Post Christmas Decorating

Many times when I take the tree and garland and other Christmas stuff down, my home feel refreshingly sparse and spacious.

However, there is a difference between sparse and spacious and empty, bare and depressing.  So, I get out my many rubbermaid bins of January decor, you know, winter figurines, snowflake ornaments, a 3 foot tall blowup snowman.  Just kidding.  If you have that stuff, wonderful~you should use it, but most of us don’t have special stuff just for after Christmas decorating, and frankly, I don’t want more stuff to have to store.  So, I shop the house.

Here are a few things I do to fill in the gaps during winter:

1. Move the furniture around.

Since we found that new old coffee table I’m able to gather up our chairs {and dog bed} into a closer more cozy seating area~like in that photo up there at the top.  It probably won’t stay like this forever {ok so I already moved it a different way} but, sometimes just mixing things up a bit help keep a room interesting.

2. Plants

Plants make a room feel instantly fresh and alive. I brought my sweet potato vine in during the fall and it’s still doing pretty well. He gets moved around every week or so.  I keep a little table by our window and rotate plants out from there into other parts of the house.  My yellow poinsettia is still looking nice so he’s still out and not terribly Christmasy and we just added a little bonsai tree from Ikea to our coffee table.  And of course, yesterday we talked about paperwhites and their magic powers.

3. Incorporate White

In the fall I tend to lean to dark cozy woodsy colors and during the new year winter I like crisp, white sparkly warmth.   I set around some of my white trays and dishes {even planting plants in them for a double crisp alive after Christmas winter}.

Shop the house for anything white you could use~candlesticks, blankets folded up, books, even a glass bowl of white shells can feel wintry.

3. Pops of Fresh Color

Fresh pops of color are a quick way to liven up a space, I grouped these blue vase container things on the homework table for some color therapy.  Look around your home for colorful items that can be grouped together in a new way.

And also keep your eye out for a few things that may need to get packed away for awhile.  Let’s say you have this pumpkin throw and floral pillow on a neutral sofa…

…consider switching it out seasonally with one of these juicy throws that will take you through the summer…

paired with a textured pillow that exudes fresh warmth {throws are from world market, pillows from Pier 1}

Speaking of throws, here’s a close up of the one I showed in our room.  It’s from Home Goods.  I added a few of the flowers and I’m hoping to embellish my own throw and if it works, I’ll let you know.

If you have mostly reds in your room, try accenting with turquoise or white.  If you have pattern, go for a solid pillow with texture.  If you have a solid neutral sofa, then you are lucky and have no excuses because you have the most freedom of anyone to do something really fun and unexpected with a pillow or two and a throw.

Don’t forget, part of the cozy atmosphere you can create comes from smells and foods {like home made mac and cheese} and music and temperature and baskets of cozy blankets and lots of books laying around, take advantage of all of your senses.

I’ll leave you with two links to some more winter decorating ideas::

Beth from Stories from A to Z hosted a Winter Mantel party with lots of mantely inspiration.

Melissa wrote a post about The Evolving Winter House that you need to read if you haven’t already.  She talks about letting our homes naturally transition slowly from season to season.  Probably one of my favorite posts she’s ever written. She is brilliant and most of us can really relate with her when she says

My rooms never feel exactly the same in one season as they did a few weeks earlier.

my sister‘s twin girls and little boy with my three boys

Does your home look different in January than in April?

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  1. I LOVE that throw! Why, oh why, can’t I have a Home Goods store?

  2. I did exactly the same things when we took down the tree. I rearranged the furniture. I LOVE the new arrangement–totally different than anything else I’ve done with this room, which I didn’t think was possible. I have a bit of a sickness and must rearrange the furniture at least quarterly, and sometimes more often than that. :D

    I also decided the room needed some green and bought a plant and pulled a wreath in from another room.

    I don’t’ feel the need for white, though–still seems dangerous with three toddlers. But I did crave some bright cheery yellow this month. I bought a small yellow dresser for my entry (visible from the living room), plus new yellow art on the wall (new furniture arrangement necessitated new art, you know). and I’m nearly finished sewing a new yellow throw pillow. I’m so pleased.

  3. I know you get a ton of comments everyday but every time I see your couch and the slip cover I fall in more in love with it. My question is where did you get/find your slip covers?????

