7 decorating ideas we’re stealing from the Holiday Home Tour

Upside down gingerbread man cookie cutter = reindeer heads.

The Broadreach team had a heck of a weekend. We headed to Portland’s West End for The Divine Series’ Holiday Home Tour. Holy holly. These gorgeous, historic homes were meticulously manicured — not one pine needle out of place.

Some ideas we plan to steal:

  • Make reindeer cookies by using a gingerbread cutter. Upside down, chubby legs looks like majestic antlers.
  • Quilts as tablecloths. What a great way to make the table feel homey.
  • Dress up old metal radiators by placing a small marble tile over them for a shelf. We saw one home set a rosemary tree — decorated with red roses — on top of the radiator. The green of the rosemary (and the smell…) mixed with the bright red roses said “holiday” without screaming it. One designer whispered to us that usually you can get a scrap of marble for nothing or near-nothing at most tile stores … if you ask nicely.
  • Pick a theme that isn’t color-related. One home had a feather theme. The front room had a teal and green peacock tree, with fresh roses poking out as decorations, whereas the living room had a wild safari feel with orange birds nesting in the tree. A different home had lots of deer — deer paintings, doe figurines, deer ornaments, antler decorations — but not so much that it felt like you entered Deer World, just enough that it felt pulled-together.
  • It seemed like everyone who walked into one of the homes had an “of course!” moment when they saw how one decorator handled a staircase. Pine garland is beautiful, fragrant, festive … and a pain in the butt to twirl down a railing. One of the decorators instead ran the pine garland down the stairs, to the side. Brilliant. So simple. It was a clean, modern take on a holiday stand-by.
  • One tree wasn’t enough for many of the decorators. Some families want those kid-decorated ornaments, but also wanted a preened, thematic tree. It never felt odd, or like you entered a forest or anything. Because the homes as a whole felt festive, the extra trees were right in place.
  • Sticks can help make a bouquet look frosty. Sawyer & Company Florist, Gifts and Gourmet delivered us a gorgeous arrangement that features long, grey branches, which make the display appear much larger and hints at snow … without the cottony-glitter mess of fake snow.
This peacock nested in a tree, with several other peacocks. Their tails covered the tree and the bright green roses filled in other branches. Add some ribbon and wa-la.

Wowza. That’s a lot to think about. It’s not even Thanksgiving and I already feel behind on Christmas.

Broadreach is honored to sponsor The Divine Series, and although it’s a few months away, we’re already thinking about the Portland Kitchen Tour in May. For more information, visit the Series’ website.

Those darn paper machete birds got into the seed on the kitchen table, which was covered in a red-and-white quilt. The quilt made the dining room feel homey, plus it’s easily washable and serves many uses.