Decorating for Christmas has often been one of my favorite things to do.

Yet, some years, we can get overwhelmed with Christmas decor…

Where do we begin and where do we end?

There’s the entryway, the tree for the main living area, wreaths, and garlands, and the list goes on.

Today I want to help make Christmas decorating easier for you.

I’m kicking off a weekly series…

Hope Decor Tips for Creating Christmas Memories with Vignettes.

Creating Christmas Memories with Vignettes

Every Wednesday between now and Christmas a different blogger will be stopping by with vignettes they’ve created to inspire you in your Christmas and holiday decorating.  I’m so excited for this series.  You are in for a big treat!!

Maybe you’re wondering…

 “What a vignette?”

I like to think of a vignette as a snapshot.

A capturing of a moment in time…

A lovely decorative moment that catches the eye.

A vignette is usually comprised of a tabletop or other flat surface upon which a few objects in differing sizes relate together to create a theme or visually enjoyable moment for the eye to rest.

It can be as simple as a tray with a few complementary items, to a pretty lamp, a stack of books, and a pair of reading glasses… pleasingly arranged.


In Creating Christmas Memories with Vignettes a tray is perfect for holding a natural vignette.


On a larger scale it might include a chest, a wreath on the wall, and a large object placed on the floor near the chest and wreath to create a visual trio.

You might place a vignette on the corner on top of a fireplace mantel or the hearth, the corner of your kitchen countertop, a shelf on a bookcase, a coffee tabletop, in front of a focal wall, or maybe a corner that needs some visual interest.  The possibilities are endless.

When it comes to decorating for the holidays, most everyone puts up a tree for Christmas, but the question often is, how do I decorate the rest of my house?


In creating Christmas memories with vignettes, a collection in the kitchen with accessorized with ribbons and season plate is perfect.


Let me suggest you decorate your home… one vignette at a time.

Like everything we tackle in life, we may or may not have a vision for the whole, but we can accomplish a task, one step at a time.  Or in this case, decorate for Christmas, one vignette at a time, until the whole house is ready for the holidays.

Really it’s pretty simple.


While creating Christmas memories with vignettes, think large scale, with an arrangement of furniture and decor as well as small scale, such as tabletops.


Let’s begin…

Choose your location.  (Keep in mind we are decorating the house one vignette at a time.)  Start with the areas that will get the most traffic or will be seen the most.  Or, an area in the house where you spend a lot of time.

Decide on a theme or an object that will be the focal point for your vignette.

Let’s put a comma here before we continue...


When creating Christmas memories with vignettes, don't forget all the wonderful space on top of the piano for memory making


This series is called Creating Christmas Memories with Vignettes.

Let’s talk about what I mean by that.

I’m all about stories.  Back when we built our first home we started our landscape and gardens from scratch.  Friends would give me extra perennials from their yards, I started some from seed, and others I picked from greenhouse hopping with my husband.  When guests would come to my house they always wanted to see my gardens, so we would walk around the yard and I would tell stories about the plants.  Over time I came to realize that things were important to me based on their sentiment or story.   I love beautiful home decor, but the real value of an item comes from its story.


Pick a theme, like this woodland theme when creating Christmas memories with vignettes.


As you think about the vignettes you will be creating, think outside of the typical “Christmas decor” box, and think about displaying or grouping items that tell a story or are meaningful to you in some way.

Additionally, there is no reason why you cannot create a vignette for the memories you are wanting to establish now, and cherish forever.  Here is where you might start a tradition with a cocoa station or a nativity or special childhood toys.  In this case you may be creating the story that you hope your family will treasure.


CreateChristmas memories with vignettes in unexpected spots like a shelf in the bookcase or secretary as shown here.


Let’s get back to creating our vignettes…

Do you have a collection?  Collections are a great for vignettes.  Here we may not necessarily use the whole collection, but instead pull out a special piece and use it in an unconventional way.

I did that here…

I’ve been collecting Droste’s Cocoa tins for a long time.  Whenever I would attend an antique fair, I had my eye open for one.  This particular five-pound can is a little rough, but I bought it anyway.  You see several years prior I passed up one in pristine condition because I thought it was too much money.  In hindsight it wasn’t.  You know those decisions you regret.  So when I finally found one, I had to have it… regardless of the condition.  And it was the same price.  [good grief]   Anyway… I love the cocoa tin not just because it has a story, but because there is an even bigger Christmas memory behind the can.  My mom did not do much entertaining when I was growing up.  But, one Christmas I remember so well.  She decorated the house beautifully.  And on Christmas Eve she invited several of our elderly neighbors over for hot cocoa and cookies.  She served it in an antique cocoa pot and poured it into tiny cocoa cups… all by candle and Christmas lights.  It’s a memory I will always treasure.   And yes… it was Droste’s Cocoa she served.   Purchased at the local delicatessen, it was the only cocoa we drank.   Isn’t that the perfect reason to  place an artificial tree in the an old Droste’s Cocoa tin?  Oh… and my mom was Dutch and Droste’s is real Dutch cocoa.


