Category Archives: Holiday Home Tours

Classic Christmas Porch Decor | Our 2016 Holiday Porch

I am so excited to be closing out this week with a look at our very first holiday decor of this season AND in this house! Getting the holiday decor up has been a little slow going around here for a few reasons (baby on the way, sick kiddo, and general post-move fatigue); but as usual, once I finally get myself going, I tend to really get into it despite my commitments to “keep it low key” (which I promise myself year after year after year)! What typically holds me back from getting started with our holiday decor is deciding on what direction to go. Since I participated in several holiday home tours a few years back , my Christmas stash is borderline excessive and embarrassing; but that also means I can pull off a variety of looks without having to run to the store. You guys know that decorating with red isn’t one of my preferred colors; but around the holidays, I just can’t seem to get enough of it. So, I decided to embrace the red for our outdoor porch decor and went for a very classic yet fresh take on our porch display!

Looking for a classic take on your Christmas decor this year? Check out this holiday porch decked out in classic red, white, and black for a charming display!

Greg spent all last weekend hanging lights along our roofline while I stayed cozied up with a sick Henry on the couch. Greg really loves to hang lights, but our first year in a new house is always a bit tedious as we figure out the best arrangement, buy new lights to meet the new requirements, and determine how to hang everything on our new digs. I’m thankful Greg genuinely enjoys that part so I can turn my attention to the craftier projects. With the lights looking so wonderful, I really wanted to pull together a front porch display to match. However, our front door is tucked back into a “vestibule” of sorts so I didn’t want to clutter it up with a bunch of stuff that either wouldn’t be seen and/or crowd our walking path. I turned to a bunch of things we already had on hand and my tried-and-true combo of a green wreath and green mini tree to pull together one charming vignette!

Looking for a classic take on your Christmas decor this year? Check out this holiday porch decked out in classic red, white, and black for a charming display!

As the saying goes, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it;” and that sentiment couldn’t be more true for our wreath. Years ago, I shared my 15-minute ornament wreath here on the blog. It worked so well then that I have literally turned to the same technique every year since (just swapping out different colors and bows to achieve different looks!)

Looking for a classic take on your Christmas decor this year? Check out this holiday porch decked out in classic red, white, and black for a charming display!

I always start with a fresh green wreath (this oversized one is from The Home Depot) and tie on ornaments in clusters of three with floral wire (you can see the full tutorial HERE). I think what really makes this a winner is the textural combination of the greenery, pinecones, and metallic ornaments. The fact that it comes together in a matter of minutes also helps 😉

Looking for a classic take on your Christmas decor this year? Check out this holiday porch decked out in classic red, white, and black for a charming display!

The holidays are a great time to get a little whimsical, so I didn’t pull myself back when I wanted to combine two of my favorite ribbons (a buffalo check and a stripe) into a single massive bow. It’s finished off with a sparkly branch, and I am kind of obsessed with how it turned out!

Looking for a classic take on your Christmas decor this year? Check out this holiday porch decked out in classic red, white, and black for a charming display!

Looking for a classic take on your Christmas decor this year? Check out this holiday porch decked out in classic red, white, and black for a charming display!

Not only do we have some empty space to the right of the door (where I did have a porch plant until this week), but we were also looking for a way to hide all the plugs, timers, and cords from all the various strands of lights we have about. As I was considering all my different planter options, it occurred to me that my Fall apple cart would be the perfect addition to our holiday porch!

Looking for a classic take on your Christmas decor this year? Check out this holiday porch decked out in classic red, white, and black for a charming display!

After sanding off the apple seeds on the wheel, I loaded in a table-stop pine tree…

Looking for a classic take on your Christmas decor this year? Check out this holiday porch decked out in classic red, white, and black for a charming display!

…and topped it off with another patterned bow.

Looking for a classic take on your Christmas decor this year? Check out this holiday porch decked out in classic red, white, and black for a charming display!

A remnant of faux fur always comes in handy this time of year; and since we don’t get much rain here in southern California, it became the perfect way to conceal those cords as well as the tree base.

