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  • Jan Peterson

Finding Your Holiday Style

Updated: Dec 3, 2020

I don't know about you, but I look forward to the annual trek to the attic the day after Thanksgiving to pull out decorations from holidays past. Each year it's my walk down memory lane of family gatherings, my children's holiday school projects, and time spent with those I've lost. Holiday decorating is one of my favorite things to give my family, and share with my friends.


Creating and decorating is in every florist's blood. It's what we love to do, even if it's hard to think about celebrating the holidays this year. Those of us who are lucky enough to still have corporate customers know the herculean effort the few days after Thanksgiving requires to get all those companies transformed by early Monday morning.


Although for some of us it may be hard to get into the holiday spirit, it's important to give customers some cheering up - even though our connection to customers may have to be virtual and contact free.

Here are a few tips to consider this year:


Don't overbuy. It's easy to get caught up in the retail frenzy that surrounds the the holidays, but this year you might consider pulling back on some of your decorating items and use what's already in your shop. Floral spray, glue and glitter can transform old silks and baubles from years past - and work wonders refreshing your look.


Reuse, recycle and repurpose. If you've been in business a while, chances are you've collected a stockpile of decorations over the years, so try to reuse, recycle and repurpose older items. You can change it up and keep it fresh by swapping out just a few elements.


If you're fortunate enough to decorate for your customers, here are a few more tips. If decorating is temporarily on hold this year, try giving your customers these tips, or setting up a virtual tour demonstrating these tips:


Let the home pick your style. When decorating a client's home, pick the color scheme and style that best fits the style of the home. Whether you're working with a beach cottage, modern mid-century, 1950's ranch, English tudor, American federal style, bungalow or farmhouse, the decor should mirror the style of the house. If the home is a cottage - natural, country or whimsy might be the theme. If it's beachy, nautical elements will come into play.


Start with outdoor decorations by creating a welcoming entry way. Fill empty garden pots, watering cans, baskets, etc. with cedar, pine, balsam and other hearty greens. Add garlands and wreaths on the doors. Then finish it off with ribbons, berries, pinecones, ornaments, birch, or anything that reflects your indoor decorating theme. I've collected bird nests over the years, so I tend to use a lot of pinecones, burlap, flannel buffalo checked ribbons, vines and natural elements on the outside and inside of my home.


Continue the outdoor theme inside. Pick a focal point for the room - a large wreath above a fireplace, a garland on a staircase, a tree, and carry your theme to each element. Repetition of the theme will bring every room together and make your decorating more pleasing to the eye. For example, if your theme is coastal, adding shells, hanging sand dollars, and burlap ribbon to each element helps carry the theme throughout the home.


The finishing touches. Add bows and ribbon everywhere to finish off the festive mood. Fill glass canisters and vases with antique ornaments that fit the color scheme. Bring greenery indoors by filling small vessels with greenery. All the little elements carried throughout the home add welcoming touches.



Despite the oddities of 2020, I'll still do my best to create an inviting holiday home and I'll still try to embrace the season, no matter how limited our celebrations may be. I hope you'll do the same and we can all look forward to more normal times.


"Traditions touch us, they connect us, and they expand us."

Rita Berreto Craig




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