23 Last-Minute Holiday Decorating Tips From Showhouse Designers

The annual 'Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles' Home for the Holidays Designer Showhouse and Marketplace is a great place to pick up genius ideas for holiday decorating.

Photo By: David Christensen

Photo By: David Christensen

Photo By: David Christensen

Photo By: David Christensen

Photo By: David Christensen

Photo By: David Christensen

Photo By: David Christensen

Photo By: David Christensen

Photo By: David Christensen

Photo By: David Christensen

Photo By: David Christensen

Photo By: David Christensen

Photo By: David Christensen

Photo By: David Christensen

Photo By: David Christensen

Photo By: David Christensen

Photo By: David Christensen

Photo By: David Christensen

Photo By: David Christensen

Photo By: David Christensen

Photo By: David Christensen

Photo By: David Christensen

Photo By: David Christensen

Pare Back for Impact

Designer Lauren DeLoach shows the value in simplicity, pairing plain white stockings and a simple green garland decorating a mantle in this cozy but refined room for the 2018 Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles Home for the Holidays Designer Showhouse and Marketplace.

Stocking Stuffer

Instead of hanging stockings on the mantel (which may interfere with your decorating scheme), place them in children or guests' bedrooms for a sweet surprise when they wake up.

Get Outside

Designer Kristin Kong extends the holidays outside, demonstrating how a tree can work in every room in—or outside—the house.

Stocking Stuffer

Instead of hanging stockings on the mantel (which may interfere with your decorating scheme), place them in children or guests' bedrooms for a sweet surprise when they wake up.

Think Pink

In lieu of red, pink can be a lovely, contemporary design-forward way to bring festive color to your home. We love how the pink bow on this wreath cleverly draped on a shower door is echoed in the pretty pink bow-ornamented package outside the bathroom door here.

Shop Your Home

Looking for a quick and easy holiday table centerpiece? Follow designer Carole Weeks' lead and use an existing sculptural object, even something from the garden like this swan, and surround it with evergreens, bows and holly sprigs.

Feather Topper

A completely original, creative Christmas tree topper from Davenport Design: a dramatic bouquet of feathers.

Bring the Garden Indoors

The gift that keeps on giving, take your usual outdoor window box and reverse it as the green thumbs at Atlanta's Boxwoods Gardens and Gifts did here. Fill an indoor window box with seasonal bulbs and blooms, ferns and ivy and brighten a key room like a dining room or living room with greenery.

Themed Tree

Take your cue from design firm Interior Philosophy and coordinate a unique tree for each room. This minimalist tree works beautifully in a room with a very contemporary global design scheme.

Present Tense

Introduce pretty wrapped packages that echo the color palette of your rooms into your holiday decorating scheme.

Wrapped Up

Another creative tree topper is a cascading arrangement of oversized bows that coordinate with the wrapped gifts below. Take a tip from designers and make your presents part of your holiday design.

Rethink the Wreath

Wreaths aren't just for front doors. Use them as centerpieces and hang them with invisible filament or a pretty ribbon in the center of a window for a striking visual punctuation.

Make a Statement

Designer Gordon Dunning uses thistle and winterberry as punctuation on this gorgeous bunting of magnolia leaves ornamenting a staircase at the Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles 2018 Home for the Holidays Showhouse and Marketplace.

Neutral Colors

Holiday decor does not have to mean red and green, tinsel and gold. Designers often use an understated, tasteful color palette in their holiday packages, wreaths and swag, often coordinated to each room to keep the look cohesive.

Rustic Chic

We love this simple, rustic garland of evergreens draped on the window frame in designer John Fernandez's room at the 2018 Home for the Holidays showhouse.

Spot the Season

Having a hard time finding the holiday decor in this kitchen from designer Liz Godwin and Kingdom Woodworks Cabinetry? That's because not every room has to, or needs to shriek "It's Christmas people!" Creamy white pitchers that hold bright greenery may be all you need to get in the holiday spirit and refresh a room for the season.

Pretty Vignettes

Surprise guests with pretty holiday vignettes placed throughout your home, like this lovely arrangement of beautifully wrapped gifts artfully displayed on a hallway bench, and a canine sculpture festooned with a pretty bow and greenery.

Everyday Cheer

Don't overlook the most functional rooms in your home when you're doing your holiday decorating. Even your master bath, your mudroom or your laundry room can get a holiday overhaul. Here a pretty zinc container filled with greenery and a cozy, Scandi-chic sherpa stool define designer Lisa Joublanc's invigoration of a functional workspace with holiday cheer.

Rearrange for Maximum Impact

Think about adding or just rearranging mirrors, glass accessories and other reflective items to better highlight the allure of your holiday lights this year.

Tell a Color Story

The simple application of red elements works beautifully against this gray kitchen backdrop. Red ribbons, flowers, some winterberry at the bar tell a cohesive color story.

Powder Room Primp

Simple but elegant, this lovely wreath with a blush bow absolutely makes this guest bathroom.

The Surprise of Small Packages

Create an air of mystery and anticipation by tucking small—but significant—gifts around a guest room or your own bedroom and ask your recipients to wait until Christmas Eve or Christmas Day to open them.

Smart Decorating

Think of holiday decorating as an extension of your design sensibility and coordinate the colors, the materials and the mood of your holiday decor to your home's existing style.