Festive outdoor decor

wreaths on shutters

Hola! How was your holiday weekend? Great I hope! Ours was lovely – got plenty of time in with the family, did some holiday decorating (still tons to do), saw a GREAT movie (Rise of the Guardians – amazing) and just enjoyed being home. (Thanks so much for your wonderful comments on last week’s post by the way. They meant a lot to me.)

I actually started the outdoor decor last weekend when it was nice and warm, but I finished it up on Saturday by getting more lights up and filling in the window boxes.

I do pretty much the same decor outside every year because I found something that works (and that I LOVE) years ago and I just keep going back. There’s a few tweaks year to year, but not much. 

Since I do the same thing every year, I’ve got it down to a science. It takes me very little time to get everything up and festive. And perhaps more importantly – it’s easy to take down! :)

The window boxes were filled with greenery from the grocery store – a bundle was $4. Instead of just sticking them in as they came (which wouldn’t fill up much), I cut them down into smaller pieces and stuck them in the soil:

holiday window boxes

There’s fir, white pine, boxwood (and one more, I can’t remember the name of it! The droopy stuff.) in each bundle. I grabbed some red sticks from the hardware store (later found them for even cheaper at a nursery!) and cut each one in two to make them go further.

I used to hang wreaths on our front windows, but a few years ago I started hanging them on our shutters instead. This is the part that takes longer than anything else but I love the look so it’s worth it! And it was super cheap too – I got the four wreaths years ago for I think $2 each at Joann’s, then the ribbon is just the cheapy red stuff you can get anywhere:

wreaths on shutterswreaths on shutters

I had extra upholstery tacks from this project so I just used those to put them up this year. Sometimes it’s thumbtacks, sometimes it’s nails. Whatever is handy. ;)

I love how the red ribbon and green looks against the brown shutters! (Yes, they are a gray/brown, not blue. They always photograph blue.):

We have a teensy tiny front porch but I do it up BIG this time of year. I frame out the front part and the door with greenery, then just stick the lights in:

I used to wrap the lights around the greenery, but the first time a strand of lights went out I realized that was for the BIRDS. I just smoosh them in there now, using the greenery to hold the strands where I need support.

Putting up the stuff takes not time at all anymore – I reuse my big cup hooks every year and screw them into the same spots:

cuphooks christmas decorating

Then I just hook the greenery in and they stay put!

The porch makes the biggest impact and takes no time at all. I even keep the little swags of ornaments attached so I just put them up and I’m done:

greenery around door

A couple years ago I wound red ribbon through the greenery, which was beautiful -- but more time than I wanted to take on it this year.

The wreath is two put together – a flatter, white pine kind of wreath and a red one from Target clearance years ago on top. I have an idea in mind for a different kind of door decor, we’ll see if I can get it done this year.

Of course I love it best all lit up at night:

greenery around door

I plug everything into a outdoor timer so I don’t have to think about it again till the week after Christmas. That is, unless a strand goes out. Knock on wood…

I always plan on doing luminaries or lanterns down the steps, but I never seem to get to it. So much left to do, like our big honkin’ tree inside!

I love that the greenery and wreaths still make it look festive during the day and when the lights aren’t on:

traditional outdoor holiday decor

And I love how the landscaping lights highlight our cool shutters. (I love our shutters!):

traditional outdoor holiday decor

Of course I have to add some fun for the kiddo too – the red lights on the bushes are big round balls that look like Rudolph’s nose. :) (From Target two years ago I think?)

And we still have to get the big lawn inflatable out too…yes, we are one of those houses. But the Bub LOVES it, so as long as he’s into it, we’ll put it out every year.

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas, can you believe it’s that time already?? I’m starting to feel the mushy, gushiness I feel every year when we pull out the decor. I love it! I’m a traditional girl at heart, especially at Christmas, and the front of our house reflects that:

traditional outdoor holiday decor

When do you put your decor out, if you do anything outside? Are you inflatable people like us? ;) Or do you put a wreath on the door and call it done?

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