Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Tips on Holiday Home Decor

Czarina Ledesma, Rustan's resident stylist, and Ferdi Salvador

Christmas is fast approaching. The question is, are you sure you’re house is ready to host endless parties? Have you finished decorating your house for the season or you’re still confused if you’re still going to use stuff from last year’s decors? Fret, not! There’s hope and this article may help.
Rustan’s Department Store in Makati recently held a free holiday décor workshop to help unleash the Martha Stewart or Colin Cowie in everyone. Ferdi Salvador and Czarina Ledesma gave talks on how to discover tried and tested ideas on how to decorate our home without breaking the bank for the holidays. Both are partners of The Event Architects, Ferdi is the Director of Style of the Discovery hotel chains and co-host of TV show F.A.S.H. Even Rustan Department Store’s resident stylist also shared his ideas; I wasn’t able to get his name…because I had to admit I had arrived late for the talk…(Sorry!) but just in time to share with you what we have learned during their talks.

The speakers explaining the do's and don'ts of Holiday decorating.

On decorating your home for the holiday, the speakers gave importance on assessing what you have. Whether it’ll be you grandma’s old baul, or that China Cabinets that most Filipinos have, you have to know where you must place them so that their beauty will get noticed.

When trying to mix and match, do not forget the color wheel. What goes together, goes together. But don’t be afraid to mix unique color combinations as well. You see, Christmas isn’t all about red and green, silver and blue, red and gold. Purple, lavender and some brown are great. Done gray with blush, sea foam green and burnt orange looked good together.

With furniture, check out with what you have. Try to have a “rigodon” of things inside your house. Meaning, your old China cabinet which used to occupy your kitchen may be put in the living room for some “homey” feel. Vintage items can look cool with some creativity and passion. If you ever decide to buy something, always look for quality—it has to be something you’re going to use for a very long time.
As for Christmas trends in 2010, modern look and non-traditional look is advised. Look for greens. Shapes may be different. Things had to look more fluid instead of structural heavy pieces. Bold colors may be used like pinks, blues, copper and red. With themes, décor is more playful and pretty much anything goes. But NEVER overdo your decors. Instead of using faux poinsettia flowers, use fresh flowers and bleached them for that “tie-dyed” look.

Yours truly

With fellow attendee, my new found friend, Ate Norma Galera.

Salvador also suggests using LED lights instead of the usual Christmas lights. These LED lights uses less energy, and are not prone to short-circuit. You may also use fiber optics. If you decide to stick to old style Christmas lights, make sure it’s ICC marked for assurance of its quality that it had passed the standards. Garlands are highly flammable so avoid putting them near the candles.

The famous bag lady, designer Amina Aranaz-Alunan also attended the event with husband Rafael Alunan. (not in photo)

To tablecloth or not to tablecloth—you see, some tables looked wonderful in their own right even without tablecloth on. Consider the type of mood you’d want your guests to experience. Divisoria had a lot of Irish linen designs to choose from, just dip them in gawgaw and dried before using them. For the candles, if not using a candelaria, heat a spoon with a candle’s glow, then scoop inside the circle of a candle’s tip, that way it’ll follow the candle’s melting. When using a scented candle, see, feel and smell the scent for a whole experience. For votive candles, put water inside the candleholder, just to be safe. Add your favorite scent so that your guests will remember you. Try to use jasmine, chamomile, anything citrusy will do. But never use something as heavy as patchouli. Why? It might kill your guests’ tastebuds. Rosemary is good as it enhances the flavors of every food.

Try to consider music, for cocktails, jazz and songs by Sergio Mendez never fails to delight guests. Dine the way you want but surprise your guests in your own way. For al fresco dining, you may use a diffuser, or oil burner with scented oils. If you want to try, you may also use dama de noche plant as centerpiece if the party is at night. Create a signature drink, be it as simple as rhum with coke, or mix red and white sangria. If you have a lazy Susan table, serve Mongolian cuisine with a Golden Buddha as centerpiece. Old huge mirrors are also great centerpieces too.

Always label foods when in buffet, that way, your guests will know what they’re being served. And consider their diet requirements and beliefs as well, so ask them beforehand. Don’t forget your guests; cater to every age if necessary. Ex. A game room for kids, where they could play, draw and color. (Just make sure your walls aren’t white!) Don’t be a martyr; it’s okay to ask for help. If you have helpers, which Ferdi and Czarina likes to call DDs or domestic divas, train them properly how to help you and in serving your guests.

Czarina Ledesma giving out pointers on how to properly handle a buffet table.

And when your tablecloth had been stained with food or with melted candles, don’t fret. You may use salt or baking soda, vinegar or white wine. As an etiquette, give a token even as simple as candies in a cute jar so they will end the night with smiles on their faces knowing you appreciate their coming. If you bring a dessert to a party, it could be served. But if someone gave you a bottle of wine, party etiquette dictates not to open it and serve to your guests. Lastly, never drive when drunk. Have fun and enjoy the holiday parties!

One of the tables that they filled with decors and centerpieces.

If you’re interested to learn more, please call up the SOFA (School of Interior Design), they offer different courses like 3D design presentations, furniture styles, renovating on a budget, etc.
(632) 8928807 loc. 104

If you need help with organizing your house for parties, call TEA
The Event Architects (TEA)
(632) 5863752


  1. wow, i should've attended. it is a weeks before christmas and i haven't done any decor prep yet!i'm on time constraint!help!been wanting to make lovely decorations and prep them with my baby and we will start a yearly tradition out of it, what do you think mommy?anyway, nice post..hope to see you sooner:)

  2. Thanks a lot, Mommy Vix! Hope to see you soon.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...