From the December/January 2015 Issue:

Detail Analysis: Fun & Festive Holiday Decorating

    Compiled by: Mary Vinnedge |


Article Photo
enlarge | Photo by Patricia Burke
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Check out these ideas for holiday decorating.

Holiday design “is not just about what you see, but what you smell—real greenery and touches such as cinnamon sticks and oranges with cloves,” says A.J. Margulis, then of Deborah Leamann Interiors in Pennington and now owner of A.J. Margulis Interiors in Pennington.
December 2012/January 2013

(Photo Left) Don’t just put a star or angel on top your Christmas tree. Be more inventive—such as like this hat, a decorating inspiration of Manalapan homeowner Tina Lombardo.
December 2011/January 2012

When decorating for Christmas, select a color scheme and theme, advise Lyn Loeb and David Sirna of De Vries Christmas Shop/De Vries Landscaping & Garden Center in North Brunswick. These might be an unusual color combination (silver and rust, perhaps) or a special interest (possibly gardening or cats).
December 2008/January 2009

Designer Alex Zuniga of New York City and Nancy Conner of Nancy Conner Design in North Plainfield suggest these delightfully different Christmas color combinations: pink and gold; burgundy and gold; copper, gold and citron; copper and red; lime green with burgundy or fuchsia; teal or navy with brown and copper.
December 2006/January 2007

The general rule is 100 lights per foot of tree height, but a skinny tree could take less and a plump one might need more.
December 2006/January 2007


Article Photo
enlarge | Photo by Patricia Burke
Remember to decorate chandeliers when it’s time for any party. Greenery trims this fixture, but garland, ornaments, ribbon, streamers and strings of beads are other options. Keep anything heat-sensitive away from light bulbs, of course.
January 2004


Article Photo
enlarge | Photo by Kim Carpenter
For a quick Christmas centerpiece:
(Photo Left) • Nancy Conner of Nancy Conner Design in North Plainfield starts by laying real or artificial evergreen stems along the center of the table (protect the tabletop from sap and scratches with a layer of waxed paper or something similar). Arrange ornaments of a single color or theme along the greenery to unify the design.
Winter 2002

• Jacqueline Brathwaite-West of J. West Design in Plainfield suggests placing floral foam in a basket (or other object) that echoes the shape of your table. Cover the foam with Spanish moss. Then use lengths of greenery (holly and other evergreens from your yard are fine) and attach floral sticks to tree ornaments with floral tape; insert the sticks into the arrangement. You can embellish with pinecones (possibly sprayed with metallic paint).
December 2004/January 2005

• Theresa Battagliotti of Designers Touch Interiors LLC in Bernardsville suggests filling a glass trifle dish two-thirds with water (tint with food coloring if desired). Add floating tea light candles. If you hang light-reflecting ornaments on the edge of the dish—dangling from the outside edge—the candlelight will add even more of its shimmering ambience.
December 2004/January 2005


Article Photo
enlarge | Photo by Tom Grimes
For an alternative Christmas tree, suspend ornaments from twigs (these are curly willow) in a vase as designer A.J. Margulis does.
December 2012/January 2013

— Mary Vinnedge