  4. I usually suffer from post Christmas decoration blues, but this year I picked out a few special pieces with a gift card to the Pottery Barn and some flowers at Hobby Lobby, moved a few pieces of furniture, just like you said, and voila, was actually thrilled to have my decorations down and back in storage. I do find, however, that my room is stuck in a world of earth tones and deep red and golden yellow…. but before I had that, I had nothing…. so I kind of like it. :) Next stop, a new throw! I’m inspired. :)

  5. I so needed this little nudge today. For some reason I cannot get things back in order decor-wise since Christmas. My mantle has been naked. The shelf in my kitchen was, um, different. Maybe this afternoon I can get it together.

  6. So beautiful and fresh and at the same time cozy and inviting. And as always inspiring. Love it!

  7. Ohhhh how I do LOVE HomeGoods!!! :)

  8. THANK YOU for posting this!!! :) After Christmas stuff goes away, the house feels so plain and sad. Great post, and I love what you said about bringing in white and plants!

  9. I am a big believer in new plants in January. I also add bright green candles to my candle holders.

  10. I have been digging out all my whites for winter! I left my white christmas lights in a large mason jar out. It feels wintery more than christmasy so it got to stay around a little longer! :)

  11. Ok, so my plan for the day was laundry and grocery shopping, but now I want to switch gears and start playing around with the house! :)

  12. Your photos are always so inspiring. Love all the touches of white!

  13. Good reminder!
    I always have stuff in the closet that I FORGET to bring out.
    Time for the milkglass, I think :)
    And, those paperwhites from yesterday will be lovely, too.

  14. I love this! In fact I have paper-whites to plant today♥ In Jan. I leave the house clean and fresh from Christmas. (although every single Christmas thing is still up around here EEEK!) Feb. I go all out with V-Day decor. One of my fav holidays. I have a large fireplace, mantel that I decorate for each holiday and that helps keep things clean and simple. I do love your idea of changing things around though…I’ll have to try that. Thanks for your great ideas!

  15. I. absolutely. LOVE. your. blog. Just looking at the pictures of your home make me take a deep breath and relax. One day I might even have something like that, but right now I live with 6 lovable, funny and sometimes very poorly behaved dogs. They’re great and I wouldn’t trade them for anything and at the same time, I would try to never let anything like that ever happen again ;-) One of the things I do as I look at your lovely home, is put a time limit on how long things my last (i.e. the bonsai, would be uprooted and eaten, the dirt emptied onto your beautiful white sofa and it’s beautiful bowl would be somewhere in the house for me to find, by the end of day one) I am very easily entertained ;-) This really used to upset me, until I realized that these dogs are a great joy to me and one day they will be gone and I will have a beautiful, peaceful, quiet home. Then I will be so sad. BUT, on another note, because of you I found the directions to make the slip covers and I am making some out of the drop clothes at Home Depot! THAT should be fairly indestructable!
    Thanks so much for sharing your home and ideas with us. They’re very uplifting and give me hope ;-) and your words have helped me realize and appreciate what I have right now.

  16. My house still looks like – Christmas! Sara = lazy. I’ll get there!

    I mean, the tree is down. But the wreathes, some other greenery, my Christmas mantle – all still up. And my Christmas cards.

  17. Beautiful throw! Love it!! I wish we had a Home Goods store nearby. The closest one is 2 hours away! :(

  18. Okay – I am going in search of winter white throughout my house. It does look so fresh and clean and, after all the Christmas stuff, it’s just what I need for January. Thanks so much for the inspiration!

  19. Thanks for the after Christmas inspiration that I needed!!! Don’t laugh at me…but we still have our Christmas decorations up. I AM taking it down today…but I left it up because my parents were supposed to come this weekend for a delayed “Christmas Visit” and I wanted to leave it up to welcome them with the Christmas spirit since they missed it. But their visit has been delayed again for a few weeks due to weather. I have decided that I cannot live any longer surrounded by Christmas! LOL So it comes down this weekend…starting today!!! I needed a little inspiration to do something special with it for January…and you gave it to me!!! thank you!!!!

    Building Home with Him,

    Mary Joy

  20. yes, I do the same thing! and I love winter fresh white, especially if there happens to be winter fresh snow out the window! :)

  21. I tend to bring out the warm colours in the winter. I favour the reds and browns and beiges. Perhaps it is due to the icy white landscape outside. Brrr. I want to cocoon in warmth inside my home.

    I do think your winter decor looks pretty, it’s just not my personal preference when I see too much white outside. Our Canadian winters are pretty long.

  22. I’m gonna be honest here. My house still has areas that look as if the remnants of Christmas still reside here. The addition has toys (Christmas gifts from well-meaning grandparents) scattered everywhere, and I am still in the middle of the Great Toy Purge of 2011 before I can organize the new stuff.

