Tiny Amsterdam Apartment Bursts With Character

Although this Amsterdam rental already had sufficient character, interior designer Rosa van den Kerkhof and Dirk van den Wijngaard turned into a cozy home that oozes with personality. A composite of antique bits, new industrial furniture along with cultural treasures mixed in from world travels gives this little, light-filled home a playful and diverse appearance.

in a Glance
Who lives here: Rosa van den Kerkhof and Dirk van den Wijngaard
Location: Amsterdam
Size: 65 square meters (699 square feet); 1 bedroom, 1 bathroom

Holly Marder

Van den Kerkhof dwelt at the apartment upstairs for nearly six years before this one became available. The hardwood flooring and the flat’s charming original features, for example, marble fireplace surround and high ceilings, instantly attracted the couple. “There was also central heating!” she laughs. “If you have ever spent a winter at a high-ceilinged, drafty old apartment in the Netherlands, then you’ll know that is an instantaneous selling point”

Holly Marder

The founder of her own interior design business, Studio Nest, van den Kerkhof loves to mix several design styles. “An interior is an extension of your personality,” she says. “I think it’s boring to stick with just one style.”

This cognac leather armchair was a lucky find on the Dutch secondhand website Marktplaats. Piles of magazines within arm’s reach plus also a large pouf turns the formerly empty space between the living and dining rooms into a comfortable dining room.

Holly Marder

In the living room, the couple paired a contemporary charcoal grey sectional with a classic chair, graphic black and white rug, and an array of textured cushions.

Van den Kerkhof initially studied theater design until she realized it wasn’t the ideal match. The correlation between theater and home design led her into the world of interiors. “If you style theater, you’re translating a story into scenery, so it is quite like designing an interior, except that it is a more tangible and durable kind of design,” she says.

Holly Marder

“I like things that are utilized, that have a story inside them,” van den Kerkhof says. “I feel it enhances the appearance and feel of a room.”

This lotion classic leather chair was her very first classic purchase, and, to this day, it is one of her favorite pieces.

Rug: Ikea

Holly Marder

“Working in the interior design industry has certainly influenced my style,” van den Kerkhof says. During her interior styling studies, she worked in Baden Baden, the former showroom of the iconic Dutch designer Piet Boon, whose style combines modern elements with renewable materials. “I heard a lot about styling out of my colleagues and has been highly influenced by Piet Boon’s symmetrical style. I have since tried to let go of a bit so as to produce my own style.”

The tray table is a gift from her father, who has traveled extensively around the world.

Holly Marder

This collector’s item classic armchair is another bit awarded to van den Kerkhof from her father. When he was young, he painted it without recognizing its own value. It’s one of her favorite bits — here, she has paired it with an inexpensive classic stool she recuperated.

The few latest purchase is that their Foscarini Diesel Fork floor lamp, which adds a bit of functional chic to the room while adhering to contemporary lines.

Shelving unit: Expedit, Ikea

Holly Marder

Van den Kerkhof gave a classic French cabinet a fresh lease on life with charcoal grey paint and some new grips from Zara Home. The item now provides functional storage for the couple’s TV.

The apartment sports a warm color scheme of black, white, gray and neutral tones, with the exception of a couple of well-placed bursts of color. “I adore gray combined with timber for a warm appearance,” she says.

Holly Marder

A low console is home to books, music, artwork, drinks and another one of the few favorite items — a lovely lamp that van den Kerkhof purchased while functioning at Baden Baden.

Above the console, a gallery screen features framed artworks by South African artist Marlene Dumas, a Matisse print, an Etsy artwork print and functions from an assortment of artwork called “Vita Brevis Ars Longa” (translated: “Art Is Long, Life Is Short). Van den Kerkhof painted the dog picture when she was 15.

Holly Marder

Even though the apartment doesn’t offer much in the means of space or storage, the couple love their home for its own authenticity and original detailing.

At the dining area, bright tangerine lamps draw the eye up, toward the high ceilings, and highlight the stunning original sash windows with stained-glass detailing.

Pendants: Arne Jacobsen for Louis Poulsen

Holly Marder

Van den Kerkhof has carved out a very small workspace at the corner of the apartment, which is where she does each of her design work and meets with customers.

The desk chair has been found abandoned on the side of the street near a trash bin. “It was dirty and old, and it has a paint mark on it. Most people would say it is trash, but I really like it!”

Drawer unit: Alex, Ikea

Holly Marder

This cherished sideboard spent nearly all of its life in van den Kerkhof’s parents’ living room. When she went away to study, the cabinet went with her. Having experienced a few facelifts, from white to deep red, its fresh pale grey hue and fresh knobs create the perfect addition to the dining room.

In addition to the classic sideboard,a wooden tray is used as a foundation for a vase, a little book bought during a weekend in Paris, brushes and pencils used during her studies, along with a stone her father gave her when she was young. A candlestick out of Ikea gives the arrangement height.

Holly Marder

Renting can be a limiting design factor, so the couple made the kitchen their own by accessorizing it with pretty and practical items. Wood cutting boards provide a soft accent contrary to the kitchen’s white tiled walls.

