Decorating Tips from Biltmore

Christmas at Biltmore 2018

If you think decorating your home for the holidays can sometimes be a little overwhelming, imagine what it's like to deck the halls at a home with over 250 rooms! Decorators at Biltmore House, America's largest private home, have made holiday decorating an art, and in 2023, decorators are allowing each room to speak to its own holiday theme. “We always take the elements of each space into consideration, but this year, we’re giving a fresh voice to what makes individual areas of Biltmore House so distinctive,” said Lizzie Whitcher, Floral Manager.

See Christmas at Biltmore

Here is a list of decorating ideas that will help bring the warmth and spirit of a 19th-century holiday to your home.

  • Choose a theme for your tree. While there will be 67 trees in Biltmore this year, you might need to only decorate a few. A children's tree is always popular with antique or reproduction toys gathered around the base. For a softer look, consider using dried flowers, paper fans, ribbons, crocheted and handmade ornaments to create a Victorian looking tree.
  • Speaking of tree, make sure to pick the freshest cut possible, and cut off the first inch or so of the base to help the tree absorb more water.
  • If you have antique collectibles, showcase them during the holiday season. Nestle them in evergreen and chooseBiltmore Christmas decorative ribbons that will tie in your color scheme. This year, Biltmore is using more than 9,000 yards of bows! 
  • Instead of red and green, sprinkle crimson, burgundy, champagne, and gold throughout your holiday colors scheme. Survey the colors in your home and coordinate appropriately, or just try a combination you like.
  • Display wreaths throughout the home to bring some cheer. According to Biltmore, the estate's "wreaths are made of fresh white pine and Fraser fir, ornamented with golden arborvitae, holly, or other natural materials such as twigs and cones."
  • Use handmade ornaments side-by-side with hand blown glass ornaments similar to those used in the 19th century. Ornate Victorian patterned paper can be folded into paper fans that are decorated with a bow. Pomander balls (dried fruit with embedded whole cloves wrapped with tulle and ribbon) are not only decorative but fragrant.
Updated October 19, 2023