Colorado’s Home for the Holidays

The Governor’s Mansion is truly “Colorado’s Home,” and the historic residence is even more enchanting when professional designers deck the halls in holiday finery

The Governor’s Residence at the Boettcher Mansion, known as “Colorado’s Home,” is a stunning piece of Colorado history. Built in 1908 as a private residence, the elegant brick home is an essential stop for tourists and residents alike, offering free tours year-round. But during the holidays, the mansion is particularly a sight to behold as it is dressed to ring in the season.

This year, the first floor will be stylishly festive, thanks to a contest sponsored by the Colorado Chapter of the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID), the Governor’s Residence Preservation Fund and Colorado Homes & Lifestyles. We asked ASID Colorado members to develop design ideas based on the lovely state china, which features a hand-painted columbine pattern  trimmed in gold and blue. Designers submitted their projects and seven winners were chosen.

Public tours of the dressed-up digs will be held December 14-20, 10am-2pm. Mark your calendar and enjoy the beauty of Colorado’s Home for the Holidays. The Governor’s Residence at the Boettcher Mansion, 400 East 8th Avenue, Denver

Grand Hallway

Designers: Jeane T. Dole, Allied ASID, à la carte DESIGN,; Lynn Williamson, ASID, Stylebox 360,

We took our inspiration from Robert Frost’s poem, Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening. Imagine walking down a tree-lined lane during one of those magical snowstorms where the flakes are big and fluffy and make everything quiet and clean.  Then, imagine that the Grand Hallway is that “walk in the woods.” The effect is created using materials such as fabric, trim, ribbons, tile and re-purposed blueprint paper, combined with lattice, holiday greenery and twigs. We propose to take those materials and fill the Grand Hallway with ‘snowfall’ and trees both large and small. In the East Vestibule and Stairway, lighted tree branches will line the balusters, extending the illusion to the upper floor.

Front Porch

Designer: Joyce Clegg, Allied ASID, Lifescape Associates, Inc.,

My design concept is based on the riches of Colorado’s land: gold, silver and lead, vital elements to the state’s colorful past and prosperity, and of course, the columbine, the state flower that colors the hillsides with its gorgeous blooms every spring. The color palette is gold, silver and columbine blue. We will mix these colors into the lights, fabric and embellishments that will go on all the greenery.

Foyer/Drawing Room

Designer: Joyce Clegg, Allied ASID, Daydream Incorporated,

We will carry the design concept from the front porch into the foyer and drawing room. Based on the riches of Colorado’s land, we will draw our inspiration and palette from the splendor of the mountains and waters of our state: gold, silver, and columbine blue. We will mix these elements throughout, including decorating the grand tree with embellishments that remind us all of Colorado’s bounty.

Palm Room

Designer: Pam Smith, ASID, Pam Smith Designs,

The color palette is inspired by the gold, purples, blues, and greens found in Colorado’s state china. The tree will be the focal point of the room, covered with bright lights and shiny ornaments, as well as miniature copies of favorite holiday books. The color palette will be repeated in the marble palm planters embellished with lights, elegant bows and ornaments. Tables will be accented with evergreens, richly colored ribbons, candlelit lanterns and ornaments. Design decor reminiscent of childhood holidays at home such as candy in apothecary jars and a miniature sleigh will give that additional nod to holiday fun. 


Designer: David A. Millet, ASID, Positive Transitions Design, LLC,

Taking inspiration from the festoons and garlands on the paneling, I will use a Della Robbia theme of fruit and floral decorations enhanced with ornaments created by Colorado artists. A pair of “Colorado Memory Trees” will be the genesis of an annual tree and permanent ornament collection that depicts historic figures, landmarks, towns and natural wonders of Colorado. We will ask Colorado artists and artisans to participate by donating ornaments. With annual additions, the tree will honor current achievements while remembering our state’s history.

State Dining Room

Designer: Eva Puterbaugh, ASID, Manor Design, LLC,

Using the colors from the state china, I will create a table runner out of “columbine blue” fabric with white and silver trim and tatted snowflakes (that my grandmother made!). I will also use a silver, mirrored tray from the Boettcher collection in the center of the table flanked by tall vases filled with sparkling branches. On the back buffet I’ll continue the color theme with several small white trees adorned in silver and blue. Papier mâché deer will gather in the fireplace opening wearing blue ribbon collars. On the mantle, garlands with white lights and blue and gold accents will create a festive glow.

Governor’s Room

Designers: Linda Klueber, Allied ASID, Kelli Walden, Allied ASID, Candace Donnell, ASID, Rebecca Lane, Allied ASID, Jenny Morrow, Niwot Interiors,

Our room design takes its cues from the rich history, vintage charm and colorful art scene in the town of Niwot. We’ll pay homage to Chief Niwot of the Arapaho Indian tribe, the vital railroads and the Victorian charm of our past. We will invite local artisans and craftspeople to contribute to the ornamentation of the tree. Nature will be represented in the leaves, branches, feathers and bark that will blend harmoniously with the sparkle.

Since 2009, Centennial-based Whitney’s Designs has created a collectable ornament depicting a special part of the mansion. This year, the state china takes center stage with this charming version of the dinner plate and charger. The ornament will be available to purchase in the gift shop during the holiday tours, December 14-20, or online at Proceeds from ornament sales (as well as anything purchased in the gift shop) support the Governor’s Residence Preservation Fund.



Categories: Colorado Destinations, Interiors