Decorating for Christmas and the holiday season has been a passion of mine since I was a little girl! When I was growing up we were in the minority because we would start decorating the day after Thanksgiving. At that time we had a vintage Ford 9 N tractor that we used to adorn with rotating blue lights! Santa Claus frequently made an appearance as well! Every year we’d try to outdo ourselves. Thanks in part to social media, we are seeing people decorating earlier and earlier every year, and to tell you the absolute truth – I love it!
DIY expert, Monica Mangin shares my love for holiday decorating and shopping for the perfect gift. She was kind enough to join me for an interview recently to share simple ways we can turn our homes into festive, cozy spaces this holiday season. She also dished on how you can buy the perfect gift for everyone on your list!
Be sure to watch our interview below or read my transcription to learn more about Nate Berkus’ favorite DIY expert! Monica is frequently seen on “HGTV”, “Live! With Kelly and Ryan” and “The Today Show”, her work is absolutely gorgeous! Be sure to give her Instagram account a follow as well.
DIY Expert Monica Mangin Shares The Best Holiday Decor Tips and Gift Ideas
Watch journalist and blogger, Candace Rose Anderson of the blog Candie Anderson interview renowned DIY expert and TV personality, Monica Mangin on how to decorate your home for the holidays and pick out the perfect gift for everyone on your list.
How To Turn Your Home Into A Cozy Space For The Holidays
Candie Anderson: The holiday season can be exciting yet very stressful. What are some simple ways we can turn our homes into comfortable, cozy spaces?
Monica Mangin: “Well, I think everyone wants their homes to be comfortable and cozy during the holidays. That’s kind of everyones wish, but it can be really daunting. It can feel like so much to do.
I think you have to break it down. I like to start in the kitchen. I think that’s the heartbeat of the home. That’s where everybody congregates into, whether it’s family or you have guests over. I think that preparing and sharing meals at home is so important during the holidays. I think if you’re not intentional about it, you can end up ordering takeout for the entire month of December. Before the craziness sets in, I think you step back and take a look at your kitchen.
Take a look at your appliances, see if they need updating – not just talking about fridges and stoves, which there’s great deals going on for those, but think through like smaller scale appliances too (smaller kitchen gadgets). I was just introduced this year to an air fryer, and it is my new go-to. I have four kids and they’re convinced that mom doesn’t care about healthy food anymore because we keep making things with this air fryer that taste so good that they think they’re having a treat.
Going into the holidays I really want to come up with some new holiday recipes to use with that air fryer, and for me that is kind of my anti-excuse. It’s making me not get takeout and I’m going to use this, and it’s going to be something that we do together during the holidays.”
Candie Anderson: You are going to be obsessed with it! I’ve had mine for two years. I make French fries, grilled asparagus, bacon, Stromboli! You’re going to love it.
Monica Mangin: “Someone just gave me a fried goat cheese recipe, and I’m so jazzed to try that!”
How To Decorate Your Home For The Holidays Easily and Efficiently
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Candie Anderson: What are some of your favorite ways to decorate for the holidays?
Monica Mangin: “I am passionate about decorating for the holidays. I am fully decorated already. I’d start in July if I could. I think that a lot of people don’t know where to begin so I would say choose a theme for your decor. That’s not to make your home look magazine worthy, it’s actually to make it easier on you. If you pick a theme, then you know that everything is going to be cohesive.
We bring so much stuff into our homes during the holidays that it can feel really chaotic, so choose a theme – maybe it’s classic, maybe it’s vintage, maybe it’s whimsical and carry that through everything from your tree to your lights to your garland – all they way down to your smaller scale accessories.
This little ceramic vintage tree (please see video above for details) is something that is going to be in my home this season. It’s part of Lowes Whimsical Wonderland Collection. When I saw this, I was so into it because my grandma had one that looked just like this growing up. It’s giving me massive nostalgic vibes, but it also works really well within the theme for my family this year. We’re going light and bright and colorful. Here’s the thing – I would love a sophisticated Christmas theme, but right now with young kids that’s just not our life. We could not have a sophisticated house if we tried.
