Skip to main contentSkip to main content
You are the owner of this article.
You have permission to edit this article.
Edit
Holiday joy: Omaha couple re-creating Christmas magic for their children
0 Comments

Holiday joy: Omaha couple re-creating Christmas magic for their children

  • Updated
  • 0

Kate and Ben Knowles use family traditions to influence the design of their home during the holidays.

Ben and Kate Knowles haven’t moved on to Christmas inflatables — yet.

“The kids would love it,” Kate said.

111421-owh-ilo-kateknowles-em11

Hand-painted ornaments from the Knowles family collection. Each Christmas every family member receives an ornament to commemorate their year.

The holidays are all about creating the same memories for their three boys — ages 7,5 and 3 — that they enjoyed when they were young. The season was always a big deal.

The Knowleses decorate throughout the house, including a little tree in each of the boys’ rooms that they embellish themselves.

111421-owh-ilo-kateknowles-em14

Kate and Ben Knowles' Omaha home.

“Christmas growing up was an important holiday for us,” Kate said. “We would always help decorate our tree. I have a lot of memories around that.”

Instead of waiting for November, though, Kate starts decorating early.

She and her sister, Ashley Jansen, have started an online décor store, so adorning every room can no longer wait until after Thanksgiving. Kate likes to share the latest holiday trends and do tutorials on her blog, kateknowleshome.

111421-owh-ilo-kateknowles-em07

A golden-colored reindeer figure is selling in Jansen Homes, Kate's online store.

“We’ve always wanted to do a store,” she said. “We felt like it was the right time for both of us.”

She’s still learning what looks right in her new home in the Old Loveland area near 80th and Pacific Streets. The house replaced a 1950s ranch after their contractor said it wouldn’t be feasible to expand it to meet the needs of their growing family. So after donating everything they could from the inside, they spent 18 months building their dream home.

111421-owh-ilo-kateknowles-em02

Family stockings hang on the fireplace in the living room. 

Again, the boys were the main consideration. The second floor includes their three bedrooms and a large playroom. A big kitchen island with bar stools gives the boys a place to eat breakfast in the morning and there’s enough room for the whole family for dinner.

Instead of a separate office for Ben, who is an attorney, they opted for a formal dining room to accommodate bigger family occasions.

111421-owh-ilo-kateknowles-em03

The family Christmas tree is done in neutral colors instead of green and red.

“It’s a really simple floor plan. Lots of windows and natural lights. Having tall ceilings is nice as well,” said Ben, who is 6-foot-4. “Kate did a great job designing it. It’s very clean and fresh. It’s very open.”

Kate calls her style modern traditional — nothing heavy or ornate — mixed with some coastal influences, in keeping with the shingled exterior of the house.

111421-owh-ilo-kateknowles-em06

Christmas decor in the living room. "We try to add a little Christmas everywhere," Kate said.

She worked with Erica Bryant Design. Advanced Design and Construction was the contractor. The family lived with Kate’s parents while the home was being built.

“We pretty much had all the furniture and the aesthetics of each room figured out,” Kate said. “I’m still working on the little décor pieces and artwork and things like that.”

111421-owh-ilo-kateknowles-em04

Golden-colored reindeer figures are part of the decor.

Ben still has to figure out the logistics of decorating outside for Christmas. It’s not as easy with a two-story home, but he’s game.

“I’m into it just as much as they are,” he said.

111421-owh-ilo-kateknowles-em12

Kate and Ben Knowles in their Omaha home.


2021 Inspired Living Omaha Stories

  • Updated
  • 0

Woody and Barb Jones' “dream home,” completed in October 1996, required three 18-wheelers loaded with logs, and one very tall crane to get off the ground.

  • Updated
  • 0

Choosing the wrong plants for your front yard and letting them run wild can sometimes cause issues with neighbors. Benjamin Vogt of Monarch Gardens has some solutions.

  • Updated
  • 0

Omaha photographer Jesi Lee decided to take pictures of people with their beloved plant babies. “I didn’t expect such a big response,” she said.

  • Updated
  • 0

While the number of steps may seem daunting, this beautiful star bread is more simple to make than it looks.

  • Updated
  • 0

The simple-to-master folding techniques are sure to impress your family and friends. There is no need for tape and scissors. Just a square cloth and you can have an elegantly wrapped gift in a matter of seconds.

  • Updated
  • 0

William Dick fell in love with chandeliers while living in Turkey and brought back around 100 to the U.S. Now, he's decided to sell most of them.

  • Updated
  • 0

“I am big on local history,” said John Hanssen. “I grew up driving around the countryside. I see these old outhouses that, for whatever reason, I want to preserve.”

  • Updated
  • 0

Jeff Davis says it's important for him to give back, and bringing musicians to Omaha to perform is one of the ways he does it.

  • Updated
  • 0

The house had gone through a foreclosure, an attempted flip and had sat empty for four years.

  • Updated
  • 0

Six children in 10 years meant lots of changes to their south Dundee home to accommodate everyone.

  • Updated
  • 0

Wade Phillips' collection has overflowed to two gardens adjoining his northwest Omaha home. In what he called his last census in October 2019, he had 513 of the colorful perennials.

  • Updated
  • 0

Zion Lutheran Church in Benedict, Nebraska, may no longer be saving souls, but it’s still in the rescue business. Tim and Kathy Johnson purchased the church as a home  for both humans and animals.

  • Updated
  • 0

Their house offers a mix of the traditional with modern design.

  • Updated
  • 0

Botanical lover finds her happy place in an older house.

  • Updated
  • 0

Orchids can be intimidating but they have the same requirements as other things you grow in your home.

  • Updated
  • 0

Diane Hayes has filled her home with things that she has made or assembled. Most have come from Goodwill, thrift shops and estate sales.

  • Updated
  • 0

Couple looked past all the orange and are now enjoying their property in all of its glory.

  • Updated
  • 0

Karin Moyer will leave most of her hostas behind when she moves on to Iowa or Florida.

  • Updated
  • 0

“It’s perfect for multigenerational living,’’ Lorrie Williams said. The two couples can have complete privacy when they want or can easily see each other for meals and conversations.

  • Updated
  • 0

Well-maintained midtown Omaha homes with the pedigree of McDonald are in high demand. "It’s the craftsmanship. Nobody builds a house like that anymore," said a Realtor involved in three recent sales.

  • Updated
  • 0

Renovations took nearly a year, but after living there for several months, they remain satisfied with the whole-house transformation. “It’s like having a baby. I created this. Of course I love it.”

  • Updated
  • 0

People who were never before interested in greenery in their home have jumped on the bandwagon.

  • Updated
  • 0

Megan Hepburn and Pat Mcilvain decided to take a chance on a house in the Bemis Park neighborhood. A great price and proximity to the Interstate made it the perfect choice.

  • Updated
  • 0

Many companies specialize in helping people with older homes that need more work.

0 Comments

Omaha World-Herald: Inspired Living

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.

Marjie is a writer for The World-Herald’s special sections and specialty publications, including Inspired Living Omaha, Wedding Essentials and Momaha Magazine. Follow her on Twitter @mduceyOWH. Phone: 402-444-1034.

Related to this story

Get up-to-the-minute news sent straight to your device.

Topics

all

Breaking News

Huskers Breaking News

News Alert