What does it mean to decorate thoughtfully? Decorating is a way of creating a space that encourages celebration and community. I love that decorating can be a reflection of your family’s personality, as well as a reflection of current trends. It’s a physical reminder that this season is meant to provoke a sense of wonder in our souls.
I have some mixed memories when it comes to holiday decorating, including our trees falling more than once and breaking all the ornaments. I will never forget when my husband and I were living in Silverlake in Los Angeles. We love midcentury design, and he decided it was time to get a vintage tree. The man searched eBay for days and scored an authentic silver aluminum tinsel tree from the 60’s, still in the box.
This is the first and only time he’s had a significant say in our holiday decorating style.
When the tree finally arrived in the mail, it was like the scene from the Peanuts—half of the little tinsel needles fell off the puny wire branches as we took it out of the box. It was old…really old. Putting that tree together was a massive challenge, so let’s just say duct-tape was involved in the end. Every person that came over that year laughed at us. We actually used it for three years until I put my foot down for a real tree when all the mainstream stores started carrying much fuller and fancier mylar trees.
Since then, we’ve approached holiday decor in a way that reflects my overall style: modern, organic, and minimal. I don’t like overdone holiday decor, and I don’t like having to change things every year. I want our decorations to be thoughtful and simple and imperfectly beautiful. I collect things through my travels, make things with my kids, surround our little home and plot of land with objects that I love and know I will continue to love for years to come.
The new Raven + Lily home collection is consistent with how I’ve been decorating for the holidays for years: take natural, neutral bases and add a little bling! It’s a wonder what a little metallic paint or ribbon can do to an everyday object to make it feel like the holiday season is upon us. I love bringing in lots of natural greenery, branches, and sparkly white lights. I’ll add some sheep skins for a cozy feel. My collection of Moroccan wedding blankets and pillows fit in nicely with the holidays.
We usually go to a nearby Christmas tree farm and cut down our own tree as a family.
For thoughtful gift wrapping, I incorporate simple patterns on recycled papers, like our new Raven + Lily hand-screened gift wrap. I like for my holiday decor to compliment my existing decor, not compete with it. I do just enough so my family feels loved and has fun helping in the process.
One of the most valuable ways to be thoughtful in decorating this holiday is to consider where you buy decorations. This might be challenging, but it’s absolutely possible to decorate your home using beautiful, ethically-produced products. Unfortunately, the majority of decor sold in stores is produced with less-than-thoughtful production practices in mind. I want to honor people and the planet with all of my choices during this holiday season, and I encourage you to do so too. Shop fair trade markets, use natural elements, make things with your family and friends, shop vintage, and just add a little bling to everyday items for an instant holiday touch of shazam.
On second thought, maybe my husband’s idea of buying a vintage tree off eBay fits this thoughtful approach to decorating more than I’d like to admit.
Photo credit: Katie Jameson Photography