Is there a single word for something that is subject to a decoration? Is it something like "decoree"?

EDIT: I want to give an explanation what I need this word for. I am currently developing a software that among other things renders text. Just think of something like LaTeX. Everything that is visible on screen is called a Box. These boxes can be "decorated" by adding accents, over- or underlines etc. Now I need variable names for the box that is decorated as well as the "subject" of the decoration. Because I have loads of these boxes, box is too ambiguous. I thought of "decoree" just as we call a program being debugged the debuggee. As I am not a native speaker, I was just wondering if there's a word that describes what I mean and doesn't sound weird to a native speaker who later reads my code.

  • 1
    I don't think you'll find a word, as the thing that is subject to decoration is quite typically identified by its name. A decorated tree will be referred to as, well, a tree. A decorated car is a car. So there is no need for something like decoree, and thus it does not exist. And since so many different things can be decorated, there is no hypernym for them, either. A car and a tree can only be summed up as stuff.
    – RegDwigнt
    Commented Jun 7, 2014 at 17:46
  • Such things could both be figuratively referred to as canvases, but even allowing that such figurative use is common enough, it seems too much a stretch: A phrase could use canvas in such a way and have everything clear, but if I just said "I decorated several canvases" that would not be interpreted as "I decorated several things subject to decoration".
    – Jon Hanna
    Commented Jun 7, 2014 at 18:08
  • A thing that is decorated is an embellished piece; using the term 'embellishment' is clearly understood by English native speakers. Axel, if you are requesting names for the style of embellishments, they exists too -good luck
    – Third News
    Commented Jun 8, 2014 at 0:37
  • Come up with nonce words if you really need it. For example: decoratee or decoratable.
    – ermanen
    Commented Jun 8, 2014 at 16:52
  • @ermanen: now that's it. Kris even added a reference to its usage in the programming world. Thanks a lot.
    – Axel
    Commented Jun 8, 2014 at 21:06

4 Answers 4


In the programming world, the term decoratee is in use.

Decorators are functions that wrap around other functions. This allows decorators to execute code before and after a function is called. A decorator takes a function object as an argument (which is called the decoratee) and returns a new function object that will be executed in its place. [Matt Johnson, Decorators in Python]


Anything really can be subject to decoration. Wall, sheet of paper, a dress, a table, whatever. If you put the word ornate before any of these nouns one would gather that it is heavily decorated.


I think it may be ornamented. You can use it for decorated items.


The box was bedizened with an abundance of pink pearls and blue sapphires.

Dress up or decorate gaudily 'a uniform bedizened with resplendent medals'

Also see bedizenment.

That which bedizens.

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