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« An English Christmas!! | Main | A 1950's Ranch House--Charming!!!! »

A Tale of Two Christmases

Happy holidays from all of us at Segreto! One of my favorite things about this time of year is getting to see how friends and family decorate their homes for Christmas.  There are so many wonderful ways to bring the holiday spirit to your home without sacrificing your design style and personality.  With Christmas literally around the corner, I wanted to share the beautifully decked out halls of a couple of my friends in the design community, interior designer Anne Lydick and architectural consultant Sarah West.


Anne Lydick has such a lovely warm and welcoming traditional-style home that’s filled with beautiful antiques and family heirlooms. She keeps her holiday decorations along a similar vein, using many of the same ornaments and dolls her mother used to decorate her tree. “Our Christmas tree brings a lot of happiness to me because I remember as a child watching and helping my mother put the dolls on the family tree. She had a great idea, and it’s a joy to continue the tradition.”


Here are the fantastic handmade dolls that are dressed in their colorful native costumes! Most of them were given to Anne by her great aunt who frequently traveled and always brought home a doll for her from each new country she visited. The collection has continued to increase over the years as Anne, her husband and her family purchase a few on their travels. I love that she added some patriotic touches after 911 with stars and stripes ribbon and flag baskets!!!

Even though putting up the decorations throughout the house takes a long time, Anne says, “When I see how happy it makes our grandchildren, it is definitely worth the effort.” This magnolia leaf garland is truly unique. Instead of traditional fir, Anne uses a mix of fresh magnolia leaves from her yard and silk and preserved magnolias from Rick Butler to infuse her own taste and style into the Christmas look.

So pretty!!! Anne makes her own seasonal arrangements! This is such a great pop of color, and by using berries instead of flowers, it lasts through the holidays. I love how she fills the container with a mix of cranberries and crabapples!



These ilex berries from Plants n Petals are so beautiful and really bring in that holiday feel. Anne brings in so many little details that really contribute to the holiday mood, like the holly in the light fixture – so charming!

Anne and her husband collect Santas as memories from various trips they’ve taken. While some of the Santas came with names, Anne likes to personalize others by  naming them after the cities where they were purchased or their grandchildren. This one was named after their grandson, Nicholas!

Anne always likes to put the nativity scene out before any of the other decorations as a reminder of what Christmas means to her. She purchased the figurines years ago, and mixes berries throughout the arrangement and on the sconces.

For an equally beautiful and entirely different take on holiday decorating, I visited with architectural consultant Sarah West and really loved her winter wonderland décor!


I’m so impressed with Sarah’s impressive wrapping skills! The gold and white presents look so sophisticated underneath the snowflake covered tree. Sarah tries to change up her wrapping every year and usually uses one ornament for inspiration – a clever way to create a cohesive look!


These great pipe cleaner ornaments came from a booth in Round Top. I love the mix of gold and silver which really stands out against the tree. And the best part is that they’re not breakable!

Sarah always incorporates fresh greenery, like this cedar garland, and boxwood wreaths into her holiday decorating. They bring a great fragrance into the home and radiate a sense of life that fake foliage just doesn’t achieve. 

Artist Sherrie Hicks was commissioned to do this incredible Santa and sleigh. The antique toys and items hung from Santa represent the family’s whole life – their children, former homes and interests!!! Sherrie hand sculpts and paints each detail. So special! Sarah’s two dogs Coco and Colt seem to love this Santa too!!!

Sarah bases her holiday décor on the architectural aspects of their current home. She complements the textures of the old stone, antique wood and reclaimed hardware with a few silver accents and fresh boxwoods. Her greenery fits right in with the home’s style!

The family moves fairly often so Sarah always enjoys changing the decorations to suit each new home. ” I look for unusual items that complement the style and architecture of my home. I never want to overshadow the home itself!”

 You can definitely see that philosophy come into play here! The silver star, Santa and fresh greenery add just the right touches without taking over. For Sarah, Christmas gives her time to focus on her own home since she’s so busy during the year helping others create their retreats.  

These cookies are so pretty I almost thought they were just part of the décor! These are from Memorial Bakery and really Yummy!!! 

Even the outdoor patio gets decorated! Mixing in some ornaments with other arrangements is a great idea and so simple to achieve!!!

Sarah has done such a great job wrapping what she says is her favorite gift to give this year--my new book!!  Anne and Sarah are both featured with home spreads of their own in Segreto:Secrets to Finishing Beautiful Interiors. Thank you so much, Anne and Sarah, for sharing your beautiful homes with us. It is such a joy to see the amazing way you have decorated them!!!  I hope that all of my blog friends have a special Holiday full of love and cheer!!  I feel so blessed to be a part of all of your lives and am so appreciative for the support and love that you all have given to me on all of my crazy new design adventures!!! Happy Happy Holidays!!!!  xo  Leslie

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Reader Comments (6)

love both Anne and Sarah's holiday decorating...each is so unique and oh so pretty...
I like that both have incorporated a little of the natural greenery to their decors..
love your gorgeous plaster walls too!! so my style..

December 19, 2011 | Unregistered Commentereclectic revisited

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! Beautiful blog, with such incredible talent. I found you tonight when I was looking for gesso finishes on furniture. You made my heart sing, and am truly amazed by your talent, and dedication, to preserving heirloom pieces. Thank you for showing all of us not to be afraid to change that inherited piece of furniture!

December 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMargaret

Such a beautiful use of color and I especially like the greenery with the stone. Such a lovely contrast of textures. Happy Holidays, Leslie!

December 20, 2011 | Unregistered Commentermimi

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