Intervention at Christmas: Tacky Decor Overload

christmas decoratingLook. It’s time we had a little chat. We’re all here out of love and concern. But frankly, your holiday decorations are, well, tacky.

We’ve seen you get high with each new inflatable Santa. We’ve seen you nearly pass out over all the ribbons on sale in the days just before Christmas. Do you realize that you bought eighteen rolls of wrapping paper but no presents? An entire set of red-and-green striped china but no Christmas ham? My god! You have four Nativity sets in your living room right now! The wise men don’t even know where to deliver their frankincense and myrrh! 

Yes, decorating is fun. Yes, holiday spirit is good. And you’ve got spirit, yes you do. But you ... you’ve become Clark Griswold. And you’re hurting not just us but yourself, too.

Consider this your tacky Christmas decorating intervention.


Here’s the thing. All those colors and tchotchkes and ... things ... you’ve got going on -- they aren’t working. Let me rephrase: it’s ugly. It's eye-searingly ugly.

The good news for you is that the solution for change is remarkably simple -- and you won’t even have to wear a patch or follow a 12-step program. It is possible to convey all the spirit your little heart holds in a much simpler fashion.

Here are a few Decorating Dos and Don'ts to help you out:


  • Keep it simple. I know this might seem impossible, but it's okay. Less really is more.
  • Use just one or two colors and run with it.
  • Pick one warm tone and one cool tone for maximum effect.
  • Extend your awesome color scheme to the dining room and guest rooms.
  • Think of unusual ways to bring color in: galvanized tin to symbolize silver, clear glass for white.


  • Drag out every single ornament you've ever had -- leave some for the attic elves.
  • Mix patterns -- you can't wear stripes with plaid, and you can't decorate with them either.
  • Go overboard with the lights -- branded retinas do not make a good gift.
  • Forget to have fun, even if you are only allowed one Nativity.

And for god’s sake, deflate that freaky Santa already. He’s scaring the kids! 

How are you fighting against the tacky this year?


Image via Pays Imaginaire/Flickr

Read More >