Holiday Decorating Ideas

The holidays are officially here and this episode is just what Santa ordered for any Christmas lovers out there, or if you just want some extra holiday inspiration to get in the spirit of the season. Even if you’ve already decorated for this year, listen above, or keep reading below, because I’m sharing some of my favorite holiday entertaining, gifting and decorating tips.  Are you ready?

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Christmas is seriously my favorite time of year!  The holiday music, twinkling lights, the smell of Christmas cookies, wrapping gifts…it all feels so magical.  So, this post feels extra special because I get to share part of that magic with you.  

One things I want to stress is how important it is to do what makes you happy at the holidays.  As an interior designer with a neutral home, I could decorate my whole home in my neutral decor for perfect Instagram photos.   But, instead…I add some color, try new things, and have fun with it.  I hope you do, too!  

Save These Holiday Decorating Ideas

Gifting and Ways to Show Gratitude at the Holidays

As we gear up for the holidays, let’s take a moment to spread some joy to others. And I’m talking about those unsung heroes of the holidays – our amazing delivery drivers! Each year we put out a sign with some snacks in a basket so our drivers can refuel get a treat on their route.  A simple sign and a little snack can go a long way in showing our appreciation for the folks who make our festivities happen

Appreciation note for delivery drivers at the holidays

Eco-Friendly Wrapping Ribbons

Now, let’s move on to one of my favorite gift wrapping tips that will add a touch of eco-friendly flair to your gift-giving game.  Recycle those leftover wrapping paper scraps to create beautiful holiday ribbons. It’s super easy to do.

  1. Cut your scrap wrapping paper into long strips that are a little less than an inch wide.  
  2. Slide the strip along a pair of open scissors to create a curl in the strip. Do this for five or six strips.
  3. Attach the strips together with a staple. Fluff it to create a full bow.
  4. Place on any gift bag or package.

Holiday Decorating Hositess Gift or White Elephant Gift Idea

Picture this: a hot chocolate station that doubles as the perfect gift for any occasion.  Simply buy some packets of hot chocolate, marshmallows, candy canes, hot chocolate stirrers or even hot cocoa bombs.  Then, wrap them up in a decorative container like a hoilday bowl, basket, or box. It’s a warm and toasty way to spread holiday cheer!   So often people give wine bottles to hosts, but this is something a little different, and more personal that will set you apart. 

And it’s chocolate…hello…it’s a total win-win gift!

Holiday Entertaining

Are you ready to turn up the dial for your holiday gatherings?  I’ve got the game-changing staggered napkin trick that will give your napkins a fancy twist.  All you need is a stack of paper napkins and a glass.  First, place the glass on top of the stack of napkins and twist.  Then, repeat until all your napkins are staggered! 

Check it out on Instagram below.  Easy peasy!

Holiday Treats

Now, let’s talk about those fun holiday treats and foods that will steal the show at your gatherings. From adorable Strawberry Santas to show-stopping wreath rolls your spread is about to get a serious upgrade. And don’t worry, we’re not forgetting the cocktails and mocktails!  Simple add pomegranate seeds or cranberries, a sprig of rosemary, and, of course, a pretty glass, and you’ve got a festive drink that’ll have everyone toasting the holiday spirit.  

Strawberry Santas

It’s easy to make these adorable strawberry Santas:

  • Cut the stems off the strawberries so they sit flat
  • Cut about a half an inch off the top for Santa’s hat and put to the side
  • Add a dollop of whipped cream to the strawberry base
  • Place the hat back on top of the whipped cream
  • Add a small dollop of whipped cream to top off the hat.
  • The eyes are optional, but if you put them mini chocolate chips work the best.  Place them flat side out so Santa doesn’t have pointy eyes;)

I make homemade whipped cream by mixing up a pint of heavy cream and adding a little maple syrup after it’s mixed and stiffened up.  If you you don’t have frosting tips, just cut a small hole with scissors at the corner of a ziplock back.  Place your whipped cream inside and squeeze our the whipped cream for a smooth finish.  

Easy Holiday Tablescapes

Let’s get your holiday table ready with a super simple holiday decorating idea.  Start with a neutral table runner and then lay stems of fresh eucalyptus or cedar down the center of your table with some votive candles for a natural vibe.   You can even add small ornaments for some color and texture.  I like to put a charger under my plates and top it with a cloth napkin to feel extra fancy.

Holiday Decorating

Now and right after the holidays is a great time to buy decorations so you can get a jump start for next year.  I know, I know, we’re still recovering from the current festivities, but trust me, it’s worth it!  From artificial trees and ribbons, to greenery and ornaments, this is the sweet spot for budget-friendly finds.

I love garlands gracefully draped on stairs, wreaths adorning windows with soft velvet or satin bows – it’s pure holiday magic! And here’s a pro tip: use Christmas ornaments as decor themselves. 

Showcase ornaments in glass jars for a touch of elegance. Or, fill dough bowls with ornaments and pinecones for a rustic charm that’ll make your space feel like a winter wonderland. You can also search Pinterest for tutorials about crafting vintage ornaments which are so big right now. 

And one of my favorite ways to decorate is to wrap empty boxes and place them under the tree.  Those wrapped packages with pretty bows adds that extra detail that makes your tree look finished.  

Thanksgiving table ideas
Christmas Decorating

Christmas Tree Decorating

Now you’re talking my love language!  I may have a slight obsession with Christmas trees.  I can’t help it…I love them and I have quite a few at our house. 

Growing up, we only had one tree, but as I started my own family we kept adding trees that we could decorate in different ways.  We have our family tree filled with homemade ornaments and memories of our family.  Then, I have a few designer trees:  a winter wonderland tree with natural decor and pinecones, a traditional red and green decorated tree, and a frosted blue and white tree.  It may sound like a lot, but it makes me happy so why not?

Now, let’s talk color palettes, the key to creating designer trees. Whether you’re a traditional red and green enthusiast, a neutral tones lover, or love a splash of champagne and pink, you have plenty of options. It’s your tree, your rules!

Dexter sleeping by our nature-inspired Winter Wonderland Christmas tree in our family room.

Holiday Decorating: Themed Trees

Next up, themed trees that’ll make your tinsel tingle:

      • Travel to far-off lands with a travel-themed tree.
      • Step back in time with a vintage-inspired wonder.
      • Embrace nature with pinecones, natural objects, and branches.
      • Create a Disney themed tree.
      • Celebrate family traditions with a dedicated family tree.
      • Adorn your tree with handmade ornaments made with love.
      • Turn your tree into a gingerbread house wonderland.
      • Bring the beach vibes home with a beach-themed tree
Blue and White Christmas Tree

Now, for some tree-topping secrets:

      • Your topper doesn’t have to be a star or an angel; get creative with bows, branches, stems, or even quirky objects.
      • My trees feature snowflakes and branches, bows and stems, and yes, even elf legs!

And speaking of creativity, ever thought of using gifts as part of your tree design? We’re talking empty boxes wrapped each year and decorative boxes wrapped with ribbons. It’s a gift to the eyes!

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Christmas Tree topper

Final Thoughts

So…did this episode put you in the holiday spirit?  I certainly hope so!I’d LOVE to hear which ideas you’d like to try this year, or which ones you know you want to try next year.  

What to do next…head over to my Instagram, hit follow and send me a DM with your favorite ideas and of course to see some holiday inspiration in action and other design tips.  

I’ll catch you next week and have an amazing day!

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Sally Soricelli