A Stocking Full of Jolly Ideas-
Wade through the holiday hustle and bustle by ornamenting your Christmas with decor and good deeds. Here are tips on decking our halls, presenting gifts, dressing for the occasion and lighting your Christmas.
Home For The Holidays
The tricks and trends of decorating your house this holiday season
Turning your home into a holiday wonderland can be overwhelming. There is garland to drape, candles to light, trees to trim and stockings to hang.
But holiday décor doesn’t have to take over your life — just your home.
“You can do as little or as much that is comfortable,” says Carolee Parkin, manager of Evans GateHouse No. 1 in Orem. “Some people decorate every room of the house, while others just concentrate on the living room or family room. Do what’s best for you and your situation.”
But regardless of your choice of trimmings, it’s all about the spirit behind them.
“It’s that whole package that turns your home into something special,” Carolee says. “It’s about the memories the decorations create for your family.”
Here are hints for making your home a holiday haven.
O Christmas Tree
Holiday happiness doesn’t grow on trees. But decorating them certainly helps. And the best tree décor is one that reflects your personality.
“Your personal style is important,” Carolee says. “It’s what people will feel when they come into your home.”
But whether your style is strung popcorn, hand-blown glass or homemade ornaments, Carolee suggests “the more, the merrier.”
“I like the tree to be jam-packed with ornaments,” she says. “And you should hang the bigger pieces at the base of the tree and then work out from there. It makes the tree more proportionate.”
And don’t be too preoccupied with expensive or matching décor.
“Most people don’t have the money to go out and buy new (decorations). Just be creative,” Carolee says. “Start collections that are fun for your family. Don’t be afraid to explore.”
The amount of decorating you do in your home is up to you, but a way to make it special is to incorporate family traditions.
One suggestion is to have collections that you can add to each year. Whether it’s snowman figurines, nativity scenes or Santa dolls, such sets are perfect for displays and fun to collect.
Another way to include the family is to set up your holiday home together. Have your husband drape the greenery (invest in the nice, artificial variety) and have your kids help hang the ornaments.
“It’s important to build your home around traditions with your family,” Carolee says. “Adding Christmas ambiance has everything to do with invoking memories.”
Show your true colors
The standard red and green Christmas will never go out of style. But that doesn’t mean you can’t throw in a colorful surprise.
“For color, trends this year seem to be much more traditional. There is little variation,” Carolee says. “But there will always be a trendy color in fashion that you can put into the mix.”
This year, that trendy color is lime green. But Carolee says the styles will constantly move back and forth.
“You have to be prepared that it’s not going to stick around. Chances are you’ll use it for a couple years and then have to move on,” she says. “So it’s important to have a traditional base. Then you can add the fun and funk as it comes.”
Don’t be in the dark on your holiday decor. Outdoor lighting can brighten up the season — and the neighborhood!
“If people have a little more money to spend, the best thing you can do is light up your house,” says Anjanette Palmer, owner of All About Service. “It adds festivities to the occasion, and kids just love it.”
The most popular light color is clear (for a more elegant look), but some people enjoy the red and white “candy cane effect” (for a more fun look).
Also, gone are the days of unruly extension chords and ladders — lights can be custom fit to your home and then reused in the years to come.
“It’ll be more expensive the first year since you’re buying the lights, but it will pay off in the future when you only have to pay for putting them up and taking them down,” Anjanette says.
But don’t let your roof have all the fun. Your landscape and trees can also benefit from a twinkle of holiday cheer.
When it comes to gift giving, what’s on the outside counts, too. Follow these tips to tape and tie your way to presentable presents.
Tips are courtesy Wendy Bills, who runs the gift-wrap booth at University Mall.
Back to Basics
1. Use a box.
2. Use the correct size of paper.
3. Make your corners tight.
The Thrills of Frills
1. Create a focal point for the package (i.e. tie an ornament or a candy bar in the ribbon).
2. Give the traditional colors (red, green, gold and white) some flavor by accenting with purples, pinks or blues.
3. Rather than a standard box, use various types of containers. This will visually spice up the package and add an element of surprise.