December 4, 2013

The Golden Touch

Three designers take a shine to precious metals in their visions for Holiday Beauty at home.

What happens when you ask interior design pros to envision their most glamorous, elegant, opulent holiday scenes in one room or space in a house?

They go for the gold, of course.

We asked three designers to create their fantasy holiday visions at home, inside or out. Each found inspiration in a different place — world travels, colorful peacocks, a client with an eye for sparkle. They all created magical interiors with distinctly modern, classic or romantic aesthetics but one common and beautiful thread: touches of gold.


When Jeff and Debbie Siek made the permanent move from California to Texas, it soon became apparent that the small Christmas tree they brought with them was in no way suited to fill the large space of their Colleyville home.

To help them take their holiday decor from humdrum to fantastical, they enlisted Amy Anderson of Design Perspectives in Colleyville. Anderson and Debbie Siek took a trip to Dallas Market Center in May to begin buying holiday decor. While some designers might be hesitant to shop with clients by their side, Anderson says Debbie (a former Apple exec) was everything she could hope for.

“She knows what she likes; she doesn’t second-guess herself,” Anderson says. “Less is more with her, furnishing-wise, but with Christmas more is more.”

For Debbie, “more” means sparkle. Trimmed with gold-on-gold decor that includes a custom-made tree topper, the Sieks’ eye-catching tree is spectacular and elegant. “Probably my favorite tree I’ve ever done,” Anderson says.

When offering decorating advice, Anderson advises to keep it practical. “Things come and go, so you don’t want something too trendy,” she says.

Resource: All items purchased from the Dallas Market Center.


Proving that reindeer are not the only animals that make for merry holiday decor, Lile Cecil of Decorating Den Interiors in Grapevine drew design inspiration from the beautiful plumage of the peacock for her fantasy holiday scene.

She chose the colorful bird as her muse, Cecil says, because she wanted to stray from a traditional holiday look for her entryway and give it more a contemporary feel. It also helped, Cecil says, that the peacock’s color palette of emerald green and dazzling blue is on trend (both are Pantone’s color of the year for 2013 and 2014, respectively).

Combining peacock accents with a penchant for sparkle, Cecil created a holiday scene that is modern in design but still classic at heart. Her favorite part? No question: the sparkling gold angel seen trumpeting on top of the entryway’s piano. (Just the answer you would expect from a self-confessed lover of all things that sparkle.)

“Bling is in,” Cecil says.

Resources: Tree, peacock ornaments and large gold angel, Norma Stone’s Home Accessories; peacock feathers, peacock wreath and cross display stand from Hobby Lobby; crystal star ornaments (annual edition), Swarovski.


A well-seasoned traveler, The House of Tuscany’s Melinda Alexander has spent many Christmases abroad. When it came time to create her fantasy, she looked no further than her love of French and Italian antiques.

“I knew exactly what I wanted to do,” Alexander said of her vision. Specifically, she wanted to stay away from the traditional Christmas palette of red and green.

Using her dining room as the canvas, Alexander chose from her personal collection a variety of special items she’d purchased on her travels over the years. Among the mostly gold and silver items, 18th-century French Christmas ornaments, Italian Murano bobeches from the 1920s and beautiful Russian china that Alexander had commissioned by the Lomonosov Imperial Porcelain Factory in St. Petersburg.

When she pulled it all together, Alexander had transformed her dining room into a holiday scene that is luxurious and inviting. Seeking advice on decorating your own home? Alexander says it’s all in laying the groundwork.

“Planning is everything,” she says. “If you wait until the last minute, then your table will look like you waited until the last minute.”

Resource: All items available through The House of Tuscany.

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