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Two Gorgeous Holiday Garlands (One is Mine) 2018

Photo and photography training this day by Ted Kalrsalr with Omnilargess Photography Classes

Every year on November 1, my two nephews William and Markus (My sister Elizabeth’s boys) pull out the Christmas decorations, they can’t wait to start decorating!

Elizabeth says it takes her about a week, but then she too, totally gets into the Christmas spirit.

Amy Grant’s Christmas albums are playing and gingerbread houses are being built.

She says, she always feels a little sad when December 1 arrives, because now she starts counting the days when Christmas will be over. It’s like the weeks leading up to December are free.

So this year, I decided to get a fake tree so I could do the same, since I love it too!

Then, when I was still on one of my trips leading my colour workshops, Elizabeth found one at Costco and sent me a photo:

“What do you think?” she texted, “it’s only $300”.

“That’s pretty, buy me one too”, I said.

So then I came home and decorated my fake green tree.

But I missed the look of my flocked trees, which I discovered in 2015 and then repeated the look in 2016 and 2017.

We rarely get snow and I love how it looks with all my colourful ornaments.

Then I felt a little deflated, and decided I would skip a holiday post on the blog this year.

Until I clicked on a blog post written by one of my fabulous and talented True Colour Experts and designers Erika Ward from Erika Ward Interiors in Atlanta, and I saw this garland and gasped it was so pretty:

Image via Erika Ward Interiors

Since I’m not in the South, we obviously don’t have an abundance of magnolia leaves so I couldn’t copy this look, but I loved the unusual, asymmetrical way the garland was arranged, so I did the same thing:

It’s so fun to look at something different than the usual way I hang the garland.

The tree you just saw is in the family room, and it isn’t much different from previous years which is why I wasn’t going to write a holiday post until I was inspired by this garland. See my trees previous years in the links at the bottom of the blog.

Love my acrylic reindeer I’ve had for years!

And here’s a view of the entire room.

Still love my flower art, painted by James Wiens, see that post here.

And here’s a few photos of how looks at night;

I have two up-lights sitting behind my sofa, I love the glow they create in the evening.

Hope you enjoyed the tour!

Next year, I’m going to buy a fake flocked tree and I’d love your recommendations!

PS. My Spring Specify Colour with Confidence dates are up!

We will be in Palm Springs this year for January and February so we’ve decided to hold a course there in February right before Modernism week, so if you’ve never been, this is the time!

Palm Springs (Indian Wells) February 11 – 13, 2019

Toronto (Mississauga) April 1 – 3, 2019

Atlanta – April 10 – 13, 2019

Houston – May 8 – 10, 2019

New Jersey – May 14 – 16, 2019

We haven’t found the last 3 locations so if anyone has any leads on meeting rooms that can accommodate 30 people in half rounds with NATURAL LIGHT (windows are critical) please email us here.

Related posts:

Christmas Tour of my House 2015; Flocked or Green?

Holiday Tour of my Home 2016

Holiday Tour of my House 2017 (See my Colour Chip Ornaments)

55 pins


  • Michelle says:

    Your house looks just beautiful! Your holiday mantel vignettes are an inspiration.I hope that you and your family have a wonderful Christmas. BTW, I’m a big fan of the fake tree. 🙂

  • Monica Malone says:

    Yep. Go BIG or go home! The “extra” length is not extra at all. Simply luxurious. Love it!

  • Velvet says:

    That’s all so pretty! I love the colors and the “imperfect” way you placed the garland to make the difference from the usual.

  • Kay says:

    You asked about beautiful flocked trees. I would like you to check out Lisa
    She is TOTALLY into the holiday season and has multiple trees that she decorates by herself in her home.
    I am not certain if she has any trees left but you can check out her website and also email customer care. I have never bought anything from her – her taste is exquisite. I just don’t have the money. She is based in Pennsylvania USA. I am not an employee – I just enjoy her fabulousness in decor, etc. You will not be disappointed. Happy Holidays.

  • Goldie says:

    I love this look with a dark green tree. The colors pop so much more.

  • Love your outfit! You look great and your lipstick matches everything. Making a garland look good in a picture — for me that’s way easier than making myself look good in a picture. And you do both. So inspiring!


  • Mary-Illinois says:

    Hi Maria,
    Every year you knock it out of the park with your Holiday decor. You have so many lovely things. You must have a large place to store all of it. I find myself getting rid of some of my things every year. It simplifies my life.

