Ever wanted your home to look like a Hallmark Christmas movie? One of Hallmark's best set decorators shares his tips.

Ever wanted your home to look like a Hallmark Christmas movie? Now you can make that happen with some tips from a Hallmark movie set decorator. Jordan Ninkovitch, who decorated the sets for four different Hallmark movies in this year’s Countdown to Christmas and Miracles of Christmas lineups, spoke with People magazine about his ideas.

In the interview, he spoke about everything from engaging all five senses to using non-traditional colors in his designs.

Hallmark Christmas movie

Ninkovich decorated the sets for The Holiday Sitter, which starred Jonathan Bennett, George Krissa, and Chelsea Hobbs; Time for Him to Come Home for Christmas, which starred Tyler Hynes and Holland Roden; A Maple Valley Christmas, which starred Andrew Walker and Peyton List; and Five More Minutes: Moments Like These, which starred Ashley Williams and Lucas Bryant.

Some of the decorations were made by hand, he said.

“We didn’t want to just go out and buy a bunch of stuff, so myself and my amazing crew got together and we made all the stockings and decorations,” he said. We had some fun with it and it brought out our inner children.”

The handmade decorations added to the festive spirit on set.

“…With kid actors that’s a helpful thing I can do to make the environment feel mesmerizing, like, wow, this is going to be exciting, like it’s Christmas morning,” he said.

Time For Him to Come Home For Christmas (Image: Hallmark Media)
Time For Him to Come Home For Christmas (Image: Hallmark Media)

Blue and gold

In The Holiday Sitter, Ninkovich eschewed the traditional red and green fare and decorated t in shades of blue and gold.

“I want to always think outside of the box and design something new,” he said. “Some of the film definitely has those traditional Christmas palettes, but I thought this was a great opportunity with this movie and everything it stands for, to start some new trends and show a wide range of Christmas styles.”


One tip Ninkovich shared was to layer decorations and engage the senses. When filming on a set that was supposed to be a New York City condominium, he played Frank Sinatra and burned incense. When he decorated a set that was meant to be a Christmas market, he made sure that chestnuts were roasting and hot cocoa was on hand, touches that helped since filming took place in the summer.

“I had all this fresh Christmas baking going,” he said. “I brought in 18 real Christmas vendors, supporting locals. [The cast and crew] shopped after. It was actually so huge it confused everybody — the public, the staff, the crew. They actually thought, well, wait a minute, is it Christmas in July? When I get those remarks, that’s awesome.”

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