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In Between Seasons & Non-Theme Decorating {Evolving to Spring}

by | Mar 7, 2012 | Decorating Inspiration, spring decorating

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In Between Seasons & Non-Theme Decorating {Evolving to Spring}

Southern Living Spring Decorating

From January through April, we tend to see a lot of ideas for how to decorate for Valentines Day, then St. Patrick’s Day and then Easter (hearts, clovers and bunnies, of course). Lots of cute ideas! But what if you don’t really like overt themes or it is past Valentine’s Day and maybe too early for your bunnies? 

In Between Seasons & Non-Theme Decorating {Evolving to Spring}

 BHG Make Your Own Flowered Branches 

A few of you expressed last week on my Gearing up for Spring post that you struggle with the in between season decorating. It isn’t winter. It doesn’t feel quite spring. You maybe aren’t too keen on decorating for Valentine’s Day, and you aren’t Irish so you don’t feel like decorating with four leaf clovers.

I get that. I’m pretty much the same way.

Even when I do decorate for a specific holiday it will likely be more subtle and less themey (although I really do like bunnies. And eggs. So, maybe I let a little theme slip in there because who can resist a bunny?). But overall, I tend to focus more on the actual seasons (winter, spring, summer, fall) than specific themed holidays.

In Between Seasons & Non-Theme Decorating {Evolving to Spring}

Southern Living: Spring willows in vase

So, the question was asked in my comments last week…how DO you decorate when you aren’t quite feeling ready for full spring decorating but a snowy winter mantel or table-scape feels a bit out of place too?

In Between Seasons & Non-Theme Decorating {Evolving to Spring}

BHG Moss and Mushroom Spring Decor

In Between Seasons & Non-Theme Decorating {Evolving to Spring}

BHG Spring and Easter Decorating

I usually end up with decor along the lines of the photos I’m sharing today. In Spring I like adding in hints of life and bits of spring! Some branches, a few springy flowers, some plants and maybe some moss.

You may have heard me say it before, but I really enjoy the the gradual evolution of the seasons. I don’t feel like I have to go crazy with themes or holidays and then tear it all down to go on to the next holiday, I just add in a pretty little hint here and there of the season and watch it evolve. It is a process that I enjoy!

In Between Seasons & Non-Theme Decorating {Evolving to Spring}

This is how my mantel has looked pretty much from January up until now. Kind of simple and neutral. But it worked for the past two months of the winter season. But about this time of year I start wanting a little bit more life, which for me will probably mean adding in some spring greens pretty fresh colors.

So, this mantel will be getting a little spring update over the next week or two, stay tuned and I’ll show you whatever I come up with! It will be a surprise to me too as I don’t really plan out my decor, I just kinda let it happen as the inspiration strikes!

 Do you like to decorate around specific holidays or themes or do you tend to decorate more around the season itself? Neither way is right or wrong!

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  1. Kate

    I definitely don’t decorate for seasons. I have a TON of Christmas decor I put out and that lasts for over a month. My girls make me put out a few bunnies and pumpkins at Easter and Halloween (and I really hate them…especially the Halloween stuff because orange is a color I would never in a million years decorate with, especially Halloween orange). But the rest of the year I do nothing and I’m quite happy that way. I’ve never thought of changing things out. I don’t think I would enjoy the constant change and storage of non seasonal items. Christmas is enough to do me in, which is why it’s up for over a month. When I get a room the way I like it I don’t want to change it!

    • Joni

      Amen! I hate themes! And as a working mom, I don’t have the time or the energy to keep changing everything. I only buy those things that I love and I want to see them all year long. I wish more decorating sites were like this one and addressed the need to do less seasonal/themed decorating :)

  2. Susan

    For as long as I can remember (even before I bought my first apartment when I was in my very early 20’s), I’ve always enjoyed buying home decorating magazines, and admiring all the decorating for the seasons, etc.

    For some reason, however, other than decorating for Christmas, I have *never* changed my decor by the seasons. I don’t know why, other than perhaps not having the money to go out and buy new stuff, or don’t have time, or whatever, so although I’ve had every good intention of doing so, it hasn’t happened yet.