    • Maria Killam says:

      I have a shed right beside my house (that no one can see) totally dedicated just for my Christmas boxes! It’s a lot of work I tell ya! Thanks for your comment Mary! x Maria

  • Kerri says:

    Beautiful! Is your garland live or did you purchase it somewhere?

    • Maria Killam says:

      Faux and I’ve had it for years, it’s a very simple green garland you can get anywhere, what makes it great are the ornaments! Maria

  • Carolyn says:

    Beautiful and inspiring. Please tell me about up-lights, how to use them and where to buy them. Love lighting in a room.

  • Georgina Wickens says:

    Love how you’ve decorated the garland. Perfect with your decor!

  • Julianna Mathers says:

    Your jaunty garland is gorgeous! Can we see your tree? I have the Costco one too. ?

    • Maria Killam says:

      OH my tree right now. . .haha I wasn’t going to post it because it just doesn’t look different enough from different years. . . Thanks Julianna! Maria

  • Bert says:

    The Garland is beautiful. So where did you put the tree? I don’t see it in any of the pictures.

    • Maria Killam says:

      Oh, sorry for the confusion, yes I should have said, my tree is always in my family room, that’s the room I was talking about and if you click on any of the links in the related posts you’ll see what it looked like for the last 3 years! Thanks for your comment! Maria

  • Patricia says:

    Your colours are gorgeous! Is the garland you used real or fake? Also, are your ornaments red or fuschia?

  • Lisa says:

    Absolutely love it. Going to do it on my fireplace!

  • Tracy says:

    How beautiful your room it is!

  • elizabeth abe says:

    I love the yellow in the garland! I’ve been hunting for two years to find yellow…source please!!

    • Maria Killam says:

      I can’t remember where I found those ornaments, I’ve had them for a few years and originally I had 8, 2 broke and now I’m down to 6! eeeek. Thanks for your comment! Maria

  • Linda Trammel says:

    So, I’m guessing that you did not get the green tree? The garland you chose is beautiful and the entire scheme of decoration is just stunning. Love all the colors. I love putting out the Christmas decorations but I do not like putting up a tree! I live alone and it is a lot of work to get all that out and then put it up. I do not have a fireplace but if I did this would be my choice on how to decorate it. My grandchildren are 18,16, 13, 9 and 6 and of course they like a tree and I will put mine up IF they come here. If not I will not. All the other decorations like angels, candles, wreaths, etc are plenty I think to make the house festive and fun. Thank you for sending these photos and story.

  • Diane Oster says:

    so simple but so beautiful. Next year I will attempt to try that.

  • Holly says:

    Absolutely gorgeous, Maria! Love the way you draped the garland and the festive colors! So inspiring!

  • Ange says:

    I too bought a Costco tree this year, my first pre lit tree. And I love it! Your mantel garland looks amazing, especially like the way you draped it. Thanks for all the beautiful photos.

  • Terri Daley says:

    Love it
    I had bought your black and white rug a few years ago. I no longer have mine. I’m a true follower of yours. I live in Buffalo,NY but just got my dual citizenship. We have an old, historic house just over the bridge in Fort Erie. I think you would love the Niagara area if you have never been here. Niagara on the Lake is really wonderful. Thank you for all the enjoyment and knowledge you send my way!
    Maybe you could hold a class in this area!
    I’m going to try and send some photos..

  • Ciara says:

    Hi Maria, King of Christmas has fabulous fake flocked trees. You can buy directly from their site. Fab garland btw!

  • Anne Elise Hudson says:

    I look forward to your holiday posts every year. Beautiful, and love the not quite traditional colors.

    How do you manage storage of your Christmas decorations? Particularly ease of access when it comes time to pull them out again?

    That actually would be a good post to cover for ALL your decorative items. Everything isn’t out all the time; I assume you rotate and refresh and retire. How do you manage that process?? I’d really love to hear some of your tips and tricks.

  • Katherine says:

    Home Depot has very pretty trees, one was flocked, and they’re priced well. I was actually amazed at how pretty they were this year. You can also check them out online. I ADORE your Xmas decorations!!!

