It’s fun to drive around during December and see what people have done to decorate the exteriors of their homes. Wreaths, garlands, bows, seasonal greens in showy containers – the displays can be beautiful, especially at night when colored strands of light illuminate tall evergreens or roof lines.
Classic holiday decorating is familiar and reassuring, part of a collective expectation that dates back well before the “Christmas tree” to ancient winter celebrations. But other elements have crept into the conversation: ‘tacky’ Christmas decorations, disco light shows and grossly oversized plastic blowups that are completely unrelated to the holiday. Can someone explain what carousels, penguins or giant dinosaurs with rotating heads have to do with Christmas? And why someone would buy these, let alone want to set them up on their front lawns?
They remind me of the ‘ugly’ Christmas sweater that suddenly is the fodder of news reports, holiday parties and social media. Once something people made fun of, ‘ugly’ Christmas sweaters are now seasonal sellers, which sadly means they’re here to stay.
I realize I’m on thin ice here in judging ‘good’ versus ‘bad’ taste, sort of The Grinch of holiday décor. But my heart really isn’t two sizes too small. I love the holidays and understand the need to not take styling, or anything we design, too seriously. Humor and entertainment should always be included, and kids should get their say with bolder colors, outsized figures and just plain more of everything.
But……. I would like to drawn a line out there in the snow (well maybe not this year since we don’t have any!). I’d love to know what drives the truly gaudy, over the top, hyperactive displays that feel they have to ‘scream’ Christmas.….and I’d love to know why we can’t stop looking at them.
Oh well, ’tis the season! Enjoy the show!
The Suburban Lot is our monthly blog that highlights topics and issues unique to the suburban landscape. For assistance with any of the above information, please contact Mierop Design, a complete resource for landscape design, installation and maintenance services.