Local florist goes above and beyond with holiday decorating

Doug Bates works on an emerald green, gold and white tree inside Designs by Vogt's. He had always wanted to decorate a tree in the colors, he said.
Doug Bates works on an emerald green, gold and white tree inside Designs by Vogt's. He had always wanted to decorate a tree in the colors, he said.

STURGIS – Sounds of the holiday season came recently from Designs by Vogt’s in downtown Sturgis, as owner Doug Bates went to work creating a winter wonderland.

Each year, he goes to great lengths to decorate his shop for the holidays. It's almost always dazzling.

The decorating is for Bates’ annual holiday open house, but customers also can enjoy it throughout the holiday season and during downtown events. Bates always has decorated Vogt’s for the holidays, at the shop’s current location at 101 E. Chicago Road, where he has been since 2015, and before that since 2006, when he got into the business.

“We try to find creative displays and maybe inspire,” Bates said. “Honestly, that’s the thing I like to do for other people is to inspire them. Maybe they’ve got decorations of their own that they just aren’t sure what to do with and have never really been happy with. They might love them, but they’re not sure how to display them. Really, it’s just giving people the inspiration to just be creative and have fun in their own homes with Christmas.”

There are more than 10 large, decorated Christmas trees inside Designs By Vogt’s this year. Bates tries to keep his decorating interesting. It’s a combination of old and new items, he said. If he finds something he loves, he keeps it for future use.

A holiday scene inside Designs by Vogt's.
A holiday scene inside Designs by Vogt's.

Bates got his decorations this year at a home and gift show in Dallas. A lot of the decorations were ordered in January. The Dallas show spans 16 floors.

“It can be overwhelming if you don’t have a plan,” Bates said. “It’s important to have some kind of a plan.”

Bates likes to be innovative with color and combinations. He’s always wanted to make an emerald green, gold and white tree, and this year, he did it. The tree is the focal point when you walk in the shop and sits inside a giant sleigh.

“Not everyone would think to put a sleigh in their living room, but it can be done,” Bates said.

For Bates, Christmas is easily the most beautiful time of the year for decorating.

“It’s very easy to make a house feel like a home when you have a Christmas tree and some lights,” he said.

Bates starts early on in November with his decorating. That’s because he also decorates homes for the holiday season, an aspect of his business that is growing.

After the holidays, Bates will have a special mission. Through a chance conversation, he was invited to be a designer for floats in the Tournament of Roses parade, something that has been on his bucket list for some time.

This article originally appeared on Sturgis Journal: Doug Bates of Designs by Vogt's gets creative with holiday decorating