 years ago and I placed a bit of berries and pine inside.

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Here’s an extra shot with my Gingerbread house in the frame that I decorated at my Mother in Law’s yearly Gingerbread party!

 

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Another one of my Macy’s Martha Stewart cake stands carrying a scented candle and snowman ornament!

 

 

 

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This is by far my favorite shot of my home tour. We are looking at my Kitchen table. The foliage is also from Trader Joe’s and was 4.00! The candle ornaments are I believe from Bath and Body works and I got them a few years back as well. The table runner is from World Market and the Wooden Snowflake Garland is also from Worldmarket.

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I always have a kitchen towel on my stove for decor and it is always in keeping with the time of year. This little beauty is from guess where; World Market!

 

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Another shot of my favorite centerpiece!

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Beautiful red December berries!

 

 

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Here’s my coffee station with my Chalkboard and mini Natural pinecone wreath. I also picked this up from Trader Joes it was 5 bucks!

 

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Hope you Enjoyed My Christmas Home tour! It’s still not too late to add a few more touches to your home!

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Holiday Decorating Ideas


HOLIDAY DECORATING IDEAS: 10 STEPS TO THE PERFECT HOLIDAY HOME
DECORATE LIKE A PROFESSIONAL WITHOUT SPENDING A FORTUNE

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Photo courtesy of Justdestinymag.com

The Holidays are officially here! This is one of my absolute most loved times of the year. I adore the smell of gingerbread, hot chocolate, and peppermint coffee. Bundling up by the fire, wearing my boots and snuggling up with a magazine are just a few of my favorite things. There’s definitely nothing I love more than decorating my home for the Holidays though, of course! It’s so exciting to think of all of the gatherings with family and friends, hosting great parties, and eating lots of cookies. Then as thoughts of sugarplums are dancing through my head, I stop to think of how I’ll be decorating the house for all of the entertaining I’ll be doing this year? I wonder how I will be able decorate my home to look as beautiful as the featured homes in magazines or in my favorite Pinterest Photos without spending all of the money i’ve saved for gifts?

I’m sure the same thought has popped into your mind as it has for many of us. We’re trying to figure out how to get our homes to look like the beautiful editorial shoots that we love. We want holiday chic instead of Santa’s Workshop. How do we do that without spending a fortune?
The good news is you’re not alone in your search for the perfect Holiday home . There are many of us who have a desire to decorate like real design professionals for the Holidays without spending all of our hard earned cash.
The good news is in this post I’ve sourced some of the best products and DIY decor advice that will make it all possible for you to get designer style that’s easy on your wallet. I’ve made sure to include the answers to the most challenging design dilemmas, and I’ve broken the design process down into 10 simple steps. Once your done with this guide, you’ll be ready to confidently decorate your home like a pro for the Holidays.
The best parr is ,It’s easy and fun, and in this post I include pictures, and a shopping list, to help make the process as easy as possible. So whether you are hosting family gatherings this year, or entertaining a few guests, this Guide will show you how to wow all that enter your Holiday domain.
Now without any more hesitation here are the steps for you

1. Try to implement as many natural elements as possible.

Implement natural elements like real wood branches, wreaths, and real green garland.
Bringing the outdoors in always adds a beautiful and interesting element . The great thing about adding natural branches, pine wreaths, and garland is that it’s not only beautiful, but the lovely smell from the natural pine is wonderful. Although there are great options out there that are not the real thing like wreaths and garland. Many times if you can implement the natural elements in your design it just adds an extra touch of fun and rustic beauty.

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lynchcreekwreaths.com

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Photo courtesy of better homes and gardens big.com

2. If you can, stay away from things that look fake, such as fake flowers, and cartoonish accessories.
In almost all cases I am sure that we would all agree that the real thing looks better than fake things. This is true when it comes to garland, wreaths, pinecones, and lips! The good news is that often times it costs less money for the real thing and something that looks better than that of something that’s fake. Think of seeing the natural beauty of real Douglas fir garland matched up next to the stiff scratchy garland. It’s an easy choice when comparing the two.
On the flip side if you are going to opt to add in a few of the fakes here and there ( I always do) a good example of some of these items that look great and are popular this year are bottle brush treess and felt wreathes and garland.

