Holiday decor is more than seasonal for some people
Brightly colored Christmas trees and ornaments sit in the middle of a white wire wreath on the dining room table at Mitchell Conklin's home.

Each January, when the rest of us have put Christmas well behind us, Mitchell Conklin and Jeff Ketterhagen are hip deep in holiday décor.

Then, the men travel to Dallas and Atlanta to attend trade shows where they get ideas on decorating for the next holiday season.

Conklin, the owner of Luce Lighting & Luxuries, a lighting and luxury gift store at 5401 W. Vliet St. in Milwaukee, looks for pieces for the store.  

Ketterhagen looks for pieces for the store, too, as he is head of visuals there. But he also looks for holiday décor for the homes of his clients. He is owner of Jeff Ketterhagen, a firm through which he does event planning, residential and commercial decorating, and floral design.

In their spare time, the men, who have been friends for about 25 years, also look for holiday pieces for their homes, which are in the same apartment building but on different floors in Milwaukee’s Martin Drive neighborhood.

There, the ways they decorate this time of year are stunning, but they couldn’t be more different.

Mitchell Conklin's work carries over to his bright holiday decor. He  owns Luce Lighting & Luxuries on Vliet Street.

Conklin decorates his living and dining rooms traditionally, with rich colors and lots of sparkle.

 “My tree is a canvas for my collection of Christopher Radko ornaments. It’s eclectic. There is no overall color scheme on the tree. You don’t see any one particular color because the ornaments are so varied, but there is a lot of sparkle,” he said.

The fireplace mantel is decorated with a white-flocked garland that has lots of small white lights, brightly colored ornaments, and a thin vintage-style glass garland. Above that is a white-flocked wreath with more lights and ornaments.