A single shelf holds a collection of decorative blue and white china bowls, crisp white kitchen accessories and some of their favorite cookbooks.

Holly Marder

A silver Moroccan sugar cup and pot are a part of a group given to van den Kerkhof by her father. The matching tray table is in the living room. When her father was young, he worked on a ship and traveled a lot, collecting bits and pieces on the way. Van den Kerkhof pairs those treasures with functional utensil storage beside the stove in kitchen.

Holly Marder

Floor to ceiling drapes in a soft latte color accentuate the bedroom’s large ceilings. Crisp white bedding is a soothing background for a contrasting black ring lamp.

Holly Marder

Outdoor space comes with a hefty price tag in this portion of earth, so the set was happy to have this balcony to enjoy warm weather.

Holly Marder

A comfortable sofa in the balcony overlooks the enchanting Dutch style architecture where Amsterdam is famous.

“The place we live in is really beautiful, with lots of cafes and stores, along with also a food market on Saturdays,” van den Kerkhof says.

telephone: Do you live in a creative downtown apartment? Discuss it with us!

See related

Open Walls Widen Home Possibilities

My dream home has a spacious wall with a door. It opens to a deck and a pool and some kind of sunny, spectacular view, preferably with all the Pacific Ocean in the background.

However, truth be told, I would settle for a garage door which opens on my own work-in-progress backyard.

Open walls would be the greatest embodiment of indoor-outdoor living, blurring the lines (well, eliminating them actually) between the two. They are a fresh-air enthusiast’s fantasy come true, and there is something about them which is merely friendly and positive. They are the greatest invitation.

But beware, the homes pictured below will likely make your own home feel closed and may induce acute home jealousy. Consider yourself warned.

Urrutia Design

I am pretty certain my dream-house fantasy is just a replica of this home. You may ocassionally find a deer or squirrel in your living space, however, the spaciousness and the willingness make it worth the trouble.

Dick Clark + Associates

Where an actual open wall doesn’t make sense, wall-size windows may do the trick. It seems as though you could dive right from these chairs and into the bay, but the fog has been kept outside.

A garage door doesn’t have to be hiding your automobile and boxes of crap. It may just as easily hide your living space. And it is a relatively simple and inexpensive way to produce an open wall.

Jeannette Architects

Gourmet kitchen, outdoor dining area. This glass garage door is clean and modern; it makes sliding glass doors seem positively old fashioned.


These multipane modern cottage windows open on the garden and make this little dining room feel ever so much larger.

Hanson Fine Building

Another wall of glass. The view doesn’t have to be spectacular to get a wall such as this to make sense. The space and light and feeling of openness are sufficient to make the wall keep. And do not you love the way the clear acrylic chairs play off the glass?

Ojanen_Chiou architects LLP

This sliding accordion door which opens floor to ceiling, turning a little kitchen into a bright, expansive area with an outdoor dining area.

Spinnaker Development

A home doesn’t have to be more ubermodern to operate with an open wall. This traditionally decorated home also receives a boost.

AT6 Architecture : Design Build

This bath takes some courage. I mean, someone in one of those homes down there might have a pair of binoculars. Still, why if living rooms and kitchens have all the fun?

Griffin Enright Architects

What’s there to say about a space with two open walls overlooking rolling green hills anyhow, “Sigh.”

Jennifer Weiss Architecture

Virtually all the exterior walls open on the backyard, turning a segmented home into a open, convivial area where the outdoors are as crucial as the indoors.

Ownby Design

Not having an open wall would be bizarre.

Knudson Interiors

A wall doesn’t have to open on a large, expansive space. Only a little tropical extension for this toilet is motive enough.

John Maniscalco Architecture

The urban version of the expansive perspective. No need for art.

Architect, Lorin Hill

Developing a tiny breezeway between the house and the open atmosphere are able to keep a room from getting too hot in the summer. It also offers a nice visual transition between indoors and out.

I don’t think that it opens, but I don’t care. Magnificent.

Opening Acts: Folding, Sliding and Pivoting Doors

See related

Small-Business Savvy: Establish a Shipping Station

When you’re setting up a creative studio, the initial focus will be in adapting a space so you can practice your art. If you make quilts, you will establish a table with a sewing machine. If you make ceramic bowls, then you’ll require a potter’s wheel. It’s important to market your studio with the ideal materials and supplies, but when your art can also be a business, an equal amount of consideration should go into making sure those quilts and bowls may get packed up and sent out to customers quickly and economically.

Packing and transport are a huge part of running a creative business, but they can be overwhelming for a small operation. So much energy may go into the making of this product which the shipping period can be overlooked. The important thing is setting up a space devoted to transport and nothing else. Spend some time getting organized and stocking up on gear before large orders start rolling in. Here are a few pointers to help any imaginative business achieve success.

Dream House Studios

Have a large, open surface devoted to transport. Designate a separate place as your transport channel. This space should incorporate an open surface for wrap everything up. The dimensions of this surface needed will vary depending on your craft. But generally speaking, the larger the surface the greater. Devote as much space to transport as you can. It may be frustrating to work in a cramped area.


