You still have time to transform your home into a winter wonderland this season. No matter what holiday you celebrate, you can sparkle up every room without spending big bucks. "Today" contributor and Shop Etc. magazine's executive editor Charla Krupp was invited to appear on the show to discuss how to add some sparkle to your home. Here's more on the items she featured on the show:
When it comes to holiday decorating, most of us just think of sprucing up the living room, but don't stop there. Steal these ideas to get your table, your bedroom, even your bathtub into the party mood.
There's nothing more inviting than a gorgeous table. These table settings are almost identical looking but one costs $1,760.66 a person and one costs $101.11 person. Can you tell which is which? The takeaway here is that you can mix and match the "good stuff" you already own with less expensive, even disposable, pieces that you can buy today. Here are my favorite examples.
The chargers: $125 vs. $3.25 each. An easy way to signal that this is not your everyday table setting is to place each dinner plate on a charger, an oversized plate used for decoration, not to eat on!
Luxe: Jasper Conran at Wedgwood Platinum Stripe Charger, $125; Wedgwood, 800-955-1550 The thick platinum stripes on this already popular white bone china reinforce a look of sophisticated elegance.
Less: Target Silver Charger, $12.99/4; Target, 800-800-8800 for stores. A charger for about $3.25 each? A brilliant buy!
The salad plates: $34 each vs. 43 cents each. Who said that the salad plate has to be fine china? These silver dots are paper! You'll congratulate yourself on your cleverness when it's time to load the dishwasher!
Luxe: Marc Blackwell, "Dots Parisian" Platinum Salad Plate, $34; Marc Blackwell, NY, 212-696-2827. The playful polka dot plate will make the salad look even more delicious, and it's a great contrasting pattern for the stripe charger.
Less: Caspari "Dots" Pearl Silver Paper Salad Plate, $3.75/set of 8; Caspari, 800-227-7274 for stores or Gracious Home, 800-338-7809 ($0.47 each). Paper is always a great option for the holidays, especially if you're having a big dinner party. And these paper plates have a classy pattern that imitates the luxe Marc Blackwell salad plate.
The flatware: $385 for a five-piece setting vs. 42 cents a piece or $1.26 for a fork, spoon, knife. Fake-out. Who said that the flatware has to be real? If you don't have nice silverware, or enough silverware, consider these very real looking plastics! An extreme fake-over!
Luxe: Christofle Galea Silver-Plated Flatware, $385/5-piece set; Christofle, NY, 212-309-9390, or christofle.com for stores. This style is actually the reinterpretation of the ornamental motif, double interlacing. Supple and round form expresses movement and modernity of the holiday season.
Less: "Looks Like Silver!" plastic utensils, $10/24 spoons, $10/24 forks, and $10/24 knives; plumparty.com ($0.42 each) This heavy-duty flatware adds a black-tie, festive touch without the dishpan hands. These are a favorite! All your guests will think it's the real thing.
Jingle bell place cards: $7.50 each vs. 20 cents each. Kate Spade's holders are a clever take on the real thing, but you can also buy the actual real thing for less — five jingle bells for 99 cents at a crafts store!
Luxe: Kate Spade "Donner Road" Place Card Holder, $30/set of 4; Kate Spade, 866-999-5283, or katespade.com ($7.50 each) The holders look like jingle bells, which is exactly what is used on the "Less" table.
Less: Craft King Silver 25mm Jingle Bell Place Card holder, $0.99/set of 5; Craft King, 800-373-3434 ($0.20 each) A jingle bell for a place card holder — how smart to ring in the holiday! And it doesn't get cheaper than this.
Whatever price your settings, consider sprinkling something colorful and festive like crystal rocks all over the table. We love these: Murval Cristale Table Accent Crystals, $15 for 40; Flora, MA, 508-996-2332, or Good Things, MN, 651-426-0625.
More shopping details on the table:
Luxe total: $1,760.66/person
- Kim Seybert Beaded Placemat, $75; Bergdorf Goodman, 800-558-1855
- Philippe Deshoulieres Carat Platinum Dinner Plate, $135; Michael c. Fina, 800.289.3462, or Lalique, 800-993-2580 for stores Perfect solid silver barrier for the stripes and the dots.
- ABH Design Silk Napkin, $22; ABH Design, NY, 212-249-2276
- Chanel Brooch, $850; Neiman Marcus, 888-888-4757 for stores, or Chanel, 800.550.0005 for stores. Make use of the beautiful brooches you stacked up on last year and use them as napkin jewelry. Just make sure none of your guests run off with this designer one!
