This evening, a 12-ton, 76-foot-tall Norway spruce from Shelton, Conn. that's bedecked with over 45,000 twinkling LEDs and topped with a ginormous Swarovski star will be christened in Rockefeller Center with musical performances by (because it's 1995, apparently) Jewel, the Goo Goo Dolls, and others.  Later in the week, the country's second most famous blinged-out evergreen, the National Christmas Tree, will be illuminated in Washington, D.C. That said, if you prefer to align your own tree-trimming and hall-decking activities with the star-studded celebrations surrounding the plugging-in of these famous trees, I’d say it’s now socially acceptable (we've passed the "jumping the gun" stage) to blast Trans-Siberian Orchestra (ugh) and go to town (or not) with tinsel and well-loved Christmas tchotkes around your own home.

As in years past, I’ve dutifully wrangled up a sleigh-full of seasonal accoutrements that will surely inject a bit of holly-jolly-ness to any home with an emphasis on the handmade, the unique, and the eco-friendly — not the chintzy made-in-China stuff that will only last a couple of seasons before being crushed and/or eaten by the cat.

I’m also fully aware that the best kind of holiday décor — be it bedazzled hosiery or bedecked shrubbery — is the homemade kind. However, but if you’re too swamped to break out the red and green pipe cleaners and glue gun for a zesty yuletide crafting session, holiday decorations and housewares designed and made with care by somebody else are a fine substitute.

So please, check out my holiday embellishment picks for this year. And at the bottom of the page, I've included a video of a suburban home rocking out to the tune of the Waitresses' "Christmas Wrapping." If this doesn't fill you with the spirit of the season, I'm not sure what will. 

Felt Mistletoe @ West Elm ($7)

Christmas Tree Pillow @ A&G Merch ($29)

Red Vintage Reindeer @ ABC Carpet & Home ($36)

Graphic Holiday Greens Door Wreath @ Beekman 1802 ($75) 

Swedish Christmas Dream Soap @ Dry Goods ($8)

Infinite Tree by Johannes Molin @ Areaware ($35)

Ugly Sweater Coasters @ Flox Home ($18)

Tyvek Stockings @ CB2 ($9.95)

Fabric Engraving Ornaments @ Terrain ($38)

Wooly Gnome Ornament @ Poketo ($12)

Paine's Balsam Fir Incense @ Daytrip Society ($6.95)

Fir Tree Cushion by Donna Wilson @ Dry Goods ($63)

Barnyard Royalty Ornament Collection @ Beekman 1802 ($59)

Tabby Cat with Tiny Christmas Cards Ornament by HolidayCat @ Etsy ($18)

Wooden Snowman Kit @ Terrain ($48)

Matt Hickman ( @mattyhick ) writes about design, architecture and the intersection between the natural world and the built environment.

Decking the halls, MNN style: 2013 edition
With the illumination of America's most famous evergreen upon us, it's a good a time as any to begin dressing up your home with stylish and sustainable cheer.