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Home for the holidays

By Keegan Prosser on December 4, 2012 – No Comment


As the holiday season comes upon us, it’s time to get the house ready for the holidays.

For Clyde Hill resident Lisa Seigle, decorating for the holidays is more than just a family tradition, it’s become a bit of an obsession.

“I go shopping the day after Christmas and find all the decorations I’ve been eyeing on clearance,” Seigle says.

Her usual haunts include Williams-Sonoma, Pottery Barn and Cost Plus.

Seigle says she likes to keep her decorations pretty traditional. This means incorporating many shades of red and green, alongside Christmas china and family heirlooms.

“It probably has to do with the way I was raised,” Seigle says of her traditional style.

Other features include ornaments from her childhood and a collection of 30-plus Nutcrackers she displays on the mantle.

Seigle says she and her family generally start decorating for Christmas the weekend after Thanksgiving, when they bring home their Christmas tree.

In regard to the tree, Seigle says they incorporate a cornocopia of things – ornaments that showcase her 13-year-old son and 9-year old daughter’s hobbies, soccer and ballet, as well as sentimental trinkets they’ve collected each year.

Decorating the house generally includes making hot cocoa, playing Christmas music on and working together as a family – something Seigle has come to cherish.

David Bromstad, of HGTV’s “Design Star,” “Color Splash” and “The White Room Challenge” television shows, says homeowners looking for design inspiration for the holidays should focus on enhancing windows and doors.

“A home’s windows and doors are a natural backdrop for encouraging holiday design elements,” says Bromstad.

“Especially during the evening, you get a warm glow coming from a home’s interior that reaches out as an invitation to guests. “

Bromstad also suggests draping live garland around window and door frames (indoors and out), adding ornaments and bells to simple greenery or creating a winter wonderland by hanging paper snowflakes from the ceiling.

Similar to the Seigle family, Monica Whaley and her family are huge fans of decorating their home for the holidays. The Whaley’s also journey a to the tree farm each year – and decorate their home in the days following Thanksgiving.

Because her job demands she travel a lot, Whaley says her holiday collection features decorations from around the world, including pieces from Russia, Peru and Asia.

She says her family also collects “Christmas in the City” houses, which have become the focus of their holiday display.

Another important aspect of their decorating tradition is displaying 16 years worth of Santa pictures and sprinkling the interior of their home with her husband’s elaborate light displays. Whaley also displays a variety of nativity scenes throughout the house.

Whaley says she enjoys decorating for every major holiday, but that Christmas is definitely the most important. Throughout the years she has collected more than 10 boxes of Christmas decorations, and has hopes to one day open her own Christmas shop.

The center piece of their decorations is their Christmas tree, which continues to grow each year.

“My daughter likes to pick out the tree – and because are new house has high ceilings, it’s gotten quite big,” Whaley says.

She says they’ll likely scale back a bit this year, as they found it too difficult to decorate the top.

And while the decorations generally go in the same locations every year, Whaley enjoys the challenge of trying to mix it up.

Whaley says her favorite part about decorating for the holidays is getting to make the house look the way she wants it to look – if just for a few weeks.

“We’re constantly remodeling,” Whaley says. “This is my opportunity to hide the things that remain unfinished.”

Seigle’s goal is a bit more straightforward:

“It makes the house look so cheerful,” she says.