Looking for a classic take on your Christmas decor this year? Check out this holiday porch decked out in classic red, white, and black for a charming display!

The vinyl “Merry Christmas” was a last-minute decision (as I said, when I get rolling, I tend to really get rolling!) and brings the whole display together nicely!

Looking for a classic take on your Christmas decor this year? Check out this holiday porch decked out in classic red, white, and black for a charming display!

A jute rug and some white lanterns (both from Marshalls/HomeGoods ages ago) ground the whole display! I am so glad I followed my instincts and went with the classic red this year. Combined with our steel blue door and white house, the arrangement couldn’t be more perfect, and it’s really gone a long way in getting me into the holiday spirit.

Looking for a classic take on your Christmas decor this year? Check out this holiday porch decked out in classic red, white, and black for a charming display!

If you’re just getting started with your decor, I hope this quick little display gives you some ideas for your home. This weekend, we do the inside of the house, so look for that update sometime next week (hopefully!). I also have another sewing tutorial coming up for you, as well as some more fun Cricut Christmas crafts! See you back here next week!

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P.S. While I’ve got some fun things in the works for you guys, I did want to mention (as you might be able to tell from some sporadic posting in recent weeks) that I’m starting to get bit behind. Between holiday commitments, preparing for baby, and just plain being exhausted, I can’t get as much done in a day as I used to. I so appreciate you all coming around here each week to see what I’m up to and please know I’m trying my hardest to keep up. The best way to stay up-to-date on new posts hitting the blog AND if Baby Boy has made his entrance yet is to follow me on Instagram. Of all the social media outlets, that’s my fav (and easiest!) to update! Have a great weekend, friends!

Silver and Gold Holiday Home

Happy Monday everyone! I hope you all had a fantastic weekend getting shopping, cooking, baking, caroling, crafting and more holiday activities checked off your list! We made some headway on a project that’s been hanging over my head for a month now (sneak peek here!) and had some good family time, so it was a good one all around! And…we had a nice sunny weekend, so I was also able to spend yesterday capturing our holiday home for you guys!

As I’ve been mentioning for the past week or so, I had a bit of a tough time getting into the holiday spirit (at least decor-wise) this year. The past two years, I have gone all out decorating every single space in our home…spending loads of time and money to create a Christmas wonderland inside our house. For me, with excessive holiday decor comes a good bit of anxiety (so much glitter and clutter?!?!?! And where do I put everything I cleared out to make space for holiday stuff?!?!?) This year, I started pulling down the bins and found my anxiety rising…so I stepped back, re-assessed, took away the pressures of having our home look a certain way, and just went with what I was feeling.

As much as I LOVED my Christmas decor of the past two years, this year I couldn’t handle all the color, and I found myself reaching instead for my more subtle and neutral accents. All the colored accessories went back to the attic, and I landed on a shimmery, classy, festive yet calming scheme for this year: white, gold and silver! Everything I used this year were projects and finds over the last two years. I loved that I didn’t have to make or buy a single thing and could still put together a lovely holiday home!

Over behind our front door is a bookcase that I style as our mantel. White and silver trees, silver glittered pinecones, a glittered dear, glittered letters and a silver wreath come together to make a dazzling display.

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Silver tree: Marshalls / White trees: DIY / Glittered pinecones: DIY / Silver & pinecone wreath: Target end-of-season clearance / “Believe”: DIY / Glittered reindeer: New River Pottery / Silver ornaments: Dollar Store

Our tree is nothing special yet is has such a classic look this year! We covered the tree in extra lights and then wrapped it in silver deco-mesh and silver strands of beads…then loaded up with every white, silver, and gold ornament we had! We LOVE our finial topper!

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Tree skirt: DIY / Gold sleigh: Mom’s basement / Finial: Christmas shop in Williamsburg, VA

Last week I talked about certain crafts/projects that my Mom made that had to come out in order for it to truly feel like Christmas. This mouse in the hammock is one of them. A little mouse in a hammock has been on our Christmas tree for as long as I can remember…years ago, Mom made each of us kids our own versions. So thankful to be able to carry this tradition forward! #NowitfeelslikeChristmas

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A few more silver and gold accents adorn our entryway table.

