Make it merry with festive ideas from Michael Murray, Rachael's friend, design expert, and general manager of Rachael Ray Home.
Michael Murray
Photography by Jean Allsopp
| Credit: Photography by Jean Allsopp

If anyone can channel Rach's Christmas style, it's Michael Murray. In his years of knowing her, he's seen the piles of gifts she's wrapped and the tons of trees she's trimmed. "The vibe is more traditional when Rachael is at her home in upstate New York, but in New York City, she goes a little more eclectic," says Michael, whose job it is to turn her furniture brainstorms into reality. (See the fab results and find a retailer at

Inspired by this, he created two spirited looks in the breakfast nook and the living room of this Memphis home. Pre-lit trees from Balsam Hill, Treetopia, and Tree Classics set the scene in both spaces, while wrapping paper from Minted adds pattern and punch. Ornaments, whether hung or arranged on a centerpiece of fresh greenery, are all Rach-approved, meaning vintage-inspired and/or food-themed. 

"Decorating should be fun," says Michael. "Try unexpected colors, and, like Rach, zero in on those overlooked spots—windowsills, shelving units, and even light fixtures."

Holidays, Two Ways

1. Country Cool

Christmas decorated dining room
Credit: Photography by Jean Allsopp

"Cheap and cheerful" is Rachael's mantra. Michael Murray used wreaths to fancy up an overhead light and cut wrapping paper into place mats.

Tufted Settee
Credit: Courtesy of Rachael Ray Home

Form meets function in a Rachael Ray Home Tufted Settee that has a button back and classic turned legs. Pull one up to your dining table for the look of a banquette.

2. City Chic

Michael Murray ottoman
Credit: Photography by Jean Allsopp

Rachael Ray Home upholstered pieces in gray tones, including chairs, a sofa, and a furry Metal Cocktail Ottoman, provide the perfect backdrop for colorful holiday baubles. A chic glass-front Rachael Ray Home Bunching Display Cabinet and End Table, both from the Highline Collection and in a greige finish, complete this chic tonal set up.

Christmas tree and inset owl ornament
Credit: Photography by Jean Allsopp

Green and blue baubles pair well with owl ornaments, a favorite of Rach's. (A lifelong night owl, Rach had a childhood nickname, "Hoot.")

Credit: Courtesy of Rachael Ray Home

Fur feels super homey and cozy, especially around the holidays. Pair this Rachael Ray Home Metal Cocktail Ottoman with a tray for serving drinks or apps when entertaining.

Bunching Display Cabinet
Credit: Courtesy of Rachael Ray Home

Turn your favorite decorative objects into a pretty display by placing them inside a set of Rachael Ray Home Bunching Display Cabinets. You can even decorate the top of these units with seasonal touches and greenery.

Presents under Christmas tree
Credit: Photography by Jean Allsopp