Ask yourself what story are you trying to tell when creating Christmas memories with vignettes.


To complete the look, I added Swedish straw ornaments to the tree, a nod to my father’s heritage.   Now in one item I have reminder of both my mom and dad.  A vignette is not a single item, so I needed to add more to create my vignette.  The pine cone is one I brought back from a Florida trip.  My aunt moved there upon retiring.  On one of my visits I picked it up and it flew home with me.  Once she moved, I missed my aunt at the holidays as she had celebrated every one with us.  So, in this vignette, the pine cone is a small reminder of her.  Because vignettes need at least three items, I added this whimsical angel.  It was given to me by a dear friend, the one who always went greenhouse hopping with me.  I love it because she gave it to me and because it looks sorta Swedish and it’s a perfect complement to the Swedish straw ornaments on the tree.  To finish off the vignette I tucked in some sprigs of Frasier fir.  It’s just a window vignette.  But, that simple vignette is crammed with meaning and memories.


When creating Christmas memories with vignettes, don't forget about the wall... it can be a perfect spot for a vignette, too.


Let’s talk about some objects and how we can put them together to create a Christmas vignette.

Your vignette can be as subtle as choosing a stack of books with red or green spines.  You can even cover books with wrapping paper to give them the color you are looking for.  Then place a glass or silver bowl on top of the books or nearby and fill it with pine cones or glass balls.  To that add a special object, an item you’ve collected or some other treasure.  Place it on top of the books or arrange with the books and bowl in a pleasing manner.  It’s sweet, simple, and meaningful.

I find it’s best to work with odd numbers of object… threes and fives are usually best.  Though I frown on fours… as I looked at my photos I was surprised at how many times I used four items.  That tells you… rules are made to be broken.  If it works and is pleasing to the eye… enjoy it!

When using books, I count the whole as one object.  I love that I can easily change their color with paper or paint.  They are great for adding height to a grouping which might otherwise draw the same height line, giving it more visual interest.

Another tip that works for vignettes is repetition of color, shape, texture, or style.  This helps make that moment you create a cohesive vignette rather than a whacky grouping.


Create Christmas memories with vignettes outdoor as well as indoors. Here a patio table is dressed for winter.


Keep in mind that you can create vignettes outdoors as well as inside.  It might be a spot in your entry or a visual corner of the garden that you can see from your window.

I’m delighted to have my blogging friends join me for
Creating Christmas Memories with Vignettes Series.  

You’ll want to stop by each one for more inspiration each week:
Week 1 :: Week 2 :: Week 3 :: Week 4 :: Week 5 :: Week 6 :: Week 7


Thank you for stopping by today.

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Best wishes for An Extraordinary Day!

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  1. Vignettes with lovely Longaberger baskets/trays and pinecones and old books and ribbons – everything I already have to make a pretty, natural Christmas decor statement. I swore off of “made in China” stuff a few years ago and went for simpler look, but didn’t want a bare look. Your post is exactly what I needed

    Dear friend, please consider changing “coma” to “comma”

    • Yay!! I’m so glad that this was just what you needed, Gail! 🙂 Thanks even more for the “catch.” Try as I might, I miss the obvious. :-/
      Blessings to you my friend!

  2. Diane, I love this idea…one vignette at a time, genius! It certainly makes the idea of decorating a lot less overwhelming and it will make each grouping a lot more meaningful! I can’t wait to see what your guests will share! 🙂

  3. Mary Barber says:

    Love the vignettes!

  4. Of course Christmas is Longaberger, pine cones, trees and vignettes of everything “under the sun”. Groupings make it so much more relaxing and entertaining. beautiful as always.

  5. Such pretty vignettes,,,I don’t start decorating Christmas until the day after Christmas. One vignette at a time is a good way to approach it. Maybe it won’t seem so overwhelming! Thanks!

    • I know so many gals start early. One of my good friend’s always started her decorating on Veteran’s Day because she had the day off. The years I’ve done that, it’s felt really weird on Thanksgiving. As much as I can I like to live in the moment….we’ll see what happens this year. 😉
      Thanks for popping by Cathy! I know your Christmas decor will be extraordinary!

