Top 10 Tips for Holiday Decorating From Angelo Surmelis

Get Angelo's favorite ideas for getting ready and through the holiday season with limited stress and a whole lot of fun.

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Take your decorations throughout the entire house.

Tip #1: Plan ahead.

You can't do everything so make a plan that is realistic with your life. The major component for me during the holiday season is to enjoy it. If I feel overwhelmed or not prepared, the enjoyment goes out the window.

Tip #2: Don't stop at the entry.

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Don't forget the cookies to get everyone in the holiday spirit.

Take your holiday decor throughout the entire home. Simple small touches in other rooms of your home make a huge difference in the way the whole house feels, especially when you're entertaining.

Tip #3: Dim the lights.

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Look for inexpensive decorations in similar to colors to create a striking display.

Buy plug-in dimmers for all your lamps. They are inexpensive, sold at most hardware stores and anyone can install them. They bring instant ambiance to any room.

Tip #4: Cookies are essential.

The holidays are all about the treats. Even is you can't bake, slice up pre-made cookie dough and stick it in the oven. The smell of cookies baking is enough to put the anyone in the holiday mood.

Tip #5: Get wrapping.

Reuse interesting papers, bags, magazines and newspapers for gift-wrap. It's essentially free, since you already have it, and eco-friendly. Make it interesting with a unique ribbon, topper or accent. If you want to be creative, draw a pattern on the paper with a markers, pens or glitter.

Tip #6: It doesn't have to be expensive.

Inexpensive ornaments from a discount store can look elegant and festive when grouped together. For instance, decorate a mantel with various sizes of clear or colored glass containers filled with similar colored glass ornaments for a stunning holiday display.

Tip #7: Less really is more.

The holidays can be about extravagance, but if you overwhelm your home with too much decor it can compete for attention and distract you from some really beautiful and special pieces.

Tip #8: Involve the whole family.

Don't take on the holiday decorating duties all by your self. It's all about making memories and the more involved everyone is the more memorable and joyous this time will be. Let the kids decorate their rooms however they want during the holidays. Try giving them each a small table top tree to trim.

Tip #9: Plan for the unexpected.

If you have a lot of people coming in and out for your home for the holidays, fill a large bowl or decorative box with simple, inexpensive, individually wrapped gifts. Give yourself a dollar amount limit for each gift and go to town. Your unexpected party guest will be thrilled to receive a unique gift from you.

Tip #10: Breathe and have fun.

Like most of us, I tend to stop breathing when I'm feeling stressed. I am always reminding myself that this time of year is really about getting to see the people I love, having a great time together and counting our blessings. Take a deep breath and enjoy.

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