    Maybe it’s time?

    • Melissa

      Maybe it is time! Even little changes can be fun!

  3. Jen

    I’m more of a seasons person. I really don’t like decorating for the holidays, it feels too forced for me. Right now my house is pretty neutral, it’s not wintry or spring. But I’m sure soon as the weather gets nicer ill want to display some of that in my home. I also try to really buy things that I’ll love all year long, I think when you love something you won’t mind looking at it all year. And if things are feeling stale I just move things around to make them feel brand new : ) have a fabulous day!

  4. Heather

    Hi Melisa

    Like you, I decorate for seasons changing things up as the year evolves. Right now, my mantel has some forced magnolia blooms which have just opened. Cut about two weeks ago, they are ready to bring some sunshine into the room. I did put away the pinecones that sit in a bowl on the coffee table and (when I get them done) they will be replaced with some decoupaged eggs – done in music sheets and newpaper for a subtle look. Hate going over the top for events like St. Patrick’s Day or Valentines – they are only one day, not a season (there, you have it, my reason for changing things seasonally).

  5. Sandra

    I’m guilty of changing things up for the seasons – I live in New England and I love changing things up four times a year =). Sometimes it’s just the front door wreath and sometimes it’s a few items in the main living area.

  6. missy june

    I very much decorate seasonally: spring, summer, fall! Christmas and winter. For specific holidays like Valentines, Easter or July 4, I may put just a couple of highlights out for a week or so leading up to the day.

    I love to use the natural elements of each season: blossoms, shells, etc.

  7. mary timmers

    I decorate for the seasons, with Christmas being more specific. I get really excited after Valentine’s Day to break out the spring stuff. This I’ll do a little at a time with maybe a children’s theme on the mantel too. I LOVE spring, so I love decorating for it anytime!

  8. Linda Stoll

    A pot of miniature daffodils coming into bloom has been my transition joy this year! Sitting on the table, they’ve made many evening meals a real treat. I’ll be planting the bulbs to remember the warmth and hope they brought during those long winter days …

  9. michelle starling

    I’ve never decorated by holidays other that Christmas or Thanksgiving. Even for Thanksgiving it is subtle and Fall colors. I would love to have slipcovers made for Spring/Summer and Fall/Winter and to be able to swap out a few pillows and/or blankets. I do like the branches in the bottles. But I did put out a new table runner that’s Spring like. I found it at TJMaxx over the weekend. It’s featured in my latest post titled Homemade Brownies if you’d like to see it.

  10. ColleenwithMurals&More

    Thank you SO much for this post. This is one of the hardest times to decorate. Something about post Holiday festive decor and then . . . blah. And this is when we need a lift! The pics you chose do just that, add a lift. So thank you :)

  11. Mindy

    Oh I LOVE the bottles with branches. And that moss and mushroom arrangement is so stinkin’ cute I can hardly stand it.
    I only completely redo my mantel for Christmas. The rest of the year the main things that change are the flowers or branches that get stuck down in the bottles.
    Although, as I was laying in bed last night, I was thinkin’ it’s about time to bust out the Easter tree. :o)

  12. Gina

    I decorate more by season except Christmas, but this time of year I think is hardest. I have been fiddling around with my mantel this week and can’t seem to det it how I want it. =P We are still using our gas logs so I can’t use flowers or plants yet. And of course there is a big t.v. there. ;)

  13. Kim

    Um, can I say both? Our home changes through the seasons, almost naturally without a conscious effort. With four distinct seasons, life and in turn our house decor, changes quite a bit throughout the year. We do also decorate for the holidays. Having kids, I find that decorating for the holidays gives them something to look forward to. We don’t go all out, but we decorate the dining room table or change up the hoop art. We also have a memo board in the living room that we change up. The decorations are simple, handmade and only stay up for a short period of time. We then revert back to the more natural seasonal decor.

  14. Mrs C

    I’m so glad I stopped by today. The pictures are very inspiring. It’s time to put up the snowmen (seasonal) and the last of the winter decor (not Christmas!!!lol) I have forsythia blooming in the yard, and I need to bring it in. I love bringing nature inside, from each season, those are my favorite ways to decorate! Spring is early this year for us, daffodils already bloomed in February! Better go grab that forsythia before these fierce March winds damage them. Thanks for INSPIRING me today!


