Christmas Living Room 2016

Marian ParsonsDecorating, Holiday, Living Room, My House38 Comments

I was trying to write this post last night and my mind was just mush!  I found myself in a mid-sentence daze and I finally surrendered and went to bed.

So, now that it’s a new day, here is my living room dressed for the holiday season.  The living room is probably my favorite room to decorate for Christmas.  It has beautiful light and this is the room that is most “me”.  This is the room you’re greeted when when you first walk in the house and it’s one of my “pretty rooms”, meaning it doesn’t have to be as functional or hard-wearing as our family room.  I don’t have to worry about toy storage, accommodating wrestling matches, or housing a TV.


So, other than the tree, I’ve decorated this room pretty much the same way I have for the past few years.  Ever since I chucked our artificial tree and purged the bins of decor, I use a few favorite pieces, fresh greens, and that’s it.  It not only lends an “old school” vibe, but it’s simple and pretty.  I also like that it’s a little different every year.

I added fresh greenery on the top of the hutch, to the chandelier, and created a laurel around the rocking horse’s neck.  I use a mix of roping and sprigs, some purchased, some were free trimming from the tree farm, and some were scavenged from our yard.

I hung my pom-pom wreath from Anthropologie in its usual spot on the primitive hutch.


I also propped some wooden skis I found at a thrift store for $18 about 15 years ago.  The poles were acquired more recently from an antique shop.

I also kept the tree decorations simple.  I started with a few strands of lights and added the wool felt star garland from Restoration Hardware.  For ornaments, I used some grain sack stars and hearts, along with some simple wood ornaments found at Home Goods.  Since the branches of the nobel fir tree are feathery and thick, lightweight, smaller ornaments seemed to work best.


One of my favorite things to do in this room each year is to create a wreath on the chandelier.  It’s super simple and makes such a big impact in the space.


Here’s a video I made last year, showing my trick for getting the wreath to look full and stay in place…


I also tucked greenery into the goat bell I recently purchased for $4.00, which happened to fit perfectly on my rocking horse!


I used a variety of greens – lavender sprigs, juniper, fir, cedar, pine, and eucalyptus.  It really is just as simple as tucking until everything looks good to me.  Sometimes a piece will randomly fall out, but it stays pretty intact through the season.


In all the tucking, I wanted to make sure you could still see the bell, though!


On the side table by the sofa, I added an old wooden bucket filled with sugar pinecones.  I tried several different accessories in that place, but this seemed to work the best.  It fit with everything else happening in the room, but didn’t steal attention away from the features – the horse, the tree, and the hutch.


Aaaand, yes.  That’s a dog on the sofa.  I gave into letting Sebastian sit on the sofa in the front of the room.  He likes to look out the window and that’s really the only place he can do it at the front of the house.  Usually, I have a quilt spread out for him to sleep on, just to make it easy to clean, but I pulled it up for the pictures.

My paper white bulbs are starting to come up nicely on the coffee table.  I can’t wait for them to start blooming!

I’m in the studio today, working on my work space and some other things, but more Christmas decorating is on the way…

Christmas Living Room 2016

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38 Comments on “Christmas Living Room 2016”

  1. Your Christmas decorations are so beautiful and I love how you keep it all in your style. I have to giggle though, because your last two posts say “2017” instead of 2016. Are you trying to make us all older?

  2. Simple, but yet beautiful!!

    I have little dogs & for them to see outside, they jump on the back of our sofa to see the squirrels (BARK!) & birds. I don’t dare put a quilt on the back of the sofa, as much as I would love to, ’cause my one dog chews & eventually eats them.

  3. Absolutely beautiful as always! I believe I called it, that the dog would be on the couch after a few months, lol. 🙂 (hey I let mine do the same)

  4. Marion,

    Thank-you for sharing this space. The tree is really beautiful, and everything looks so peaceful, and thoughtfully put together. Sebastion is adorable, and I know it’s hard not to let them have access to the window since they want/need to know what’s going on.

    i hope that you and your family have a very Merry and blessed Christmas.

  5. I moved our bed in front of the bedroom window so the dog can see what’s going on out front. It is her tv!

  6. Your impeccable taste + restraint = A room worthy of the season. Brava!

    In your LR, I love the warmth, contrast and added texture of the (sisal?) rug. It’s the perfect counterpoint to the beautiful-but-stark blue and white that dominates.

