Holiday Decorations - Exploring Sentiment and Habits of Holiday Decor

Holiday Decorations

Exploring Sentiment and Habits of Holiday Decor

Holiday travel plans in 2020 may not be completely canceled, but there’s no denying that the holiday season this year may look different than ever before in light of the global COVID-19 pandemic. Although your travel plans may be on ice this year, there’s one aspect of the holiday season that can help make things feel as normal and magical as possible: home decor.

With people spending more time at home these days than ever before, holiday decorating started sprouting up as early as March in 2020. Even if you weren’t quite that excited to dust off the lawn ornaments and lights in the spring, cooler weather is finally setting in, and Halloween, Thanksgiving, and winter holiday decor are back in season.

So how early is too early to start thinking about decorating, and which parts of the home deserve a seasonal touch? To find out, we surveyed 984 people about their holiday decor inspiration and habits. Read on as we break down people’s responses to which decorations get them most excited, from where they draw their holiday influence, whether they’ll be spending more to decorate in 2020, and if getting into the spirit of the season has ever caused serious disagreements for couples.

The Reason for the Season(s)

Decorating for the holidays isn’t just an obligatory task to avoid being labeled a humbug; experts say looking at holiday decor can actually make you happier. Despite the potential mood boost, many people agree not every holiday warrants its own interior design. According to those we polled, 30% of people don’t decorate for New Year’s Eve, Valentine’s Day, or St. Patrick’s Day.

Stoneside Holiday Decorations - The Reasons for the Season(s) Infographic

On the other end of the holiday spectrum, Halloween, Thanksgiving, and the winter holidays seem to get people much more excited with decorating potential. While more than half of people reported decorating for Halloween and Thanksgiving (in addition to Easter and the Fourth of July) three weeks or less in advance, 40% of people prepared their winter holiday decor a month in advance, and 21% started decorating even earlier. As we found, people are more than twice as likely to start decorating a month in advance for the winter holidays, including Christmas and Hanukkah, compared to any other holiday.

Fifty-six percent of respondents indicated holiday decorating was extremely or very important to them, and the most common areas getting these holiday overlays were the living room (86%), the exterior of the home (56%), and the dining room (47%). Just 31% of people reported putting holiday decorations up in their bedrooms, and only 19% added any festive cheer to the bathrooms.

Holiday Decor Trends in 2020

While 64% of people said they’d be putting their holiday decorations for 2020 up at the same time they have in the past, 27% of people admitted they’ll be decorating earlier than usual this year. A quarter of people also indicated they’d be putting up more decorations than usual, a majority (74%) of who also said they were opting for earlier decorating so they’d have something to look forward to.

Stoneside Holiday Decorations - Holiday Decor Trends in 2020 Infographics

Overwhelmingly, 60% of those surveyed agreed the winter holidays were their favorite to decorate for, followed by Halloween (21%) and a more distant New Year’s (8%). Perhaps more than any other time of year, the ornaments and decorations we put up in the winter months create the best kind of nostalgia, reminding us of some of the happiest times in our life.

For those looking to spruce things up, 48% of people reported getting their holiday decor inspiration from Instagram, followed by Facebook (43%), friends and family (44%), and Pinterest (37%).

Setting a Holiday Decorations Budget

Fifty-seven percent of people said they will spend about the same amount of money on holiday decorations in 2020 than in years past; though 23% will spend more than usual, and another 20% will spend less. To keep things from getting out of hand, 45% of people also acknowledged they’d set a strict budget for their holiday decor spending.

Stoneside Holiday Decorations - Setting a Holiday Decorations Budget Infographic

And just how much are they spending? Despite not being the overall favorite time of year to deck the halls, people reported spending more money ($334) on New Year’s decorations, on average, than any other time of year. Other less popular decor holidays, including Valentine’s Day ($274) and St. Patrick’s Day ($246), resulted in higher average spending than the winter holidays ($191).

Just 19% of people reported buying new decorations every year for the holidays, while it was more common to use a mix of both old and new decor (48%) or to simply stick with the same decorations year after year (33%). Among those polled, women (53%) were more likely than men (24%) to indicate caring more about holiday decorating than their partner.

Disagreements on Decor

Even without the added pressure of a global health pandemic to contend with, the winter holidays can be a stressful time for many families. In 2020, that stress may be compounded when traditional holiday celebrations don’t look exactly the way we might want them to or the way they have in the past.

Stoneside Holiday Decorations - Decorating as a Couple Infographic

For some couples, making decisions about how to decorate for the holidays can be tense, too. Fifty-four percent of couples living separately admitted to having argued about their holiday decor, and 37% of couples living together said the same. While a majority of people in relationships (60%) said they never argued over holiday decorations, the winter holidays were the most likely to cause disagreement among those who do. Forty-two percent of people in relationships also reported having decorated their partner’s home for the holiday season.

So what were the most triggering aspects of holiday decorating? For 59% of people arguing over festive decor, the problem was the type of decorations, followed by the amount of decorating (57%) and the cost of that decor (50%).

Going the Extra Mile

Decorating is one thing, but what about going above and beyond to renovate for the holiday season? Thirty-nine percent of people reported having renovated their home to prepare for the holidays, most commonly for New Year’s (54%), the winter holidays (52%), and Halloween (47%).

Stoneside Holiday Decorations - Renovating for the Holidays Infographic

Renovating may not be as simple as putting up your standard holiday decor, but for many people, renovations made it easier to entertain guests (58%), made space for people visiting (54%), and helped impress guests coming over for the holidays (53%). Forty percent of people indicated they opted for holiday renovations to personally feel more excited about the holiday season.

The Decor of Your Dreams

The holiday season is coming, and even if the festivities of 2020 aren’t exactly what you may have had in mind at the beginning of the year, decorating for the holidays gives us all an opportunity to infuse our home with memories and cheer. While many people expect to put their decorations up at the same time as they have in years past, some also indicated spending and doing more for their holiday decor just so they would have something to get excited about.

At Stoneside Blinds & Shades, we know a thing or two about transforming your home for the better. From shades and blinds to drapery and valances, our designers will work with you every step of the way to help make your home decor dreams a reality. With our free virtual and in-home design consultations, we’ll help you find the perfect solutions for any sense of style or budget. Explore the possibilities for yourself online at Stoneside.com today.

Methodology and Limitations

We surveyed 984 respondents who decorate their home for at least one holiday a year. Of our respondents, 449 were women, 534 were men, and one respondent was nonbinary. The average age of respondents was 39.43 with a standard deviation of 12.24. All numerical values entered into this study were given a maximum of the 95th percentile of all responses, and all averages are based on a minimum of 100 respondents.

The data presented in this study rely on self-reporting, which is inherent to some limitations. This includes exaggeration as well as underreporting of information. These data have not been weighted.

Fair Use Statement

Are your readers ready to start decorating for the holiday season? We welcome you to share the findings of our study for any noncommercial use with the inclusion of a link back to this page in your story as credit to our contributors for their work.