  6. Such lovely vignettes, Diane!

  7. Wow…you make that sound so easy! No doubt I’m the one who complicates it. So this concept of one at a time versus trying to coordinate a whole house, inside and out, is really heartening! Thanks for giving me perspective and encouragement. I might actually do a test run for fall! 🙂

    • For me, Mel, it is easier. And then when you’re done, you’re done. Decorating this way really does reduce my stress. Hope it works for you, too! Let me know how the test run goes. Have fun with it!!! 🙂

  8. I love this tip doing one area or vignette at a time! Oh my word that Droste tin is BEAUTIFUL! I am going to have to search for one now!

    • If you find a big one… let me know Heather! They have gone up in value since I purchased mine. Hope you find a deal.
      And thanks for stopping by and leaving your warm words!

  9. David Ryan says:

    Ah, Christmas! I can smell it in the air.

  10. all very pretty but with 47 years worth of Christmas decorations and over 50 nativities I’m set! my nativities are the main thing in every room! I have put them all on facebook in the past!
    wishing you a blessed Christ Centered Christmas!
    Glenda Kremer

  11. That is a wonderful idea and keeps us focused on one thing at a time,which i need. Thank you and have a great day.

  12. This is such an inspiring post. I love all the little vignettes you created. But I especially love the screen in front of a large window! It adds privacy but still lets in lots of light!! Visiting from Anything Goes party.

    Be Well, The Lady Kay

    • Thank you so much LadyKay. 🙂 I didn’t want to have drapes or sheers on the window, as it would close in my small space. The screen gave me a wee bit of privacy and lots of light…as you said. 🙂 You might like to know that the screen was actually something I put together from roadside disassembled and discarded cabinets. Fun.
      Thanks for stopping by! Hope your weekend is extraordinary!

  13. You have made this sound so simple I may have to give it a try myself. Not being at all arty I’m always a bit scared to try new stuff. Thanks.


    • Diana…as someone who can be guilty of over-thinking things…try it!! Try one! Have fun with it and I just know you’ll keep going.
      Thanks for stopping by. 🙂 Hope your weekend is extraordinary!

  14. I am loving your post! I am visiting from Natasha’s and am a new follower! My home is on our city’s Christmas homes tour. You can be sure I will be following your advice. The photos are gorgeous.

    • Oh Terri! How exciting to be on the Christmas home tour!
      I really do hope my tips help you to have a low stress beautifully decorated home for the tour. 😉
      Thanks for your kind words and for stopping by!
      All the best for an extraordinary weekend!
      And best wishes for tons of compliments and a successful home tour!

  15. You are so right! Christmas decorating can be so overwhelming. But breaking the task down into small manageable piece is so smart!

    Pinning and sharing!
    {big hugs}
    ~ Ashley

    • Thanks Ashley! It’s as the old saying goes…”Inch by inch it’s a cinch.” 🙂
      All the best for an extraordinary start to your week! {{hugs}}

  16. Diane, I’m just realizing that if we all approached decorating for Christmas in the way you are talking about, we might be less stressed. Maybe it’s just me….looking at all the blogs that look so perfect stresses me. Having meaning to the vignettes makes more sense to me.

    • Stacey…I can’t tell you how much I appreciate your thoughts tonight.
      I know exactly what you’re talking about. It really can be super stressful looking at all that perfection. Then I’m reminded that when I do photo shoots…many times in order to take the photos in the time frame that I need to, I have a big mess just outside the photo frame. Sure at one point we do get everything cleaned up and our house is ready for company…but how long does that last? We live in our homes and they are not magazine perfect on a daily basis. For one of my 31 days posts I wrote about comparison and shared that quote by Teddy Roosevelt… “Comparison is the thief of joy.” At least that’s how I remember the quote. It was such a helpful reminder to me to quit the comparison practice. Am I there yet? No. But…I am getting better and for that I can be grateful. 🙂
      Regarding decorating with meaning. For me… it’s helped me enjoy decorating even more. Now I confess that as both my parents have died, as an only, I have a lot of old stuff which can be fun to use. 😉
      If you start decorating this way and it helps this year… let me know. Okay?
      Thanks for popping by Stacey! I always love to hear your thoughts. Hope your week is off to an extraordinary start!

  17. I love the vignettes you created! Thanks for the tips to help us decorate for Christmas without getting overwhelmed, and create some awesome vignettes of our own.

