Festive Front Entrances
(ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2005)
This red-brick house with a green front door lends itself to the season's traditional hues. We played up the classic red and green colors with pine branches and plaid accents. A giant stocking and old wheelbarrow packed for a picnic of snowy fun accent this festive winter vignette.
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If your front door has a large window like this one, skip the traditional wreath and try something more playful. Sew a fuzzy stocking (30 inches long) out of a red blanket with fringe. Fold the fringe over at the top for a jaunty cuff. Tuck evergreens, eucalyptus and plaid-wrapped presents inside. Frame the door by securing fresh garland around it. Attach large, red spray-painted pinecones to add a touch of standout color. A wheelbarrow holds goodies for a sledding party, but a wagon, sled or sleigh would work just as well. On the porch, two small trees give balance. We tucked fresh-cut pine branches into inexpensive artificial trees. Line the walk with decorative lights like our red jingle bells.
BASKET Palecek (800/274-7730; www.palecek.com). BOOTS Smith & Hawken (800/981-9888; www.smithandhawken.com). BLANKET (In wheelbarrow) Pottery Barn (800/922-5507; www.potterybarn.com). JINGLE BELL LIGHTS Pottery Barn Kids (800/993-4923; www.potterybarnkids.com).
This creamy white stucco house needed a theme as light as its exterior finish. A mix of pearly pastel ornaments in shades of pink, lavender and mint sparkles against the white-flocked, oversize wreath; matching swags; and twin boxwood trees. Just add snow!
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To keep an entry feeling open and airy like this one, avoid garland around the doorway. Instead, drape swags along railings and choose a wreath that mimics your door's character, making the entry a focal point. If you can't find flocked greens at a local tree farm, add the snow-kissed coating yourself. Spray-on flocking is available at most crafts stores. Tie shimmering, glittering pastel ornaments to the wreath and swags with thin wire. They'll look great against the snow-white background. The two miniature trees look real, but they're not. We arranged boxwood branches in plastic foam tree forms and anchored them in the bottoms of white-painted tin buckets. A pair of white ice skates finishes the winter-wonderland look.
ORNAMENTS Seasons of Cannon Falls (800/377-3335; www.seasonsofcannon falls.com). Cost Plus World Market (800/267-8758; www.costplusworld market.com).
Starry, Starry Delight
The exposed wood beams and wood front door on this Tudor-style house give it a country quality that inspired its woodland scheme.
A tree branch and forest greens keep the decor simple, while silvery stars and tin tree luminarias add a hint of holiday bling.
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Outline the door in garland, then attach silver accents. If your door has no built-in hooks, tap thin nails into the frame's corners and into porch supports. Wire garland to the nails. Glitz up greens with tin or silver spray-painted stars. We cut stars from tin sheets available at local crafts stores. Thin tin strips (careful-they can be sharp!) naturally spiral into shooting star trails. For a unique holiday tree, place a 4- to 5-foot fallen tree branch in a tin pail anchored with floral clay, rocks and faux snow. Dangle ornaments on its branches. A basket bursting with cedar, juniper and stars hangs below the door's window. Tin tree luminarias don't need candles; they shine in the daylight.
BASKET Melrose International LLC (217/222-2144). TREE LUMINARIAS Vintage Tin Trees. Design Ideas (800/ 426-6394; www.designideas.net).