Five Ways to Decorate your Home for the Holidays like a Pro

Commercial Christmas décor designer, residential and commercial design consultant and shop owner, Shania Corzine shares her best tips for stylish ways to bring the holiday’s home. As proprietor of New Braunfel’s home mercantile, Red Stag  and La Belle Vie French antiques, and fine gifts, Corzine’s philosophy is “embrace imperfection and remove intimidation.” Here’s her tips to fill your home with holiday cheer and a pro’s touch:

  1. Be consistent with your color palette. Corzine, says “that doesn’t mean it has to be all the same.” Just use her 80/20 rule and stay consistent with 80 percent, then you can go with whatever with the 20 percent. That will give you a stylish, cohesive look whether you go traditional or contemporary. Some guidelines she recommends: let your home guide you, if your home is lighter, go with lighter colors that coordinate such as silver, blue or white. If your home is warmer go with red, green or gold. Some of her preferred color combinations are turquoise and copper, seafoam green and white or all teal or eggplant. At home, her personal favorite is full-on metallic with silver and gold which she’ll mix this year with white ribbon. Whatever defined colors you choose, make sure you carry it throughout your home.

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  2. To Corzine, the most important factor is to include personal and meaningful items, “items that will bring back special memories.” She says they don’t have to be ornaments or even store-bought, in fact, treasured collections of non-Christmas items can be one of the best resources.

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    Check out her super ideas for inspiration:
    • Tie your grandfather’s pipes to a wreath (always tie things on, never hot glue!)
    • Put your children’s silver rattles or baby cups on a small tree in the kitchen.
    • Use items that speak to passions like a ballet theme with slippers.
    • Fan open old books and tuck in between tree branches.
    • Get a rustic look with taxidermy animals.

  3. Corzine counts ribbon as the most valuable player. But not just any ribbon will do, she advises to use craft store ribbon for gift wrapping and buy specialty ribbons for your décor. “Invest in good quality ribbon that will last for up to 8 years or longer.” Home goods stores like Red Stag (link) carry premier ribbon or she recommends florist shops, or fabric stores. “The wedding department of fabric stores can provide incredibly, shockingly, beautiful ribbon that was designed for dresses.” 

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    Her ribbon guidelines:

    • Choose 2 ribbons.
    • Differentiate them by color, texture, or width.
    • Plan to spend $10 – $50 per yard
    • Figure 40 yards for a 9 ft. tree
    • Utilize the ribbons starting outside such as a mailbox garland or front door wreath. Carrying them outside through the inside gives you a consistent, cohesive pro look and reduces clutter.

    Eager to share her knowledge, Red Stag ties ribbons for customers free of charge and will also teach you how to create bows and garlands. “We love to educate,” says Corzine.

  4. Work in layers. Think layers in your tree approach, and, don’t forget the right order.

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    Step-by-step per Corzine:
    1. Start with lights.
    2. Add ribbon.
    3. Drape beads or floral garlands.
    4. Hang largest ornaments or insert floral accents like poinsettias or hydrangeas.
    5. Disperse the bulk of ornaments or décor by color starting with the largest quantity. This will provide organization, structure and balance.
    6. Mix in the anything random this way they won’t detract from the other decorations and it’ll keep things from looking too “matchy, matchy.”
  5. Go organic. Natural materials can be support players to all sorts of styles from precious to woodsy and everything you need can be found outdoors or on hand.

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    Adding a natural touch:
    • Fill boxes or candle holders with dried hydrangeas on tabletop or nestled in the tree.
    • Dip magnolia leaves or holly branches in white paint or slightly spray the tips with metallic paint and tuck into wreaths or tree.
    • String together wine corks for garland.
    • Plain or painted pine cones are a great seasonal addition.
    • Tree branches painted gold elevate decoration adding a rich look inexpensively.
    • Accent with feathers.