We all know that the holiday season will look quite different this year. While there may not be any holiday parties and family gatherings will be limited, we all still deserve a holiday that brings us joy!

This past spring, we wrote about how design can help us cope while sheltering in place. And, with a long winter ahead of us, we’re going to continue leaning into those design hacks to help our homes work for our new needs. But, for the holidays, we want to approach this same theme from a different angle—how design can help create virtual togetherness. Because design can also spark joy and help you delight in the simple things, while also finding creative ways to connect with loved ones, near and far.

Want some tips on how to foster virtual togetherness and plan holiday celebrations during COVID? Here are some ideas from our Modsy designers on how they’ll be getting festive and celebrating safely this year!

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Fill Your Home With Moments of Joy and Delight

Since you probably won’t be traveling this year, perhaps you want to use some of that travel money to turn up the dial on festive decorations? Filling your home with moments of joy and delight through your decor will bring a smile to your face, even if you’re sad to miss some of the “normal” holiday gatherings and moments. (Need some inspiration? Check out our Holiday Decor Lookbook.)

Here’s how our designers are doing it…

“I think this is an opportunity for families to be excited for the holidays, even though they’ll look different this year. Since travel and events don’t seem to be on people’s high priority list, there’s a high demand for home decor and redesign for the holidays of 2020. I’m a big fan of incorporating bright colors that bring happiness to holiday decorations this year!” –Brooke M.

“This winter, decorate your home just as much as you normally would if the whole extended family and neighborhood were coming over for a party, even if they won’t be due to potential illness. Let yourself decorate your home for YOU and appreciate all that you’ve done to make your home feel festive for yourself and your family, despite all challenges and tribulations.” –Sam K.

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Spread Some Joy

Don’t stop at just making your home a space of joy. Take some time this holiday season to look beyond yourself and spread some joy to others. Whether that’s baking some cookies for a neighbor who lives alone, inviting a couple people over for a backyard winter bonfire, or volunteering with your favorite non-profit, now’s the perfect time to do something for others.

Here’s how our designers are doing it…

“Want to see people and spread some joy? Bake some pies or cookies and go deliver them to people who are spending the holidays alone. Just because we can’t all be together doesn’t mean we should all be alone.” –Katelin S.

Create Winter Rituals

Instead of focusing on the things you won’t be able to do this year, why not start some new traditions? They don’t have to be big, either. Small, simple rituals—like lighting a candle and meditating each morning or setting up a reading nook by the fire where you can curl up at night—will help you feel more grounded, during the holidays and beyond.

Here’s how our designers are doing it…

“I have various small rituals for the holidays and the time leading up to them. In Autumn, I change all the candles in the house to black. It’s rich and elegant and perfect for my family’s style. Starting a ritual or continuing one during the pandemic is more important than ever for grounding the spirit and creating a safe retreat from the world.” –Don L.

“We’re keeping traditions that have nothing to do with large gatherings and are focusing on those—like going for a morning run in the park and having cider on the porch by the fire at night.” –Brielle M.

Focus on the People Under Your Own Roof

We may not be able to have big gatherings of family and friends this year. But that makes it a perfect time to focus on your immediate family or housemates. Create some new traditions and find new ways to connect with each other. Whether that’s letting each person in your household plan an activity they want to do or each of you making a special dish for a holiday dinner, make the most of the time you have together. (And maybe even infuse some of those new winter rituals into your time together!)

Here’s how our designers are doing it…

“Since this year won’t include the same fun outings I am planning on making the most of our time at home with our immediate family. We’ll be doing things like making yummy desserts together, watching holiday movies, decorating the house as a family, and even doing some fall-inspired crafts.” –Amanda L.

“Times are definitely different this year for everyone but celebrating holidays is something we still need to do to keep our spirits high and to allow the kids to have some of the holiday magic they always look forward to. If you are unable to do your normal traditions, make new ones! Get dressed up and have a fancy Thanksgiving dinner with just your household, whomever it may be!” –Katelin S.

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Bring Back the Virtual Gatherings

Remember this spring when we were all great at keeping (virtually) in touch with all our friends, through Zoom happy hours and long Facetime calls? By the time summer hit, a lot of us were feeling Zoom fatigue and cut back on virtual gatherings. But, with winter coming it’s time to bring virtual gatherings back for special occasions and holidays.

Does your family play games at every holiday gathering? Keep the tradition alive by organizing a game you can easily play virtually. Does your friend have a signature punch she makes for her holiday party each year? Have her send out the recipe so you and all of your friends can mix up a batch and enjoy a virtual gathering. Get creative in how you can keep special traditions alive this year.

Here’s how our designers are doing it…

“Thanksgiving will be small this year, however, we plan on playing Scattergories virtually with lots of family members! This is a perfect game to play. All you have to do is send the list via text or email and call out the letter to start. The host house will shout out the timer when it’s done and everyone can share their answers. We laugh non-stop!”  –Kelly W.

Cook The Same Meal From Afar

Even if you can’t all be together for the holidays, break out the family-favorite recipes and have everyone make the same meal! Then, set up your laptop for a video call with everyone. Eating the same meal together, even when far apart, will make you feel closer together.

Here’s how our designers are doing it…

“We are cooking our traditional holiday meal using grandma’s recipes and then plan to virtually “sit down” together with all of our family members that we would normally see in person.” –Shelly S.

“Keeping safe is so important right now, but no one truly loves being alone during the holidays. Virtual dinners and drinks are perfect for those who can’t make it to their family physically. Set up a spot for your loved ones at the table and have fun cooking the same dishes together, from afar!” –Becky S.

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Practice Gratitude

COVID has taken a lot away from many of us. But perhaps it has also given you some gifts. Use this time to reflect on what you have gained this year—whether that’s more time in an ordinarily hectic schedule, a new hobby, or perhaps even a new love!

Here’s how our designers are doing it…

“We spent the beginning part of quarantine learning how to garden. Now we have an abundance of zucchini as well as a few pumpkins! We plan to help the kids write what we are thankful for all around the pumpkin. Even though there is a lot we are missing, there is still so much to be grateful for.” –Lacey P.

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When It Comes to Gifting, Think Cozy

We’ll all be spending so much time at home this winter. So, think about cozy comfort when gifting this holiday season! Plush materials like velvets, furs, and chunky knits (in throws, pillows, and even sweaters) will keep you and your loved ones cozy all winter long.

Here’s how our designers are doing it…

“Sending cozy items like throw blankets or personalized candles as holiday gifts can help make your loved ones feel closer. It’s basically like sending them a hug!“ –Valentina

Need help bringing some joy and delight to your home this winter?

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