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Bring the Season to Life

Find Your Holiday Spirit With Design Tips From Local Expert Katie Heinz

Article by Nicole Wisniewski

Photography by Jacqueline Zema of ISO Photo Studio

Originally published in Medina County Lifestyle

The air is cooling and the leaves are rustling. As you bundle up and nestle in, you stop for a minute and look around. You feel nostalgic and become thankful. The holidays are coming. And it’s time to gather and welcome family and friends. 

As you eagerly put dates on the calendar, planning out your holiday festivities, it’s also time to get your home in the mood for the season. A little shift in the décor is in order. Enter Katie Heinz, co-owner and lead designer of Interior Design Studio and JK Gift Ship in Medina. She brings 18 years of experience decorating local homes and has some creative ideas to make your season shine.

Grab a pumpkin spice latte and try some of her tips for your Thanksgiving table and your holiday foyer to prepare for the season before your plate is full with apple picking, pumpkin patches, visits with Santa and holiday shopping. 

We Gather Together … to Eat

Let’s start in the kitchen; it’s where you gather during the holidays. Whether you’re keeping grandma company while she cooks or having appetizers and sharing stories and catching up, the kitchen is your hub. 

Dust off your serving platters and get them out before the holiday. Give them a chance to shine for the entire season vs. just one day by making them part of your seasonal décor. “You can even layer the look by pairing grandma’s china or crystal with your favorite Thanksgiving serving tray,” Katie suggests. 

Having a few pals over for “Friends-giving?” Accessorize the serving board on your kitchen island with seasonal candles and florals. “If you use a neutral serving board made of wood or marble, you can add or swap fall additions like gourds and fall leaf garlands throughout the season,” Katie says. “Pumpkins paired with fresh fruit can add a thankful theme to your charcuterie board. Try white pumpkins for a clean look or use brass and copper accents to bring a contemporary edge.” 

Do orange pumpkins clash with your home décor? Modernize them by hand painting your pumpkins. A white base with polka dots adds a fun, whimsical look, while a cursive “Welcome” or “Thankful” message highlights the meaning of the season. “Varying the sizes of the pumpkins in your display and using odd numbers will keep the look festive and fresh,” Katie emphasizes. “Also, remember to keep your arrangements low as not to distract from conversation.”

And don’t forget about the kids’ table. There are cute, clever décor ideas that can act as place settings as well as turkey headbands to ensure the kids have a memorable – and fun – holiday. 

1. Nora Flemming Petite Pedestal; $30.95

2. Nora Flemming Mini Pumpkins; $13.95

3. Mud Pie "Dip It Like It's Hot" Dip Bowl; $19.95

4. Mud Pie Turkey Headband or Platewrap; $9.95

5. Mud Pie "Where to Put" Serving Board Paddle; $42.95

6. P. Graham Dunn Family Forever Coaster Set; $15.95

7. P. Graham Dunn Food Before Us Serving Board; $60.95

Deck the Halls … Especially Your Foyer

Your kitchen isn’t the only place to think about when decorating your home. 

When you welcome people for the holidays, you want them to feel special right from the start. And that first moment they enter your house – in your foyer – is when they will remove their coats, take a deep breath and settle in. This is your chance to create a great first impression.  

“Start with a warm, welcoming greeting by adding cozy pillows and throws that suit the season on your foyer bench,” Katie says. “Guests will admire the holiday colors and soft accents as they take a seat to remove their shoes.” 

Next, create a vignette on an entry table by grouping holiday accessories. “This is the perfect place to show off your prettiest decorations,” Katie says. “A classic cookie tin with ribbon can bring a vintage feel, while pinecones, berries and twine add natural appeal. Get glamorous with a bit of glitter and glitz – bulb ornaments stacked in a creative container or an elegant vase full of snow glistened leaves, holly berries or evergreen sprigs bring the outdoors in … without the cold.”

Remember, foyers don’t have to be stuffy. “Don’t be afraid to get creative,” Katie encourages. “You can add a decorative stack of wrapped gifts beside a staircase or next to your bench to dress up the area; space under the tree is at a premium after all.”

With a festive foyer and an inviting kitchen, your guests will not only arrive to decked halls, but they will say their goodbyes feeling merry and bright. As Katie says, “It’s these tiny touches around your home that bring that holiday magic to life."

1. Primitives by Kathy Gray Nordic Pillow; $49.95

2. Demdaco Music Lit Santa Post Globe; $49.95

3. Demdaco Red Cuddle Blanket; $60.95

All of these festive holiday decor items are available at JK Gifts, located at 207 S. Court St., Medina, OH 44256.

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