Around Your Home

Get ready for party season with these decorating tips.
Derick Belden

Ice Is Nice
Greet guests with a twist on traditional luminaries. These icy stars add seasonal sparkle to a front porch or sidewalk.

We ordered these from Lee Valley (www.leevalley.com; item 45K42.01). If you want to line a path, we suggest you order half as many molds as you ultimately need. Freeze half, remove from molds, and store ice stars in the freezer; then repeat the process. The trick is to give your forms plenty of time to freeze. We left them in a freezer for a couple of days before the party and pulled them out as the festivities began.

Light It Right
Keep from feeling like Clark Griswold this Christ­mas with outside outlets strategically placed where you want to hang lights. Derrick Koger of Derrick Builders in Kissimmee, Florida, worked with the homeowners of this new house to add outlets under the eaves that are controlled by switches inside. Consider having an electrician put a couple in your garden. They would come in handy for decorations or garden tools.

Quick Change
Slipcovers can give your furniture a new look any time of year, but try this for the holidays. We asked Laurie Gibson of Cherry Zebra in Columbus, Georgia, to embellish a fitted slipcover with a festive monogram.

The Southern Living Cover Style collection is a line of chairs and benches with fitted covers in more than 20 different fabrics. The unique feature we love is that the covers are attached with self-fastening strips underneath the seat, so that in mere minutes, you can change your fabric with a custom upholstery look. For more information visit www.southernlivinghomecollection.com.

Share With Us
Tell us about the things you do to make the holidays special and your best sources for decorations. Send a note to Southern Living Home Department, P.O. Box 523, Birmingham, AL 35201. Or e-mail homesandgardens@timeinc.com. If we showcase your ideas, we’ll send you a copy of Christmas With Southern Living.