Consider adding shelves or cubbies underneath the surface for storing boxes. Maintaining boxes arranged can be the biggest problem when it comes to shipping; heaps of boxes may escape control and immediately start to infringe on your creative space. So select a work surface for the transport channel with shelves or cubbies built in underneath. Flatten all of your boxes and keep them organized by dimension. Maintain bubble mailers and envelopes as well.

Hint: Shop most of your boxes apartment however keep a few made up and accessible so you will be all ready to go in case an order must have sent out immediately.

Utilize a pin board or pegboard to hang tools on so they are ready once you need them. Ensure that your shipping channel is stocked with all of the tools and materials you’ll need. You do not need to be scrambling at the last minute for tape or scissors. You need these products to be highly accessible but also out of the way of your workout surface. The best solution is to hang them by a pin board or pegboard that is adjacent to your shipping channel. Quickly pull down the gear that you require, and cleanup afterward is going to be a breeze.

Install paper roll dispensers for wrap paper and bubble wrap. Should you use rolls of paper or bubble wrap, then consider installing a few paper dispensers. You may either attach them to your work surface or put them next to your channel on the wall. Dispensers make it so much easier to manage paper and cut pieces off.

Jeanette Lunde

Hint: in case you don’t have space for dispensers, store your paper rolls upright in a bin next to your transport channel.

Maintain twine and ribbon together in a caddy. Add prosper to your bundles with twine or ribbon and maintain those loose spools arranged by storing them at a hanging organizer or caddy like this one. This caddy has sufficient space for multiple spools so you can add variety to your packaging.

Hint: Hang a pair of scissors from the caddy. This implies you can always find them when you need to produce a cut.

Keep business cards and other promotional materials at your channel. with your goods, you’re probably shipping out business cards and promotional materials (flyers, coupons ) with your packages. These materials need to be performed beforehand and organized at your transport channel. Organize them in a desktop caddy such as this repurposed metal one. Aesthetically this vintage piece adds rustic charm to the surface, however any drawer or cubbie system will speed up the shipping procedure.

Have a whiteboard or calendar handy for creating a shipping program. It’s important for small businesses to establish a shipping program — it is inefficient to run into the post office every second day. Establish a regular and be honest with your customers about when you send out packages. Maintain a whiteboard or calendar near your shipping channel so you can keep track of orders, check off jobs when you finish them and denote transportation times.

Cost Plus World Market

Wood Potting Bench – $119.99

Repurpose a potting bench to a shipping channel. A reclining seat may be the best answer to get a shipping channel. Many have shelves built in that are best for organizing boxes, mailers and paper. Also they’re normally made out of wood, so it’s easy to screw in hooks to hang tools and materials.

Martha O’Hara Interiors

The key to a successful and effective shipping channel is organization. Put time and effort into this stage of your business and make sure that your studio is stocked with the ideal supplies. Plan beforehand, before you start receiving large orders, to guarantee you will be ready when when items do get active.

Want more advice in setting up your creative space? Learn how to craft the perfect studio.

More Small-Business Savvy:
Personalize Your Packaging

Photograph Products Like a Guru

See related

A Primer on the Language of Design

I was introducing a job to my client a couple of days back. I stood at the head of the conference table, flanked with my renderings, and began to ruminate on the design idea. The job was to be an urban intervention, and as this could be formal understanding of the tenuous balance between the requirements of the community and the needs of the individual. The project would represent, in built form of course, the space between these contradictory forces — the interstitial kingdom, if you will.

As I finished my presentation and opened my eyes I was greeted with a collective blank stare.


I had the sobering realization that my clients had no clue what I was talking about. Why does this keep happening to me? I mean, we’re talking the same language, aren’t we? I’m being perfectly clear, aren’t I?

Well, obviously, since I did not do anything wrong, I can only assume that everybody else needs to brush up on common architectural terms. I thought we’d done this before (here), but obviously more study is justified. Feel free to review these flash cards one or two times a day, as required.

And please refrain from staring blankly at me meetings. I’ll lose my train of thought.

Jody Brown Architecture, pllc

Frankly, I could specify “architecture” all day long. And occasionally I do. Then my clients go to the “structure,” and also the “structure” starts to specify them. It’s like the circle of life, just with more angst.

Jody Brown Architecture, pllc

We know, we know: All great architecture leaks. Please stop reminding us.

Jody Brown Architecture, pllc

Actually, “interstitial” is just one of my favourite words. This means “the space between.” Tell me that’s not awesome.

Jody Brown Architecture, pllc

It must be in the unbearable lightness of shining.

Jody Brown Architecture, pllc

Here’s a fun fact: Whenever an architect designs a building that struggles with its surroundings, we call it “juxtaposition. ” That is a large word, and it will take you a couple of minutes to emotionally process it. We do this mainly to distract you from the fact that our design does not fit with its surroundings. It buys us some time. Then we will point out the “interstitial” space between our building and its surroundings. Eventually, you’ll get bored and proceed. So it’s a truly win-win.

Jody Brown Architecture, pllc

I believe they should remove that cushion.

