5 Holiday Decorating Tips from Brooklyn’s Emily Thompson

Emily Thompson is a Brooklyn-based florist who recently exhibited her unique talents in the East Room at the White House. She recently shared five simple, natural tips for decking your own halls at home this holiday season:

– Decorate with a lot of a particular thing: “I love using lots of one thing. If it’s tinsel, really go crazy with the tinsel” she said. “If it’s popcorn and cranberries, try covering the tree in a web of the stuff.”

– Utilize the great outdoors: “During my childhood, we made lots of chains of pine cones, wiring them into these long ropes. And after a big storm last year, I found sweet-gum tree pods and horse chestnuts. It’s hard to forage in Brooklyn but you can do it.”

– Use fruits, vegetable and leafy foods: Make bowls filled with citrus fruits and “poke a few bits of foliage like fresh bay leaves into the crevasses between the fruit to dress it up” she said. The bowls can then be placed at a buffet table, an entryway or as a centerpiece.

– Remember the evergreen: “Tucking evergreen foliage around candles, ornaments or trays of cookies adds an immediate seasonal feel.”

– Mix the nature with the artificial: “Put real pinecones on a fake tree” she suggests, adding: “even though I’m in favor of more natural and wild aesthetic, I like the contrast with something man-made.”

Whatever you do, don’t forget to be unique and incorporate your own personal style. Involve your family and friends to compare ideas and approaches to create a winter wonderland that it truly unforgettable.


James Allenby is the editor of Gowanus Lounge, bringing to his position a vast background on New York, and especially Brooklyn history, culture and lifestyle. Born and bred in the heart of "the County of Kings" James Allenby knows what it means to be a Brooklynite, and imparts this meaning at all times to his readers. Contact James at info(at)