Ahh Christmas! The joy… the expectation… the pressure and madness of it all! Here are some key guidelines for a foolproof, professional interior designer finish to your festive decorating.
1. Keep it clean and confident
Most people’s decorations are a wonderful eclectic mix of ornaments acquired or passed down through the years, home-made crafts and anything that glitters… nothing wrong with that! If the collection lacks a strong identity, divide them into stronger ‘stories’ and decorate different rooms accordingly.
2. Pause For Thought
It is so important for our homes to reflect our individuality and celebrate our personal taste. Whatever your individual style, be clear in your interpretation. Where do you want the focal points to be in each room? As every musician knows, the pauses in a melody are just as important as the notes themselves: The same can be said in an interior. Concentrate your decorations to areas you wish to accentuate and keep the other areas more neutral.
3. Think outside the box
I love to give a new twist to existing items within the interior: Be creative in transforming the ordinary into the extraordinary. Like a cake stand piled high with baubles as a table centrepiece. An element of surprise and humour is always important in styling.
5. Space to Sparkle
Many homes struggle with storage at the best of times. Add to this the challenge of a Christmas tree, the scatter of Greeting cards and a home full of family and friends, it’s not surprising we feel a little overwhelmed this time of year! If you don’t have room for a tree, don’t worry. Decorating the mantelpiece, staircase or framing the Hallway mirror can be just as effective.
5. The magic of light
Lighting is crucial in creating the right atmosphere on those dark cold evenings. Christmas lights are not just for Christmas trees or living rooms: Pop them into a large glass vase, behind floor length voile curtains or hanging lanterns. If you are looking to take the hassle out of creating so much ambient lighting, remote-control plug adapters allow us to create the desired ambience with a click of a button… no more rummaging around on all fours trying to switch everything on individually. Remote control, battery operated candles and LED lights are also widely available and a useful tool inside lanterns. For me though, nothing beats the flickering glow of real candles as the centrepiece – I often use a framed mirror as a tray to hold candles and let their light dance in the reflection. Now is the time to decorate the home with all that twinkles!
6. It’s all in the detail
It’s the thoughtful finishing touches that give a professional edge and make a lasting impression to your interior. This needn’t be expensive, in fact using elements from nature is, for me, an intrinsic element to decorating: Intertwining eucalyptus, rosemary, cinnamon sticks, twigs and feathers within the tree, wreath or centrepiece makes an instantly stylish detail.
7. Evoking all the senses
Smell is the most powerful and emotional of our 5 senses and is directly hardwired to the brain. Slices of oven-dried oranges or ginger biscuits are an easy and welcome touch and far nicer than most artificial diffusers.
However you decide to decorate your home this Christmas, I very much hope that you have fun and I wish you a wonderful Festive season!