Jody Brown Architecture, pllc

“It’s all part of the process.” This is what I tell my clients when they are unhappy with the very first attempt at the design. “It’s all part of the process.” But this isn’t really correct. I just allow the interns slap a design together. I’m really seeing it for the first-time today too. We’ll continue working on it.

Jody Brown Architecture, pllc

Have you been considering me? Great.

Jody Brown Architecture, pllc

This is the style admired by hipsters. I discovered Bon Iver has a fishing shack at Minnesota clad entirely in flannel.

Jody Brown Architecture, pllc

Architects do not wear pleated trousers. Ever.

Keep reading. You will get it eventually.

More by Coffee With an Architect:
Find Your Inner Minimalist
Flash Cards for Architectural Terms
Find Your Architectural Style
Great Architecture Speaks to Us

See related

Striped Rugs Lay It on the Line

There’s a reason you see a lot of guys wearing striped tops and pin-striped suits: Stripes are a timeless pattern. And they are not only sartorially chic; striped patterns are a great choice for the home as well. They are a particularly nice choice for area rugs and carpets, which may be a major investment.

A striped rug is frequently a sensible choice. A patterned rug is obviously better at concealing stains compared to a solid-hued carpeting. Plus, a striped rug will match with a number of other patterns and will still be in fashion a few years from now. Stripes may also be used to draw attention to or away from elements you wish to highlight or hide in a space.

Stylewise, stripes underfoot can be a bold selection or a subtle one: Broad bands of white and black make a statement, while subtle tone-on-tone stripes blend into the background. Have a look at these 13 rooms to get a dose of striped-rug inspiration. Perhaps you’ll come across this perennially fashionable layout is just right for your house.

Tara Bussema – Neat Organization and Design

A white and black rug is a powerful choice in this nautically inspired room. This striped version is comparable to Madeline Weinrib’s Black Buche carpets and Ikea’s Stockholm Rand rug.

SchappacherWhite Architecture D.P.C.

In this enchanting cabin, Steve Schappacher and Rhea White added some picture appeal to the usual beach-house aesthetic with a black and white palette and ample usage of stripes.


Set against a dark stained hardwood flooring, this blue and cream coloured rug defines the dining area of an open-plan kitchen and dining space. Coupled with aluminum Navy chairs and a rustic farm dining table, the look is country contemporary.

Richard Bubnowski Design LLC

The subtle cream and tan runners lead the eye through the transitional space enclosing the staircase in this house by Richard Bubnowski Design.


Bright, bold stripes enliven a upper stairwell within this house by Vanillawood. You may easily create a similar look in an unusual space with carpet tiles in Flor.

Garrison Hullinger Interior Design Inc..

All colors of whites and blues match within this living room by Garrison Hullinger Interior Design. The Dash & Albert rug acts as a canvas on which the designer has put many other striped fabrics.

Scot Meacham Wood Design

Striped rugs aren’t only for inside your home. With a weather-resistant outdoor area rug, you may enjoy a pinch of pattern in your patio as well.

Schranghamer Design Group, LLC

An attic space becomes an airy escape when painted white and accented with calming blues. This white and blue rug is a mild, soft covering for the floor.

Studio Marcelo Brito

A striped floor covering is also a energetic choice in this den. The pattern of these stripes echoes the wall therapy, which resembles the exterior siding of a beachfront cottage.

Patrick Sutton Associates

A barely there stripe is a calming choice within this airy bedroom. The subtle layout enhances the space without drawing attention away from showcase beams like the floating vessel and wall-hung oars.

Tobi Fairley Interior Design

Section of Tobi Fairley’s layout for the Richmond Symphony Orchestra League’s designer show house, this unassuming hallway readily becomes a focal point with its own striped rug and red accents.

Palmerston Design Consultants

You may also stripe right up the stairs using a vibrant runner.


Putting a striped rug within this low-ceiling room gives the illusion of more space by drawing the eyes outward, rather than around the narrow eaves overhead.

11 Area Rug Rules and How to Break Them
Guest Picks: Rugs for Every Room
Browse rugs in the Products section

See related

24 Beautiful Walls of Books

When my wife and I moved to our present apartment a couple of years ago, our main decision was not where the place the sofa or tv or home office or even the dining room table; it was where to set the books. Having spent in a floor-to-ceiling shelf system, the eventual location sits alongside the front door and becomes a wall of novels contrary to the sofa. While the novels have outgrown this wall and shot over different areas of the house (like any book enthusiast will concur, this always occurs ), there’s something attractive about this huge surface of novels, particularly when compared to smaller bookcases. While this ideabook attests, I’m not alone in liking walls of novels. The following examples show various ways of accommodating large numbers of publications in most areas of the house.

Griffin Enright Architects

Why a wall of novels when you can have two? Whether this room just had a wall covered with novels it would need another, given the powerful symmetry of this space with its central fireplace. 1 thing that our wall of novels shares with this particular one is that the change in spacing from large on the floor to small on the very top, so bigger books are nearer to the floor and therefore easier to deal with.

