I feel safe in assuming that we’re all fairly classy gentlefolk around here, Gentle Reader. Or I am, at any rate. The holidays, especially, are a time of hosting parties and entertainments in general, and it’s important to correctly set the scene for the festivities. Therefore, using my guiding principles of elegance and simplicity, I have just a few tips that can transform any home into a magical wonderland.
1. Bring the Outdoors In
If you’re fortunate enough to live in the forest, as I am, you can simply gather nature’s bounty at your leisure, and festoon it liberally about the place. I prefer to decorate with cedar boughs, myself, but fir, pine, and juniper all work well. Strewing greenery everywhere will make it seem less strange that you have a tree inside your home, as well as remind guests that it is, in fact, winter.
Don’t fret, though, City-Dweller! Even if you can’t wander about your yard gathering sticks, you needn’t pay the exorbitant prices they charge for woodland garlands. Simply venture into the park with a hacksaw!
2. The Lights
There’s a large amount of argument over whether white lights or multi-colored lights are better; personally, I feel that the multi-colored ones are best saved for out-of-doors, where I don’t have to see them. For my tree, and for my garlands, I favor soft, simple tones of white and gold lights, mimicking candlelight. To take things a more authentically old-fashioned step further, you can also strap actual candles to the dry resinous tree that you’ve brought indoors!
Furthermore, should your tree spontaneously go up in flames, you can tell your guests that you’re simply celebrating an old custom: burning the yule log.
3. Make it Magical!
Now that your base layers of shrubs and lights are suitably scattered around your home, it’s time to add some festive pizzazz. All the ornaments too ugly to go onto your tree? Arrange them in glass bowls on any surface. You can also hang ornaments in doorways and windows at different heights from varying lengths of ribbon.
Speaking of glitter, you’re going to need rather a lot of it. Strew it hither and yon – on your tree, on your garlands, in drifts on your windowsills and floors – make everything shine. Each bit of glitter will catch and refract the soft lights, sending sparkles everywhere.
And there you have it, Gentle Reader – my three surefire tips for making your home festive this winter. Happy Decorating!