What could be more enchanting than a winter wonderland? As the days grow shorter and snowflakes fall in frosty gusts, many of us start dreaming of a white Christmas. Childhood reveries help make the holiday special. And for interior designer and blogger Breanne Doucette of Rooms for Rent, decorating her New England home every Christmas means awakening her children’s imaginations.
“I want to set the stage for my children, so they’ll love the holiday as much as I do,” she says. Breanne still remembers what it felt like to be a kid at Christmas, she says, describing the magic of the season and how decorated pine trees transformed her parents’ house into a winter fantasyland.
Today, Christmas magic and wild forests mix in her home, where pine trees covered in glittering icicles beckon tiny feet into dreams of forests full of snowflakes and shimmering silver.
To set the scene, Breanne places several pieces of décor at various eye levels, so her children, a six- and an eight-year-old, can enjoy dreams of “woodland glam” and “rustic elegance.” She hopes her children will be inspired to carry on similar Christmas traditions.
“I wanted the holiday feel without the traditional red and green,” Breanne says. “But everything I use stems from tradition.” She mixed vintage mercury glass and shiny metallics with soft furs, throwing in other natural elements like deer antlers and tree bark to highlight and play with texture.
Breanne wanted a special kind of Christmas elegance. Drawing inspiration from old Christmas movies in which everyone still dressed up for Christmas, she wanted her home to appeal to guests too. “When decorating, I’m always thinking about how I’ll entertain.”
Originally, Breanne’s style relied on white, and she added touches of gray and brown to round out the shade. But these all seemed to fall flat. To soften the setting, she infused her décor with elements of iceberg blue.
Blue velvet throw pillows add nuance to the living room’s pale white couch. The elegant blue hues polish the more rustic pieces, adding charm and sparkle to the otherwise rustic scene.
“Focus on the details,” she says, because balance is key. Too many natural elements can make a room too rustic. Breanne explains she will sometimes add pieces, leave the room and then return to gauge how everything fits together. “It’s a pieced together look,” she says, relying on focal points to capture guest attention. “Everything has a place, and it is all about figuring that out.”
The best decorations can last throughout the winter season. Fur throws are perfect for combatting the cold elements and also creating a comfy Christmas feel. They can stay in place well into January and beyond.
Flexible décor such as evergreen garlands, gleaming votives, and silver and gold candles are elegant and versatile. Best of all, packing up after Christmas is made so much simpler. “I don’t have to take away everything all at once.” Plus her children and guests can enjoy their Christmas dreams a little longer.