Michael Fullen Design Group

This more compact distance also offers bookshelves facing each other, however, one side is punctured by a doorway. I like the way relief is brought to the book through double-height openings that are used for artifacts, such as a world.

Chr DAUER Architects

Two walls covered in novels can also throw in a corner. This office space is not only packed with novels but designed so that the work surfaces meld with all the book storage. If going this course in your project, make sure you check the top shelves can be reached over the desk.

HartmanBaldwin Design/Build

This publications in the corner of this library extend past the soffit (seen at left) to the underside of the clerestory windows that also wrap the corner; this necessitates a ladder for reaching the shelves.

Chang + Sylligardos Architects

The corner of this library is access to other chambers, however, the bookshelves on each side are still constant in design, particularly the narrow shelf roughly a third of the way up; I’m guessing it’s used for large books and papers looking to lie flat.

Webber + Studio, Architects

These shelves also utilize a very short shelf roughly half of the way up. Also, like the previous example lighting is integrated over the shelves, projecting out and pointing right down to assist in locating books and for reading them.

Tim Cuppett Architects

Two vertical walls are covered with novels in this room, separated by a large window that brings in plenty of daylight. Note how the shelves are curved in the window, a fine Art Deco touch.

Erdreich Architecture, P.C.

In the very first steps within this house, one is faced with publications, which cover a wall adjacent to the front door. The dark shelves have been emphasized with orange endings that work nicely in the sparse modern space.

Vinci | Hamp Architects

1 end of this massive living space is covered in shelves that are novels interspersed with sculptures; the former have been available to the lightly shaded wall, whereas the former includes a dark backing that helps the objects stand out.

Smith & Vansant Architects PC

This wall of novels was created with an integral railing to get a rolling ladder in addition to lighting for 2 flat openings used for displaying objects. In proportion and execution the shelves are minimum yet tasteful.

Hugh Jefferson Randolph Architects

This is just another wall of novels that incorporates bigger openings for showing objects other than novels. They are flat, vertical, and square, enabling different things to be on display.

Ian Moore Architects

This simple wall of novels with rolling ladder works nicely with the minimum design of the inside. Note how the vacant shelf space seems to trickle down from top right to bottom left, indicating that even room for future publications can be a part of an interim design.

Stern McCafferty

These shelves stand out from the last examples in the exceptionally thin edge profile and evident lack of supports.

Laidlaw Schultz architects

Here are additional shelves with a slim profile and hidden affirms; the latter are, according to the architect, included of”an upturned leg at the trunk which is bolted to the wall… [and] then hidden.”

Tom Hurt Architecture

This wall of novels is freestanding, behaving as a divider between the kitchen and living room.

The gap between these rooms looks like it’s carved out of the wall of novels, as they write a header over the opening.

Browse more home libraries

I’ve always thought that a hallway is a good place for publications — that is, if you’ve got one and don’t have a library or room in your living space. For me, the bedroom ought to be free of too many novels (a couple of on the nightstand or a small shelf is good, but not a wall), and also near a kitchen may harm novels.

Hallways are good for keeping books, what with long walls and all. On the downsidethey don’t provide much room for sitting to enjoy themlike a library.

Chang + Sylligardos Architects

Hallways can also be mezzanines, so the books become part of the larger house, not tucked away from different chambers.

Smith & Vansant Architects PC

This is just another hallway mezzanine (nice door in the far end!) Where books are put round the windows, making the most of every bit of wall space.

Lisa Borgnes Giramonti

Do not have enough books to cover a wallsocket? You can always use background!

More: 20 Great Design Books for Your Library
Get Ideas for a Cozy Library Space

See related

30 Beautifully Inventive DIY Christmas Decorations

Many of us are pinching our pennies nowadays, so extravagant Christmas decorations aren’t on very top of the shopping lists. Fortunately, the economic slump has inspired a creative crafters to make beautiful, easy, and affordable DIY decorations. We’ve gathered up 30 of our favorites to help you celebrate the season.

1. Colorful paper ornaments. If you require something new to spice up your tree, try these easy, contemporary DIY ornaments from Lisa Storms. Employing border pushes, she hit out patterns from vibrant bits of paper in different lengths, and stapled together the ends so they buckle in the form of a decoration.

2. Feather ornament tree. Wish to go glam this Christmas? Try producing this marabou feather tree, courtesy of Kate out of Centsational Girl. Kate made this ornament tree out of dowel rods plus a 12′ length of marabou feather boa.

She made the tree shape using one 3/4″ x 36″ dowel pole, six 1/4″ x 36″ dowel rods, a hand saw and a drill. Then she put it into a timber bun foot from her hardware shop. She painted the whole thing white, place it together with her drill, then wrapped 12′ of a marabou feather boa around the dowel rods.

Kate glued a adorable white bird into the top of the tree for an extra touch, then added some brightly colored ornaments in metallic hues.

sarah & bendrix

3. Contemporary holiday dinner party. Veronika of A Few Matters Out of My Life changed her London dining room into the perfect setting for a posh holiday party.