    Spring is my favorite time of year so I probably force it a bit more than most. I start by bringing in some greenery from outside, very much like what you have pictured above in pretty bottles. Then comes the first blooms, camelias floating in pretty bowls, I tend to bring in more white and green to give everything a fresh look. I just LOVE this time of year!! You sound like one verrrry busy lady, xo Kathysue

  16. Lisa

    Seasons…except for Christmas, of course, but then it’s Winter on Jan. 2! It’s mainly about colors & textures for me. My backdrop is neutral so most of the color comes from accessories & artwork. I usually don’t go crazy. I have 2 pieces of artwork that I switch out {one for spring/summer, the other for fall/winter}, create a few vignettes in the living areas of the house, put away my fall/winter cranberry red pillows during the warmer seasons & that’s pretty much it!

  17. Diane

    Melissa I LOVE the winter mantel!! Perfect!
    Right now I am itching to do something. And since today is sunny and soon to be 60…I’m going to go for a walk and see if I can find something to bring inside. I have a couple of primroses…a bargain at the grocery store…which are helping in the meantime. (That is if my cats don’t decide that a primrose salad would be a perfect afternoon treat! I have to be vigilant!) Thanks for the tips…**you are the best** at working with the seasons in a more subtle classy way! I loved the inspiration…and look forward to seeing what you do next!!!

  18. Karen

    I love blooming branches. Nice to know I can make my own. The leather wing back chair is fabulous.

  19. Pat

    Christmas is the only time I go all out. Easter used to be a close second, but we do not have children and the dragging of all the stuff out and then putting it away got to be too much. I am selective about what I display. I must love it. One habit I have developed lately is to display a saying about the holiday in a frame. At Halloween I found a Halloween themed eyechart. I thought it was cute and displayed it in my guest bath. I now use the same frame and change out the art if I find something I like. It makes things interesting as my husband does not know what he will find and it is fun to see how long it takes him to notice it. There are variations on the “Keep Calm” poster and a variety of subway art themes online that are free. This is easy and fun. For the most part the idea of keeping it simple is best for us.

  20. Jo

    The only holiday I specifically decorate for is Christmas (except this year when I did a little Valentine decorating). Other than that, I usually add a few subtle seasonal decorations. Right now I have a garland of yarn and pinecones across my mantle…which kind of clashes with the reeds and cattails I have above it (leftover from a baby shower). I look forward to seeing how your mantle evolves for spring!

  21. Carrie

    I have young children so I definitely decorate for the holidays. It’s fun for them, and for me too. I also decorate to coordinate with the different seasons. It just always seems necessary to make the room match the outdoors since I live somewhere with four very distinct seasons.

  22. rosekraft

    A few vintage holiday touches in our household – have a collection of framed antique holiday postcards that are displayed.
    Seasonal decorating on a weekly basis – whatever is happening in the garden ends up in matte green vases on the kitchen counters.
    This time of year is just great, with so much pruning going on…..

  23. Lisa

    I like to decorate for seasons more than holidays. I usually plant paperwhite bulbs to bloom for Christmas but this year forgot. When I planted them a few weeks ago I thought they would be a nice peek into Spring. They are blooming right now! They are amazing. I think that I will continue to buy the Christmas paperwhites but save them until February/March from now on. :)

  24. Camille

    I absolutely LOVE decorating for the season. I just feel like it’s wrong if I have a painting of summer flowers on a wall in the winter! I don’t really care for decorating for holidays (it can get cheesy) except for Christmas, and even then I like to do a more natural Christmas. My Christmas tree this past year had big red poinsettias, pine cones, icicle ornaments, and the occasional woodland creature here and there. I absolutely loved it.

    I also stick to things that I love all year round. I am obsessed with anything glass or silver. When I go to a thrift store, my particular weaknesses include glass containers and silver candle sticks. No matter what time of year, you can find them all over my house! :)

  25. NanaDoll

    Love the branches in the jars! So beautiful…and the leaves also. Simply beautiful.