We’re really embracing where we’re at in our life stage right now and then reflecting that within our theme. I think the theme helps act as a guide and make decorating much more enjoyable and easier.”
Why It’s So Important To Choose A Theme When Decorating
“I am passionate about decorating for the holidays. I am fully decorated already. I’d start in July if I could. I think that a lot of people don’t know where to begin, so I would say choose a theme for your decor. That’s not to make your home look magazine worthy, it’s actually to make it easier on you. If you pick a theme, then you know that everything is going to be cohesive.” – Monica Mangin
Here are a few Holiday Decor Themes You’ll Love!
How To Stay Cool, Calm and Collected When Decorating
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Candie Anderson: I’m with you, I love decorating early! In your opinion, how early is too early to put up the Christmas tree?
Monica Mangin: “I’m not the one to ask about this because I’d be like do it in July! Really, just do it! I think the real answer is that there’s no wrong time to start bringing the holiday spirit into your home. Do it when it feels right. For most people that’d probably be the day after Thanksgiving. My biggest tip here would be to remember that it isn’t one and done. It doesn’t all have to happen at once. Maybe you take a day and you start with your outdoor lights and then you move into bringing the tree into your home.
I think that when you bring your tree in, that’s when the magic really comes into your home and everything just starts feeling so seasonably appropriate. I feel like the biggest thing is you can add holiday elements all throughout the month. It isn’t just one day you have to commit to it.
The only thing I would say is even if you’re going to decorate on Christmas Eve (December 24th) – I love a good deal – I’m going to take advantage of Black Friday sales. I know at Lowes, they start now through the first week in December. You’re going from Black Friday through December. I’m going to take advantage of those deals and stock up on everything from ornaments to my icicle lights, my ribbon, poinsettias – everything I need and then decorate at your own pace. Just because you’re choosing to decorate a little later doesn’t mean you should miss out on some awesome deals.”
Monica Mangin Shares 7 Christmas Tree Design Ideas
Monica Mangin Shows You How To Hang Outdoor Lights
How To Choose The Best Holiday Gift For Everyone On Your List
Candie Anderson: Shopping on everyone on your list can be overwhelming, do you have any tips on how we can choose the best gifts for everyone on your list?
Monica Mangin: “Yes, I do. I’m a huge gift giver. I think giving a meaningful, thoughtful gift – there’s just nothing like it. But when there’s 20 people on your list and they all have different interests, that can have you running all around town and it can become stressful instead of enjoyable. For me, my goal is to do one stop shopping, so I am going into Lowes. I’m thinking of everybody on my list and their different likes and interests.
Monica Mangin’s Holiday Gift Must Haves For Techies
I have friends that are major techies. This year I am giving them smart home gadgets. There are thousands of options, all the big names – Nest, Ring, Google, Amazon – they’re all there so that’s what they’re getting.
Holiday Gift Ideas For The Clean Freak!
My mom is a super clean freak so this year I am getting her a handheld cordless vacuum, and I know she’s really going to like that.
Monica’s #1 Gift For DIYers!
I have a lot of friends that are like me or want to be in terms of being a DIYer. They have a home and they’re trying to renovate and they’re also trying to really personalize their space. For them – this is my number one gift that I’m giving a lot of people this year is a Craftsman Tool Combo Kit. It has a drill driver and an impact driver. I know that when I started out as a DIYer, that was something that I used all the time. This the perfect gift for all the weekend warriors on my list.
It comes down to you want to get the right gift, you want to get a thoughtful gift, but you also want to enjoy the process. Do it all in one place, Lowes has everything you need.”
Where To Go For More Information
For more information please visit lowes.com.
For more information on Monica Mangin and to see her amazing DIY projects, please check out her Instagram account: Instagram.com/MonicaMangin
Monica Mangin Bio
Discovered by Nate Berkus and quickly named his “Favorite DIYer”, Monica Mangin’s guest appearances on The Nate Berkus Show began a career as a TV host and On Air Expert. Co-hosting her own design series for ABC for 2 years, serving as the Home Expert on Live! with Kelly and working as the EP and Host/Designer for The Weekender Makeover series are a few of her favorite professional accomplishments.