A wreath hung from the ceiling becomes a impromptu chandelier, while evergreen trimmings, a linen tablecloth, and lots of candles make a subtle and tasteful Christmas ambiance.

The sideboard in the end of the table becomes a bar for effortless beverage access and additional storage.

sarah & bendrix

Veronika’s unique spin on an advent calendar is beyond easy, and is superbly minimalist.

Office envelopes with bright pink lining fill up a poster board. Every envelope is numbered and filled with quirky holiday treats.

sarah & bendrix

Veronika stuffed her wall shelves with Christmas lights, small wrapped boxes, and garlands of newspaper rings to v modern-crafty look of her dining room.

Paper garlands are a great, cheap Christmas decoration — try something easy like paper rings, or attempt more elaborate paper snowflakes.

Heather Thoming

4. Candy-cane striped wreath. For a festive wreath that will last longer than the one you usually pick up along with your Christmas tree, try your hand in this DIY candy-cane striped wreath from Heather of Whipper Berry.

This flirty, ruffled wreath is the best way to welcome the holidays to your house. Have a look at the entire tutorial.

Atypical Type A

5. Holiday decorations for small spaces. Alicia Parsons of Atypical Type A doesn’t haveroom for a full-sized Christmas tree in her home, so she’s gotten into the practice of reusing one of her old wedding decorations — branches at a moss-filled bud — rather.

This really is a great tip for anyone with a small apartment or a small budget!

Atypical Type A

Many of Parsons’ ornaments are handmade. These small Scrabble letter ornaments are too adorable! Parsons used a power drill with a nice bit to drill a hole through Scrabble letters and series together cheerful holiday phrases with festive red decorative thread. Have a look at the entire tutorial on her website, here.

Atypical Type A

Another space-saving tip from Parsons: Don’t allow your current furniture limit you! She brought this ladder in from a different room for an extra screen surface. Get creative and think outside of the box older suitcases, wine crates, and backyard stools may all contribute to your holiday décor.

6. DIY “milk glass” forest. Shannon of Madigan Made loves crisp white holiday decor, and also had a fantasy of a tiny white woods of trees covering her cart.

When she could not find what she was looking for, she chose to create it herself. She discovered plain glass tree-shaped candy jars and chose to spray paint.

She wrapped the exterior of the jars and lids with tape and plastic, and painted a few thin coats of white — on the interior. Painting them on the interior gave them a more uniform look and prevents peeling. In the long run, the bits have an almost classic, milk glass-like look.


7. Advent calendar ladder. Jen Hadfield of Tatertots & Jello chose to do something a little different because of her family’s holiday advent calendar. She wanted a fantastic spot to hang holiday cards, and thought that having a ladder would be festive and unique. When she could not find a fantastic ladder in thrift shops, she made one.

She’s a ladder at the specific size she desired, and the entire screen cost her less than $20.

Hadfield painted it blue so that the ladder would go with the rest of her home’s color palette. She can leave it up all year long and use it to display invitations, art, or just as decoration.

For the holidays, the ladder becomes a quirky advent calendar. Little canvas totes are attached to baker’s twine with reddish clothespins; subsequently Hadfield placed hooks on the sides for Christmas stockings. This is a great alternative for anyone who doesn’t have a fireplace!

The Happy Home Blog

8. Christmas dinner in the summertime. For anyone living in Australia and New Zealand, Christmas comes in the midst of summer. As opposed to getting warm in front of a toasty fire, odds are you will be trying to cool down with the evening dinner outdoors. Belinda Graham of The Happy Home Blog establish a mixture of indoor and outdoor chairs inside her private courtyard for a simple Christmas meal. Light linens and blossoms are highlighted with touches of glitter for a small holiday glow.

The Home Blog

To give standard jars and vases an extra special touch, Graham highlighted them with a little glitter, then stuffed them with easy blooms and LED candles for a charming centerpiece for the table.

Christie Thomas

9. Holiday garland for the anyplace. Christie of Three Pixie Lane chose to mix up things a bit by placing a holiday garland at a somewhat unexpected place — the foot of this bed! A handmade red and white garland in her daughter’s room adds a remarkably festive touch to the space.

10. Intelligent peppermint wreath. Does not this seem like a picture from a catalog? Believe it or not, Myra of My Blessed Life made this magnificent Christmas decoration out of three bags of peppermints, a hot glue gun, and a white foam wreath form.

She included a ring of Red Hots to fill some white space, then hung the whole item with a festive ribbon.

11. Warm and intimate holiday dinner. Lauren Hufnagl of With Two Mothers includes a great deal of hints and tricks for entertaining large holiday celebrations in tiny spaces.

Mirrors and metallics assists a space appear bigger, as does turning on the lights. If your space is small and comfy, there’s no need to dim the lights to make guests feel comfortable.

Hufnagl set aside a kids table for her holiday dinner setup. Brown art paper is a terrific makeshift tablecloth — provide kids a pair of crayons, plus they’ll be busy for the whole meal.

The Decor Repair

12. Merry and bright Christmas mantle. Curious about the way Heather Freeman of this Beautiful Cupboard obtained her mantle to glow? This cheerful DIY art was made simply by sticking Christmas lights through the rear of a canvas.

