The Meaning of Home: Holiday Edition

The Meaning of Home. For Jeffrey Alan Marks, guest designer for Progress Lighting’s Point Dume™   collection, it’s more than a phrase: it’s a design philosophy.

“To create a really outstanding, satisfying home, you need to throw out the rule book,” Marks states in his book, The Meaning of Home. “When working with people, I try to find out what they really need.” Marks does this by combining unexpected elements, pairing traditional elegance with clean contemporary accents to create an atmosphere that is luxurious and comfortable.

Marks translates the meaning of home into one of cozy ambiance when it comes to holiday decorating, flavored with touches of natural materials inspired by his California surroundings. 

“Because I’m in California, I use a lot of citrus and natural elements in my holiday décor. I tend to go to the flower market and pick out big bouquets of that incorporate the same colors as my tree. I’m not a lover of poinsettias, but I do like them in mass.”

Lighting plays a restorative role in Marks’s life, and he believes it to be an essential element in a room’s design. For the holidays, he creates an intimate environment by dimming the lights, using a lot of candles and lighting a fire. 

“Go very dim with holiday lighting,” says Marks. “I usually switch bulbs out to a 15- or 20-watt bulb to make things more warm or romantic as there is usually a fire, Christmas lights, and candles.”

Ally Calder, an Instagram influencer and blogger @our_whitefarmhouse , expresses a coastal decor theme in her home, highlighted by the Point Dume™   Surfrider pendant by Jeffrey Alan Marks. Soft pastel tones dominate in her Florida home, and her holiday décor choices reflect this sense of laid-back ease and comfort which is at the heart of the Point Dume™  design philosophy.

In his new Santa Barbara, CA home, Marks’ living room is a key gathering spot for the winter months. His holiday décor scheme picks up the accents of red and white that are already established as a design theme. A red lantern hangs in the middle of the living room, setting the tone for a very festive space. In general, for the holidays, Marks leans towards a bit more nautical theme. “I use a lot of red, white and blue and trade globe ornaments for fish ornaments.”

As a starting point for his holiday décor, Marks calls upon his overall design philosophy as an inspiration for the room’s design: the captivating beauty of the landscape. “Natural elements inspire me the most,” says Marks. “I like a lot of pine, flowers and garland; usually I have every doorway covered with garland. My must-have holiday décor items are scented pine candles, garland in every doorway, twinkle lights around the house and outside, and mistletoe everywhere.”

To establish an aura of laid-back luxury when decorating for the holidays, Marks says, “All my rooms are very comfortable, tailored and ready to be napped in. For the holidays, I bring out velvet combined with heavy linens, and scented pine candles everywhere. It’s all about smell, lighting and comfort.” To achieve this look, Marks recommends changing out part of your normal décor elements: he sometimes slipcovers the sofas in a more festive color, switches out pillows to velvet and rearranges the furniture, making the Christmas tree the room’s focal point. And dim the lights for the perfect finishing touch.

The Point Dume™ Collection brings Jeffrey’s inimitable touch into well-crafted, artful lighting designs. Learn more about Jeffrey Alan Marks and his lighting designs created especially for the Progress Lighting Design Series here