Fool-proof holiday gadgets

Set the tree in the base, hold it upright and pump the foot pedal until secure.

— Melissa Davis is a celebrity designer well-known for her appearances and creative work on several HGTV shows. For more information,

I’m a lady who works in construction. I could write a book on the importance of good foundation be it your home, wardrobe or beauty routine.

Before attempting to layer in the decorations, I like to start with great tools, gadgets and basics that will make that job easier.

As the holiday decorating begins, I scurry around my clients’ homes gasping at the nails they’re putting in the new front door to hold the wreath.

Or, what about the screws being drilled into the brick exterior to keep the string of lights in the perfect position to win best neighborhood decorations.

I’m no Grinch, and if you want to add glitter to every square inch of your home, I say go for it. But first let’s chat about the best tools for the job so you won’t need to hire my handyman to fix the post-holiday damage.

Here are my top holiday gadgets that get the job done and disappear with barely a trace come January.

Front door hangers

Perfect for a steel door, this gold plated magnetic knob will support up to 3 lbs. so you can buy the biggest wreath your heart desires and know come spring you just pop off the magnet and the door is still show ready. Hanger Knob $9.95, Lee Valley Tools

Brick clips

These handy clips let you quickly attach anything to brick without in any way damaging either the bricks or the mortar bond. These are handy for holiday décor but also work great for securing vines and trellis. Brick Clips, package of four from $10.95, Lee Valley Tools

Tree stand

Oh, the toppled trees and dry needles that have fallen in my house. With this stand, setting up a tree couldn’t be easier. Just set the tree in the base, hold it upright and pump the foot pedal until secure. The claws automatically conform to any irregularities.

To top it off, an internal reservoir holds up to 2.5 gallons of water and has a water level indicator so you know when it needs topping up. Fool proof! Krinner Christmas Tree Stand $129, Lee Valley Tools

Tree light controls

Finally a solution to keep us from crawling under the tree to plug in or unplug the lights. Hang this brass ornament in your Christmas tree, and with just a light tap of your finger, its touch-activated circuitry turns the tree’s lights on or off. Touch Control For Christmas Lights $24.50, Lee Valley Tools

Loop hooks

I know you’re still going to hang hooks along your porch so I won’t give you trouble, I’ll just offer the best tool for the job. My advice is to install these hooks cleanly in locations that work for holiday décor but also hanging planters or feeders come spring. Leaving them in place will avoid adding more holes each season.

A quick twist is all it takes to hang items securely on these pigtail-shaped hooks. The overlapping open hook design traps cables or rings, holding them reliably but not permanently, so you can remove items anytime without a fuss. Loop Hooks Pkg of 20 $17.50, Lee Valley Tools

Forget being the Grinch. With these easy suggestions, I hope I have inspired you to get your home in festive style this holiday season.