I have no tree up yet. I have no wreath. And yet my house looks like it’s totally getting its Christmas on. How do I do it?

I have figured out some dual-purpose decor that can at least look like they belong on your walls or shelves for 3 out of 4 seasons if you don’t have time to take them down in January. Which I never do.

Yep. I’ve had these babies up all year long, and all I had to do was dust them off in place and pretend I put them together just for some winter pizzazz. So sit back, and enjoy these teachings of a decor slacker pro.

Sphere of Thinking

You know how you go to into places -like fancy bathrooms, spas, or maybe people’s houses that aren’t ruled by kids – and they have ‘decorative spheres’ sitting just-so on hand-blown plates? Yeah. Not going to happen with a 2-year old in the house. But if you somehow manage to contain the ‘fancy bouncy balls’ as Vee calls them, then you’ve got yourself a winning and festive objet d’art.

All I did here was buy a glass storage jar from Walmart (the have assorted sizes, all under $20) and cram it full of decorative spheres and Christmas ornaments. It sounds kitschy, but it looks really nice. And it continued to look really nice in May. Just saying.

Decorative Spheres

No dusty balls here, no siree.. not even in the summer when they’re still out.

Buy Some Expressionist Reindeer Art

Not all your decorating has to be ‘cute’. At the end of the year I saw this little guy on clearance and I have to say, he’s been sitting in my living room ever since. You say Reindeer, I say festive Giacometti sculpture.

The key to pulling this off for year-round display, is that it has to be extreme enough to look like it’s either a statement (Rudolph, Failed Flight) or a sojourn into Naturalism (Donner Undone).

It doesn’t help to have any bows, holly, bells, sleighs, or jovial fat men of any variety because it *kind of* screams December. Unless that’s your statement. Or Buddha.


He’s a starving artist. But it still works in March.

Visual Warmth

I love candles, but I won’t even go near the flameless variety while my kid doesn’t grasp the concept of fire, because, well…I’m paranoid. I’ve also seen what she can do to Play Doh, so I really don’t want to be picking wax out of her teeth.

Here’s another ‘contained’ focal point that picks up a space without lighting it on fire, and communicates ‘beachfront relaxing’ in August as well as ‘cozy and warm’ in December.


Winter or summer this keeps things bright, and baby proof!

Metallic Accents

I love this vase. My sister bought it with me (ok, for me) a zillion years ago in Kensington Market, and it continues to kick style butt. This is another one of those awesome ‘shape-shifting’ design elements. It says playful, fun, modern and fresh in the summer. It also says New Year’s Eve, here I come. There’s just something about the glitz of metal during the Holidays that sparks the spirit, whether it’s chrome or Burl Ives singing ‘Silver and Goooooold..”

Pair metallic accents with crystal or glass for a chic, crisp, wintery ‘Fortress of Solitude’ kind of feel.

Break out the Skinned Muppets

The thing that says ‘cozy’ for me the most is texture. As soon as fall starts chilling your nose, what do you do? Turn to your favourite cable-knit sweater or comfy scarf. One of the easiest way to add some ‘coze’ to your nook, is to use some throws. Bring textures to your living room, entryway, even your coffee table. It says warm and festive all at the same time. And seriously, if you don’t have time to put them away, you can always tell people you are an avid fort builder. To get some super funky digs going here, I bought a kid’s ‘shag’ from Ikea for $9.99. Awesome. Doesn’t that make you want to curl up and eat some Turkish Delight/drink some port/listen to Isaac Hayes?

Check out this shag, and the awesome over-size pile of the carpet. And yes, I just *may* be showing off a sneak-peek of my basement.

Hope this helps you out! And remember the key to all of this is not to try to hard. Which is good. Because it will give you more time to curl up with a book/bottle of wine/your family.