Go with the glow this season with the introduction of metallics to your surroundings

As a little girl, I was always attracted to shiny objects. Maybe that was because I grew up in a working-class family and there wasn’t much money for those pretty things that I wanted oh so badly, especially during the holidays. Since then, the glow and shimmer of gold metallics and warm candlelight have always brought to mind Christmastime. And the cool, bright glisten of silver gets me excited about the new year and new beginnings.

So in this two-part series, I’m going to give you tips about how you can incorporate a trend that’s hot in home decor: the unmistakable sparkle of metallics. First up is Christmas!

Gold, antique gold, bronze: All these metals are warm in nature and work beautifully with warm colors. Remember those? I’ve talked to you about the color wheel, something we all learned about in school. How can you incorporate warm hues of red, orange brown and earth tones into your home not only for the holidays but throughout the year?

When we remodeled the Vavuls’ home in Diamond Head, we chose to accent one wall in the sitting area off the master bedroom not with paint, but with a cork wallpaper that has a glint of gold peeking through. It’s from Phillip Jeffries of Architectural Surfaces in Gentry Pacific Design Center.


The wallpaper creates a warm and interesting backdrop for our punee and ties in well with our gold lotus lamp. The warm colors that accompany this range from reds to chocolates and a soft black. It’s an ethnic, modern space that glistens with the right amount of gold highlight.

Other possible gold elements for a room? Think accessories, drawer pulls, candlesticks and yes, even wallpaper.

And how easy is it to bring in some pillows or re-cover a seat cushion? Yes, you can choose a warm color, or you can go literal with a yellowish-gold fabric. But why not do it in a metallic?

There are so many amazing textiles out there now that can give you the warm glow you’re looking for, like a gold metallic basket weave print, crocodile or snakeskin prints, or even ikat prints with a splash of gold. These textiles are super-hot, and it’s easy to create one-of-a-kind pieces from seat bottoms to seat backs or bolster cushions or even ottomans.

If you don’t want to go quite so big, how about making changes in small ways? Look for some gold tea lights or candlesticks. Don’t have them in gold? Paint them! Especially if you find something affordable in wood, the easiest thing to do is take a can of spray paint and paint on your metallic.


If you want it to look a little more weathered, then while the paint is still wet, take a cloth and brush a little off. Voila!

And how about some organic branches?

Get some very simple curly willow or other natural branches, spray on a coat of gold paint and suddenly you have a tall, dramatic natural centerpiece for just pennies.

So there you have it: ways to add the glow and glisten of gold so that a touch of Christmas magic will make your house sparkle all year long.

Cathy Lee is president and designer of Cathy Lee Style and Cathy’s Marketplace, a furniture and accessories showroom with design services at 1110 University Ave. She recently opened reStyle Hawaii, an affordable, style-conscious consignment warehouse with upholstering and repurposing services at 420 Keawe St. Visit www.cathyleestyle.com.