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Reindeer candelabra: Marshalls / Gold urchin: DIY / Brass candlesticks: Mom’s basement

I carried the gold, silver and white theme into our family room as well. I finally found something to put under my cloche! And those Christmas pillows I made a few years back? I love that I can just slide them on, and they bring in a subtle coziness to the room!

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Over on the media hutch, our year-round decor got tucked way (really, they are all just sitting on a table out in the garage – groan!), and I brought in a few more white accessories and trees.

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White nutcracker: Lowes / Gold wing bowl: thrifted / Gold trees: Dollar Store / White wooden tree: Mom’s basement / White & grey pillows: DIY  

Down on the ottoman, I swapped out a functional/usable tray for a display of glittery trees (my husband loves it when I do stuff like this ;). This view from the couch is one of my favorite displays this year! There is just something about clean silhouette-ed trees that just gets me!

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Silver tray: HomeGoods / Glittery and tall white cones: DIY / Small striped cones: IKEA / Brass mirror: Target / Fur remnant: Mom’s basement

Over in the dining room, I added just a few touches. I LOVED our nativity up on our butterfly cabinet last year so I was quick to repeat that again. The only difference is the actual nativity. We normally display our beloved Willow Tree nativity, but this year I could’t wait to display the Lladro nativity I inherited from my Mom. This was the exact nativity that was on our mantel every year growing up. Mom always displayed it with such pride, and I always loved that the nativity characters were kids dressing the parts. It warms my heart to make this our family nativity now. The blue walls really call to mind that very first Silent Night!

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Lladro nativity: inherited / Creche: Willow Tree / White tree candles: Pottery Barn / Silver obi: Japan

Lastly, I filled some class candle sticks with my remaining gold/white/silver balls and baubles as a center piece on the dining room table. It’s just enough to tie this room and the family room/entryway together!

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And that’s it! There’s nothing else to see – there’s nothing in the bathroom or the office or our master. Our Christmas decor feels normal and manageable this year, and I’m proud of myself for finding a balance between too much and doing nothing at all! I have to say..I’m pretty smitten with the white/gold/silver combo!

What do you guys think? What’s your approach when you just aren’t feeling the holiday decor?

I’ve been cranking out gifts for all of Henry’s little friends and teachers – I’m going to show you what I’ve been up to later this week! See you Wednesday!


P.S. If you left me questions recently (like on the ornament magnet post or about base housing in HI) and you didn’t’ hear back from me, it’s because you’re a no-reply-blogger commenter. Check back to your original comment – I answered you there 😉

Holiday Home Tour 2013

As promised, I am back today with my full holiday home tour for this year! I already showed you our Turquoise, Blue and Silver Living Room and our Silver and Green Dining Room in separate posts. Most of the decor went into these two rooms, so I wanted to highlight them on their own. Now, I’m going to show you the rest of the house! Here we go!!

Just to recap, our Entryway, Playroom, and Living Room were decked out in blue and silver tones. See lots more photos HERE!

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Our Dining Room was given a silver and green holiday treatment. See lots more photos HERE!

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Next up, our Kitchen! I didn’t do too much in here, but enough to bring the holiday spirit into this cave-of-a-kitchen. I strung holiday lights under the cabinets using tiny command hooks (it’s so pretty at night), and added the “eat, drink, and be merry” along the top of the cabinets. These words were cut out of corrugated cardboard and glittered (similar process as the pinecones); I got the idea HERE. They were a ton of work and totally tedious to do (we had to cut them out by hand with an exacto knife!) If my sister hadn’t been here to help, they would have never gotten done 🙂 I love them so much though, do you think I could get away with leaving them up year-round?!?

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Let’s go down the hallway! A few turquoise and gold accents were added to our Command Center

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…and our bathroom was done similar to last year, with lots of cobalt, white, and silver accents!

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Our glitzy master bedroom was just given a few more glittery accents for the holidays!

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In Henry’s room, I added some Santa hats to his vinyl owls and gave him his own mini tree. I decorated this tree with a bunch of trains he doesn’t ever play with. Don’t you know that as soon as they were on this tree, he insisted on taking them off and playing with them!

