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Decorating Secrets: Entryway Holiday Decor

With the holidays just around the corner, no doubt you’re beginning to think about preparing your home for all the festivities.  Wondering where you should start? How about dressing up your home’s entry to make a seasonal statement?  Whether you have a small porch or expansive courtyard, there are fun ways to spruce up your otherwise ho-hum front entrance to kick-off the holiday or winter season.  There’s no need to rival the Griswold’s with Christmas lights and inflatables either, just remember the 3/3 Rule: 1) Keep it simple, 2) Make it festive, and 3) Have fun.


From Drab to Fabulous in a Few Easy Steps

There are a few things to do before you pull the ornament and decoration boxes out of the attic.

  • Make a plan.  Clean and de-clutter the outside entryway.  Determine focal points (generally the front door, a set of windows, an outside railing — anywhere that draws the eye).  What you can do is dictated by available space, but no matter how much or how little room you have, think about grouping holiday items near each other for best effect. Also design with vertical space in mind in order to draw the eye up.
  • Establish a color scheme.  For the maximum impact, choose two main colors and one accent color.  You can use seasonal colors such as red, green, silver, gold or white. Keep in mind there are no hard and fast rules (other than 3/3 rule) so have some creative fun and set the color stage for welcoming your guests. 
  • Gather materials. Repurpose existing materials and decorations, and consider using live plants, as that can help bring life to an otherwise cold and dark season. Something as simple as a potted conifer, even an oversized Rosemary bush can be used depending on the climate and availability.    They’re reasonably priced and can remain on the porch until the ground thaws in early spring, at which time you can dig a hole and plant them!  If live plants aren’t your thing, many of the discount stores sell pre-lit small conifers that look genuine and come potted in urn-type planters.  They’re hassle free and last year after year.  
  • Tie it all together.  A great decorating tip is to repeat a few elements.  Using evergreen garland along the railing compliments the green in planters.  Ornaments salvaged from the attic with newly purchased ribbon and hung from the porch can compliment the over-sized decorations in the planters.  It’s a perfect 3/3 rule — simple, fun, and festive!

Deck the Halls – Staging the Scene

  • Reuse warm-weather containers and planters as part of your outdoor holiday display.  Birdbaths, terra cotta planters and baskets are a great place for lighted wreaths and additional holiday ornaments, and can be spray-painted for a new look to match your latest decor.  They make a dramatic display and transform themselves easily from one season to the next.  Fill them with evergreen garland, huge ornaments, sparkly twigs or white lights and see how fast they go from an annual planter to a full-blown holiday display. 
  • Utilize real pine roping for an old-fashioned holiday look or purchase/reuse artificial pine roping to swag from posts, railings or frame the doorway.  Add lights, bows, or other adornments to change the look from year to year.
  • Add sparkle.  Lighted displays create an instant intimacy on the porch once the sun goes down.  Consider going eco-green by investing in new LED lights as well.  They’re much more efficient and provide a brilliant light source.  If you’re short on outdoor outlets, consider battery-operated ornaments and use them during peak hours to preserve the battery life. 
  • Create a lighted walkway with luminaries.  Battery operated tea lights are all the latest and they come complete with a flicker flame for a truly authentic look.  Luminaries can be created from just about anything ranging from seasonal gift bags to mason jars.  A quick Google search on “winter luminary projects” turns up many creative, inexpensive and easy ideas.   
  • Suspend oversized ornaments or wreaths from garden hooks. Also think about wreaths with a different twist. We’re accustomed to seeing wreathes made from pine boughs, but you can also use other plant materials, such as eucalyptus or cotoneaster, a garden shrub that has red berries in the winter. Some garden centers also sell wreaths made of living succulents.

There is something magical about arriving home to a well designed holiday porch. With a few simple items and some creativity, you can give your home a winter season makeover with festive curb appeal.

Holiday Elegance- Urns from Home Depot cost as little as $12.  Some gold spray paint, greenery, lights and ornaments bring new life and classic holiday elegance to your front step during the winter season. (Idea courtesy of www.homedepot.com)

Winter Wonderland- Repurposed ice skates with a touch of garland and ribbon set the stage for upcoming winter fun.  Throw in a vintage sled and wait for the “snow” to fall. Nothing says “Let it Snow” like a sled and skates.  (Idea courtesy of www.betweennapsontheporch.net )

Luminaries of Light-Use vintage or store bought mason jars filled with white beans and flicker candles for a safe and beautiful way to add glow to your entryway.  Tie with raffia or wired ribbon to add color.

Presents to Pine For– Glue floral foam forms together to form box shapes.  Attach lighted garland strands with T-pins, then wrap with colorful ribbon for fresh looking presents that make a presence on your porch.

Modern Minimalism- For an easy, yet striking display, paint a repurposed old frame a bright holiday color. Attach ornaments with festive ribbon for a clean look that speaks to the creative spirit of your home. (Idea courtesy of www.adiamondinthestuff.com)

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