Better Homes and Gardens Magazine says it best here;

“Take your cues from Mother Nature’s palette and pair rich textured brown pinecones with natural greenery. It is the holidays after all, so add a bit of sparkle and shine to the organic tones with hints of silver. Mercury glass decorative balls add shimmer without being too flashy, while gifts wrapped in kraft paper seem just right for this woodsy scheme”

betterhomesandgardens.com

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Photo courtesy of better homes and gardens

And here are some fun accessories that are a bit novelty, but are fun and popular this year!

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joann.com (has great options for bottle brush trees)

3. Choose one theme and try to stay close to that theme throughout your home

(e.g. winter wonderland, can flow into a woodland theme, but maybe not lots of Santa everywhere.)
Choosing one theme and trying to stay close to it is a common rule that I often suggest many design enthusiasts follow when they say that they want a consistent look to their design, and need help achieving that. Whether its for the holidays or not this is a helpful hint. A big problem that many of us have is wanting to use everything that looks pretty. This sometimes leads to things looking cluttered and like you have a little bit of everything going on instead of a defined style. The thing I like about having a theme for Christmas Décor is that It’s fun and a bit more modern than doing just a lot of Christmas everywhere, which is also not an issue if that is what you choose to do. However when you stick to a theme and display it throughout your space it creates a cohesive design. This will also help to carry the Holiday spirit all through your home, without looking to novelty. I would say a greatly under appreciated rule in design is that editing out certain décor pieces is just as important as adding things to your design. White space is equally as important as a decorated space.

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target.com (Classic Christmas Collection)

4. Choose three main colors and carry 2 of those colors throughout your design in each room.
By choosing three main colors and then carrying two throughout your design (matched with a third color of your choice), you will create a cohesive look in your home without being too matchy-matchy. The biggest problem that many people run into when decorating their homes is keeping the décor consistent without creating the same type of style over and over in their homes. By carrying two colors throughout in your design with pieces such as art, pillows, etc. You can create a cohesive space without recreating the same room. Remember you can have a different color in each room as long as you implement the same two colors in your design in the rest of your rooms (this is not a hard and fast rule, it will just give your design a more cohesive look).

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hm.com/home

5. Include handmade, and sentimental pieces wherever you can.

This should go without saying, but when including handmade and sentimental items throughout your designs, you will not only add more visual interest to your design, but this will make your space very personal and unique to you. Handmade and sentimental items are not only beautiful to look at, they hold memories. It means so much more when there is a story to your accessories than having everything bought off of a store shelf somewhere. One of my absolute favorite Christmas accessories is a delicate stroller ornament that my mom received from one of her friends when she was pregnant with me. When you look at the bottom of the ornament in tiny little writing it says baby’s first Christmas. This is not just something that is pretty to look at, it evokes a feeling and has a story to go with it. Try to fit as many stories into your Christmas décor, or on your tree where you can. Even those ugly little macaroni ornaments we made for our parents in grade school can find a place in your Christmas décor.

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Photo courtesy of nobiggie.net

6. Stick with paper, fabric, glass, and real foliage when possible.

We’ve all seen it time and time again. You know that fake flower arrangement in grandma’s house, it looks really pretty, but just so fake. There’s nothing wrong with fake, but when you are committed to using the fake stuff, try to be sure it has a handmade looking element. This is why plastic flowers for example aren’t very appealing, but people love paper flowers. This is because one is trying to look like the real thing, and the other is just an artistic expression of the real thing. This actually makes a big difference in your design being “chic” and “having a designer feel” rather than looking a bit novelty and cheesy. Sometimes if it looks like a DIY that’s usually not a good thing. Paper Fabric, glass, and real foliage also add a beautiful element of texture to your design. Our eye is used to natural beauty and is always sensitive to something that is not quite right. Bringing in natural and rustic elements gives a great layering of texture and a beautiful appeal to your home.

