Christmas has gone from being right round the corner to practically upon us in the blink of an eye, and while I’ve thoroughly enjoyed decorating our tree whilst singing along to my epic Christmas playlist, wearing red lipstick, buying the coolest Christmas jumpers I could get my hands on, visiting the Christmas markets and buying the dogs candy cane shaped treats (they haven’t proven as popular as I’d hoped), there are certain elements of Christmas that most people, your girl included, find stressful to say the least.
The first being finding the perfect gifts for everyone. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I am not a natural gifter like James is, and despite my best efforts, I always end up falling short in the gifting department. In fact, this year, to avoid being in this exact situation, I started hunting round for James’ presents a good few months ago, created a Pinterest board with all possible options and bought the best ones at the start of December. I put so much effort into him having nice presents this year that I haven’t bought myself anything all month and have been cancelling plans with friends because I’m so broke. EXCEPT that he accidentally found his main present last night, it turned out to be te wrong model and if I return it now, the refund won’t kick in before Christmas, so now he has nothing to open on Christmas day save for a couple of silly stocking stuffers. My credit card has also chosen the worst time to expire, so I can’t even order anything on express delivery. Basically my own personal version of The Nightmare Before Christmas.
The second thing people find a bit stressful around Christmas is having the house look perfect for having family round. While James’ mum very kindly spoils us every year by hosting the Christmas meal in her home (and let me tell you, it is incredible!), we invariably tend to have family or friends around this time of year for drinks, dinner or even pre-drinks before a night out in town. During which time, you will see me zipping round the house like a headless chicken for 24h prior, manically cleaning and tidying to erase any form of life from our apartment and in extreme cases, even and re-arranging elements in certain parts of our home prior to their arrival. Crazy, right? And yet I know there are so many others like me who feel the pressure of everything looking and feeling ‘perfect’ for our loved ones during the holidays.
Now I’m well aware you’ve probably already decorated your home for Christmas. But instead of the same old traditional decor you opt for every year, freshen up your home by updating your Christmas decor with some out-there ideas that make great conversation-starters for when the chat seems to run dry. Housing Units recently invited me down to their VIP Christmas blogger event and shared some wonderful decorating ideas and displays that I was so inspired by, I just had to share them with you all. Here are some of the biggest Christmas decorating ideas and themes for 2017 that I took away from the event:
Still a tad traditional as Christmas decorating tends to go, but berries look festive, are a nod to cranberry sauce eaten with a traditional Christmas meal and they’re the perfect way to breathe new life into your holiday decorating, without taking any drastic measures. We have some on our mantle, but it also looks great in clusters on trees, in bowls and stuck in with Poinstettia.
I fell head over heels for this simple but effective, out-of-the-box idea. Simply buy some cheap elf hats and add them to an old coat stand for a cute and quirky Santa’s workshop vibe. Isn’t it just the cutest way to brighten up an often neglected entrance hall or lobby?
Its funny, considering how commonly used trees and acorns are in holiday decor, that we don’t see their ‘fauna’ counterparts, woodland birds and animals, around very often. I’m pleased, however, that this is changing this year with little owls, squirrels, hedgehogs, foxes and rabbits turning homes into magical little forests.
Blush Pink and All Things Girly
Okay, so it may not be the most popular opinion if you’re living with boys / men. It certainly wouldn’t be in my home! But if you’re living by yourself or sharing with flatmates, roommates or friends, I’d like to not-so-subtly urge you to take one for the team and go full-on pink with your Christmas decor, so the rest of us can live vicariously through you for a hot minute!
I’m not asking you to go hardcore Ugly Betty and buy a pink tree. Just update your regulr tree with baubles in pretty blush pink, rose gold, gold and silver hues. Feeling fiesty? Add some feather boas to your decor on trees or draped over chairs for a girly boudoir vibe.
Bonus points for mixing in elements like little shoe, perfume, nailpolish or lipstick ornaments. I have six cheeky gold glitter shoe ornaments on my own tree – they match the rest of our red and gold gender-neutral Christmas decor, but still bring an element of ‘me’ to the tree.
This is such a cute theme, particularly if you have little ones running about. The main man of this theme is undoubtebly the Nutracker, so I’d invest in a couple of wooden Nutcrackers that’d go nicely on either side of the fireplace. Painted wooden boxes filled with baubles, teddy bears, little toy solider and drum ornaments and toy trains complete the look. In fact, this year, we bought a little train to run at the bottom of our tree, and it has quickly become on of our favourite Christmas elements in our home. All our presents fit within it nicely, and it runs fairly quietly on a timer (save for a little mild whirring you quickly get used to). And after the initial WTF-is-this-strange-new-thing moment with the dogs, they don’t seem to bother with it either.
If you’re a Pick-A-Theme-And-Stick-To-It kinda gal, this one’s for you. The icy theme works particularly well with silver and white, or silver white and blue. If a white tree isn’t your thing, use snow spray / or thin slivers cotton wool to fake a snow-like effect on your tree. Then go in with silver, clear and white ornaments. I personally love ornaments in the shape of snowflakes, icicles and glass baubles for this look and can’t wait to try it next year!
I’m not gonna lie, I’m not entirely sure how this trend has blown up as much as it has considering not a lot of flowers actually grow this time of year. But I suppose there’s always roses and Poinsettia (which I just CANNOT keep seem to keep alive!) Still, they do look beautiful and the trend is great for the lazy girl as they easily twist on to tree branches plus they take up fairly large pockets of space on your tree, so less work hanging the other ornaments up, hey?
I personally love these, because not only do they make great presents, but I love how understated they are. Perfect for adding a subtle dose of festive cheer to a neglected corner or to a room in your home, like your bedroom, guest room or bathroom, that doesn’t need to scream Christmas.
This one’s not venturing far for those of you who like to serve a traditional Christmas meal. It is, however, all about the drama and the wow-factor. Start with your Christmas tablecloth and then go in with a contrastic placemat. Then use a plate-shaped place mat and layer your dinner plate on it, followed by a quarter plate. Full marks for throwing a wine glass, cracker and place cards on there, too. For the middle of the table, create a rectangular ‘wreath’ of sorts with baubles on it, the perimeter of which forms the border within which your dishes of food will be placed, with plates on the outside.
This one’s for the social media savvy, trend conscious girl. Think ornaments that, traditionally, have nothing to do with Christmas whatsoever. This year has seen peacocks, cactii, unicorns, pineapples, marble baubles, elephants, coffe cups and bottles of alcohol, all in ornament form for your tree. The closer they are to an Instagram trend, the better. This is not a drill.
So there you have it – a few crackin’ decorating ideas that range from mild to wild, depending on your Christmas style. I’d love to know if you were inspired by any of these ideas – share your thoughts with me in comments below or via social media – I’m @MascaraEverSat on Twitter or @MascaraEverySaturday on Instagram.
Thanks so much to Housing Units for inviting me down to their beautiful, MASSIVE store in Manchester and for inspiring me enough to write this post with all these cool ideas! (PS all the products you see in these pictures are available at their online store, should you want to buy anything).
Don’t forget to check back tomorrow for another #CountdownToChristmas post! xx
**This post is in collaboration with Housing Units however, all opinions are entirely my own.