The Ultimate Guide to Christmas at Home
Christmas is a time of year to celebrate, but for many, it can evoke fear. The never-ending list of things to do, the hectic social calendar and the expensive shopping trips all adds up. By the time the big day comes around you’re left exhausted with little Christmas cheer.
But it doesn’t need to be that way! With the silly season upon us, we’ve created the ultimate guide to help you not only survive this Christmas but enjoy it too. Here you’ll discover the latest styling trends, how to dress a small space, Christmas tree decorating advice, as well as tips to help you avoid a budget blowout.
Christmas styling trends
If you’re looking to refresh your styling this year, take a look at these emerging Christmas trends.
Back to nature
Getting back in touch with nature has been a rising trend in interior design over the last couple of years. Today, consumers and stylists are drawn to using natural materials like linens and timber and muted colour palettes of greys, blues, greens and whites in the home.
This year we’ll also see the Christmas style influenced by nature. You’ll find decorative elements going back to basics – wooden ornaments, line table runners, foliage, brown paper wrapping and twine. Amongst the soft shades of blues, slate and whites will be metallics of silver, gold and rose will add to that festive touch.
Whimsy and joy
For those who love colour and play, this year’s Christmas trend of adding whimsy to your home will no doubt catch your eye.
Inspired by childhood memories, this year’s trend adds joy to the home through bright colours, fun patterns and eclectic decorations. Instead of the sophisticated baubles and stars, trees will be decorated in cute animal figures and fairy-tale like characters that put a smile on your face. Bright strings, confetti and bunting can be used to decorate all things from the tree to the home. You’ll also find embroidery and crochet adding texture to the space. This Christmas trend will see fluoro, pastels and all colours in between adding joy and whimsy to the space.
A nod to the past
There’s a big return to celebrating the traditional look and feel of Christmas. Displaying a real Christmas tree in the home will be at the forefront of this trend with traditional ornaments and decorations to match. There will be an emphasis on high-quality objects that last and can be stored away for years to come. Glass ornaments, ceramics with a metallic festive touch, and classic stockings will be used throughout the home. This traditional Christmas trend will result in a return of luxurious materials such as plaid, tweed, velvets and linens in a sophisticated colour palette. Whites, silvers, brass, deep greys will be the preferred colours of the traditional style.
Greatly inspired by the Scandi design style, this year’s minimalist Christmas trend is likely to be popular. It’s the perfect style for those living in small spaces or contemporary interiors as well as those with a restricted budget or limited time. A minimalist Christmas is an understated, modern aesthetic. A humble tree made of fairy lights, paper wrapping with string, a table arrangement of three candles or a simple silver garland. Stick with a monochromatic look using blacks and whites or add a festive twist of a metallic or dark forest green. Just think simple, bared back and sophisticated.
Christmas styling tips for small homes
Don’t have a big home? That doesn’t mean you can’t get festive and make an impact with your Christmas styling. Here are 6 ways you can style a small space:
1. Look up
You may not have a lot of floor space, but there is always room on the ceiling to hang decorative elements such as snowflakes, stars, lights and the all-important mistletoe.
2. Repurpose your wreath
Not only do wreaths look great on a front door, but they also work well arranged on a wall. You can stick with the traditional and hang foliage wreaths, opt for a modern look by making paper wreaths or have a few metal shapes with a touch of foliage for a minimalist look.
3. Opt for an alternative tree
If you don’t have room for a large Christmas tree there are plenty of alternatives that work well in a small space. Try a tree that hangs against a wall, a mini tree or simply opt for a branch in a vase.
4. Light it up
Lights are a great way to add a festive feel to any space and don’t require any room. Hang lights from your mantel or scrunch up a bunch of lights and place them in vases on your dining table. You can even thread lights through your wreaths.
5. Utilise your shelves
If you have shelving, use it to display your decorative elements in vignettes. String up a garland of lights, add a collection of baubles in a vase, display your Christmas cards or festive trinkets.
6. Replace existing accessories
Adding more accessories and furnishings to your interior can make a small space feel overwhelming. Instead, replace your existing accessories for those with a festive feel. A few cushions in a metallic fabric could be just want your space needs for some Christmas cheer.
How to stylishly decorate your Christmas tree
Styling a Christmas can be fun, but often we’re overly stress that it’s going to look like a mess once everyone gets involved. If you’re hoping to achieve a magazine worthy Christmas tree this year, following these tips:
Choose your tree
Do you want a live traditional tree or will you go for something more modern? Whatever you choose, make sure it works with the space of your home.
Pick a style
Choose to build on your previous year’s style or pick something new. Perhaps you want to have a whimsical look or go back to a traditional feel. Once you’ve picked a theme, stop searching Pinterest and stick with it.
Settle on a colour scheme
Choose a few different colours for your Christmas tree decorations. Opt for traditional with reds, greens, whites and metallics or try a contemporary look. A mix of pastel colours with a touch of copper can create a joyful look or a palette of black, white and silver can be more minimal.
