Welcome to Defending the Small House, number 5: Christmas Decorating in a Small House. I’m so glad you’ve taken some time to visit during this holiday season. Brenda and I are really looking forward to this special edition linky party!
I am not someone who decorates for Christmas with a ‘theme’ or a different color palette every year. I couldn’t care less about that kind of thing. For me and my husband, Christmas decorating is about using favorite decorations that we cherish. Some of them are mine from my childhood. Most of them we’ve collected together. They each have meaning, even the ones we had to buy at the local drugstore when we first moved out East and realized that all our boxes of ornaments had inadvertently been put in storage!
If you’ve learned anything about me from reading this blog, you’ve learned that decorating and adorning our house is only done with things that have meaning to us, with a history or an interesting story to tell. Likewise with Christmas decorations. Even if it involves me digging frantically through every bin at Big Lots a few years back to find my bottlebrush wreaths – that’s a story I’ll tell for years to come! Tip#1: If you decorate with the things you love and that have meaning to you, you can’t go wrong.
I suspect this happens in most homes – I’m absolutely sure it happens in small homes. Furniture has to be rearranged. In our case, the dollhouse had to move up to the living room because it usually lives in the corner of the den where we put the big Christmas tree. So – up comes the dollhouse, the yellow chair moves near the kitchen, the red chair moves to the other side of the loveseat. I like the chairs in this new arrangement. Tip #2: As you decorate for Christmas and have to move things around, look at it as an opportunity to view your space with fresh eyes – you just might discover something you like.
For instance: I’m rather liking the dollhouse is this new place. As Don says, he sees it more clearly here because there is a lot more light. What do you think?
The Big Lots bottlebrush wreaths. I have 4 of them. The others are hanging in the living room windows. Tip #3: Repetition of an item or shape can tie a room together. The wreaths are hung in the kitchen, above the piano and on the living room windows, connecting both parts of what is essentially a large room.
I just added the reindeer.
The dollhouse has been decorated.
We have a little white tree in the living room. I won a beautiful small tree skirt a couple of years ago in a blog giveaway, so I had to buy a little tree to go with it. It looks prettier with the lights on.
The other day, I chained stitched a garland for the tree. Simple and sort of homespun. No cost, since it was yarn I had on hand. Tip #4: Look at the things you have on hand and incorporate them into your decorating. In this case, I thought about the pink ornaments on the tree and the garland that hangs on the white cabinet (see below) and a little light bulb went on – so I grabbed the same yarn and made the garland.
I always use the branches we’ve trimmed from the bottom of the tree to decorate the house. They work beautifully on top of the white cupboard. Whoops! I have to tuck that light in.
These are on the windowsill above the kitchen sink. I have more in two glass milk bottles on another window sill. Tip #5: Use live greenery wherever you can. It is beautiful in its simplicity. If you live in a very tiny space, some boughs or garlands may be all you need to create your holiday home. Don’t underestimate their power to transform your space.
I just posted about this snow scene yesterday. I used a vintage jar, some kosher salt, a putz house and bottlebrush trees. Tip #6: Make your own snow scene with a jar and some small Christmas ornaments. You can use any size jar, any size ornament or bottlebrush tree. Make a few and group them together.
On to the den. Monty is dressed for the holidays. Tip #7: Sometimes a simple bow works wonders.
I usually crop the television out of my Christmas tree photos, but since this is a series about small houses, I’m going for truth in advertising! There it is, right next to the television. As you can see, I have a lot of vintage ornaments – lots of old Shiny Brites. And I have my big bottlebrush ornaments that I got a few years back from my friend’s shop. I kept buying them every time I went in there. I think I have 9 of them. I. love. them. They add so much to the tree. I don’t know what I’d do without them, so I guard them with my life.
This is an early evening shot. I’ve given up on trying to take photos of the tree in the dark. It never works.
We always have a real tree. We don’t have room to store a large artificial tree; besides, I can’t imagine a Christmas with my husband without a real tree. That’s just our preference. But, I’ve had plenty of Christmases with a small tree, usually artificial, in the various apartments I’ve lived in. You can make anything work and look beautiful. Maybe you could buy a small live tree and plant it at the end of the season.
I try to keep things simple. This is a small house; I have a lot of pottery everywhere, most every available surface has something on it already. We don’t have the luxury of storing those things to make way for the Christmas decorations because we don’t have an attic or a basement. I’m careful about what I use because I want the decorations to stand out, but in a classic, simple way. So I decorate with a light hand and try to enhance what I already have. Tip #8: Sometimes less is indeed more. If there are a lot of things fighting for attention, they make less impact.
Of course, in the end, holiday decorating is all about the things you love and treasure, about your very own holiday traditions. Have fun!
Be sure to visit Brenda to read about her Christmas decorating ideas for a small space.
Grab a cup of coffee or hot chocolate, sit down in a cozy chair and pay everyone a visit. I know I will be visiting everyone. Let’s spread some holiday cheer! With great thanks and holiday wishes from my little cottage. Blessings to you all.
Links will remain open for two days, so if you need some extra time to link up, you’ve got it!
To link up to our party:
1. Publish your post and please remember to link back to my blog.
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3. Use the linky tool at the bottom of this post and paste the URL into the appropriate box. The directions are easy to follow.