- Artel Rose Narcissus Champagne Flute, $126; Gumps, 800-766-7628, or Trove, MA, 781.642.0484. Toast to a happy and healthy new year with this intricately detailed flute.
- Dempsey & Carroll Silver Border Place Card, $29 for 25; Dempsey & Carroll, 877-750-1878, or dempseyandcarroll.com ($1.16 each)
Less total: Around $101.11/person
- Bombay Silver Square Beaded Placemat, $19; Bombay, 888-226-6229
- Marc Blackwell "Parisian" Platinum Solid Dinner Plate, $47; Marc Blackwell, NY, 212-696-2827 The most expensive item on the table — for $47.
- Foreston Trends Sateen Napkin, $9.99 for 4; Linens 'n Things, 866-568-7378, or lnt.com ($2.50 each). Here's a less expensive version of a red napkin. The brooch you see on it is a steal — a sparkling burst for your cloth.
- M. Haskell Pearl and Crystal Brooch, $18
- Samba Champagne Flute, $37 for 4; Pineapple Post, 877-757-7678 ($9.25 each). A simple red glass flute for some bubbly.
- Crane's Place Card, $6/set of 10; Kate's Paperie, 800-809-9880 ($0.60 each)
Think the bedroom should be just as festive as the living room? Why not? Even if it's only you in the bed, why not create a winter wonderland? Anything that is usually for the living room can go in the bedroom. Candles, trees, plus tassels on your drawers. Hang a wreath on the foot post of your bed, and surround your bed with a forest of fake fir trees.
On your vanity or chest of drawers:Try candles that look like mirrored tree ornaments — just a little heavier. Light the wick and as the wax melts, the shiny metallic foil folds in on itself to reveal the candle inside. Wisteria Mirrored Holiday Candles in royal blue, silver and soft turquoise, $24/set of 3 (4"); 800-767-5490 or wisteria.com
Attach mirrored tree-toppers to candlesticks with Bobeches that drip in crystals, for a magnificent decoration you'll want to keep up 'til Valentine's Day. Tip: We used Staples Tack N Stick Reusable adhesive to stick the toppers to the candlesticks, $1.58 at staples.com.Jim Marvin Candlesticks with Bobeche, $45/each; C'est La Vie, OH, 419-241-4892. Jim Marvin Ribbed Tree Topper, $37; C'est La Vie, OH, 419-241-4892. Jim Marvin Glitter Spiral Tree Topper, $26; Manor House Gifts, PA, 717-692-2673. Jim Marvin Glitter Spiral Double Ball Tree Topper, $37; C'est La Vie, OH, 419-241-4892. Jim Marvin Shiny Green Tree Topper, $49.95; Wind River Silks, AK, 907-348-7455.
Decorate your vanity or any chest or dresser with a pretty metallic silver tassel — and keep it on year-round. Tassels are everywhere right now, from belts and necklaces to napkins, pillows and vanity drawers.
The one you saw on "Today" is from Cursive at ABC Carpet. Vintage Metallic Tassel, $42; Cursive at ABC Carpet, 646-602-3806.
Why bother with the bathroom?
When you're entertaining, you should always have a few surprises that will get guests talking. That's the measure of a successful party. This idea will have them saying: Go check out the bathroom!
Fill your tub with Jim Marvin Iridescent Murano Balls in Capri blue, $19 for 6; Duce & Company, FL, 850-654-7490.
Jim Marvin Plastic Balls in aqua, $27 for 12; Bella Boutique, AR, 501-603-5373. John Toole Jumbo Glass Balls in antique white and olive, $9/each; johntoole.com. Custom colors in classic shapes. Covered with a sheer milk finish.
You might want to change your tub mat: Gracious Style Blue Christmas Tree Bath Mat, $85 (20" x 34"); 888-828-7170 or graciousstyle.com. This one says holiday in untraditional colors.
And for bathroom reading? Your holiday cards!
You don't have to celebrate Christmas to buy a crystal dripping tree! Terrific Topiaries: Jacsonic Group Clear Crystal Topiaries, $45 (40"), and $37.50 (30"); 2910 Main, MD, 410-675-8505.
Acrylic tables are a nice price! Table Service: CB2 Peekaboo Clear Nesting Tables, $199; cb2.com. Nest together or scatter room to room. Made of molded clear acrylic.