Freeman made all of the mantle art herself, and accented it with ornaments from Wal-Mart and heavy green velvet stockings from Hobby Lobby.

The Decor Repair

Freeman made this extravagant looking wreath — rolled up audio sheets glued together — in a craft party. A retro Merry Christmas hint adds a classic touch.

The village below is one of Freeman’s most preferred possessions — her mum bought it for her and her brother on a family vacation to Germany if they were small.

13. Simple advent calendar at a contemporary palette. Christy Wallace of Everyday Giggles wanted to make an enjoyable and vibrant advent calendar because of the 1-year-old daughter. Simplicity was key, so that she went to Hobby Lobby and discovered a simple starter kit. Using her Cricut machine, paint, and a lot of decoupage, she gave the kit her own custom look. Rather than using more traditional Christmas colors, she chose to go with crimson, red, and gray theme for another look.

14. Christmas bulb advent calendar. Try your hand in a exceptional advent calendar like this one Meg Spaeth of Elise Marley made for her kids. Using a homemade pattern (found on her website), she sewed this by hand out of felt.

Each tiny bulb is a pocket which Spaeth matches with lightweight treats — notes, small ornaments, and candy — for her kids to open every day before Christmas.

15. Elegant handmade stockings. Trying to find a sophisticated stocking for your mantle? user Michele Cabot made hers out of amazing vintage French linens for a tasteful and minimalistic holiday mantle. If you’re tired of browsing shops for the best stockings for your family, consider creating your own unique models out of fun classic fabric.

My Sweet Savannah

16. Quick and effortless holiday vignette. To get a easy holiday display, Melanie Thompson of My eldest Savannah discovered some used books and removed the covers. This is a trick used for many years by interior designers and retail shops, and is a great way to bring a rustic element to any sort of vignette. Evergreens and a couple of straightforward ornaments round out the look.

17. Cheap DIY Christmas candle holders. Kristin of Iowa Girl Eats maintained her holiday decor cheap, simple and pastoral. Mason jars were filled with votive candles, imitation berries and spruce, and wrapped in a twine bow. Voila! They’re perfect party decorations. Put them onto a mantle and light the candles indoors as it gets dark. Try using scented votives in vanilla or cinnamon for an extra holiday signature.

18. Christmas screen in Sunset. Shelley Smith out of House of Smiths always has an amazing holiday screen in her dining room (check out her Halloween screen in this roundup).

This past year, she made a decision to prevent red and green and use colors that sensed more wintery. She picked a palette of silver, green, and a tiny turquoise with this particular setup.

Though she chose not to do a Christmas tree this season, she still wanted to have a Christmas-tree like screen. Spray painted branches wrapped with little ornaments became a fun and affordable alternative. Then she stuffed up glass votives with little baubles and trinkets for a little additional sparkle. Perfect!

Nicole Lanteri Design

20. Chic black-and-white Christmas tree. Retro-looking all-white Christmas trees really are making a massive comeback this season. specialist Nicole Lanteri employed a Parisian theme with hers. Simple black iron ornaments in the form of the Eiffel Tower go perfectly with a chic black-and-white striped tree skirt.

21. Whimsical pom-pom garland. If you have younger kids running around, you may want to have a holiday decorating hint from Kristina of ReMade Simple: Make it unbreakable.

Considering her holiday decorating theme this year was “childlike and whimsical,” she wanted her own garlands to be playful combinations of simple substances and vivid colors.

Rather than using colored glass or hard plastic, then she made a trip to her local craft shop and purchased pom-poms, eyelash yarn, and a yarn needle. Making the garland was incredibly simple — just pull the yarn through every pom-pom till you have the spacing you want — so Kristina made an all white version also!

22. Classic velvet wreath. Classic maven Danielle Thompson made this diverse wreath out of classic fabric she had lying about. She wanted something with a mod, 1960s texture for her holiday decorations. Making something out of fabric also supposed she could reuse the wreath year in, year out.

She cut a wreath form out of a foam core board, and glued and sewed classic fabric (and buttons she covered herself!) To the cloth covered wreath form. She made a bow out of more classic fabric and a classic ascot, and attached it to the wreath. How adorable is that? It’s an adorable and one of a kind wreath that (depending on what colors you select) could be used for several vacations.


23. Holiday tablescape inpsired by character. specialist Lynda Quintero-Davids employed a white spray painted branch as the centerpiece of the holiday tablescape. If you’re having problems coming up with ideas to your holiday dinner table, consider sticking to something easy like that. Sometimes nature supplies all the necessary decoration — spray paint a few branches and accent with some discovered pinecones, and you’re set.

24. Crafty yarn ball wreath. Lisa of Recaptured Charm put together this catchy wreath using styrofoam balls, yarn, and a wire wreath form. By wrapping the yarn around each ball in different directions, she was able to make it look like an actual yarn ball. She hot glued all of these faux yarn balls on a wire wreath shape, and blended a couple red Christmas ornament in as nicely for some colour contrast.