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Last but not least, the Office/Craft Room. I played up the gold accents already in the room with some simple holiday items. The gold trees are from the Dollar Store (!!!) and I bought the chalkboard print HERE and printed it at Staples. Lastly, I made a simple glitter circle garland to string along the craft counter. I don’t want to show to many photos of this space since you haven’t see the whole thing come together yet, so consider this your sneak peek!

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Phew. I feel like I could go on and on with photos of holiday decor, but as Christmas is next week, I think I’ll cut myself off here! I am so thrilled with how our house came together this year. Little by little, I feel like I am finally identifying how I like to decorate for the holidays: clean silhouettes, wintery textures, piles of ornaments and lots of glitter!

Oh – and another super big “thank you” to my neighbor and friend Jessica for snapping a lot of these photos!

Christmas is less than a week away, are you ready? I am done with my shopping and just need to focus on wrapping and baking up some cookies! Hope you have a great weekend! On Monday, I’ll have a last-minute gift idea for you!


Christmas in Green and Silver

Hello everyone! Are you all busily getting ready for Christmas? I am this close to being all done with my shopping…and as for the house? I will say this about being on a holiday home tour – it makes you get your decor up really early so you can actually enjoy it! For the past few weeks, I’ve been able to enjoy all the sparkle and really soak in all that Christmas spirit (which is good since the holiday season is so short this year!)

One of the very first places I decorated in our home this year was our dining room; and I have to say, of all that I’ve done throughout our house this time around, this room is my absolute favorite! I didn’t do anything too fancy in here and didn’t go crazy with too many crafts, which is perhaps why I think it turned out so simply stunning! For this year, I used silvers and greens found in ornaments and simple silhouettes against our cobalt blue walls to make one festive display!

 This is one (rare!) occasion I think I’ll let the photos do most of the talking!

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A small tree in a simple bucket brought some fresh green and sparkly lights to this space!

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And now over to the other side of the room…just some simple touches to balance out the bookcases.

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Our Nativity Scene, which usually finds a new home each year, looks so stunning against our blue walls that I think this will be its home from now on. The silver stars hung from the ceiling call to mind that very first O Holy Night!

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In the center of our table, I placed some more ornaments and a candle alongside a vibrant (and oh-so-sweet smelling) rosemary bush!

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I had to include just one more glance of this bookcase because it’s my very favorite display this year. I kinda wish I could keep it dolled up like this all year!

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And there you have it – a very festive Christmas done in all greens and silvers!

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I have some more fun things to show you this week, so check back frequently! I’ve got a lot to squeeze in before Christmas arrives! Next up, I’ll show you how I made some very sparkly pinecones!


A Turquoise, Blue and Silver Christmas

As promised, I am back today with our first stop on our Virtual Holiday Home Tour – our entryway, living room and playroom!

A few years ago, I had a holiday decorating epiphany (back when I was trying to make all my red holiday decor work in our orange living room!). After pouring through magazines and looking online at beautiful holiday homes, I realized that a lot of these homes worked with their everyday decor, not against their everyday decor when adding holiday touches. (See the lightbulb going off now?) Ever since, I have approached my holiday decor a bit differently. Instead of grabbing and using every holiday item I see and love, I try to pick items that will either match or compliment my existing decor. I think this approach creates a more seamless transition into the holidays AND keeps your home from having a Christmas-themed identity crisis. This year, I decided to go the full-on “matching” approach, and I have to admit I am just smitten. May I present to you, our Turquoise, Blue, and Silver Christmas!

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Okay, fair warning. Be prepared for picture overload! I had my lovely friend/neighbor Jessica come over and shoot some photos of our holiday home before the tour on Friday night. Between her shots and mine, there were just too many to choose among, so I included a ton!

This is the view that greets you as you walk into our home! Our tree was round and bushy this year, and I covered it end-to-end with any and all royal, turquoise, silver and white ornaments, beads and garlands I could find in my stash.

