After the Christmas tree, stockings and string lights come down, the house can look a little ... lackluster. Add a bit of cozy cheer to your home with these wintery — but not Christmassy — decorating ideas.
How to Decorate After the Holidays
We get it: It can be hard to part with your Christmas decorations at the end of the holiday season. Once they’re taken down, it just feels like there’s something missing from your home, doesn't it? If you’re experiencing some post-holiday blues, try these simple decorating tips that’ll help you transition into winter. Start by putting away anything overtly Christmassy: Think Santa figurines, stockings, candy canes, bows and — of course — the Christmas tree. Then, replace those items with more subtle color and texture in the form of fresh greenery, plush fabrics and metallic accessories. Some of your existing holiday decor may fit the bill, but if not, we’ve got easy and inexpensive ideas for every room.
After you’ve taken the Christmas tree down, consider adding some unadorned greenery to your home for a burst of fresh color and scent. You may even be able to forage it from your backyard! A pair of potted pine trees and tree cuttings hung on the wall lend a wintry feel to this dining room.
Add Plush Faux Fur
Decorating for winter is all about layering cozy textures, and faux fur is one of the coziest options of all. Add a couple of faux fur throw pillows to your accent chairs or a perfectly draped blanket over your sofa to create a space you’ll want to snuggle up in all season long. Gray or brown fur will lend a rustic touch to your decor, while white fur will look more modern and call to mind a snowy landscape.
Take a Cue From Winter Clothing
Think about your favorite winter clothing — like a thick, warm cable-knit sweater — and try to capture its look and feel in your home decor. Incorporate cozy, sweater-like texture into your space with pillows, throws or even ceramic vases like the ones seen here. You can make your own cable-knit-inspired vessels by cutting old sweaters to size and adhering them directly to glass or ceramic vases with spray adhesive or starch.
Repurpose Holiday Lights
You don’t have to pack up the string lights as soon as the holidays are over; put them to use in creative new ways to give your home a warm glow all winter long. Try hanging string lights, a sheer curtain and faux ivy from a curtain rod to create a dreamy backdrop behind your bed, like YouTube creator Karen Kavett did here.
Spruce Up the Mantel
After the Christmas stockings come down, the fireplace mantel can look a little bare — but it doesn’t have to. Dress it up with some simple, seasonally appropriate decor; greenery and a grouping of candles is a can’t-go-wrong look that’s easy to pull off. Here, designer Brian Patrick Flynn piled eucalyptus on the mantel in lieu of the more typical pine or spruce garlands.
Introduce Metallic Accents
Bring a few metallic accessories into your home to replace some of the shine that your Christmas ornaments previously provided. Candles, vases and glassware in gold, silver, copper or bronze will add just the right amount of sparkle to your space.
Hang a Wintry Wreath
Swap your Christmas wreath with an understated door decoration that can stay up all winter long. Stick with natural elements like greenery and pinecones, and steer clear of anything too Christmassy like bows, ornaments or jingle bells. This DIY wood slice wreath is a great option; you can make it with fresh greenery and replace it as it dries out, or use faux greenery that’ll last year after year.
Go Mad for Plaid
Buffalo check, tartan and other plaids are staples of holiday decor, but they can also be used year-round to give your home a classic, cozy feel. Adding plaid pillows and throws is an easy way to incorporate the pattern into your home, but if you’re ready to make a larger commitment, look for furniture upholstered in plaid fabric or even plaid wallpaper.
Put Blankets on Display
A blanket ladder serves two purposes: It instantly cozies up any room and frees up storage space elsewhere for the new goodies you got for Christmas. Build this easy DIY blanket ladder to fill a bare wall with your fluffiest blankets, or shop our favorite blanket ladders.
Pretty Up With Pinecones
Like greenery, pinecones are a popular holiday decoration that don’t scream “Christmas,” so they can be reused throughout the season. Simply fill a clear vase or candleholder with pinecones for an easy table centerpiece, or make a pinecone wreath. If you can’t find the pinecones in your yard, you can purchase them from a craft store.
Store Firewood in Style
Keeping a stash of firewood inside not only makes it convenient to build a roaring fire any time, but it also serves as a warm, rustic accent for your space. Try storing firewood in a woven basket for even more inviting texture, or shop our favorite firewood storage options.
Go All in on Green
While red and green is a decidedly Christmassy color combo, using green on its own can create a woodsy atmosphere in your home that works all winter long. Spruce up your home with accessories in forest, hunter or pine green, or paint your walls in one of these rich hues if you're up for a larger project. A small powder room, like this space designed by Kate Marker Interiors, is a great place to experiment with bold, moody color.
Showcase Winter Sports Gear
Make your home feel like a rustic ski lodge by incorporating winter sports gear into your decor. In this bedroom, designer Brian Patrick Flynn created a unique gallery wall by hanging vintage snow shoes behind the bed.
Create a Coffee Station
A hot cup of coffee, tea or cocoa is so comforting on a cold winter day. Make your beverage routine a little more special by setting up a coffee station on your kitchen countertop or dining room sideboard. Set out a few of your favorite mugs, and organize stirrers, creamers and other essentials in pretty containers. Arrange everything on a nice tray to pull it all together.
Pick Cold-Hardy Plants
Don’t forget your outdoor spaces. Brighten up your porch, deck or patio with cold-hardy potted plants like thread-branch cypress (pictured), Japanese yew or cast iron plant. To ensure your plants will thrive all winter long, pick varieties that can survive a climate one or two zones colder than where you live.