    How wonderful that you were able to devise a compromise for Sebastian to do his job of guarding the front of the house. Accommodating the canine member of the family is so much more important than always having a picture-perfect room. You have your priorities straight, girl!

  7. “All is calm”……words so fitting for your living room. Peaceful, merry, and just beautiful, too. And I bet it smells wonderful!

  8. Very lovely! It really is the room that is the most “you”. Just wait until those paper whites start blooming and that glorious scent along with the fresh greenery adores the room. Now, that’s Christmas!

  9. Dear Marion,
    I have followed your design blog for years….such a beautiful aesthetic.
    You seem such a special person.
    my question is….where is your faith as a christian showing through in your Christmas decor?
    No nativity scene? stars? the star of Bethlehem? no reason for the season? Christ’ s birthday, not Santa Day? nothing.
    I just don’t see your reason for decorating your home with evergreens so beautifully,, unless you acknowledge that He is the one who brings the seasons, and we celebrate the Christmas tree, because it is evergreen, like He is ever faithful, and it points to Heaven?
    Why Christmas and our pretty homes , without Him? Why not use your wonderful eye for design that you have, to celebrate what Christmas is really ALL ABOUT?
    Please reply.
    love Sue

    1. Of course Christmas is not all about what decorations are used to decorate your home, or what holiday souvenirs are used for display, or what starlit reminders you use to define reasons for the season. A room full of Christmas actually requires no decorations at all—yet your home speaks for the holiday with a lovely, natural, and subdued celebration of the season (I have been to churches with no lighted candles, no shiny star, no cross, no nativity, no Chrismon tree…yet Christ and Christmas were there in sweet abundance). In your home, Christmas is written all over the place because you have Christ and Christmas in your heart and display that every day. Beautiful room. Beautiful you.

    2. I actually have a beautiful nativity set that my mom made, but I don’t have a good place to put it. It’s pretty large! So, it’s packed away until I do have a spot one of these days.

      I don’t think you have to have a nativity scene, star of Bethlehem, etc. for Christ to be on display in your home, though. As Debi said so beautifully, it’s about the heart.

  10. Martha does it, Bunny does it, even the Queen of England knows her corgis make the castle warmer. Sebastian adds a loving layer of “home” to every room ~ the perfect final touch!

  11. Marion, your living room is just lovely. I love the look of the evergreens! So glad that Sebastion can share the sofa with you! Our dog does, too! They are so much a part of the family!


  12. Such a peaceful and refreshing room! I can only imagine how lovely the fragrance is with the fresh greens. The star garland is so sweet and those paper whites…what’s not to love! Thank you for taking time to share your Christmas living room with us! Maybe I’ll go get a fresh wreath, because balsam-evergreen candles are great, but just aren’t the same!

  13. I love your decor! I was wondering, do the greens stay fresh till Christmas? Are some faux greenery?
    Beautiful job!

    1. They are all real and I wouldn’t say they stay “fresh”, but they stay green until Christmas. They do dry and get pretty crispy, but they are fine if they aren’t disturbed, so I put them in place and just leave them there!

    1. Ha! I do get it all over myself, because I hate wearing gloves, but I have found that rose hip seed oil will remove it. I would imagine any kind of oil would work. I rub the oil all over the sappy areas and then wash my hands and it comes off.

  14. I always liked the pom pom garland, so I made one this morning, slightly different. Now, where to put it?

  15. The decorations are perfection to me. And you know how they say having a plant in a room brings it to life? Well I think having a pet in a room does the job 10-fold. :-). Wonderful!!

  16. Can I ask what color are your walls? I’m looking to repaint my living room and dining room and entry way (all open to with no real dividing walls to separate the spaces)?

  17. Your Christmas living room is just so inviting and beautiful. I love the old blue cabinet. I’m trying to incorporate my similar old green cabinet into a mix of new and “rustic” decor. Your an inspiration. Happy New Year!

  18. HI Marian! I’m going to Just repeat the question Meme asked. 😃 : what is the colour of your living room walls? I am always struck by the beauty of that white. Thank you so much. I am on vacation for the next two weeks and I need to paint my living room and front foyer. I appreciate the input.
    Your home is so lovely…….year round.

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