To give a holiday feel to her home's neutral color palette, Elizabeth Tanny infuses simple Christmas decorations -- stockings, wrapped gifts, and a basket of ornament balls -- all chosen in shades of green. Fresh winter greenery is a natural accent, too. In the family room, Elizabeth dresses the mantel with evergreen branches and a wreath of evergreens, seeded eucalyptus, and green hypericum berries.
To create a unified, uncluttered look, Elizabeth decorates her fresh-cut evergreen with ornaments of similar shape and size -- all in hues of green, brown, and white. For a simple accent, she ties many of the ornaments to the tree with bows of ribbon or rickrack.
To bring a touch of Christmas to a relaxing window seat, Elizabeth mixes tangy apple-green pillows with the year-round white and brown cushions and adds holiday touches with a festive wreath in the window and pretty packages scattered about.
Gifts wrapped in silver, cream, and pale apple-green papers are tied with a variety of green, brown iridescent, and checked ribbons. Beneath, an inexpensive rug serves as a tree skirt.
Elizabeth assembles an easy holiday centerpiece without traditional Christmas decorations by simply arranging a vase of amaryllis blooms and cedar greens, ribbon-adorned ornament balls, and a pretty package on a silver tray.
Green toile chair slipcovers, a pale green checked tablecloth fashioned from an inexpensive curtain panel with the tabs cut off, and green silk shades on the chandelier bulbs brings Elizabeth's Christmas touch to the dining room.
Elizabeth favors potted paperwhites (narcissus) as a holiday floral because of their simplicity and fragrance. She turns them into a dining table centerpiece by displaying them in a silver footed bowl cleverly "mulched" with tiny green, cream, and silver ball ornaments.
In the living room, Elizabeth keeps the holiday decorating minimal in keeping with the room's more formal feel. Wreaths hung in the windows with ribbon and a vase of fresh greens arranged with candles on the mantel add just enough.
An everyday arrangement of candles can transform into a Christmas decoration without changing a thing -- just wrap each candle in a piece of holiday-theme ribbon.
At the front door, visitors know Elizabeth is ready for the Christmas season despite the absence of traditional exterior lights and bright red bows. Planters and hanging baskets of winter greens and a natural door wreath say "Happy Holidays" in the same manner.