Decking the Halls

Just as the seasons themselves change, for many homeowners, the arrival of winter signals it’s time to start thinking about change inside the home. Aside from the obvious coniferous addition to your abode, there are some more subtle changes that can increase aesthetics and heighten holiday cheer.

“Decorating your house for Christmas for a lot of people is more than just putting up a Christmas tree,” said Charlene Threatful, owner/design consultant at Calgary’s Lush Interiors Inc. “People are decorating their entire homes for Christmas – even decorating their bedroom for Christmas. In the past that may have been unheard of, but we’re seeing more of that.”

In addition to bedrooms, some of the less conventional candidates for holiday makeovers include family rooms, dens and kitchens, where Threatful recommends adding a few accessories as a way of introducing some Yuletide cheer.

“You’re cocooning in your house for Christmas. You’re usually doing a lot of entertaining over Christmas, so you want to create that holiday feeling,” said Threatful, who added not all Christmas colour schemes need to start with red and end with green.

“If you go to The Bay and look in their Christmas section, every colour under the rainbow is available now to decorate with,” she said. “Green and red is so traditional, but you’re seeing a lot of untraditional colours in Christmas décor.”

For those of us lucky (or perhaps unlucky) enough to host family and friends in our homes over the holidays, decorating considerations can extend beyond floral additions and kitchen kitsch. With an increased number of holiday well-wishers walking through our homes, more practical concerns should not be forgotten.

“You have to make more room, because your Christmas tree takes up a lot of room. So if you’re doing a lot of entertaining, you’ve go to think about rearranging furniture,” Threatful said.

Another issue involves giving Christmas visitors a proper first impression once they enter your home.

“One of my big beefs is people have a front entry and no seating, so there’s no place for people to sit and put their boots on,” she said. “So you want to make sure you have a bench or some sort of seating at your front entry to put on their winter boots and coats and mittens and gloves.”

Threatful also advises choosing your colours carefully when picking out rugs for your entryway, steering clear of lighter shades that will inevitably be besmirched by the grit and grime of an Alberta winter. And to give those visitors coming in from the cold a warm and welcome environment once they enter your home, Threatful recommends adding a few more cushions and blankets around to curl up with.

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