  • Jude Schneider says:

    Dear Maria
    I have been following your website for 2 years now, and love the way you use color, and the very classic look of design.
    My question is about your dining room chandelier. Can you give us a closer, more clear picture of it? Can you let me know the name/manufacture? Is it from Maxim Lighting? How many inches in diameter is it? I’ve recently purchased a goose neck, very Country French looking chandelier in a type of white finish, and had to send it back. So disappointed, it was made crooked, very off kilter, poor workmanship. So I’m looking for advice with size, and maybe going in a new direction. Also, looking at Pottery Barn’s rain drop glass light. Or I’ll just keep the one I have, hand painted with lamp shades on electric candles. Cute, cozy, but maybe too old.

    • Maria Killam says:

      Hi Judy, it was from a local home decor shop and I can’t seem to find any identification on it. Maria

  • Lucy says:

    Oh Maria you are such an inspiration! Your camera class certainly has paid off! I am sure that you will have many copy cat followers that will clone your beautiful Christmas house! Your styling is breathtaking and should be in every magazine!

    I am with you regarding flocked vs green Christmas trees! I absolutely love the fragrance of pine and the flocking reminds me of beautiful snow covered trees that I grew up with in Illinois. Also I am also struggling with whether to buy a fake tree this year. If I do I will put real pine boughs interspersed through the branches for the pine scent. Thank you for your ever inspiring posts!

  • karen says:

    I love to see you living life in bright style! This year we have a French Blue decorating color scheme; along with lots of champagne (French too!) crystal, white and soft gold. My husband insists we allow some rose and red tones to join the party, so we’ll see what happens. I have always preferred a soft red to a bright red but that is still a difficult color to find in all the traditional bright red and green.

    Whatever colors we use it is always a beautiful season!


  • Love the garland on the mantel. What is the wall colour? It is beautiful

  • Kat says:

    Lovely fresh take on holiday decor! Happy Christmas indeed. How long is your garland? It drapes so full and lush! Thank you Maria!

  • Nancy says:

    Maria – your garland on the fireplace very pretty
    Well your whole house is just yummy !!!
    beautifully decorated !!!

  • Loved the night photos especially. Nice affect!

  • Luisa says:

    Beautiful – especially at night !

  • Lisa says:

    Maria – both of these wreaths are beautifully decorated and styled. I myself have an asymmetrical wreath (from Grandinroad) over my fireplace mantle and was looking for something similar to replace it for next year. I run my gas fireplace and it is hard on the wreath. These wreathes give me the idea to go with a more traditional wreath, but with different styling.

    Flocked trees are also my favorite. I have one from McDonald’s Tree Farm and Nursery here in the states that has held up very well over the years (minus the lights going out) and I use minimal decorations because I find the tree to be a statement piece in itself. I also took your trick of wrapping empty boxes some years ago and have beautifully wrapped packages underneath it. Thanks for inspiring creativity and good luck with your tree search. There are lots of flocked options online.

  • I love it all, especially how it looks with the warm glow of the fire. I always wish I had a fireplace when I see images like these. The garland is so wonderfully positioned. I almost bought a fake one not too long ago. I need a place to put decorations so my pup can’t reach them! I do have a short bookshelf that could act as a mantle, so maybe I can do that! Thank you for the lovely tour.

  • Connie says:

    Have to comment on how involved your nephews are with décor! Sometimes in the USA boys are discouraged from this pursuit…..stupidly.

  • Lisbeth Naurbol says:

    I love the frames you are wearing with the black dress! Could you please share with me the maker and/or brand? Thanks so much for your help.


  • JoAnne McArdle says:

    That is stunning!! I wanted to ask….how long is your garland?
    Your room is gorgeous. You’re going to be hearing from me shortly…..putting in a new master bath and am overwhelmed with choices!!! Happy Holidays!

    • Maria Killam says:

      It’s just two standard garlands tied together, I think they are about 6 ft each. Thanks! Maria

  • Meredith Atkinson says:

    Love your shoes, adorable. I am from Maine & love the scent of our pines. We are so lucky to live in the Pine Tree State!

  • Judi says:

    Really beautiful!!

  • Fran W. says:

    Love your colorful garland, Maria! And I really REALLY love your black and white shoes! 🙂

  • Mary says:

    Love every thing about that space even when not decorated for holiday, but now that it is….next level! Just gorgeous and so fresh.
    And BTW your shoes are killer!
    Curious, how long did it take to decorate the fireplace garland, and now that you have, will you pack it away as is or need to dismantle it all?
    Happy Holidays Maria

    • Maria Killam says:

      Hi Mary,
      It was already covered with ornaments from last year, so yes I carefully put it into a box so I don’t have to install every single ornament! Thanks for your comment! Maria

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