This week, I'm inspired by bright spaces that weave in weathered antiques and fresh greens for a look that feels light but lived in. Mixing modern trends with vintage pieces is my favorite recipe for achieving a contemporary look that still has soul. This time of year, it's easy to find tons of examples of people incorporating this type of style into their homes. Check out this gallery and get ideas for how to seamlessly achieve this coveted look.
The Christmas tree may be an international icon, but you'd be surprised by how many people don't know how to hang lights on one. Beginning tonight at 7 p.m. EST, the folks in Rockefeller Center will kick off their annual tree lighting celebration, so I thought I'd let you in on a few tips so you can join in on the fun and light yours too!
- Begin with a bare, undecorated Christmas tree that is seated firmly in its tree stand.
- Plug your string lights — which had better be LED lights — into an outlet to make sure they work before you get started. If they do not light, first make sure that none of the bulbs are broken. If so, replace the bulbs. If no bulbs are broken, you'll need to replace the fuse in the fuse panel on the pronged accessory plug. That should do it!
- Begin at the base of the tree and work your way to the top by weaving your string lights over and under the branches alternately as you go across.
Keep reading for the rest of the steps!
I can't help but chuckle over this 1954 Christmas Swim Photograph ($275) by Slim Aarons of his wife, Rita, swimming in a pool with a decorated Christmas tree and ornaments floating about. For one, it's absolutely unheard of to put a Christmas tree actually in your pool. Second, the tree is so extravagantly trimmed with lights, tree-toppers, tinsel, garland, and ornaments! I've certainly seen plenty of outdoor trees, but this one takes the tradition to a whole new level.
Do you decorate an outdoor Christmas tree? Take the poll below!
I'm all about feathers in the home, and the holidays are no exception! If you liked the tabletop feather trees I rounded up, you'll love these flighty ornaments. Delicate and sophisticated, these tree adornments are either inspired by the motif, like this set of Three Feather Ornaments ($40), or the real deal, like these gorgeous peacock feather ornaments ($3-$4). Click the images above to shop the look!
A tree topper is the icing on the cake when it comes to Christmas trees. Or maybe it's the cake topper on an iced cake, but in any case, it's the crucial finishing touch for your Fraser fir.
If you haven't finished trimming your tree, I've rounded up a few fabulous toppers that will give your tree that special je ne sais quoi. My favorite is this Venetian Star Tree Topper ($75) from Ballard Designs, which resembles a starburst mirror — the home décor accessory of the '00s. If stars aren't your thing, you can also go with a Santa, an angel, or a Santa hat. Take a look at my finds below.
Interior stylist Selina Lake recently shared this photo of an assortment of pastel baubles and Christmas gifts wrapped in chic silver paper, which she styled, along with a shot of her ever-growing bauble collection. The soft, pastel ornaments are more feminine than your typical red, green, and gold tree decorations, but they look nonetheless festive. Since the palette was common in the '50s and '60s, antique stores and flea markets are great resources for these girlish adornments, but you'll be hard-pressed to find them in new decor stores. Do you decorate with pastel ornaments?
I do love the scent of a seasonal fir in my living room, but I also understand the appeal of a reusable Christmas tree. For those of you who have the space to store your tree year-round, I've rounded up a few very handsome and chic reusable trees that already have stand-alone style.
After choosing your favorite tree from the tree farm or lot, you still have to carry it home and get it into the house. This often means that you're leaving a trail of needles from your front door to the living room. If your vacuum isn't doing the trick when it comes to cleaning pine needles out of your carpet, try this simple trick. Wrap a loop of duct tape, sticky side out, around your hand, and use it to pull those stubborn needles out of your rug, carpet, or grooves in your wood floor.
Do you have any other tricks for picking up Christmas tree needles? What's worked at your home?
I have a lot of Christmas decorations that my mom got in Mexico over the years. I love the skeleton light covers and the tin ornaments. I've had the nativity scene since I was a baby, and I put it up every year. I think Christmas in LA means a lot of Mexican influence.
Not to be confused with the German-bred feather Christmas trees — the sparsely branched grandfather of artificial X-mas trees — these soft feather trees are much more rustic and luxurious, made up of layered feathers, typically over a cone base. Perfect for a chic log cabin-esque holiday tablescape, I've rounded up some of my earthy-toned faves for those of you who don't have the time to tackle your own DIY version. I'm drooling over the Downy Mini Tree ($18) and Pheasant Feather Trees ($20-$26) with their rich color variances, but the Roost White Feather Trees ($22-$38) have also caught my eye. Shop the rest by clicking on the images above.