15 Holiday Decorating Ideas Interior Designers Use in Their Own Homes

There’s no wrong way to decorate for the holidays, but having some tips from the best and the brightest tastemakers can definitely help you bring the joy home in style. We asked some of our interior designers how they spruce up their homes for the holidays and where they find inspiration so you can follow their very stylish leads.  

Incorporate family memories.
“My mother always decorated our house with natural greenery, flowers, and branches, and I’ve continued to do that as I build memories for my own children and grandchildren.”  

Honor the style of your home.
“An antique home is the perfect backdrop for classic decorations. I weave together fir, cedar, white pine, and boxwood for a door garland, hang matching window wreaths, and fill the holly with white lights.”  

Keep it minimalist and contemporary.
“Many Hanukkah traditions revolve around oil to represent the miracle of light, so we made a garland out of olive branches in homage to that. Pair a contemporary menorah and minimalist gift wrap for a new spin on the season.”    

Stick to a color combination.
“My family celebrates both Christmas and Kwanzaa. We choose a different theme every year, but you’ll always see a thread of blue running throughout—my father always used to hang blue lights on our house because it was my mother’s favorite color.”  

Set the scene with greenery.
“The planter in our entryway changes with the seasons. In the winter, I incorporate moss, princess pine, and berries—I want my guests to feel like they’ve been transported elsewhere.”  

Don’t be afraid to experiment.
“More is more—the holidays are meant to be extravagant! Instead of a tree skirt, try a vintage fishbowl or planter. It heightens the tree and gives you more room for Santa’s surprises.”  

Go monochromatic.
“As much as I love traditional red and green, I wanted to do something a bit more glamorous and elegant with a mix of fine china, crystal, and silver, and don’t forget the importance of fragrance to set the holiday mood—think freshly cut evergreen branches and burning wood.”  

Always start fresh.
“My usual first step is to completely discard any idea that I’ve used before, that way, each year is new and exciting. I even go as far as putting the tree in a totally different room each year.” 

Repetition is always classic.
Repeating design statements adds serious impact. “If I decide to put a wreath in a window, I’ll almost always end up putting matching wreaths in every window. Last year, I used the same plaid textiles all over his study to create a magical holiday retreat.”

Embrace boxwood wreaths.
“I use boxwood wreaths all over my home — in front of mirrors, tied onto furniture, anywhere. One reason: It’s not nearly as messy as garland can be,” 

Decorate your storage.
Just because your hutch is simple during the rest of the year, doesn’t mean it should be a Scrooge come the holidays. “I tuck ornaments into baskets and tiered trays and sprinkle them with fake snow.” 

Go crazy with garland.
“Garlands are my go-to decoration. They don’t take up much space and can be used in a number of ways that are child-friendly. Magnolia leaves are my favourite. I use two and tie them together at the top of my mirror so that they look like one large garland.”  

Remember scents are important.
Smell plays an important part of the season, “Nothing gets that feeling going quicker than a bowl full of clove pierced oranges, Or try a mulled wine with cinnamon. Shucks.” 

Do a final edit.
“it’s important to do a final edit. I always try to create one big statement, then make sure everything else is secondary,”