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Holiday home styling: Evergreen ways to spruce up home for the holidays

When it comes to decorating for Christmas, more is wonderful. Photo by Morgan Schleif, submitted by Eco Chic Boutique / Special to the Forum

FARGO — If it wasn't for holiday decorating, some homeowners might keep the same decor up year-round, leaving their homes stale and dull, month after month.

"Christmas decorating is a time when people are forced to try new things — revamp the mantle and spruce things up," says Maria Bosak, owner of Eco Chic in Fargo. "You can let a season go by and not change things out because nobody is going to notice, but your friends are going to ask, 'Where's your Christmas tree?' if you don't put it up."

Still, sometimes it's hard to fuel the imagination. Creating a new, fresh Christmas look year after year can be challenging as the same artificial tree and wall hangings lose their sparkle and homeowners lose their drive.

"They don't know where to start so it becomes a burden, rather than a blessing," Bosak says.

This holiday season, Bosak and Leanne Seibold, owner of the Green Room, offer tips to help inspire homeowners with their holiday decorating. By re-arranging what they already have or adding a few items to the mix, homeowners may find their holiday decorating spirit once again.

Trending themes

Photo by Morgan Schleif, submitted by Eco Chic Boutique / Special to the ForumToday's holiday decorating goes beyond the traditional rich reds and forest greens. In decorating a contemporary lake home, Seibold's team of designers used a seaside-inspired theme with silver, ice blue, hints of copper and soft reds bordering coral. In contrast, for a chiropractic office they implemented shades of blue and red.

Rustic and woodsy themes — with natural elements like stems, berries and greenery — are also popular this year. There's just a slight difference with the rustic look; it's more refined.

"Not as much rust and dust as it was before maybe — not so shabby but more time-worn," Bosak says.

The best part about a woodsy theme is that homeowners can remove their traditional Christmas decor after the holiday but leave the rest. "Sometimes leaving out some of that greenery helps to keep your interior warm and inviting," Seibold says.

Metallic colors are also trendy. "A lot of what we like to do is mix metallic tones," Seibold says, encouraging homeowners to incorporate several tones into their home, including copper, gold, silver and rose gold.

Christmas tree

Photo by Morgan Schleif, submitted by Eco Chic Boutique / Special to the ForumRather than using garland or tinsel, Seibold encourages homeowners to give wired ribbon a try.

"We love working with ribbon because you can either do it horizontally or vertically," she says.

Ribbon can be used as a tree topper or bustled to fill holes. Extra greenery and floral stems add layers, dimension, texture and a pop of color to the tree.

When it comes to ornaments, Seibold suggest layering them throughout the tree, not just on the tips of the branches.

"You actually want to put them towards where the trunk is as well because that shows the layering effect and adds depth," she says. "If you add in metallics, the light reflects off that and makes your tree sparkle a little more."

As for the tree skirt, fabric works just as well as a manufactured skirt. "You can put an old sheet underneath it to make it more billowy," Seibold says. Not only does using fabric give the tree a more proper scale for the base, it can be reused in future years to make table runners, pillows or other holiday decor.

Dining table

Photo by Morgan Schleif, submitted by Eco Chic Boutique / Special to the ForumSimply setting the dining table adds Christmas cheer to the home. Incorporating natural elements from the backyard is cheap and easy; an evergreen sprig or cranberries can be placed in vases or tied to napkins as a place setting.

"Then you have the smell of a real Christmas tree if you don't have a real tree," Seibold says.

For a table centerpiece, candlesticks and fresh greenery add height to the table. "If you keep your staple pieces neutral — placemats, dishes, centerpiece pieces — and change the napkins and floral spray, you're able to transition it to the next season," Bosak says.

Clear fishing line can also be used to hang ornaments or a wreath from chandelier to create further emphasis above the table.

Fireplace and mantel

Photo by Morgan Schleif, submitted by Eco Chic Boutique / Special to the ForumBosak says the key to mantel decor is making a statement. "There needs to be one thing on a fireplace mantel that catches your eye," she says.

In one home, Bosak's team propped a black cathedral window — without the panes — on the mantel and hung a wreath from it.

"That becomes the piece that centers it, grounds it and the rest is just embellishment," she says.

From there, homeowners can add artificial greens and battery-operated candles to their mantel.

If homeowners choose to hang stockings around the fireplace, Seibold provides a tip: stuff the flat, one-dimensional stockings with tissue paper to give them more body.

When it comes to holiday decorating, homeowners should think about their own personality.

"If you're doing it on your own, go with what makes you happy. Play around." Seibold says.

While social media can provide inspiration, Bosak says not to let it become overwhelming. "Do not compete with Pinterest," she says. Often people see a photo of just one corner of the home that's decorated perfectly. It's not reality.

Above all, remember to make decorating fun. "Turn on the Christmas music. Light a Christmas candle and just start playing," Seibold says. "It doesn't have to be perfect."

Alexandra Floersch is a content producer for Forum Content Studios and staff contributor at alexandrafloersch.areavoices.com. She can be reached at (701) 451-5730.