Choose your ‘bling’
Decide on the finishing touch of your tree. Do you like the dazzle or lights or prefer a metallic garland? If you’re opting for a playful look, a coloured string of pom poms may be your ‘bling’ of choice. Whatever you choose, do so in abundance. A lonely string of fairy lights can get lost amongst the ornaments and foliage.
Space out your ornaments
If you choose to hang ornaments, ensure they are spaced evenly around the tree. Keep your favourite ornaments in the front and at eye level. Remember to create depth by staggering the position along the tree branches.
5 alternative Christmas tree ideas
Ladder Christmas Tree - hardtofind.com.au
DIY Tree - almostmakesperfect.com
Small Potted Tree - dreamywhitesonline.com
Timber tree - esty.com
Branch in vase - thatnordicfeeling.tumblr.com
Last minute entertaining tips
Christmas is by far one of the most hectic times of year and while it would be nice to have an entire day to prepare for your guests, that’s not always the reality. If you’re stretched for time or have an unexpected gathering, here are some tips to help you pull it off!
Opt for a shareable spread
If you don’t have time to whip up a three-course meal, opt for a shareable spread. To make it easier, you can use a mix of hot and cold things that are relatively easy to prepare or you can purchase prepared. Think cheeses, olives, spiced nuts, Arancini balls, grilled asparagus, grilled prawns. A generous platter or two in the middle of a table can look very impressive even if you didn’t make it all yourself.
Be happy with a mishmash
Eclectic styling is in so go with it! Don’t worry if you don’t have ten of the same champagne flutes or enough of the same size dinner plates. Embrace the mishmash and use what you have. You can also repurpose items that you have such as water glasses for tea lights or large jars for vases. Chopping boards can be used when you’ve run out of platters. It doesn’t have to match perfectly to have a stylish setting.
Have extra chairs on hand
If you have the opportunity, get your hands on a few folding chairs that are of decent quality. If you entertain more than once a year, it’s worth the investment so you don’t have to worry about whether you have enough seats for everyone.
Add some festive touches
Get in the spirit of things and add some festive touches to the table. Candles, a bowl of baubles, a garland of greens will help enhance your table setting. And if you want to add a personal touch, making the effort to create place cards won’t go unnoticed by your guests.
The more bubbles the merrier
One of the easiest jobs to do when you’re entertaining is putting a few bottles of champagne on ice. A glass of bubbles is a welcome beverage on arrival or you could make a celebratory toast with your guests, even if it’s off the cuff. And if you don’t drink it all, a bottle of champagne makes a great gift for the next festive affair you’re invited to.
Table decoration inspiration
Ecucalptus Table Runner - HappyWedd.com
Mini Christmas Trees – christmas.365greetings.com
Simple setting – Pinterest.com
Dramatic black place setting - bobedre.dk/
Candles - 99homy.com
Table Setting – volang.elledecoration.se
Tables Setting – thereseknutsen.no
Tips to avoid a budget blowout this Christmas
Money tends to flow in one direction during the festive season and that’s out of your pocket. We could all do with some tips to help keep our budget from exploding and our credit card bills sky rocketing. Budgeting may not be as fun as spending but it could end up saving you a whole lot of cash.
Write a budget
Set some time aside to sit down and write a list of all the gifts you need to buy, décor costs and any holiday food expenses. Assign a realistic dollar amount to every item on your list and compared it to what you can afford. This helps if you need to pare back if you’re stretching your budget.
Get a printable here: http://amandarosezampelli.com/freeprintables-giftlist/
Take stock of what you have
Before you get swayed by a new Christmas décor styling trend, take stock of what you already have. There are plenty of ways you can reuse ornaments and decorative pieces but just in a different manner, and only require adding in a few key pieces.
Opt for an eclectic look
Don’t have enough of the same champagne flutes or the one set of dinner plates? Instead of buying more pieces that you won’t use again, opt for an eclectic look. Mix and match what you have and if you don’t have enough, ask a family member to provide what you need.
Ask others to contribute
You don’t need to ask for donations, but you can certainly lighten the financial load by requesting friends or family to bring a plate. You could also have some fun and assign a course to your guests. You’ll find most people are more than willing to contribute with food or drinks.
Get on social media
Now’s a good time to get on social media and follow your favourite brands. Most companies offer discounts and exclusive deals on their social platforms. Signing up to newsletter can also save you some money.
Only shop with a list
When it comes time to hit the shops, only do so with a list in hand. Know exactly what you want to get before you go or at least know the shop. Limit the amount of shop locations to minimise distractions and impulse purchases.
The earlier you can start shopping the better. Leave it to a Christmas eve rush and you’re likely to spend more in pure desperation. By starting now, you’ll have time to compare deals and watch for sales. You’ll also dodge the crowds which will make the experience of shopping all the more bearable.
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