The holiday season is upon us. This means it’s almost time to bust out your collection of twinkling lights, traditional trinkets, and tinsel-clad trees and start getting merry and bright. Unfortunately, not everyone decks the hall in style. In between the nativity sets and Santa’s shiny sled, there’s a treasure trove of ho-ho-heinous décor waiting to be unwrapped and proudly displayed.
Often, these types of holiday decorating mistakes can be easily avoided with a few simple solutions. Follow these five tips and your house will be the talk of the neighborhood for all the right reasons.
The Mistake: Red and Green Everything
If there was ever an appropriate time to use this traditional color combo, Christmas would be it. But honestly, why stick to the usual when there are so many other fun ways to mix and match for the holidays? This is especially relevant if these colors clash with your everyday décor.
The Solution: Mix Up the Colors
Instead, coordinate your accessories around what is already in your home. For example, mix cream shades with blush, wine or metallic tones such as gold, silver, or copper. Make sure to use them evenly for a more professional look and feel. Or, try celebrating with your traditional color. For Hanukkah celebrations, try mixing in different shades of blue. Or for Kwanzaa, add bits of red to your greenery.
The Mistake: Too Many Lawn Inflatables
There’s always that one person in the neighborhood who can’t resist displaying at least a baker’s dozen of these. Don’t be that person. Sure, kids love them when they are lit up and flopping around in the breeze at night. But during the day they serve as a deflated eye sore no matter the age of the observer. If you can’t resist, try sticking to just one inflatable. These overly expensive items are more trouble than they are worth.
The Solution: Traditional Lawn Décor
Good news. If parting with inflatables means getting rid of important holiday traditions, it doesn’t have to happen. Just try sticking to one. And make sure it fits with a more refined theme. For example, frosty the snowman would go great with a winter wonderland theme. Sticking to any theme makes your décor lean toward the more traditional and less tacky. Consider asking yourself: when you think of a winter wonderland, do you imagine a giant Frosty and vacation-clad Santa hanging out on your roof? Probably not. No matter the type of décor you choose, make sure it matches your desired outcome.
The Mistake: Too Many Decorations
Collector Christmas plates? Menacing nutcrackers? Elves creeping on your shelves? A giant scary Santa stuffed in a corner? Displaying every single decoration you’ve collected over the years is overwhelming. For starters, it just makes your home seem sloppy and cluttered. This is like a home with too many inflatables. You want to spread holiday cheer. Not fear. Also, be careful with the amount of holiday lights. You don’t want to overwhelm your guests to the point of blindness.
The Solution: Less is More
When it comes to displaying Christmas-themed décor, less is more. Simplify your décor by adding a few holiday items to the pieces you already own around the house. For example, add a couple of metallic accents, like golden clad bowls, for instant holiday-spruced table décor. Once you’ve gotten your décor out and situated to how you like it, take a photo of your displays. That way you can see it from more of an objective point of view. Also, keep in mind you don’t have to go crazy decorating in every room of the house. Simply add a little holiday element here and there to instantly spread some cheer beyond just a tree.
The Mistake: A (Literal) Explosive Display
Decorations are a big part of celebrations. They are most often seasonal or temporary. And they also constitute major fire safety issues. For starters, the amount of wires that go into one power strip can overload and ignite an electrical fire dangerous enough to burn your house down. If you have pets, avoid accidentally creating hazardous incidents. This includes potential entanglement when hanging holiday lights, or putting out poisonous plants such as poinsettias, holly, and mistletoe.
The Solution: Power Strip Safety
Just like the importance of limiting how much décor you display, it also ties into how much you’ll need to plug in. Before decorating, always make sure to plan out where you’d like everything to go. Make sure you use multiple outlets by evenly scattering the plug-in décor. Avoid leaving your lights on overnight. This is not decreases the risk of upset neighbors and overall energy bill, but also the risk of overheating your outlets during the hours you’re less likely to notice. As far as your pets go: use extra precaution and care to avoid any avoidable trips to the vet.
The Mistake: Overpowering Holiday Scents
Sugar and spice doesn’t always equal everything nice. Just because you can stock up on gingerbread, pine tree, and Christmas cookie scents, doesn’t mean you have to. Too many scents can have the opposite effect on your guests. That is, similar to the times you accidentally over sprayed yourself with perfume, instead of providing a sweet take over aroma of fragrance, it can overpower and stink.
The Solution: Go All-Natural with Your Fragrance
Instead of filling your home with synthetic winter scents, try using a natural air freshener. Along with the already fresh scent of cedar wafting from your Christmas tree, consider creating a natural wreath with a few pine cones. Or, simmer a pot of homemade potpourri. Simply fill a giant pot with fresh cloves, cinnamon, oranges, or other favorite warm scents, cover with water, and let it simmer. This provides a great feast for the senses, especially for guests if hosting a holiday party.
Final Thoughts: Always Keep it Merry and Bright
In the end, if you’re décor makes you happy, you are ultimately doing it right. But if you go overboard, you might risk missing out on a tradition that is supposed to be easy and fun. Prior to getting out all of your décor, consider making a list and checking it twice. Decide what décor is aesthetically unpleasant, and what is nice.
And don’t forget to make it a family affair. Hanging the lights in the trees by yourself can feel like a chore. But, when you get everyone involved, you create a tradition everyone can enjoy. Not to mention, you add a personal flair that all members of your home can agree on.
Are you a homeowner who has any additional holiday decorating tips and tricks? We would love to hear from you! Feel free to leave your opinion in the comments section below.
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