The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

 

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, so to help you get in the spirit, we’ve rounded up a few locally sourced ideas for you to have a festive holiday season! Everything from decorating to personalized gifting, we are sure that this collective of some of our favorite local stores and trends will have you ready to host, entertain and celebrate all of your special occasions in style. Cheers, ya’ll!


Trees + Home Decor | House by JSD

How to make your tree fuller:

It’s always fun to check in with the guys at House. We promise that you will always leave having learned something new! It seems oddly simple, but we really wanted to know a few basic tips for making a tree look layered and full. What are a couple of things that we can all do step up our family trees?  Take note below. 

  • Always start with the lights! The industry standard is that there should be 100 lights for every foot of the tree.  
  • Once you have your lights on, gather some faux white pine branches and begin to add in sweepy layers throughout. 
  • A couple of rolls of ribbon. Keep in mind, you don’t have to be traditional here! Try mixing a solid crushed velvet with a classic checkered print. 
  • Berries can be your best friend. A subtle pop of color and character. We love that they are shapeable, you don’t have to be precise with their placement. 

Before you know it, you’ll be creating “little moments” as Dwayne calls them. You can still add in all of your family heirlooms and a large topper if you wish, but you’ve suddenly elevated the entire look.

Holiday Baskets

House by JSD is known for their holiday door baskets. The store carries a large array of individual items a la carte so that you can pick and choose what will correlate best with your home décor on a seasonal basis. Dwayne explains you honestly just need:   

  • A few sticks 
  • A strand of berries 
  • Two types of greenery 
  • Ribbon 
  • An added focal point  
  • Great stuff! – An insulated foam sealant

 

Centerpieces

When it comes to putting together your own holiday centerpiece - the possibilities are endless. There are so many different types of stems and foliage to incorporate, you’re probably thinking, “where do I even begin”? 

The holiday pros from House by JSD have just the right recipes to create the perfect holiday centerpiece! Follow these and you can’t go wrong!

Perfect Recipe:

1. Set of 3 Birch Branches, $16.95

2. 38” Magnolia Tree Branch, $9.95 

3. 28” Faux Pheasant Feather Pick, $5.95

4. 19” Faux Magnolia Spray, $4.95

5. 26” Faux Hydrangea Spray White, $12.95

6. Realistic Faux Cedar Stem, $6.95

7. 18” Pine Spray with Pinecones, $6.95

8. Long Needle Pine Spray, $3.95


Christmas Foliage | Alexandra Pallos

Keep it Abundant

When we think “natural”, we think of Alexandra Pallos. Alex strives to make each of her arrangements full and lush by using several different greens instead of just one. By doing so, it helps add in texture and movement throughout. A few of Alex’s favorite fresh foliage picks this time of year are magnolia, cedar, tree fern and pine.   

Keep it Interesting

Add in some unexpected pieces like fruits and vegetables (dry and or fresh) to help create more interest and dimension. Alex enjoys adding in pieces like pomegranate, dried persimmons, tangerines, pears, and artichokes for depth. This is also a really great way to add in color! 

Keep it Creative

Don’t be afraid to spray-paint leaves to help give that sparkle factor. Alex enjoys painting leaves gold for an extra bit of character for the holidays especially.


A Checkered Holiday | For Friends

For Friends is the only Lexington store that carries the beautiful creations by MacKenzie-Childs.

These products are handmade in Aurora, on a small farm in rural, central New York. From plates to planters, teapots to tureens and even holiday decor, MacKenzie-Childs designs are alive with individuality.

Stains and glazes are painted on by hand, not by machine. You may notice variations in the density and depth of the color. This evidence of the artisan’s hand is highly valued by collectors: No two pieces are identical. Set a table with MacKenzie-Childs plates and their variations are sure to please and delight your guests this holiday season. Their signature Courtley Check print is classic and makes for a versitile backdrop all year.


Forever-Greens | Corman's Marketplace

Chad Salyers, Lead Designer at Corman’s Marketplace, is our go-to tree guru. When it comes to shopping for your family’s Christmas tree a lot of people opt for a beautiful artificial tree. Now, you may think this is an easy purchase, but there are actually many different types of artificial trees to choose from. 

The structure of the tree needles come in different shapes and sizes, which can cause the overall tree to have varying appearances. Knowing these characteristics will help choose the perfect tree depending on your vision!

 

Classic PVC Tree Needles

These create a full look. However, the rectangular ends of the needles and the material they’re made from are often not the most realistic look.

