By Miki Bass, Chief Executive Officer
Arkansas Realtors® Association
Decorating for the holidays doesn’t have to break the bank. Being festive just requires a little bit of time and creativity. My kids love to help prepare our home for the holidays and I have a few tips and tricks that even the little ones can get in on.
I was in awe as I watched my Facebook feed filled with Christmas Trees worthy of the Macy’s Christmas window this weekend. Boughs of colored mesh perfectly flowing, tiny twinkle lights and gigantic oversized colored balls abounded. At my house, all ages get in on the action so the word ‘perfect’ does not describe our tree. Instead, our tree is filled with memories collected by my family. We have a variety of ornaments that each tell a story and make our tree a great conversation piece. So feel free to break out your hand imprint ornaments and add a personal touch.
Speaking of the tree-Save those Christmas tree clippings! Use the simple springs of greenery by placing them in colorful vases or jars. Spritz them with a light coating of metallic spray paint and add holly berries. The fragrance and color will add a little holiday cheer to your coffee table.
If there are too many ornaments for the tree, add the extras to a garland. Drape greenery along a mantle, doorway or bannister, then hang ornaments from ribbon loops and insert berry branches for color.
Transparent glass cylinders can make a real splash when filled with painted holiday objects. Spray paint to add life to pine cones or glass ornaments. You can even fill the cylinders with shards of broken glass ornaments and place a tea light in it to create a little sparkle in a dark corner. Display them in groups on a coffee table, windowsill or even as a centerpiece in your dining room.
Use some things you have already around the house in a grouping for holiday appeal. Arranging a grouping of festive candleholders, sconces, and lanterns would make a cozy, mismatched look. Add some of your wrapped gifts to the area for more Christmas spirit.
Use your gift wrapping as décor too! Wrap gifts in simple burlap and use some silky ribbon with some holly berries tucked in. You can even use old sheet music as gift wrap. Festive material also makes for a fun, personalized option. Try using old plaid shirts to make a statement under your Christmas tree.
If hosting a party, greet your guests with luminaries. They make a dramatic statement as you enter a party. There are many versions of the luminary. You can use paper sacks weighted down with sand and insert a tealight or battery-operated candles. You can cut holiday scenes into the paper sacks or leave them plain. My favorite luminary is made from mason jars. You just fill jars with Epsom salt to emulate freshly-fallen snow, then add small votive candles and place along your front walkway. Both looks are beautiful.
The most important thing about decorating for the holidays is to do what you like and makes your family happy and comfortable. Whether it be boughs of colorful mesh or popcorn garland, each family’s style has the opportunity to shine through.
Contact Arkansas Realtors® Association or visit www.arkansasrealtors.com for more information about selling or buying a home in your area.
House to House is distributed weekly by the Arkansas REALTORS® Association. For more information on homeownership in Arkansas, readers may visit www.ArkansasRealtors.com.