Your Christmas Tree--GORGEOUS! or just kinda meh....

Each year many of you tell me how helpful this article was to you in the past, so I wanted to share it again to get us in the spirit and decking the halls with confidence!

 Happy decorating!! :)

static1.squarespace.jpg

Just this week someone asked me the darnedest question:

"Can you tell me how to decorate my Christmas tree?"

This time of year, a lot of us are bundling up in our mittens and hats to go pick our tree, while others of us may be hauling an artificial one out of the basement…but what I didn't realize is that many of us never really feel all that satisfied with the way it looks once we have it all trimmed. 

Well, that's not good!

SO, I thought it would be fun once again to share some tips and tricks that I use when decorating my own tree as well as my clients' trees that can really help this centerpiece of our holiday decorations to look dazzling and magical. :) So here goes: 

  1. Be Bright-- the first and most important thing you are going to add to your tree is lights, and lots of them. The formula I most often hear for properly lighting your tree is to use approximately 100 lights per each vertical foot of the tree.  I know this sounds like a lot of lights, but once you see the difference this makes, you will never go back to a mere two or three strands sparsely sprinkled on the branches! The reason the number of lights is so important is because the glow and sparkle they give is really what makes the tree come alive visually, and gives it that magical twinkle that literally lights up a room. This year, add more lights. Really. It is a game changer. 
  2. Be Consistent--In order for your tree to have visual impact, you need to have elements on it that make it look cohesive and consistent. Usually the best way to do this is to use garland and/or ribbon as well as matching glass balls or other large ornaments all over the tree that are all of the same color scheme. Trees that don't have this grounding element can look chaotic, with each ornament different from the next, and nothing pulling the whole thing together visually. Once you have these foundational elements in place, you can comfortably go on to the next step where you can then add a little of the sentimental chaos….:)
  3. Be Sentimental--The part of our tree that makes it so meaningful are the ornaments that we have collected over the years that are significant to us. To be honest, these are NOT the things that will most likely give your tree the "wow" factor…but they are, after all,  what we love about Christmas! After you have completed step two where you have given your tree an overall balance and color scheme, the sentimental ornaments should be sprinkled throughout the limbs, between the colored balls and garland, completing the look of your tree!

I hope that these few ideas help you to feel more confident as you deck the halls this year-- AND I hope this year you are able to step back and smile with pride as you look at your gorgeous, glowing, glittering tree!

A little less stress, please. A little more beauty?

During the holidays, we long for our homes to be extra beautiful and welcoming, the picture of peace and serenity...don't we??

Farmhouse at Christmas.jpeg

So it has always struck me kinda funny that to create this much desired peace and serenity,  we bring out stacks of boxes bursting with stuff, create chaos as we empty their contents willy-nilly in the center of our houses, and then try to assimilate all of these extra items into an already full house--

And we do all of this during some of the busiest weeks of the year.

Seems crazy when we look at it that way, right?

Simplicity is at the heart of joy and beauty, but we often forget that during this season.  So, as we start to get big plastic bins out of the attic and spread their contents around our homes, I would like to invite you to try a different approach this year...one that will hopefully leave you feeling less frantic, and more peaceful & joyful indeed:

  1. Create a staging area--a place you don't mind if it is messy--the attic or basement itself where the holiday items are already stored, or perhaps a guest room. THIS is where the boxes and all of that STUFF will be unpacked and sorted--not in the middle of everything in the main part of the house.
  2. Focus on only ONE ROOM AT A TIME...We seldom have huge blocks of time to decorate, so think of one room you want to focus on--or even a single shelf or small area of that room--when you have a bit of time. Take just a handful of items from the staging area to the spot you are working, so there aren't big piles of things to deal with that can overwhelm you. (Decorating in small doses helps us to remember that this is a season, not a single event, and a process to enjoy, not an item on our checklist.)
  3. Decorate with only your most favorite decorations this year and abandon the devotion to decorating things a certain way because it is the way you always have in the past. Bah Humbug! Try something new, follow your heart, do something fun!
  4. Embrace Simplicity--small, subtle, yet sparkly touches around the house can be more beautiful than going whole hog...and they will be less stressful to gather and put away come January 2nd.
  5. Share the Spirit--After you have HAD FUN (rather than stressing and fussing) putting your favorite items where they can be enjoyed for the holiday, come back to your staging area. There will be a lot of items left over that you don't truly love or really need, and that is GREAT! Consider donating these to a charity as soon as possible so they can bless someone else's holiday. Your generosity will be so appreciated, and there will be less to put away and more storage room left over when you are done.

Decorating for the holidays is meant to be a celebration, not a chore. Be mindful and selective, so that you do things to adorn your home not simply out of obligation or tradition, but because it truly brings you joy.

AMEN & Happy Holidays!!

{video} Imagine you and I are cleaning out your closet...

So, we find this box in the closet we are cleaning out. Sealed. Unlabeled. 

What is in it??

Who knows!

SO...should we open it up and go through all of the STUFF that's in there??

I SAY YES!!!!

What do YOU say?? (Don't roll your eyes at me!)

Hope this week's video helps you to tackle these "clumps of clutter" we all have in our houses, and inspires you to just jump in and get started, one small step at a time. :)