Making Your Home Merry and Bright For the Holidays

3:07 PM Amanda Prahl 0 Comments

For many of us, it doesn't really feel like the holidays until we've put up our decorations. As much as we all love the classics - a tree, a wreath or two, and some lights - it can get easy to get stuck in a decor rut. Perhaps you're tired of the same old ideas, or perhaps you live in a small space that doesn't fit a big tree. Whatever the case, here are some ways to add holiday cheer to your space!

Words as style

Signs with festive quotes or phrases are an elegant way to bring the feel of the season into your home. Nestle smaller signs into garland or trees, and hang a flat sign on the wall.

A photo posted by Amanda Prahl (@amandaprl93) on

On a smaller scale, I love using smaller signs of just a few words tucked into greenery to make that Christmas staple more unique. This "Merry And Bright" wood sign spruces up the traditional garland along a mantle.

Table vignettes

When space is limited, embrace it! On a single coffee table or side table, you can put together a display by bringing together a few elements around a common theme and/or color palette. 

Focus on unique pieces that you already use during the rest of the year, and spruce them up with holiday touches. This vintage Underwood typewriter and lantern are part of my everyday aesthetic; the addition of the wreath, mini glass ornaments, lights, and snowflake make it festive.

A tray can be a great base for a vignette piece by creating borders for the design. For this vignette, we mixed antique books and a vintage cloth ornament with a fresh bouquet, colorful candles, and geometric votive holders. The copper in the votive holders and candle lids tie the inside and outside of the tray together. (Pro tip: it's 100% okay to mix metals, as we do here with the silver and copper, as long as the other surrounding colors work to bring both together.)

Small themed trees

Whether because a big tree doesn't fit in your space, or because you want to add even more holiday cheer, a smaller tree with a specific aesthetic can brighten any room.

Don't be afraid to use several of the same ornament or interesting variations on the same themes: here, every ornament aside from the glass balls are snowmen or snowflakes. Even the tree topper is a holiday top hat that would be at home on Frosty's head. Craft fairs and monthly pop-up vintage markets, both of which are increasing in popularity, are great places to find coordinating sets.

A tree doesn't have to be "themed" in this way; instead, try building an aesthetic around a color scheme or style. This small tree is began with a color palette of golds, silvers, and ivory, though the ornaments range from angels to music notes to skates and more. Then, to add a pop of color, I filled in with small glass ball ornaments in warm tones.

Holiday treats

One of the best parts of the holidays is the excuse to make and eat delicious treats, right? If you have the space for it, bring this part of the season into your decor. Try tucking a gingerbread wonderland into a corner of your kitchen, using either real gingerbread or ceramic villages (ours are Department 56), and weave some wire lights among them:

Instead of an actual bar, create a hot chocolate bar. You can use a chalkboard to write up a cute sign or find one ready-made, and fill glass jars with marshmallows and candy canes. Depending on the space available, you can make it a small display on a counter or a full-size "bar":

Most importantly of all, enjoy the decorating process and the Christmas joy! From my house to all of yours, may your days be merry and bright!