Last year, as Christmas fanatical as we are, the outside really was an afterthought. Or rather, a really lame prequel. It’s hard to get excited about decorating something that – quite frankly – isn’t great (the porch).
Last year was the first Christmas that we lived here, though we have owned it for two – the first when it was surrounded with scaffolding and we were knee-deep in the kitchen renovation. Last year’s exterior was just about getting some lights on the house and hanging a wreath. That’s it.
And sawhorses. There are SAWHORSES on the porch. Typical.
Totally acceptable. But not show-stopping.
Jackson Street at Christmas was always super charming.
So this year, with the porch being done at Martin Place, I had SO MANY IDEAS. And with that, I took so many pictures. I’m so sorry. I whittled it down to just under 40, but I took about 140. I just had so much fun planning and plotting and decorating – it really was just joyful to do. And glittery.
I want there to be snow on the ground, but we don’t have any coming for a while, which it utterly heart-breaking. Let’s start in the daylight!
I put two types of garland on the front fence, and silver bows on each post. Doug was able to light the garland, which you’ll see when I get to the evening pictures.
Some full shots of the house. I do like how the paint scheme on the house has pops of red, so I can play off those pops for the Christmas Decor.
There’s a reindeer on the roof. We initially thought the roofline was odd when we bought the house, because there is a 2′ to 4′ ledge (depending where you are) on the back of the porch roof that’s just flat, almost like a too-skinny balcony without a railing. Or a door. We thought it was odd, until I realized you can put ANYTHING out there basically. Of course, Mr. Reindeer is safely affixed with lots of fishing line.
I love this porch. I love that I HAVE a porch.
I decided to make a railing for the porch out of garland, which was easier than I thought it would be. Doug lit these as well, and then I took pre-made bows, and added longer ribbons to them, and attached a sparkly Poinsettia to them. More pops of red! I thought long and hard about choosing silver or gold (I didn’t want to mix) as my metallic color. EIther answer I feel would have been correct – gold would have gone with the gold balls on the posts, but I chose silver to work with the gray color of the siding.
We came up with 17 ways MINIMUM of figuring out how to create a “post” in-between these two to allow the garland to span that far a distance. Turns out, I just needed to see if it worked first on its own, because it did.
Hopefully it feels welcoming and cheery, because that’s what I was going for.
My mom bought me this sled about 10 years ago. She always had a sled that I loved on our porch growing up, and she found this one, made by the “Speedaway” company. At the time, we lived in Speedway, Indiana (right by THE track!), so she loved the play on words. It’s a great reminder of past houses and childhoods. But don’t let the skates fool you. I’ve never been ice-skating, which I know is a crime. I’d love to go, I just never have. 100% skier.
I struggled with indoor Christmas Tree placement, because I always felt there should be one in this front window. But that’s also the entrance hall, with the magnificent stairwell, which CLEARLY needs a tree by it. The compromise? A full tree OUTSIDE. So far, it’s been up a week, and nothing has fallen off it. And we have it tied to the house with fishing line. So the tree won’t go anywhere, but I worry about the ornaments. They are plastic, so that’s good, but I can see them whirling down the street….
I moved the furniture around a bit to make the decorations work.
I used more garland and ornaments on the porch swing…..
….and wrapped the pillows as presents. I hate that I never thought of this until now, because I LOVE wrapping presents, and this is so easy and festive.
I mean, really. SO EASY.
And, yes. I absolutely and completely chose Christmas ornaments that match the colors of the house. 100%.
I took two sets of night pictures that don’t completely suck – I really am not great at night shots. The first was right at dusk. Doug really did a great job with the lighting. Also, all the exterior power is controlled by a switch in the basement, so Doug installed a special switch that allows you to use it as a regular switch, or on a timer. He was going to be too annoyed that the lights would have come on seconds apart with multiple timers, so since he wanted them on all at once, a new fancy switch did the trick.
Mr. Reindeer is easier to see now!
I think that the house looks equally festive with and without lights, which was a main goal for me.
This twilight hour was nice for porch pictures. So warm!
This is probably my favorite shot.
I waited about thirty more minutes, and took some more during the blue hour, when you can really see the lights, and can’t see the house as much.
It just glows!
I’m just so happy with the exterior. Seriously, this is so much fun for me to do. I absolutely love decorating.
I CAN’T WAIT UNTIL IT SNOWS so I can get some pictures decorated in the snow. I can’t wait. I promise, I’ll share!