Michelle Kraker, half of the style duo team of Interior Edit Nashville, has strong memories of her childhood Christmases and traditions that she remains faithful to today.
Her mom would go all out for the holiday, cramming all the ornaments Kraker and her three siblings had made over the years onto the tree ringed with ’90s-era multicolored lights and crowned with a sparkling tree topper.
“It was definitely very nostalgic, and every Christmas morning, my dad would read the Christmas story from the Bible,” she says. “We couldn’t even open presents until that was done, so we would be trying to appreciate it while at the same time, being like, ‘Wrap it up, Dad.’ It was a really special time for my family.”
With the COVID-19 pandemic blowing so many holiday traditions out of the water, Kraker says it might be fun to try something totally different for Christmas 2020. The décor in our homes is something we can control, after all, so going a completely different direction this year could inspire some new traditions to add to the mix in years to come.
“Even though I like a glam look, it could be that next year I’ll do more of a simple farmhouse or find clients who want a cottage feel. And that’s what’s fun for me — finding those different styles and not just doing what I like,” she says.
Kraker, with business partner Katie Jimenez, helps people audit their existing décor. Then they either add to it to evoke a new magical scene, or they buy everything from tree to tinsel and set it all up — helping clients define their personal style.
Kraker and Jimenez recently teamed up in their business, offering decorating services for the holidays – and not just Christmas – as well as styling all year long.
One tradition Kraker has begun with her husband that is an homage to her childhood is sawing off and saving a sliver from the bottom of each year’s live Christmas tree. It has become a visual reminder of how much they have grown together from the year before.
“When we were broke in Chicago in a studio apartment, we had the Charlie Brown Christmas tree, so it’s like a quarter size,” she says. “You can tell that once we got a little bit more money, the slivers got bigger and bigger. So now it’s like a pyramid stack.”
She is of the opinion that this year, or any year, really, you can’t have too many trees. Kraker plans on pushing the envelope in her own home, though, to test the theory.
“I am envisioning when people walk in, it’s just lined with Christmas trees,” she says. “They are just like big warm, glowy candles.”