Monday, January 4, 2016

11 tips for decorating your home for winter once Christmas is over

It is a couple of days into the new year and you've just taken down the Christmas decorations and now your home looks incredibly blah. Now what?

Prior to Christmas your home was likely decorated with pumpkins and the warm golds and oranges of the fall harvest. So what do you put in your home now? After Christmas but before spring?

Is it too soon for daffodils?


Especially if you're in a colder climate and outdoor flowers won't be sprouting for awhile. In the meantime, you do need some seasonal decor, but what?

Here are a few ideas:

1. Make use of natural greenery. Christmas may be over but I repurpose the wooden bowl that holds pinecones and evergreen branches and colored ornaments over the holidays for the remaining winter months. After Christmas, I remove the ornaments and freshen up the greenery. I've added a little sparkle and some cinnamon sticks. The pop of red is courtesy of a faux pomegranate and a handful of wooden beads cut from a string of "cranberry" garland. The arrangement adds color, sparkle and the spicy scent of cinnamon.

2. Don't put away the apothecary or ginger jars. At Christmas, I fill apothecary jars with vintage ornaments. But with the holidays gone, I use the same jars and fill them with wine corks or potpourri. Again, I add a little color with cranberry beads.

Christmas decor
Post-Christmas decor

3. Fill your vases with winter florals. Berries are great for a winter floral arrangement. While they also are used at Christmas they are not exclusive to that holiday. They work all winter long.

4. Just as berries work in winter, so do evergreen boughs. These are artificial boughs from Michaels, but they work just as well as the fresh ones I bring indoors at Christmas. During the summer this vase is filled with a yellow mum, but until I can bring out the spring flowers, the bright red sprig of berries will warm up the otherwise drab winter months to come.

5. Not all Christmas decor is just for Christmas. I originally got these lanterns at Christmas but I loved them so much I keep them up year-around. I fill them with wine corks and during the winter, through in some berries to dress it up.

6. Use found items from outside as filler in your jars. I love these glass blown hurricane candle holders from the Sundance Catalog. You can fill the bottom half with virtually anything. Again, at Christmas, they hold vintage ornaments (see below) but afterwards, I fill them with pinecones from my yard and some wooden "berries." The flameless candles are from Pottery Barn and are encircled with cinnamon sticks. I don't think the cinnamon stick candles are available any more, but they are offering Birch Wax Pillars as well as Shimmering Bark, both of which would give the same look.

7. Use winter floral arrangements. Winter can be such a dreary time of overcast, gray skies that you need color wherever you can get it. That's why I use a lot of color, bold color, particularly red in the winter time. Here on my island is a floral arrangement that I love from I also continue to use my Winterberry hand lotion and soap from Williams-Sonoma and I keep my dishwashing liquid in the red bottle for dispensing into the sink.

I made this floral arrangement from pieces I picked up at Michaels. Again, greenery, berries and pinecones with a splash of color keep the winter theme going.

8. Use natural poinsettias and candy to accent the room.  I received a poinsettia for Christmas and there's no need to toss it when the holiday is over. Keep it going and add in some bright candy too. Here I have a dish of peppermint snaps to bring color to the room.

9. Fill up your year-round vases with seasonal floral. I hate storing seasonal decorations so I try to make them work year-around. Here, I simply change out the filler in this set of mercury vases that I have out all year. I fill them with some faux evergreen branches and they sit on this antique washstand alongside another beautiful floral arrangement from I picked up the mercury candle holders from Michaels.

10. Replace the Christmas door wreath with something more generic. The traditional Christmas wreath doesn't look good past the holidays but a natural winter wreath works. I'll keep this up at least through February or maybe mid-March before I change it out to something with a spring theme.

The same goes for my back door, which I keep to a simple, green wreath with pinecones. 

11. Don't forget your outdoor planters. Outdoor planters can look dismal in the winter months, making the outside of your home look almost as dismal as the weather. When spring isn't around the corner, fill the empty planters with winter elements. Again, my go-to items are evergreen boughs and pinecones. Surprisingly, these natural boughs will look good for quite some time before they dry out and need to be replaced. By then, I hope to go to something that evokes thoughts of springtime.

How do you decorate between January and March? What do you do to keep your home looking warm and cozy when springtime is still 90 days away?

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