Decorating Your Home for Christmas

Jon Fesmire |

Whether this is your first holiday season in your own home, or you’ve been hosting Christmas for years, it’s nice to be able to put up decorations and bring the holiday feeling into your own space.

Here are some of our favorite ways to decorate for the holidays:

The Christmas Tree

When you pick out holiday lights to hang in the tree, get the same type for the rest of the living room. You can arrange them around windows and over shelves. Using the same type of lights throughout the room will bring a sense of unity.

Put the ornaments on the tree as a family, or with friends. This can help foster an appreciation of the season with those you love. Ornaments can include some you’ve bought, and those you and your loved ones have made.

Advent Calendar Ornaments

Advent calendars are fun, but here’s an idea that could be even more interesting. Purchase some miniature gift bags or boxes, small enough to fit a single candy and a slip of paper inside. Decorate and number them from 1 to 25. Put a wrapped piece of chocolate and a holiday message in each one, then tie yarn around each and hang them from the tree. For each of the 25 days, a member of the family can find the current package and open it for the candy and the message.

Deck the Halls

Holly, ivy, and berry branches—whether natural or faux—can be a good way to decorate along the top of the walls in various rooms. Consider putting red and green velvet bows here and there on the walls as well.

If you’re religious, you may want to put a nativity scene on a bookshelf in the living room, or on the fireplace mantle. If you have a more secular bent, Santa, elves, miniature presents and Christmas trees, all look great. Of course, whether religious or not, many of us find angels delightful, whether on top of the tree or hanging out with miniature Santa.

Don’t Forget the Stockings

A stocking for each member of the family, and even for the guests who are coming over for Christmas, can make an attractive display. You can hang them along the fireplace mantle. If you don’t have a fireplace, hanging along the stairwell works, or all together in a row on one wall.

Glorious Wreaths

Wreaths can brighten any door or wall. You can either purchase pre-made wreaths, or craft your own. Add elves, angels, paper or cloth snowflakes, or seasonal flowers to personalize them.

Scent of the Season

There are many scents we associate with Christmas. Some include pine, gingerbread, and cinnamon. If you like to bake, you’ll have a house filled with the smell of chocolate chip cookies and other treats. At other times, consider lighting scented candles. When it’s especially cold outside, if you have a fireplace, there’s nothing quite as comforting as the smell of wood burning in the hearth.

Delicious Holiday Treats

This is a good time of year to fill some decorative bowls with a variety of chocolates, candy canes, and other treats. Again, we suggest finding those in red, white, and green wrappers, though silver and gold can add a nice touch.

When you have guests, these candies will add to the decorative feel and give everyone a literal taste of Christmas.

Christmas Tracks

What are your favorite Christmas tunes? Perhaps you like oldies with holiday themes, the Nutcracker Suite, or jazz. When your guests come over on Christmas Day, have something nice playing on the stereo, or play them in the evening in the week leading up to the big day.

After the Holidays

A few days after New Years Day, most people take down their Christmas decorations, dispose of their trees, and get their homes back to a pre-holiday state. You may be wondering though what you should do with all those ornaments and other decorations.

Consider using self storage. A 5x5 or 5x10 unit is excellent for storing all your off-season items. You can keep your Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas decorations there, use it as an off-season wardrobe closet, and use it to store summer beach and pool toys.

Meanwhile, we hope these tips give you some new ideas for how to decorate your home for Christmas, or whatever winter holiday you celebrate!