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This season, more than ever before, we’ve seen homeowners let the design of their homes inspire their Christmas decorations. Scandinavian-inspired holiday decor for the minimalists, non-traditional for the eclectics, and classic, traditional decorations for the modernists.

Libbie Summers, a Savannah-based chef, blogger, and author of three cookbooks is no different. Every single room of her playfully designed home got a sprinkling of very colorful Christmas cheer. The decorations are also budget-friendly, DIY laden, and perfect for any size home, too, which makes us love them even more.

Summers says she went for a more colorful Christmas, over a traditional palette, after feeling inspired by her paternal grandmother’s colorful jar of candies that was ever-present over the holidays when she was growing up. Her pink sofa and boldly painted walls blend seamlessly with the colorful accessories chosen.

To all the small space dwellers—I know what you’re thinking. How do you decorate every room of your home without accumulating boxes and boxes of stuff that you have absolutely no room to store? Summers says, “I love a little touch of something in every space to make it magical. It doesn’t have to be big or showy… just a little taste.” The perfect example? Summers’ DIY garland found throughout her house.

She also reports that all her holiday decor fits in just three tubs—excluding the large tree!—but admits it’s a game of Tetris to get it all to fit. Impressive nonetheless.

Here’s how to get the look of our favorite moments in Summers’ home, plus her tips to bringing holiday decor to your space.

Easy ornament centerpieces

“I collect milk glass vases and wanted to show how easy a centerpiece is for anyone to create on-the-fly. If you have a collection—like a bunch of bud vases—simply add holiday ornaments and BOOM, you have a centerpiece!”

Small space-friendly trees

“These trees are proof that a lot of one thing can have a big impact. More is definitely more for bottlebrush trees. They came from a company called One Hundred Eighty Degrees, and they served double-duty for me this year.First, I used them to line the center of a long dining table for a private dinner event with loads of vintage liquor carafes, candles and fresh greenery. Then, I moved them to the vintage credenza in our home that you see in the picture (which a friend of mine scored for an absolute steal at an estate sale).

I just love them in front of the painting of a cove in Maine—they look like a colorful little Maine forest. Better still? The painting hides the television on the wall. These trees are also like a little pathway to our secret rooftop garden.”

See how these tiny trees fit just about anywhere? Small space decorators, take note.

DIY tree topper

“It’s a simple DIY with big-ballsy drama. I made an embarrassing amount of felt ball garland this year (again, back to the candy and gum balls). I thought a massive “gum ball” tree topper would be perfect. It’s easy to create—just use a styrofoam ball that has a hole cut in the bottom. The top branches of the tree can be tucked inside the hole to secure it in place. Then, just used a glue gun to secure felt balls to the styrofoam.”

Get the DIY for her pom-pom tree skirt here and DIY felt ornaments here.

Summers’ three, go-to tips for decorating your home for the holidays:


Pinpoint your inspiration.

Think back to the fondest memories you have and pinpoint little moments that made them special. Then, focus in on the visual of that. Was it a dress that someone made you that was red velvet? Or, the first time you ate a pomegranate? Identifying precious moments are what lead to great design.


Go for multiples.

Have one impactful thing and use it a lot.


Spread the magic!

Put a little holiday magic in every room…even the closets. I love opening a closet and smelling a pine bough.

Summers’ tips for decorating on a budget:

1. Hand-make decorations out of the “leftovers” you have laying around. Scraps of fabric, stripy straws, whatever. I worked on a large felt project earlier in the year and had a load of remaining felt, which I used to make some fun decorations!
2. Always incorporate food into décor. There’s nothing more gorgeous than a bowl of oranges with a few sprigs of rosemary, it just never gets old.

Get more holiday inspiration:

The Holiday Decorating Tips We’re Stealing from Our Favorite BloggersThis Is the Hottest Hue for Holiday DecoratingThe Best Christmas Trees We’ve Seen on Instagram

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