Memory Lane: Christmas Decorating

By Kate Riley December 9, 2014

This year’s Christmas decorating in our home is the definition of minimalist: there is an evergreen wreath hanging indoors for the scent, a faux tree, glitter confetti strung here and there, and a few white branches, and it’s just enough. We will get our real Christmas tree when we arrive in Las Vegas for the family reunion and we’re bringing our box of treasured ornaments so we do have that to look forward to.

We’re also taking this year off from hosting our annual Christmas party which feels somewhat strange, but all those hours not spent baking or decorating has freed up time to attend local plays, go out to dinner with friends, or take long drives just to enjoy the twinkle lights and outdoor decorations around town. It’s different, quiet, and nice.

I’m in correspondence every evening as the two Elves on the Shelf that my children adore… answering questions like “Who is your favorite reindeer?” (Comet, he is the fastest) and “What is your favorite movie?” (theirs of course) and “Are you on Instagram?” (Why yes). Forming letters in an Elf’s handwriting like y and g requires multiple swirls and it’s so hard to disguise my own writing! I can’t believe they haven’t figured it out yet so I’ll treasure their belief while it lasts. :)

This year I have no house tour to share, although I’ve been enjoying so many of my fellow bloggers lovely homes this season! I was looking through some old images from Christmases past, years when I have decorated the house for the holidays and it looked so festive all dolled up. Here’s a stroll down memory lane with trees and favorite vignettes from the past, a “recycled Christmas” if you will. :) 


poinsettias on porch


poinsettias and wreath kitchen window


flocked red and white tree



kate holiday entry


branches and bowl of ornaments


mirrored apothecary with stockings


blue and white christmas tree


gold bowl filled with ornaments


silver gold place setting


ornament garland on christmas mantel


white deer and colorful garland


boxwood wreath white tree with ornaments



decorated tree and piano


tufted sofa sheepskin rug poinsettia in crate


ornaments in tureen in window


evergreen clippings on dining table


console with trees


mixed metallics christmas mantel


wonderful time pillow on chair


I hope you all are savoring the holiday season in your own way too! Cheers friends.


  1. Wow, these are all so good! Don’t even know which is a favorite. Anyways, noticed you picked out a colour each year and really, you’ve done such a great job on each of them!

  2. You really know how to decorate a house for Christmas. What I want to know is – where do you store all of those decorations!!

    • Ha great question Leslie! We have a closet under the stairs, it hides behind a hutch. Every year I pack up my favorites in big bins and tuck it all under the stairs, I fill every inch. It’s our “Christmas closet” that we open once a year :)

    I love the train idea [ I guess I actually do have space for a train set]!
    Second – where did you find those white Christmas stockings?

  4. Your designs are always so beautiful and this Christmas display is beyond gorgeous! I have never commented before, but wanted you to know that I look forward to your email updates in my mailbox. Thank you for sharing such a wonderful talent.

  5. SO beautiful, what a fun walk down memory lane as I remember these too! I still adore every single one of these. I see a happy little face with a little elf in the window of that first photo, almost missed it. :) Have a very Merry Christmas, Kate!

  6. Hi Kate!

    As ALWAYS, so inspiring! I keep saying next year I’m changing it up, but the boys just will not let me! Grrrr who would have thought it would be them?

    Merry Christmas!

  7. Kate, you are the Indisputable Queen of the Vignette. Each is so lovely, thank you for the inspiration.
    Merry Christmas!

  8. Wow! Your trip down Christmas lane made me realize how long I’ve been following you. I have loved every minute of it. Thank you for sharing your decor, DIY projects and home. You are truly an inspiration to me… to say the least! Merry Christmas!

  9. Beautiful! Sounds like you are doing what we are doing taking a break from Christmas decor. We are gut renovating a new house we bought, and moving in two months and leaving for Sweden. Kind of feeling guilty but you just made me feel better about it.:)

  10. Holy moly! Your Christmas home is beautiful! I love your color different themes you’ve had each year. Thanks for the inspiration. Hope you and your family have a Merry Christmas!

    • Hi Alex, we bought that years ago at a local hardware store, living in the Wine Country they can be found around town and nurseries too.

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