Tips for Planning Your Holiday Decor

Use these tips for planning your holiday decor to make the season easy and stress-free. Included are ways to organize everything in advance, and the free “Home for the Holidays” printable planner. 

This is not the post I was going to publish today. I’m a planner, and I rarely alter schedules, or do anything spur-of-the-moment. However, I felt I needed to get this information out in a more timely manner than I originally intended, so here I am!

When it comes to planning your holiday decor, the most important thing to remember is that nothing is written in stone, and that changes can be made. The second most important thing to know is that starting early will make the job much easier. I do 95% of my shopping online, and I recently realized that some things are already selling out. Now is the time to get the ball rolling, while the selection is still good.

There are four simple steps I follow every year when I’m planning my holiday decor. They don’t take much time, and they make the job so much easier.

*Affiliate links included. See my disclosure statement.

4 Steps for Planning Your Holiday Decor

Inventory Your Existing Christmas Decor

It’s important to know what you have, so no unnecessary purchases are made. Take the time to look through your existing Christmas decorations. Last year, before we moved, I organized my Christmas decorations in clear bins. I can see what I have, and I know everything is in good shape.

Choose Your Theme or Color Scheme

Choosing a theme and/or color scheme will help you stay focused. My Christmas decor always includes red, but the other colors vary from year to year. A few years ago I added navy blue, and I loved it. Last year, I wasn’t exactly sure what I was doing, so I used plenty of neutrals. I’m currently craving a calm yet traditional look, and there will be reds with shades of green added for something different. Fresh and faux greenery will also be everywhere. By narrowing down the colors, it makes spreading out your decor among your rooms a simple task.

Make a List

You’ve done your inventory, and you know what color(s) you will be using. Now it’s time to make a list. Here are some things to consider:

Assemble Your Items

Designate a spot somewhere in your home where you can gather all your Christmas decor items. A large bin placed out of the way works great. When shipped items arrive, unpackage them, and drop them in the bin. My other bins of Christmas decor are in the basement, so my “gathering bin” is down there too. That way everything is in one spot.

Benefits of Planning Your Holiday Decor Early

  • You will avoid the frustration of finding just the right thing, only to discover that it’s unavailable. Most sites and stores are well-stocked now, but that won’t be the case next month.
  • You can take your time executing your plan. The beauty of planning ahead is that it gives you priceless peace of mind. Time is a Christmas gift you can give yourself. Avoid the stress of rushing around at the last minute, spread out the tasks, and enjoy the process.
  • You will have the freedom to decorate when you feel most comfortable. Some people like to get their decor up well before Thanksgiving, while others feel it’s important to wait until Thanksgiving is over. No matter when you decide to put your plan into action, you will be ready.

The Home for the Holidays Christmas Planner for 2022

Use this Christmas planner to keep everything in order. It’s been freshly updated for 2022, and it’s available in the Members Only Library to all my email subscribers. If you aren’t on my list, but would like the planner, just fill out the form at the end of the post.

The Sugar Maple House Plan | Christmas 2022

I could not advise you on how to plan your holiday decor if I didn’t actually do it myself. What follows are my ideas and plans for the coming holiday season.

The Front Porch

I’m reusing this Norfolk pine wreath, there are new pillows for the porch rockers, and a fresh doormat. I wanted these Norfolk pine trees last year, but they sold out before I could get them…so I snagged them this year. They will go in the planters that flank the front door. I want to use the vintage Flexible Flyer sled I found a couple of years ago…not sure where it is though!

The Entry

Something simple on the antique dresser, using things I already have.

The Christmas Tree

Before we moved, I didn’t put up a big Christmas tree. I was a firm believer in tabletop trees, and actually still am. Our new house is set up differently than the house on Sutton Place, and decorating a big tree is very simple. In fact, last year I actually enjoyed it!

So the tree is going up again this year. Stay tuned!

The Living Room

Since I didn’t get new pillows last year, I decided to treat myself. I got these new pillows for the tufted arm chairs, and 2 of these cute plaid pillows for the sofa. I also ordered this Father Christmas pillow cover, but I’m not sure yet where it will go. Norfolk pine garland on the mantel, with these fairy lights. These stockings, and these vintage-inspired gold bells will again hang from the mantel.

The Dining Nook

A simple table runner with a centerpiece in my dough bowl.

christmas centerpiece in long dough bowl

Just For You

New Printables

There will be brand new printable wall art and gift tags. I’m designing new graphics exclusively for OSP subscribers, so you won’t find them anyplace else. Click {HERE} to subscribe so you don’t miss a thing!

The Christmas Market

Everything in the OSP Christmas Market was curated with you and your budget in mind. From classic red decor, to beautiful throw blankets, ornaments, gorgeous wreaths, pillows, and more. With twelve shop sections to choose from, decorating your home this holiday season will be fun and fulfilling! Take a look HERE.

the christmas market on sutton place

This year, we need to count our blessings, celebrate what we have, and be thankful that we are here to celebrate. Let’s do it together. Until next time…

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  1. I confess, I’m so excited to begin the decorating for Christmas process. I’m savoring autumn and will hold off. :) But you’ve shown me some great ideas when I do begin. Thank you!
    Karen B.

  2. Loved the Christmas Market. It’s great to see everything in one place where you can click on the items that interest you. I loved shopping at your Market. Thank you. As always, your printables ‘are beautiful!

  3. Lisa Fisher says:

    Only 57 days till Christmas (today is Oct 28th). You are right on time Ann!

  4. Susan McKim says:

    Thank you for all the wonderful tips! Last year, after 42 yrs of Christmas decorating, I did my decor the week before Thanksgiving. Doing that this year also because I love it and can’t wait any longer. Can’t believe I haven’t always done that!

  5. Great picks.I love the Norfolk tree, stockings and vintage gold bells.Can’t wait to see your home decorated.

  6. Christy Montgomery says:

    When I go to the Christmas Market and opt for the pillow selection it takes me to trees.

    1. Ann Drake says:

      Hi Christy…thank you so much for taking the time to let me know. I fixed the glitch and it should be working correctly now. Happy Holidays!

  7. Next weekend I will be purchasing the Christmas cards to fill in any gaps in what I have left over from last year. Want to get them before some of the style I like gets sold out.

  8. As always, great ideas but I loved your last few lines and so feel that way this year…..being grateful, counting our blessing and be thankful! Thanks Ann.