Easy holiday decorating ideas

By Terri Sapienza
Washington Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, November 23, 2010; 12:28 PM

Thanksgiving is a day when you enjoy your family, your friends, your meal and your day off. The last thing you want to think about is decorating for the holidays. We get it. And we want to help. To make things easier, we put together a list of quick ideas that you can implement this weekend (with many items you probably already have). Then you can consider yourself done. By Monday you'll be able to officially move holiday decorating off your plate.

The front door

The simplest way to say you're ready for the holidays is to hang a welcoming wreath on your front door.

For something a little extra, "add a large bow that complements the colors of your house," says Arlington designer Melissa Broffman . Then, tack up a single swag of real garland to frame the door. If you want, attach a string of lights to the garland.

Bonus idea: Hang wreaths (real or artificial) indoors with wide ribbon in front of mirrors or from the center of curtain rods.

The mantel

Swap your existing mantel decor for a grouping of potted flowering plants, such as red amaryllis, paperwhites or another of your favorite seasonal greens, suggests Daren Miller, owner of the D.C. shop And Beige . "Mantels are always a fun and festive spot for a row of flowering holiday plants massed out like soldiers," he says.

Do groupings in threes or fives (odd numbers are more visually interesting), "remove all existing foil wrap and simply drop your plants into clay pots, decorative pots, bowls, baskets, large jars or silver pieces." It's okay if your containers don't match, Miller says, because the red or white flowers will tie everything together.

Where to Find Plants

American Plant. Locations in Bethesda and Great Falls. www.americanplant.net.

Behnke Nurseries. Locations in Beltsville and Potomac. www.behnkes.com.

Garden District. 1740 14th St. NW. www.gardendistrict-dc.com.

Ginkgo Gardens. 911 11th St. SE. www.ginkgogardens.com.

Johnson's Florist and Garden Centers. Locations in the District, Olney and Kensington. www.johnsonsflorists.com.

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