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And yes, your eyes do not deceive you. I sprayed our tree with spray “snow” from Home Depot. I was terrified to try it, fearing a gigantic mess. But it worked wonderfully, the mess was easily cleaned up, and the silvery-white tree worked so much better in our grey and white space!

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Under the tree went a brand-new extra-large tree skirt (tutorial on Friday!) and some beautifully wrapped presents. I stuck to all white and silver wrapping this year with blue and silver trimmings as accents!

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And if you’ve been coming around here for a while, you know that our Thomas trains can’t be too far away at any one time. Because the train table went into the garage (just so the tree could go in front of the window), we placed our train track around the tree, and our Sodor Island friends await in a matching bucket!

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Back on the other side of the tree (and behind the front door) is a nook many of you have seen dressed up for various holidays, but this display might be one of my favorites ever!

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Our bookcase/mantel has gotten into the theme too!

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I found a bunch of pinecones in a nearby park and gave them a major glitter treatment in coordinating colors! (It’s a super fun project that I’ll show you here soon!) A few other wintery accents combined with some trees make this a clean yet festive display!

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The blue tree (above right) was one of my old cone trees just given a new dress. I cut lots and lots of pretty turquoise tulle into 3″ strips and then gathered them (with my sewing machine) into one huge, gathered garland. I then hot glued the garland around a paper mache cone. I love her fluffiness and fullness compared to most of my other trim and slim trees 😉

And then there’s the wreath. This huge ornament and feather wreath. It brings so much WOW to this side of the room, and I love it. I love it so much that I will choose to ignore that it caused me to go back to the store TWICE for more ornaments (bad planning on my part!) and I had to re-arrange my ornaments several times (did you know that a hair dryer will melt hot glue?!?) Folks, I wish I had a pretty little tutorial all tied up with a bow to share with you, but this one was a try, start over, try again, oh-no, un-do, try again sort of project. I’ll see what kind of pictures I have from the journey, and see if I can piece a tutorial together for you. But no promises 😉 But she sure is pretty, isn’t she?!?

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All together, this mantel ties in my blue and silver theme while feeling cozy and wintery at the same time!

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On the entryway table, I placed four of my trees from last year with a glittery reindeer. Nothing here is new, I just gave all my old trees new dresses by layering textured fabrics over them. Everything is temporary so I can un-do and re-do as the years go on! That fur tree (the fabric was leftover from my wedding – thanks Mom!) is my favorite! Such great texture in this little space!

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On the other side of the tree, a bunch of Henry’s toys got put away (just for the season), and I added our cherished Christmas stockings and put a few holiday trinkets on display. The felt snowflakes on the wall were from JoAnns years ago, and I have used them over and over again in different ways each year. These are held on with scotch tape and haven’t budged!

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I carried our theme right on over to the other side of our great room into our living/tv-watching area.

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I made these ornament trees using this tutorial (only instead of knitting needles, I used skinny wooden dowels). I love that not a lick of glue is used on these, so I can disassemble them for easy storage! But boy, do they make a statement over on this side of the room, don’t they?!?

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Onto our couch, I layered all of our regular pillows with the holiday pillows I made last year!

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And on the ottoman in front of the couch, I added more of that furry fabric, a reindeer candelabra, and a votive full of matching candy canes (which my little guy can’t keep his hands off of now that he’s discovered they are not just one of my mom’s decorations but something very tasty indeed!)

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Here’s a sneak peek many of you haven’t seen yet. I finally added some frames to our great striped wall (but the truth? I haven’t found quite enough things to fill them yet, so two of them are really just empty!) So, I had some quick chalkboard art printed at Staples to fill the frames for the season. This cost me about $12 total and received some of the most comments during our home tour. Best on-the-fly idea ever!

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It’s been a long, long, long time since I’ve given you a glance at this full space. My friend Jessica snapped these photos and I love them. Not only can you get a good sense for how this huge room is laid out, but you can see how all these holiday items work together!

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Phew! Are you exhausted? And that was just the entryway/living room/playroom! We have so much more to cover! On Friday, I am going to show you how easy it was to make that oversized tree skirt, and next week, we’ll continue with the home tour! See you then!