Posted: 27 November 2017
The Christmas season is fast approaching, and it’s time to start thinking about your decorations.
In fact, if you haven’t broken out the tinsel and tree yet, you could be running a bit behind. Eighty-seven percent of people start decorating Thanksgiving weekend or earlier.
One of the most striking–and occasionally overlooked–areas to decorate are your windows. They can be the perfect area to showcase your holiday spirit. Just be sure not to add too much Christmas flair.
Here’s how to strike the perfect balance between festive Christmas window decorations and overkill.
How to Create the Perfect Christmas Window Decorations
You can, of course, use the classic tactic of hanging a wreath in your windows. If you’re looking for different Christmas window decorations this year, read on.
Shake up Your Color Palette
Don’t limit yourself to just red and green. Instead, try some fresher color combos:
- Green and brown for a natural, woodland look
- Silver and white to give off a snowy feel
- Hot pink and lime green for a festive, modern aesthetic
- Robin’s egg blue and red for a vintage look
- Metallic turquoise and cobalt blue to create a frozen, icy appearance
- Baby pink and silver for an unforgettable 50’s vibe
Pick a Theme
An overall theme for all of your holiday decorations can help you create a stylish, uniform look.
It’s also a fun way to make each holiday season a little different from last year’s.
If you’re having trouble picking a theme for your Christmas window decorations, here are a few questions to ask yourself:
- Do you prefer classic decorations or a more contemporary look?
- Are you into bright, vivid colors or subdued neutrals?
- How do you feel about vintage?
- Do you have kids?
If you tend to like a modern look, consider hanging minimalistic snowflakes or reflective ornaments in your windows.
If you prefer the classic look, pine boughs and red ribbon are quintessentially Christmas. Pine cones and cinnamon sticks can also add rich color and a natural, woodsy look.
If you have children, do something a little more fun! Vibrant red and white candy canes make an engaging–and delicious–theme. If your kids are hands-on, you can use paper cutouts to depict a holiday scene.
Repurpose Other Decorations
If you’re really feeling creative, try going through your old decorations to see if there’s anything you can reuse. This is also a great way to tackle your holiday decorating on a budget.
Old ornaments or tree baubles can make a beautiful statement bundled together and hung in front of your windows.
A can of metallic spray paint can revive old wreaths and create a striking central focal point.
Metal cookie cutters hung with ribbon or string can create a nostalgic scene. If you want to add visual impact, you can line the backs of them with wrapping paper.
Even old Christmas ribbon can work. Simply tie a large bow to act as your focal point and hang ribbons down from it.
Think About Composition
If you want to make a strong impact, treat each one of your windows like a work of art.
The best way to do that is by considering your composition when you decorate. When it comes to artfully composing a perfect window scene, there are eight rules you should follow.
Here’s a quick primer:
- Make sure all of your decorations “feel” right together
- Balance your items and try to avoid a lopsided look
- Stagger how your objects are arranged
- Try repeating the same colors or shapes
- Make one central focal point in each window
- Leave some empty areas for contrast
- Create a repeating pattern
- Pay attention to the size of each element
If you have large windows or several adjacent ones, you could create a scene that stretches across all of them. The end result would look something like a triptych, or a painting made of several joining panels.
Finally, don’t forget to get vertical! Placing tall objects on your windowsills or hanging decorations from strings will draw the eye upward. That makes for an interesting finished look.
Get Creative with Your Lighting
Getting the lighting right on Christmas window decorations can be tricky.
Of course, you want passers-by to see your hard work. It’s not necessary, however, to string extra lights or go overboard with dramatic spotlights.
Instead, a small exterior spotlight at the base of your window can illuminate your decorations. Even a small overhead light inside your home can showcase your work.
You can even incorporate lighting into your decorations. Tall candle tapers light up your decorations and adds a classy look. Small tea lights in glass jars bring a whimsical touch.
If your decorations feature reflective items or light-colored objects, you may not need to add any extra lighting. These materials can catch enough ambient light to illuminate everything.
When Christmas Window Decorations Qualify as Overkill
Overkill is a subjective term. One man’s masterpiece is another man’s eyesore.
However, there are some ways to tell if you’ve gone too far.
Your Windows Light up the Whole Neighborhood
Holiday spirit is great, but if your decor has the power to illuminate the entire street, it’s time to tone it down. Your neighbors will thank you.
Your electric bill will be easier to manage, too. That’s a big help, considering the average family spends an extra $58.34 on their energy bills during December.
You Have to Pay to Store Your Decorations During the off Season
If part of your household budget is earmarked for Christmas decoration storage, you may have gone too far.
This season, consider combing through your collection and purging the items you no longer need. A store of well-loved decorations could make a great donation to a charity.
There’s Too Much Going On
If each one of your windows has a different color palette, composition, and theme, you have too much going on.
Similarly, if your windows clash with your yard decor and exterior lighting, your house is more likely to look confusing than cheerful.
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