  26. Julie

    I agree with you, I much prefer a subtler look. And as some have said, decorating for the seasons feels more authentic to me than decorating for holidays. I love your branch ideas. Bringing some branches inside is something I’ve wanted to do for a while.

  27. Melinda

    during a snow storm last week, I desperately needed Spring. must admit I used faux flowers, faux dog, and yes, faux vegetables to bring Spring to my dining room. don’t know how long it will stay, I may need to get real, real soon!

  28. Sonya

    Very tasteful choices. I’m not a Valentines and bunny deorating person so I really enjoyed your take of this in between seasons decorating. Always great posts. Thanks

  29. Mimi

    I tend to allow color to lead my design decisions when it comes to decorating my mantel. Since spring is coming, I needed to brighten the place up. So I just bought some beautiful citron pillows with a black graphic design from Marshall’s for the living room. Found 2 matching lamps at Target. The citron and other colors will make their way onto the mantel in some form.

  30. AlexisAnne

    I am SO not a Holiday decorator- but I love to switch things up w/ the seasons and I decided that on March 1st- winter was out and spring was in :) My Spring Decor is greens, yellows, and some purple as soon as I can get my hands on just the right thing. My linked post shows what I’m talking about exactly.

  31. Wendy J

    Yes! Yes! Yes! In between. So ready for spring/summery stuff but can’t bring myself to do it yet. I loved the mantle pick with all the white. That is inspiring. Think I will pull out my white stuff this week. Thanks. Love your blog!

  32. susan

    I like to start with the season and add little things for holidays, even “little ” holiday types. Palm Sunday, Midsummer Night, Saint Nicklaus day, Epiphany, and even weird. Ones like Nurse Day or Secretary Day. I am a kid @heart ;)

  33. susan

    How could I forget? Paczkes for Shrove. Aka Fat. Tuesday? Slovak Daddy wud be miffed! ;)

  34. susan

    ARGH! I forgot twice. Best ideas to find demijohns like in first picture? Help? Auctions? Craig’s? Goodwill? Love em but on the cheap. –

  35. Suma

    I am most inclined to decorate and reinvent when the sun is shining and the skies are blue. I spend the winter crocheting, sewing ….etc and I am intensely thinking of all the projects I can do when the weather is warmer. Of course, only a few get done but it gives me pleasure and motivation to be able to (make) things with my own hands. Btw, I love your mantles and all the glass containers with the branches. Thanks Melissa for all the tips and pictures!

  36. Brenda

    I’m realizing that most of my everyday decor (non-holiday) is based on nature with birds, flowers, candles, nature pictures etc. My problem is decorating during the Winter months following Christmas. I’ve tried to keep out any of my holiday decor that doesn’t scream Christmas, such as pine, pine cones, snowmen, pictures that say “Let it Snow”, etc., but there isn’t enough of it to decorate my very bare house after I put away my mountains of Christmas decor. So I try to get out the bins that hold my everyday decor items, but they just don’t meld well with snowmen and so on. So rather than going out and filling 3 or 4 more bins full of Winter decor, which I really don’t want to do, I end up taking it all down by the 3rd week in January and just going right to the everyday decor that is up most of the year. I don’t decorate for Spring yet per se, no bunnies or peeps, but it sure doesn’t look like Winter either. My Mother-In-Law always did an African theme for January & February with lots of zebra and leopard prints in her throws and pillow, and African masks on the walls and figurines of elephants, tigers and giraffes sitting on her tables mixed in with lots of green plants and black and tan planters. It was something we all looked forward to seeing. I’m not sure where she stored it all, but every couple of months her whole house was transformed. She had the Easter Season, followed by the birds and butterflies season, followed by the frogs and daisies season, followed by owls with fall decorations, then Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas and then back to the African theme. I’m exhausted just thinking of it! It’s also very hard to do a white theme when your whole house seems to be earth tones of gold, green, burgandy and tan. The red and green of Christmas look wonderful but not the stark white of the winter decor, which seems to go better in neutral settings. I’m at a loss! :/


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