Tapered PE Needles

These molded needles have the look of a real evergreen. Trees with just PE needles tend to look more rustic and sparse..

Mixed Needles 

These trees utilize classic needles to create fullness, then feature PE needles at the tips to create the most realistic look. It’s the best of both worlds!

Fancy Needles

From long needles, reminiscent of a white pine tree, to feathers and beyond, there are plenty of other types of tree out there.

Tinsel

These trees generally have the classic needle shape, but with the added fun of a glitzy metallic or colored finish.

Fiber Optic

These trees have fiber optic lights interspersed with needles (typically the classic type). Some offer customized lighting schemes that will dazzle.

 

Flock-On!

Don’t call it a comeback: flocking is a retro tree trend that has been gaining popularity in recent years! Flocking creates the look of freshly fallen snow over the tree’s branches. This velvety coating offers a wintry look that will feel custom. 

Fair warning: flocking can be messy! While flocking can be added on after-market, there’s less mess – and less stress – with a tree that comes pre-flocked. Still, you will want to take extra care when packing the tree away to ensure that the flocking isn’t damaged.


Home for the Holidays | Norwalk Furniture

Before you start filling your home with a bunch of holiday decor, create a stunning backdrop that you’ll love all year long. When you start with an expertly decorated home, it makes all of the holiday decorating a breeze. You may even find your home being the star of the show.

Perfectly placed pillows and fur throws add just the right touch of cozy and warmth we all love this time of year. All you’ll have to do is add some lush holiday garlands and you’ve got yourself a beautiful holiday home.

The design experts at Norwalk Furniture & Design are the go-to team to help you create the perfect backdrop for all of your holiday decorating! A couple of tips they give on decorating your home are:

• Incorporate family! Add some vintage family pieces or pictures in fabulous frames. Again, It is the season of family!’

• Stay fresh. It’s as smiple as sticking fresh magnolia or holly berries in any vase or urn to make a beautiful holiday arrangement!


Home Lighting Decor

Some people may overlook the Kitchen when it comes to holiday decorating, but a true Southern girl would say this room is her favorite of all!

It’s as simple as adding a garland of greenery or some berries to your pendant lights and you’ve got yourself a perfectly decorated Christmas kitchen!


Picking the Right Real Tree

For those who aren’t as big on those forever-greens and looks forward to that natural pine smell that fills their home each year, then you love shopping for a real Christmas tree.

Now, this can be a daunting task for some as well, but is also so much fun. We’ve broken down a few important tips to keep in mind when searching for that perfect real tree:

Measure First

Before you even start looking for a tree, pick the spot you’ll place it. Measure across the space to find out how wide your tree can be. Then measure the height, taking into account any tree toppers you might be adding or the base you’ll place your tree in. 

Know Your Wants

What look are you hoping to achieve? Do you want a tree that is full, or one that’s a bit more rustic? Do you mind if the needles that fall are sharp, or would you prefer they be softer?

  • Check for Freshness
  • Look for even coloring.
  • Compared to others of its kind on the lot, your tree should be greener.
  • The trunk should be slightly sticky to the touch.
  • Do the “bend” test: bend a needle in half with your fingers. Firs should snap while pines should bend, but not break.
  • Gently bounce the tree on its base: if needles on the outermost tips are falling off, move along. 
  • Give it a sniff: fresher trees should be fragrant. 
  • Hold a branch loosely between your thumb and forefinger, about a foot from the tip. Gently pull your hand toward you and see if any needles fall off.

Other Tips

• Bring along one of your heavier ornaments: you want a tree whose branches can support the weight of your decorations! 

• One bare spot? If you’re planning to set your tree in a corner or against a wall, you can put the bare spot to the back. You might be able to negotiate a better deal for a less than ideal tree! 

• While a lush, full tree is beautiful, it actually may not be ideal for those who love to fill their tree with decorations. If you pack in the pretties, pick a tree with more space between branches. 


Tablescapes

The dining room table is oftentimes a focal point in the home during the holiday season, and for many, a gathering spot where joyous memories are made. Christmas is the perfect occasion to pull out your precious china, family heirlooms, and even non-traditional décor to piece together an inviting tablescape. Our friends at My Favorite Things set the gold standard when it comes to adorning your tables. 

  • Prioritize color coordination (even change it up by using colored glassware!)
  • Incorporate greenery or florals 
  • Light a few candles
  • Have fun with layering! Your favorite linens, a charger, and even different sizes plates 
  • Add in variety of textures for an extra bit of character and balance

Don’t be afraid to step outside the box and have fun with your table settings! The more pattern and detail, the mor gorgeous they can be!


