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Some traditions at Christmas seem like a must: Christmas cookies (of which we inevitably eat too many), watching Christmas classics such as White Christmas and Holiday Inn, sipping creamy eggnog, …and hanging garland on the staircase banister. We admit, this may not seem like a normal holiday tradition. But, here at The Gray Boxwood, it is something we have always done and encourage all our clients to do as well. Something magical transpires when a touch of greenery and a few sparkling lights are added to your stairwell. The garland adds a nature-inspired feel while the glowing lights provide a romantic and enchanted feeling.

We think of garland a little differently here at The Gray Boxwood. Although it looks tremendous displayed as simple greenery adorned with lights, it is not near enough for us. We like to make the garland fit into the décor of each house perfectly by adding a few extra touches. To us, garland is an extension of the Christmas tree; it can evoke the same theme and colors used on the tree and give a greater uniformity to the house as a whole. Our mantra when it comes to garland is that it is simply a differently-shaped Christmas tree for us to decorate.

Throughout the season, we use different greenery to provide a desired design aesthetic. While there are a few instances where we use real garland, most times we use faux greens for Christmas. Faux greenery is environmentally friendly and more cost effective in the long run. And as an added bonus, you never have to clean up the needles that faux garland’s counterpart leaves behind! For high-end, life-like garland, we love Ballard Designs’ selection of wreaths and garland. (Trust us, their realistic garlands will fool anyone!) For a lower-cost option that still provides great quality, we are impressed with Menards’ choices. The great thing about big-box stores is that they usually have great sale options.

If you desire real garland, make sure to check with your local décor stores or Christmas tree retailers. They are sure to have plenty of high-quality options to choose from.

Elaborate Garland

In this staircase, the home has plenty of old world charm, so it was simple for us to pick some great options for the garland. We ended up choosing a classic pine variety garland.

Expert Tip: If you are going to suspend decorations from your garland, go with a garland that has extra strong branches. This way your decorations will avoid a disastrous ending.

As can be seen, we included a variety of traditional Christmas items with red and green being the dominant colors. To include some added interest, we used unique snowflakes and sparkly glass icicles that seem to glisten in the light.

Simple Garland

A different approach to hanging garland can be taken. This method allows the understated garland to take center stage. The garland in this stairwell has large pinecones and is hung in a swag pattern. To embellish, we only needed a selection of icicles and simple glass-and-silver string garland. The end result is wonderful: not too much, but just enough to add a “wow” factor to the staircase.

Expert Tip: Glass is a wonderful medium for ornaments because it complements any color or design. This trait allows glass ornaments to be forever in style.

Garlands are as traditional as the word Christmas. But, often times they are forgotten or just put up as a last thought. This season, try to make your garland an unexpected center of attention with ornaments and other elements that will play off the lights. Christmas is a time of wonder and beauty and an adorned garland gives an extra special touch to any home!

-Happy Trimming!

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