Text by Bethany Adams
In the Schmidt house, Christmas starts early. By Thanksgiving, Patsy Schmidt and her family have decked the shiplap walls of their Tennessee home with all the colors and lights of the season—and they keep things festive into January.
“I just feel like, the sooner we start, the more we can enjoy the actual season,” Patsy says. With seven trees throughout the renovated garage and carriage house, decorating the space is no small task. But with the help of her husband, Jeffrey, and their three daughters, Rayley Beth, Emme Grace, and Maggie, the job is a joy. When the family is finished with preparations, the house sparkles with the lights and vibrant colors Patsy associates with the season.
“To me, Christmas really is color,” she says, despite the fact the home’s everyday décor is saturated in calming, neutral tones. It’s part of the reason she uses fresh greenery on every available surface, from the exterior windows to the chandeliers above the oversize, wood-topped kitchen island.
“I love having fresh greenery tucked over picture frames and mirrors and going up the stairs,” Patsy says. Woven into the greenery, red plaid bows and striped ribbons inject festive country-style spirit into every corner. “I’ve always joked and said that if it’s sitting still, it gets greenery and a bow on it.”
But Patsy’s preference for color is best seen in the glittering décor in the dining room. The tree—a favorite of both Patsy’s and Maggie’s—hangs heavy with vintage ornaments as well as Christopher Radko pieces gifted by Patsy’s parents to mark various special occasions.
Not far from these reminders of precious memories, Patsy has set the table with pieces she hopes will create more. Paired with simple white dishes, the vintage-style Santa plates glow atop the rustic farm table. “The girls so look forward to setting those out every year,” Patsy says, “and I love that they’ll hopefully associate those with Christmas forever.”
While the Christmas cheer extends into the bedrooms, it takes a more neutral turn in Patsy and Jeffrey’s space, where silver and gold ornaments allow the framed black-and-white portraits of the girls to shine. The choice blends well with the softer country style of the room, sending a glow across plush white linens and wooden surfaces alike.
In the girls’ rooms, the trees reflect the three sisters’ personalities, but it’s the tree in the mudroom that really allows them to express themselves. Laden with everything from handmade works of art to Hallmark ornaments specially picked out every year, the tree is a monument of joy-filled Christmas memories, which, for Patsy, is one of the most important parts of the season: giving her daughters what her own mother gave her.
“She always made Christmas magical, and it was always surrounding the birth of baby Jesus,” Patsy says, noting that she has tried to pass that experience down to her girls. “That’s why we do so much—because there’s so much to celebrate.”
See more of Patsy’s holiday style on Instagram at @blessedmommatobabygirls, and see this feature in it’s entirety in our Country Cottage Christmas special issue, available now.