As a stay-at-home mom of four boys, Mindy Wester is always looking for ways to add a feminine touch to her home. Using items that she already owned and transforming thrifted and sale items, she realized she had a knack for decorating — and when it comes to the holiday season, she loves to go all out.
The local influencer first got involved with social media about four years ago by creating letterboard quotes of the funny things her kids said that she would share on Instagram. She quickly built up a following. Now, she’s sharing her design touch in the hopes of that everyone can make their surroundings a little bit more delightful. “I discovered that I really like making my house look prettier,” she says. “I decided to start sharing my decorating tips because I realized that the kids were getting older, and I wouldn’t have as much humor coming from a toddler. So I went into decor. Decorating is a creative outlet of my motherhood.”
This year, Wester decided to forgo the traditional greens and reds of Christmas and instead selected a soft, flirty color scheme that includes silvers, golds and various shades of blush. “People get sick of the same thing year after year. I always did red and green, and it’s what the family always wanted, but this year I decided to try something a little different,” she explains. “I love blush. It’s so subtle and not offensive, but it’s also unexpected. I’ve seen a lot of unexpected color palettes this year, including blues, which are usually associated with Hannukah.”
Wester is always on the lookout throughout the year for decor items that she can incorporate into her holiday designs. Inexpensive thrift store candleholders, large swaths of fabric, cardboard boxes from arts and craft stores, even found items, such as pine cones, are given new life through her creative vision. “Last year, I used butcher paper at a table runner,” she remarks. “I just laid it across the table. You can write Bible verses, psalms or even song lyrics on it.
“You have to be able to see the possibility of what something could become,” she continues. “Spray paint is my best friend. Something might look ugly when you first see it, but if it has good shape and structure, it can easily be changed into something beautiful. I usually do my Christmas shopping after the holidays, and I get whatever the general public doesn’t want. Get it for cheap, and then you can embellish it later.”
And don’t forget to overlook Mother Nature’s offerings. “Adding nature into your home makes it feel more special. Gather branches and plant leaves from an area park or wash. Bake orange slices and add them to your tablescape or string popcorn on your tree. It’s attainable décor that’s not necessarily over-the-top Christmas-y but instead simply unexpectedly beautiful.”
Mix and Match
Instead of using a complete set of chinaware, Wester mixes dishes that she uses every day with ones she found at Goodwill to create a visually striking place setting. Metallic trim adds a touch of glam to the table. In each bowl, she adds a small ornament that guests can take with them when they leave.
Don’t forget to decorate your light fixtures. Faux greenery and simple strands of plastic beads can elevate a not-so-exciting chandelier.
“I used antlers on the tree and repeated them on the tablescape,” Wester says. Save money by using faux evergreen boughs layered with pinecones and beads in white and gold for vignette that looks is easy to accomplish but looks expensive. Wester also recommends using Desert Broom. “It looks like a tree branch, but it’s a common weed,” she notes.
All About Angles
Add some unexpected drama by draping your table runner across the corner of the table. Wester used a sheer fabric she found at Hobby Lobby. “I measured my table and added about 3 feet of extra material that would drape off the side,” she explains.
Little Touches, Big Impact
Wester top a sideboard mirror with a faux evergreen green garland and string of bells that she used on her stairway last year. “Instead of draping it evenly across, hang it asymmetrically. It gives it a more dramatic appearance,” she suggests. “And command hooks are key. They don’t take the paint off your walls or ruin the finish of furniture.”
Pink is typically not associated with Christmas, but Wester created this stunning centerpiece with a mix of festive pink-, purple- and blush-colored candlesticks. “It’s fun to try something a little different,” she says. She collected the brass-hued candleholders at Goodwill and spray painted them to match.
Element of Surprise
Using wreaths Target’s and white ribbon, Wester added a pop of elegance to simple dining chairs. “The cheap wreaths and nice ribbon look rich together,” she explains “I didn’t even tie a bow. I literally just crimped the ribbon and let it flow.”
Meet the Designer
Mindy Wester is a stay-at-home mom of four boys, including twins. You can find more of her decorating tips on Instagram at @house_on_oak_hill.