    • To think that you’ll enjoy decorating for Christmas and not be overwhelmed…makes my day Christie! 🙂 Have fun and enjoy the season in every way! [hugs]

  18. Love this idea – looking forward to following along with your entire series! Thank you for sharing!

  19. Love this post and your ideas for Christmas vignettes. Love the vignette with the Swedish straw ornaments on the tree. Adorable tin container and pinecones are always a favorite at our house. Visiting from Amaze Me Monday.

    • Awww…Babs…thank you so much for your kind remarks! You always create such lovely vignettes, I’m so blessed by your compliment. 🙂
      All the best for an extraordinary start to the week!

  20. These ideas are fantastic! The vignettes seem to tell a story and they are pretty to look at.

  21. Beautiful and traditional. Gorgeous post, Diane!

  22. So many pretty and inspiring vignettes. Thanks tons for linking to Inspire Me.

  23. Diane I love your vignettes. I am working on mine. I so want to decrease the decor this year and focus on more important things like helping the kids make memories ad such. Will join you soon.

  24. So much inspiration! Thanks so much for sharing at AMAZE ME MONDAY!

  25. Sooooo pretty…I loved it all!!

  26. Thanks for sharing your gorgeous Christmas post at the Say G’Day linky party. I’ve just pinned this to the Say G’Day Saturday board. I LOVE all of your ideas!

    Hope you are having a great week.

    Best wishes,
    Natasha in Oz

  27. I kept seeing this link on all the link parties I visit and I finally had to come see what it was all about. Not what I was expecting – so much better! “The real value of an item comes from its story” is so, so true. This was a beautiful post and I look forward to the rest of the series.

    • You just made my day! Thank you for your warm and encouraging words, Stephanie!
      I, too, am looking forward to seeing what all the bloggers in the series put together.
      Hope you enjoy it!

  28. What a great idea for a series Diane. Don’t we all love a good vignette and some great ideas in your post today. I appreciate you sharing at Shabbilicious Friday.
    Hugs ~ Kerryanne

    • Thanks Kerryanne!! We sure do love a good vignette. 😉 You put together some lovely ones yourself. 😉
      All the best for an extraordinary day!

  29. So many pretty touches! I love to see little vignettes throughout the house at Christmas time!

  30. THis is truly a wonderful helpful post today. Thanks for taking time to help us slow down and think about what we’re doing. Take a few breaths. Sit down and look around the room you are starting in.
    It is so easy to get caught up in the frenzy thinking we have to get this or that done. Guess it’s old age but I catch myself telling myself, do one thing, finish it then do another. It does work. I have the luxury of being home alot with ample time but I still tend to try to do too much at once. We get so much more done by tackling one project at a time. Think about what has to be done right now and after that’s accomplished start in on another, makes whatever you’re doing much more enjoyable. Often I’ll have to table the project as I’ll think of something I want to add that is stored, I’ll have to go digging for it.
    Your vignettes are lovely, meaningful is a good guide line to make it what you really want it to be. You can always change it later. I often do. I’ll make a vignette but later finesse it when I’ve had more leisure time to think about how I really want it to be or find something more meaningful to be in the vignette. This is one way we learn and add experiences to our decorating, find out what we really love and want in our homes.
    Happy season Diane. Hope you are well.

    • It’s so good to ‘see’ you again, JaneEllen! Hope all is well.
      Thank you for you thoughtful remarks. 😉 You’re right, we all can get caught up in a frenzy. I don’t think age has a thing to do with it, either. I’m so glad that you’ve discovered a less stressful way of accomplishing your decorating tasks, too. 🙂 You’re right…we can always tweak things later, too.
      Thanks for the good wishes! May your holidays be blessed in every way!

  31. Barb @ A Life in Balance says:

    Thank you for posting on Motivation Monday!

  32. Great ideas! Thanks for linking up to Show Me Saturday. Hope to see you there tomorrow!

  33. Oh how we love our vignettes Diane, lol! It’s so much fun and the stories that go along with them is indeed what makes them special. This is a fun series. Looking forward to seeing more. Love your little deer and the darling cocoa tin! Thanks for sharing with SYC.

  34. Also, super cute! So many great, great ideas here! Thank you!!!

  35. Diane,

    I am just now getting around to read these posts and savor them. This is fantastic. I love your thought of vignettes having special meaning. I think I have often done that without realizing what I was doing. Thank you so much for the wonderful ideas. I am saving them for next Christmas!

    • How wonderful that you’ve already been creating meaningful vignettes. Thanks for stopping by and taking time to read the posts. You are a blessing. [hugs]


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