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Eat, drink and be merry

All Areas > Homes & Gardens > Interior Design

Author: Gill Greenwell, Posted: Thursday, 23rd November 2023, 09:00

Image: Lights4Fun Image: Lights4Fun

I’m starting my Christmas preparations early this year. I have family coming from all corners of the globe to spend the festive season with us and I want to make it extra special. It’s the first time we have been together for a long time, so I’d like it to feel different and memorable. Here are my tips for making your celebrations that little bit special this year.

A warm welcome

Create a welcoming first impression for your guests with a stunning front door wreath. I like to make my own with foraged foliage from the garden, then I add bunches of cinnamon sticks, dried orange slices, and a crimson velvet ribbon for a festive feel. If you need some guidance, book yourself into a local wreath making class and have fun getting creative.

Deck the halls

This year I want to create an especially warm and festive atmosphere. A classic, traditional theme always works for me. Evergreen garlands and branches arranged on top of bookcases and cupboards with pops of red berries look fresh and seasonal. At a friend’s house recently, I noticed a huge crimson amaryllis plant on a side table – it looked so striking and festive. Bright paper streamers would add a cheerful touch, and on-trend white origami stars and birds will create a contemporary feel.

Christmas tree décor

A friend of mine went Nordic one year. She sprayed a large branch white and hung it with coloured baubles – her family have never let her forget the ‘Christmas twig’! I love a real tree; every year my husband tries to persuade me not to have a big tree, but he never succeeds.

When decorating your tree, keep to two or three colours, like crimson and emerald or white and gold. Add sparkle with warm white fairy lights, and hang up your treasured tree decorations, adding a new one for 2023. My grandchildren will love handmade Hector the Hare from Not on the High Street.

A festive table

A beautifully set table sets the scene for Christmas dinner and adds to the jolly atmosphere. We always have a tablecloth. My mother had starched white linen; mine is red and green tartan. I have a collection of coloured napkins and I always choose red for Christmas.

Bright coloured glasses, candles and candlesticks complement the festive look. This year I’ll also have bowls of red pomegranates, fun toadstool decorations, eco-crackers from the Little Green Cracker Company, and small individual gifts for everyone.

Family traditions

Finally, don’t forget to hang personalised stockings on the mantlepiece and compile your Christmas playlist to set the mood. Light your favourite scented candles, evoking memories of past family gatherings. Ours is Winter from The White Company.

Happy decorating! May this Christmas be truly memorable, filled with joy and togetherness.

Other Images

Image: Gisela Graham

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