Is there time to redecorate by the holidays? Designs by Dawn shares what’s possible.

With the holidays coming up, are you looking at your home with your entertainment schedule in mind and thinking you need to make a few changes before guests arrive? We spoke to Designs by Dawn, the sponsor of the Petoskey area Northern Home & Cottage Tour about changes homeowners can make between now and the New Year to refresh and revamp guest bedrooms and baths, your great room, living room or dining area … and of course, the kitchen!

As you consider these changes, Designs by Dawn encourages you to get in touch with your designer quickly. There may be initial steps you can take now to enjoy this year, and start a bigger re-design project after the New Year.

Having Guests?

Some updates to the guest bedroom, bath and closet will have your friends and family feeling the love, instead of feeling like they are staying in your storage space.

Closet organization systems don’t just look good, they can also get you started on those New Year’s resolutions to reorganize and declutter your home. Designs by Dawn uses ProClosets, which ship in two days. Installation is quick and easy too.

Updating the guest bath, or the powder room that party guests use could be as simple as swapping out a builder grade plate glass mirror for a more decorative framed mirror. A new, updated light fixture and sink faucet, along with new towels and a rug may be all a small bath needs to be holiday ready.

Refreshing furniture is a quick way to change the look, feel, and function of any room.

New Kitchen By Christmas?

A whole new kitchen design by Christmas isn’t advisable. But if you’re sure your holiday entertaining is going to mean that everyone ends up in the kitchen (and doesn’t it?) and you can’t stand the thought, here’s what’s possible.

New countertops. Fabricators lead times are around 3–4 weeks from the time of template to installation, roughly. So if we can get measurements, find a top that fits the direction you’d like to take, and secure a fabricator quickly, you can make a major change in time.

Redoing the kitchen backsplash is another great way to make a big impact quickly. Tile installers seem to be in short supply in Northern Michigan, so it might be tricky to get on their schedules. Homeowners might consider combining a backsplash project with a refresh of the fireplace tile or stone, to make the project more desirable. And together, those projects really help to update the home.

Painting or refacing kitchen cabinets can be an easy update that is much less expensive and much less involved than replacing the cabinets. We recommend a professional painter who can spray the finish on the doors and drawer fronts to avoid brush marks.  While the painting work itself would only take a few days, many painters are really busy right now and it may be difficult to get someone to take on the project before the holidays. If this is your solution, get started now.

Obviously fresh paint is another great way to get ready for holiday decorating and entertaining. Adding an accent wall, such as the new peel and stick wood veneer products, like Petoskey’s own Plankwise, can make a dramatic change as well. This product has adhesive strips on the back and can be installed pretty easily by a do-it-yourselfer with a level and a chop saw. It’s the perfect way to add interest and texture to fireplaces, accent walls in dining rooms, front entries, bedrooms, etc.

Wallpapered accent walls can also add a lot to a room, fairly inexpensively and quickly. On the Northern Home & Cottage Tour, there were some examples of textures and unusual patterns that added whimsy—boat building blueprints wallpaper in a bathroom. Other wallpapers were all drama, like the dining room with snakeskin textured walls.

Updating lighting is a great way to get a new look without spending a ton of money and could definitely be done before the Thanksgiving turkey is served. A new dining room light or kitchen pendants instantly update a space. Simply adding a dimmer switch provides instant ambiance and makes the celebration feel really special when paired with some candlelight.

Again, Designs by Dawn encourages you to get in touch with your preferred interior designer or kitchen designer to talk about what your overall needs are, where you’d ultimately like to take the project and what’s feasible before the holidays. To get in touch with Designs by Dawn, visit

Photo(s) by Designs by Dawn