    But other than the new-toy-clutter, it is pretty bare around here, and you shared some really neat tips for how to spruce things up. I think I’m going to break my snowflake pom pom garland out today if I can keep the little one from barfing on anything else. :s

  23. Fabulous advice and I want your throw! I need it. LOVE! Thanks for the shout-out friend!

  24. I love your blog! I read it everyday and you have inspired me to embrace my imperfect self/house/decor! This was such a great post about color and plants. I will definitely be working on these changes this weekend. I went to Pier One the other day and just about DIED because everything was so beautiful!

  25. That throw is gorgeous. Gotta love Home Goods.

  26. I have been searching for a sectional that will fit our long narrow living space. You’re seems to be the perfect size. Where did you find it?

    Thanks for sharing your beautiful home!

  27. I love white – it’s my go-to color year round. I love those yummy throws! The blue one is calling my name :)

  28. Fab ideas! I will be trying some out today! Kate :)

  29. I really like changing things around too. I’m strangely leaning toward mixing a warm dark orange and robins egg blue together. It’s always interesting to me how my preferences are always changing!

  30. Re: the “smells” part–i bake bread & make up new cakes (chemistry experiments) just so the house smells wonderful on nasty snowy days. Always have bread flour of several types&plenty of yeast&vital gluten for the winter! And so I dont wind up weighing 400#, I give it to the neighbors or take cupcakes to my bank&the staff at MaPa’s care center. Everybdoy’s happy& I had my aromatherapy Tx. :) -s-

  31. Love it! I wish I could have plants, but we always leave for the summer for our job, so they would probably die. :-( Also why we don;t have a puppy!

  32. OMG
    How did you take those aerial shots?

  33. Hello! I am so happy to have found your blog! We have a lot of common interests! It’s so nice to find other women still blogging! I L-o-v-e it!

  34. Please share where you found your beautiful white gourd-shaped lamp. I’ve been looking and looking and looking and the few i”ve found are outrageously priced. Thanks in advance. I so enjoy reading your blog daily. Thanks for all your efforts.

  35. Ok…the antler looking thing on the dark wood table above the suitcases…you should totally think about wiring it. I think it would make a very cool lamp. Just sayin’.

  36. i love how nice and clean your house is! spacious…also the snow looks so pretty out that window. I am trying to be more intentional in my decorating… :) so much inspiration here….xo

  37. thank you for the bulb idea. now i am on the quest to find something to plant them in…..

  38. Yes, my house definitely does look different with the seasons. As far as smells go, you were so right. I usually always have a candle burning but I bake and cook all the time so our house always smells yummy. =)

    And I think I’m going to have to go find some of those plants!

  39. I was shopping my house for a little Valentiney love for our mantel and I was amazed. I apparently love all things love and hearts. I pulled things from 4 different rooms. Free shopping is fun shopping.

    And although I have total disdain for the color purple, that lavender rose pillow from Pier 1 is scrumptious!

  40. I like the simplicity of January, too, And I like an occasional something new. I have rearranged and simplified my home this January and then went to the store West Elm to buy a set of yellow lacquered coasters. Just the ticket for something fun , new and that pop of color that you mentioned. I love the month of January.


  41. Your home is so pretty! I love your blue lamps. =)

  42. This is a totally FANTASTIC post. Your ideas are so specific about how to make the house a January winter house, and you did a wonderful job of showing examples with pictures — like the one where you show to change out the throw and pillow. Thank you!

  43. did you take that first picture with your spy gear?


    one wintery thing i add is lots and lots and lots of candles.

    the soft glow against the backdrop of dreary days adds warmth and coziness.

  44. CLEARLY I need to find a Homegoods store. I also need to go to an Ikea. I live way out in the country but I keep hearing about these stores over and over.

    I need a field trip!! lol

  45. First time here and I could be addicted. LOVE your ideas.

    ps hopped over from (in)courage.

  46. You inspired me to clear my mantel of the year round family photos and make it look a little more like winter. Saturday I shopped my house and my newly stored Christmas boxes for touches of winter…and I love it. Thanks for the inspiration!

  47. Love these ideas! I love Christmas decorations and it is always a little sad to take them down, but there is such a freedom to me when I have more space in my home to “breathe & create.” :) Thanks for the beautiful pics!!

  48. Marsha Buckner says:

    I hate to take Christmas Down Always so depressing because I hate to see it go! I leave out my snowmen and candles,throws and pillows seem to give me that fuzzy warm feeling I love!

  49. June Woodard says:

    Love the way your home looks so fresh

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