Below we see the use of some of these elements in a Christmas party. You can see that the use of paper cups, burlap, and wood trays against the backdrop of beautiful evergreens. Notice the interesting texture and beautiful appeal it adds to the photo.

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karaspartyideas.com

7.Don’t do too much. (In this case being selective is best, don’t get crazy with the ornaments and decorations. Remember you want to add to your regular style. Not re-create Santa’s workshop)
I know that we’ve all heard the saying that less is more. This is often the case when decorating in general and also goes for Christmas. Pick a few places where you want to set up some vignettes (small grouped designs,can be themed) and then throughout the rest of your space subtly add in your holiday décor. For example, switching out some of your regular art with printable Christmas art. Or changing up your mantle with winter wonderland accessories, and adding some Douglas fir garland to your stair banister. These are all good examples of making small changes that make a big impact without going overboard. I would also strongly suggest moving and storing some of your regular décor items and swapping them out for your Christmas décor.

Kara from Karasparty ideas writes about her tree
“I absolutely love all the rustic decorations on and around my farmhouse + cabin tree.”     @karaspartyideas.com

Below is a photo from Karas Party Ideas Blog where she uses her christmas theme beautifully!

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Photo Courtesy of Karaspartyideas.com

Often times trying to layer your Christmas décor over your regular decorations just ends up looking too cluttered and doesn’t leave enough white space for your eye to take in the overall appeal of your design. Stay true to your style by adding your personal touch to your tree and changing out some of your normal accessories for your favorite Christmas decorations. Destiny from Just Destiny Magazine gives great advice in her holiday post below

“I know it’s not realistic for you to go out and purchase an entire new tree with all the trimmings every single year so I encourage you to use some of the same items from last years tree and still have a fun new look! For example, instead of striped ribbon like last year you can use a buffalo check ribbon or garland like the one here. It’s all about mixing and matching and staying true to your style!”
@justdestinymag.com

Buffalo-Check-Christmas-Tree

Photo courtesy of justdestinymag.com

8.Use texture to add interest to your design (furry pillows, big fluffy throws, burlap ribbon etc.)

Using texture in your design will not only add visual interest, but using textures such as chunky knits, and furry throws will also feel great to the touch and give a lovely cozy feeling to your design. Another great way to add texture to your design is by incorporating different fabrics to your tree, and holiday decor, such as burlap, fur and flannel materials. The eye naturally  picks up the difference of reflection and grade of things, so adding dimension with something that is not flat gives your eyes something to focus on.

Below is a photo from The Tomkat Studio blog where the use of texture is used brilliantly, note the big fluffy pillows, furry ottoman, and fur stockings!

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Photo courtesy of thetomkatstudio.com
9.Definitely invest in some cool printable art to change out with some of your normal framed art.
There’s great printable Christmas art on Etsy that can fit anyone’s style. I LOVE PRINTABLE ART. Using printable art in your Christmas décor is not only fun and affordable, it gives a polished and complete look to your design, and it is literally instant! Placing your printable art in a gold or silver frame adds another boost to your Holiday design.

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easy.com (printable wisdom shop)


10. Use Metalics the right way
(Think candle holders, ornaments and picture frames instead of lots of tinsel, aluminum garland, and shiny trees.) Metalics are a trend that have been popular for a while now and are only getting better. A modern way to use metalics is to add gold accessories and then enhance your design with your normal Christmas décor. There are some beautiful options out there right now. Look at some of Target’s Christmas décor collections. They have a few of my favorite accessories such as gold antlers, gold table runners, and ornaments. Worldmarktet is another of my favorite places for beautiful gold décor and entertaining pieces. They have some wonderful gold dipped whine glasses and gold serving trays for the Holidays.

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target.com

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target.com

Hope you enjoyed this post! Please click the link below for the shopping list

Holiday Shopping List

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