How to Make the Southern Living Bow | The Front Porch

We all know Southern Living is THE pro on how to make the perfect holiday bow. Follow this step-by-step guide to create your own perky, rounded shape bow that attaches easily to gifts, treetops, garlands, wreaths, and more. As you make it, you can use longer or shorter pieces of ribbon to adjust the size of the bow you’re wanting!

  1. Start the Bow: Make a continuous loop of ribbon. The size and thickness of your loop will determine the size of your bow.
  2. Join the Center: Cinch the loop in the middle with a length of twine or a chenille stem
  3. Form the Loops: Begin to pull individual bow loops out from the center, alternating pulls from each end.
  4. Create the Tails: Once all the loops are formed, tie a long piece of ribbon around the center to make the tails of the bow.

The Front Porch has a gift for everyone on your list, but did you know that they also offer the best variety of ribbon and pre-made bows for Christmastime? Spruce up your gift wrapping this season by adding in multiple colors, prints and patterns your friends and family will love!


Staircases + Runners | Carpet One

What better way to add some character to your home, especially during the holidays, than with a custom stair runner. Now, don’t think red and green; any beautiful neutral runner will compliment your holiday decor and you can still enjoy it year round!

Installing a stair runner on your stairs can eliminate noise, increase your comfort level, and is aesthetically pleasing!

Another way to add design detail to a room is with a gorgeous rug. Area rugs can add warmth and a soft surface underfoot, they can break up a room into different sections, they can add a pop of color or style, or they can add a combination of all three!


Holiday Curb Appeal

Symmetry + Comfort

The holiday season is about warmth and welcoming friends and family. Greet your guests with a cozy and gorgeously decorated front porch this year!

When planning your front porch decor, think symmetry as you walk up. Find a beautiful boxed tree to place on each side of your door. Don’t be afraid to add some additional sprays to make it look full and to add some texture!

Then compliment those arrangements with a simple wreath on the door. Add a pretty holiday ribbon and you’ve got yourself a perfect holiday front porch.

Additionally, if your porch is covered, add some soft seating and decor to really warm up the space. Incorporate some holiday throw pillows and a flannel blanket and you might just find yourself socializing outside rather than inside.


How Do You Do Christmas?

If you’re like most people, decorating for the holidays is something we look forward to each and every year. Most people can’t wait and start decorating early.. like by the first of November early. Maybe it’s because there’s so much decor to get out and place just right, or maybe it’s for the simple fact to bring out that pure joy that the Christmas season brings.

No matter when the decorations go up, we all have our own vision and unique way of decorating... which seems to be the most fun part of it all! There are so many different themes and color palettes when it comes to Christmas decorating and they’re all beautiful in their own way. 

Maybe you’re a traditional red and green gal, or maybe you sprinkle your home with a little glitz with an all pink tree! Do you stick to the metallics and do an abundance of silver and gold? Or are you a die hard UK Wildcats fan and can’t wait to get out your Kentucky blue tree?

Any way you go, you’re sure to have a stunning holiday home! Here are some inspiration trees to get you excited for the Christmas season to begin!

 

Traditional Red & Green

Let’s be honest, when we all think of the Christmas season, we immediately think of the vibrant reds and greens. You can’t get much more traditional than that. 

When filling your red and green tree, add accents of gold to really bring out those classic colors!

Kentucky Blue

For all you Big Blue fans, we’re sure you’ve got a gorgeous frosty blue tree somewhere in your home! These shades of icy blue bring in the perfect winter feeling during the holidays. Plus, if you’re a fan of farmhouse decor trends, this tree style will compliment your home beautifully.

Metallic Shine

Talk about the glitz and the glam! For all of you trendy ladies who love a good shine, then a mixed metallic tree is the way to go!

Incorporating gold and silver decor can truly transform your home into a winter wonderland.

Holiday Pinks

Who says you have to have a red or green Christmas tree? For all of you girly ladies out there that just can’t get enough pink in your life, grab yourself a gorgeous flocked tree and add all the shades of blush, rouge and mauve your heart desires.

Have a little girl who wants her own Christmas tree? This would be perfect for her bedroom!

Rustic Christmas

To some, when they think of their family Christmas tree they imagine their mom’s dried orange garlands or their nieces and nephews salt dough ornaments they made last year.

You can still have a gorgeous tree with simple rustic touches and family-made details. It makes it so much more special.