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HGTV Star Lauren Makk

This Nashville Interior Designer Provides 'Affordable Luxury' Holiday Decor Tips

Article by Julie Brown Patton

Photography by Josh Vaughn

Originally published in Brentwood Lifestyle

Relatable interior designer, television host and locally based lifestyle influencer Lauren Makk was instrumental in HGTV Urban Oasis' design home in Nashville. Additionally, she's willing to share some inspiring design ideas with Brentwood Lifestyle readers. 

If Lauren and her helpful advice seem very familiar, it should. She's known for renovation space makeover TV shows and competitions, such as Design Star: Next Gen (2021), Bake or Break (2022) and Shop Class (2020). She also provided real estate expertise as the co-host and home life-stylist on ABC’s talk show, FABLife. She spearheaded the Emmy Award-Winning show, Trading Spaces, and the hit home renovation show Drill Team for A&E, too. At press time, she was flying to New York to film a Christmas Special for celebrity cook and TV personality Rachael Ray.

She says the Rachael Ray show is about fun and easy DIY holiday entertaining. "It was a blast!"

Lauren's signature approach to affordable luxury, as well as her homegirl-next-door charisma, is noticed and appreciated by her audiences. By incorporating “relaxed sophistication” into her approaches, she says she draws inspiration from architecture and from how clients are actually functioning in their spaces. 

She grew up in Oklahoma watching her mother renovate and flip houses. Then her design career ramped up after college while she was designing model homes in Los Angeles.

"Bold, bright, clean and classic definitely sums up my design style," surmises Lauren. "So holiday-related designing is certainly my fun time."

Lauren says she loves out-of-the-box ways to approach decorating for the holidays. To that end, she's happy to share the following fun, budget-friendly design tips for adding extra spirit into the upcoming holiday season: 

  1. Have some extra ornaments? Throw them in a cute dish or bowl. These little orbs of opulence look great on a coffee table, entryway, or shelf. If the colors match one's decor, they can even be kept out all year long. "You could also string groups of them together on some fishing line to create a stunning mantle garland," she adds. 
  2. Wreaths aren’t just for front doors. Consider hanging smaller versions over upper kitchen cabinets, oven hoods or even around dining lights for an unexpected punch. "Just make sure they aren’t obstructing any light bulbs, and you’re good to go," she assures. 
  3. Think outside of the gift box when it comes to holiday gift wrap. Lauren says she likes to use coordinating paper as a disposable addition to her tablescape. "I layer them up by using one pattern as a tablecloth, another pattern as a runner, and even cut out rectangles or other shapes in a third for my placemats. The effect is breathtaking, and I can throw it all in my recycle bin when my guests leave."

When in doubt, consider hosting an ornament exchange or trading select holiday decorations with a relative, neighbor or friend, just to introduce some fresh accents to overall, traditional setups. 

Instagram: @laurenmakk

Note:  For a chance to win the HGTV Urban Oasis' design home in Nashville, people could enter the contest online twice daily, once on and once on, plus $50,000 from Ally and a new Mercedes-Benz. The promotion ran from Oct. 4, 2022 through Nov. 23.