Planet Fur

25. No-muss, no-fuss Christmas tree. Do you hate dealing with a endless course of dead pine needles? Try mixing it up a bit and use a pair of branches in a vase to display your ornaments.

Small and massive variations of the contemporary, DIY Christmas tree are getting increasingly more common. Not only are they tasteful, but they’re affordable and far more eco-friendly than a real tree.

26. Quaint hot cocoa corner. Set a hot cocoa dining table for guests. user stilesquinn used a festive sterling silver tray and classic candy jars to home hot chocolate mix, marshmallows, and candy canes — a great thing to set on the coffee table in your living space prior to another big holiday party.

27. Intelligent Christmas riddle. Holiday decorations may be foolish too! Read the signal out loud to see if you’re able to find out the riddle.

Gail of Can’t Stop Making Things created this humorous sign using paint and a tabletop wooden round she’s discovered in Lowe’s for $7.

The sign reads “No L” — “Noel!”

28. Moss wreath for every season. This simple moss wreath may be used for Christmas, but can easily be adjusted for summer or spring décor too. Aimee of My Pink Life glued a bag of moss on a foam wreath form, and accented with a decorative pine cone and berry embellishment.

suzanne pignato

29. Tropical Christmas tree. To get a Christmas at South Florida, specialist Suzanne Pignato skipped the traditional red and green Christmas palette and functioned sunglasses of turqouise and gold to her shrub, accenting with shells and starfish for a beachy vibe.

30. Magnetic advent calendar. Marie of My Lil Pink Pocket made this adorable and re-usable debut calendar using papier maché boxes from her local craft shop. After decorating them glued a little magnet on the back of each one and place them on a little framed magnet board.

Inform us! Do you have a great holiday DIY? We wish to view it! Publish a photograph in the remarks below.

More: 50 Beautiful Holiday Decorating Suggestions
Live Boldly With Not-Your-Usual Christmas Tree
The Fashionista Christmas Tree
Have a Bronze, Violet and White Christmas

See related

Neo-Traditional Design in Georgetown

When a budding lawyer decided to plant her origins in the upscale Georgetown area of Washington, D.C., she called upon Zoe Feldman of Zoe Feldman Design to help her in renovating the recently bought rowhouse. The aim was to infuse the traditional space with urban attraction and honor the exclusive area without feeling nostalgic. The result is best described as vintage, neo-traditional with a modern twist. Mission accomplished.

Zoe Feldman Design, Inc..

Though small in size, this living area has generous seating options. The embroidered couch and wingchair, both by Mitchell Gold Bob Williams, are modern and stylish. The homeowner’s present ottoman was modernized with an ultra-glam fabric by David Hicks.

In the bay window, a custom radiator cover topped with a sleeper pillow provides a window seat for shooting in amazing views of the city. Panels in a linen-silk mix cloth by Nancy Corzine framework the outfit.

Zoe Feldman Design, Inc..

From the handcrafted limestone floors to the netted-glass pendant, Sorenson from Remains, this traditional foyer provides more clues to the modern updates that have occurred in this home.

Zoe Feldman Design, Inc..

Carpeted in a gorgeous hexagon pattern (David Hicks Hexagon House II by Ashley Hicks) the twisting staircase divides the public and private areas of the home.

Zoe Feldman Design, Inc..

A mix of textures, patterns, materials, and clean-lined furnishings leads to the home’s urban update on traditional style.

Zoe Feldman Design, Inc..

Initially, the homeowners were skeptical when Feldman suggested painting the present cabinetry a glossy black. They were glad they heeded her advice whenever they saw the remarkable outcomes.

Zoe Feldman Design, Inc..

Just like a fresh white shirt from a tuxedo, honed Calacatta marble countertops supply a graphic contrast to the dark cabinets. The marble’s veins include a subtle hint of colour.

Zoe Feldman Design, Inc..

A Calacatta marble backsplash and a New Negro-Marquina marble floor polishes off this sexy, classy kitchen.

Zoe Feldman Design, Inc..

Shiny black doors and Calacatta marble create yet another appearance in the intimate guest bathroom. An apartment-sized clawfoot tub supplies some luxury for visiting guests.

Zoe Feldman Design, Inc..

The juxtaposition of this dark, modern doors, traditional reupholstered headboard, and global-infused fabrics introduces a neo-traditional vibe in the master bedroom. Suzani-patterned bedding from Natori takes center stage.

Zoe Feldman Design, Inc..

Constructed from precisely the same metallic linen, a trio of functional relaxed roman shades offers both casual beauty and solitude.

Zoe Feldman Design, Inc..

A blend of cut and slab limestone sets the tone for luxury and comfort in this airy master bath. The herringbone-patterned floor adds visual interest while keeping a neutral palette.

Zoe Feldman Design, Inc..

The vanity is fit for a queen, complete with a shagreen leather inlay.

Zoe Feldman Design, Inc..

The Cartwright Dual Vanity from Restoration Hardware received an instant update when topped with an earthy limestone.

More: Modern Home, Full of Character

Manhattan Lofts and Apartments: Layers of History and Style

Pictures: Read more pictures of townhouses

See related