Get Practical Holiday Ideas from This Colorful, Eclectic Christmas Decor

Article Posted By: Katie Gavigan

Get Practical Holiday Ideas from a Colorful, Eclectic Christmas Decor

Katie Gavigan of Katie Gavigan Interiors has a remarkable ability to mix influences from many different cultures to create her own colorful eclectic look. It’s all grounded in tried and true decorating techniques, though. In fact, her gorgeous and very colorful Christmas decor includes several demonstrations of how to decorate for any occasion in just about any style.

Katie is one of several very talented designers taking part in our Holiday Style Challenge series here on The Home Depot Blog. We sent Katie a couple of boxes of Home Depot Christmas decorations to see what fresh Christmas decorating ideas she’d come up with.

She decorated her small apartment for the holidays with lots of bright color, contrasting textures and surprising details. She explains how she pulled it all together…

I love decorating for Christmas. Really decking things out, piling on the sparkle and texture and lights – lots of lights! Imagine my giddy excitement when The Home Depot invited me to their very own decorating “party,” and provided boxes of supplies to play with. What an honor, and what fun!

Ideally, I’ll have a good slice of time set aside when I can really immerse myself in the process. Once surrounded by boxes of ornaments, ribbon and other pretties and the Christmas music is playing, I’m ready to get started. This just might be one of my favorite days of the year! No surface is left untouched once the decorations start flowing. I go all out, and love for every corner of the house to feel festive. On the flip side, keeping things uncomplicated is a priority as well… especially given it’s the busiest season of the year for most of us. The Christmas cards you see above are simply taped to the door frame, and the star ornaments on a pretty strand of ribbon provide big impact. Using ribbon as reindeer “scarves” adds tons of personality.

The dining room was my assigned space for the Holiday Style Challenge. Right off the bat, I knew I wanted to use the various surfaces to create layers of holiday goodness. Styling vignettes of any kind is one of my favorite things, and the real challenge for me was not to go overboard, especially given my love for color, pattern and layering! I couldn’t resist including a couple of options here for your dining room buffet. Note that these ideas are very flexible, and could be applied to any surface that your home allows… a kitchen island, coffee table, console or any table!


A Holiday Display Table

The first example is more of an everyday set-up. A simple flower arrangement is the focal point, complimented by a few styling objects. From my leftover garland, I borrowed the berry clusters and stuck them into the greenery. Mix it up in terms of color, height, texture. Natural elements are great, such as the lemons in the woven basket, both adding a touch of life. Another tip is to mix obviously “holiday”-themed objects with your favorite year-round items! Just like when I’m decorating a room, I always mix high/low, old/new and varying styles. It keeps things interesting! Note how the very traditional red plaid bow doesn’t read strictly “traditional” here.

Don’t be afraid to mix things you love. Decorating rules are made to be broken, in my opinion. Play around with different combinations until you have a balance you love!

Get Practical Holiday Ideas from a Colorful, Eclectic Christmas Decor

Get Practical Holiday Ideas from a Colorful, Eclectic Christmas Decor


DIY Painted Wrapping Paper

The painted wrapping paper you see on the gifts in the photo below couldn’t be simpler.

Start with rolls of builder’s paper and grab any paint leftovers you have on hand (or purchase inexpensive paint samples), and go crazy. From abstract swirls and strikes to standard stripes, I had so much fun with this! Then, deck out the packages with unexpected combinations of ribbon and ornaments. I can’t decide which is my favorite design, and will definitely be revisiting this project in the near future. Read more about this DIY painted wrapping paper on my blog.

A Holiday Display Table


A Holiday Party Serving Table

Or, if you’re hosting a party and need the surface to be more functional, use a blend of trays, bowls, baskets and plates for food and drinks. Look around your house for interesting vessels.

Two of these baskets were borrowed from their usual spots as wall decor! Grab a stem or leaf from the flowers as a garnish. A bountiful display beckons guests. Mix in small bowls of ornaments. Loose ornaments, fruit, and greenery on a table are also great!

A Holiday Party Serving Table

A Holiday Party Serving Table
A Holiday Party Serving Table


A Table with Holiday Greenery

This corner table turned out to be the perfect place to incorporate garland. I do LOVE garland strung over a doorway, but sometimes a more simple solution is ideal… and this could not have been easier!

Starting with a standard strand of garland, I layered on stems of greenery from the florist for a fuller look. (Nearer to Christmas, grab free tree trimmings from any tree nursery!) And for the much-needed Christmas lights, I found these genius (!!) battery-operated light strands on a trip to The Home Depot. The lights are tiny but really bright. And the super-thin wire is not an eyesore at all. This is right up there on the list of best inventions ever, in my book. Pretty and practical.

See the slice of lilac taper? It’s a battery-operated candle that I spray-painted. I love how it turned out, and what a simple project! The sky’s the limit with color options.

A Table with Holiday Greenery
A Table with Holiday Greenery


The Christmas Dining Table

After decking out the ‘extra’ tables in the room, the dining table decor needed to be simple and clean.

This room is a rather small space and things can get too busy, very quickly! In light of this, I opted to forego a tablecloth to give the space some breathing room. Continuing with the theme of traditional with a twist, the green napkins and red plaid bows really feel like Christmas while the unexpected touches of softer pinks lend lightness and personality.

A Christmas Dining Table

A Christmas Dining Table

A Colorful, Eclectic Christmas Decor

The original tablescape includes a centerpiece of pretty silver bulbs which may be just a tad too high for table conversation, and can simply be removed during the meal if needed. The assortment of small flower arrangements and various candles left behind are more than enough for a pretty tabletop during the meal.

A Colorful, Eclectic Christmas Decor

You can see a striped pillar candle in the photo above. That was another quick DIY. Strips of tape wrapped around the candle and another quick spray paint job, and voila!

A Colorful, Eclectic Christmas Decor

On the white tabletop, I wanted to include a subtle layer of separation in the center. I used a spare piece of the painted wrapping paper (from above), and I love the funky element it lends to the table.

A Colorful, Eclectic Christmas Decor

Silver ornaments were incorporated throughout the room for continuity. Examples include the chair-back decorations as well as the green ribbon display filling the empty far corner.

Red Wood Curl Artificial Wreath

Nothing says Christmas quite like a bright red wreath! To personalize it just a bit, I added pretty orange ribbon and bead garland. Elegant, unique and quick!

Red Wood Curl Artificial Wreath

And just like that, our dining room is ready for Christmas celebrations large and small! I might not wait until December.

Photography by Thea Sonza of {trīs}Photography

See more photos of this gorgeous and eclectic Christmas decor on Katie’s blog.

Katie Gavigan is known for  her collected, fresh, relaxed and classic style. You can see her portfolio and blog at Katie Gavigan Interiors. She lives in San Francisco.

We have tons more Christmas decor ideas here on The Home Depot Blog in our Holiday Style Challenge series. Follow our Holiday Style Challenge pinboard on Pinterest, too.

Visit The Home Depot’s online Holiday Decorations Department for everything you need to decorate for Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Related Pinned Items