By Marissa Warner
The holiday season is our favourite time of the year - our family always looks forward to it! We get an opportunity to see family and friends, indulge in our favourite yummy treats and are surrounded by beautiful holiday décor. It is easy to feel like a kid again!
We love to host! Now that we have our son, hosting makes the holiday season less hectic because we can stay in the comfort of our own home. When we built our home with Activa, we designed our main floor with entertaining in mind. The large island allows everyone to have access to food and makes interacting with our guests easy. With an open floor plan, we can top up our guest’s drinks with ease or quickly say “no touch” if we see our curious little one-year-old getting brave with the holiday decor!
Seating can be tricky; it is easy to feel like there is no room for anyone to sit when hosting a large group. Transitional seating, and aiming to have enough for the majority of your guests, is key to good flow!
Transitional seating is multi-purpose furniture pieces that can be easily moved. We like to use our upholstered ottomans as additional seating when we host large groups because they are easy to move and do not take up too much floor space. Aside from a dining room table, a common misconception is every guest needs somewhere to sit when visiting or when cocktails are served. Having too many additional chairs can cause the room to feel cramped, making it challenging for your guests to move around. Some guests will prefer to stand to socialize, so chairs are not required for every guest. Seats for the majority of your guests, with room for good flow, is a great rule of thumb!
I look forward to holiday decorating all year; it brings the magic of the season to life! With all the sparkles and endless twinkly lights, it is incredible to see the joy through our son’s eyes. When decorating for the holidays, I try to allow the décor to extenuate the elements that already exist in our home, as well as focus on the simplicity of key pieces. Our fireplace mantle is from the late 1800s, I wanted to keep warmer tones and wood pieces in the garland to showcase the mantle itself. There is nothing cozier than curling up beside the fireplace with a warm drink and a good book!
Finally, table settings are a personal favourite, seeing a beautifully decorated table is like a piece of art. I try to keep the colours and patterns simple and clean, using natural pieces as décor. For this table setting, I used cinnamon sticks bound with natural twine, pinecones with white paint dusted with white sparkles, and faux tree branches to add to our statement centerpiece. If you have access to real trees for your table, they can be a cost effective way to decorate that also smells good too! If you ever need inspiration for your holiday table, check out the hashtag #tablescapes - you will be busy for hours!
The holiday season is an incredibly magical time of year; we love sharing it with those around us!