Christmas Porch 2018

Marian ParsonsAll Things Home, Decorating, Exterior, Holiday, My House27 Comments

After a 3:00 am wake-up call and 9 hours of hopping onto three different planes, I arrived safely home from my excursion to Montana.  It was a great trip and I’ll be sharing all about it and the HGTV Dream Home soon.

But today, I’m going to share the Christmas decorations I added to my porch this year.  It’s very similar to last year since I loved how it looked so much.

I added a live garland and some white lights around the door.  You can find a tutorial on how I attached it HERE.

On either side of the door, I filled the concrete urns with some fresh greens, twigs, lights, and sugar pine cones.  Last year I bought small evergreen trees, but I ended up neglecting them and pitching them in early spring, so that seemed like a waste of money.  This was more economical and the greens will still last for several weeks.  I wrote a detailed tutorial for HGTV for making these (which will be available next season), but it’s really as simple as putting everything in a pot!  It took about five minutes for each one.

(I’d like to add a little bell to my castiron cow for Christmas, but I just haven’t found the right one, yet!)

I was glad to find some nice juniper sprigs for the arrangement.  Juniper was made just for my color palette!

On the door, I hung THIS WREATH from Target.  It comes with the bells and berries on it.  To add some more texture and color variation in the greens, I tied bunches of fresh greens into the wreath.

I also hung some greens and lights over the dining room window and along the trellis we made for the sweet autumn clematis to climb on.

And, lastly, I put up a large wreath on the wall trellis, so it wasn’t completely bare and draped some white lights over the boxwood bushes in the front.  I had the cord tucked behind the trellis, but it kept misbehaving, so I’m going to have to secure it with some zip-ties.

Typically I’ll plug the lights in and then forget about them, so they are on all of the time!  I finally wised up and bought a simple timer that turns on at dark and off at dusk.  I don’t know why it took me so long!   THIS is the one I bought.

I was never big on exterior Christmas decorations…  I think it’s because I grew up in military housing apartments, so we never put up lights outside or anything beyond a wreath on the door.  But, in Minnesota, we have the snow on the ground for so long that it’s nice to have some greenery and lights to make it look festive.

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.

Christmas Porch 2018

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27 Comments on “Christmas Porch 2018”

  1. Such pretty pop of color!

    I’m not sure if the proportions, but what about having your cow sport one of the silver bells from your collection from your collection?

    Looking forward to your hgtv home post.

  2. Goodness. That comment doubled on me somehow.

    ENJOY BEING BACK HOME! Your home rivals so much of what’s seen on hgtv.

  3. Okay, I want to bring up this tip on garlands here because SO MANY people do not know this, and I know you like things to look good so here goes:

    The fresh garland is made in all one direction for the greenery. This means that if you are hanging it in a straight line, like across a porch railing, it will all flow in one direction. That’s easy.

    BUT, if you want to go around something, like say a door or window, the garland will hang downward on one side properly, but on the other side it will be “upside down” and the greenery will splay out and be wonky. The solution to this problem is to CUT the garland and hang it so that any vertical pieces flow downward, not upward. Does this make sense? So, on your doorway photo, I can see that the left side is upside down and hanging wrong. You should cut this at the top and reverse the direction it hangs. Then it will look just like the right side does.

    Some may think this is too picky, but hey, it isn’t hard to do it, and it makes a big difference in the look.

    To REALLY get it right around a door, it should be two long sections that meet in the middle ABOVE the door, flowing in opposite directions across and downward.

    Just trying to help all the perfectionists out there who may wonder why their garlands hang wonkily!

    1. Kim,
      That is a great tip! The main reason I never use fresh garland is I could never get it right. Its not about being critical, but advice for all those hanging fresh garland and wanting a more uniform look. If its a little off it does catch your eye and I too noticed it in the photos around the doorway.

    2. Good for you Marian for decorating the exterior! Very festive and beautiful! Brilliant suggestion, Kim!

    3. Kim – Whoa! Total garland game changer! Thank you!
      Marian – brilliant decorating as always – I love that I always learn something from your blog!

    4. How did I go so long not knowing this?! Thank you, Kim, for this special tip for all of us “perfectionists” 😉

      1. I was going to leave a comment regarding the same garland solution but saw someone already did. I went 30 years of doing it ‘wrong’ before I learned this tip from ‘Garden Answer’… a young Youtuber who was brought up in a garden nursery and shares her wonderful experience and tips. She really is talented.

  4. It is all beautiful! I would have liked to have seen once photo from the sidewalk showing the whole front porch and the bushes with lights all in one shot. It is such a joy to watch your new home be transformed!

  5. Your porch looks very festive. My daughter lived.in Minneapolis and I notice folks left their greenery and other Christmas decorations up for a long time after Christmas.

    One suggestion I would have is to take the pillows off of the porch bench and add a pile of fireplace wood with miniature lights or something red hanging over the bench arm or even nothing at all.

  6. Everything looks beautiful, as always, and thank you for the great idea for decorating my urns on my porch. They are sitting empty as I had to toss the little dead trees that were in them and haven’t replaced them with anything. I have plenty of greens in my yard; pine, juniper, and boxwood, and I have a big basket of sugar pine cones. I am going to decorate today, thanks to you, Marian. Merry Christmas!

  7. The porch looks very pretty, simple yet elegant ! I have been searching for some of the products you designed for the China trip. I have not found any of them,, nor seen them used in your decor ?? Where should I be looking ? Weren’t they going to be part of Hobby Lobby or am I mis-remembering ?

  8. Glad you made it back safely.Porch looks nice with greenery, and the cow does need a bell, so cute.

  9. I’m not sure how I found you online. I’m just glad that I did.
    I didn’t realize you were so much more than just a creative Mama experimenting with the what if’s that pop into our heads throughout the day.
    Today I discovered your milk paint is sold locally. I’ve never done anything like this but I’m eager to try.
    My New Year’s resolutions just got more creative. Keep sharing the inspiration. It’s a sweet part of my day.
    Merry Christmas!

  10. I wish you had included a more distant shot showing the entire front elevation of your house. It looks really nice in all the close ups!

  11. Please add us a more distance picture of your exterior Christmas deco.!
    Thanks, Marion
    We love what you do!

  12. One reason people in Minnesota leave their Christmas greens out well past the holidays is because anything in a planter is frozen solid (as in the dirt ) or the planter is frozen to the ground and buried in snow. It drives me crazy but is difficult to deal with since you can take down the rest of the Christmas decor, but the planters remain long past the time you want them out.

    1. I’m a Minnesotan and I fill my outdoor planters with winter arrangements meant to be displayed until the March time frame. I use different greenery along with birch logs, twigs and pine cones. If I add any Christmas specific decorations to the planters they are removed after the holidays. I also remove my outdoor garlands after the holidays. With our snowy backdrop in place for a few months, it’s nice to celebrate our Minnesota surroundings with the beautiful natural elements.

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