Archive for: November, 2014



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As a young child I was lucky enough to grow up in a gorgeous country house that had a large formal living room with an inglenook open fireplace. The room, complete with exposed beams and old bread oven built into the wall(!), really came alive during the festive season. Getting our tree as a family, and subsequently decorating it, was an event we all looked forward to each year. As an adult this is something I’ve always been keen to continue, so my heart mate and I look forward to bringing the festive magic of the season into our home each Christmas. As we’re currently living in a 17th Century cottage it feels even closer to the memories of those early childhood days at this time of year.LSA-christmas-gifts-2
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Naturally, when LSA International invited me to style up their gorgeous limited edition Christmas packaging in my own home I jumped at the chance to get festive ahead of December. For one day the fire was lit, the decorations came out from the loft and I hit play on Michael Bublé (natch) in the iPod – festive bliss! I’ve tried out a variety of bright, bold and colourful Christmas schemes in the past but there’s something so instantly comforting and, well, festive about a classic red and white theme, don’t you think?LSA-christmas-gifts-4
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As part of the decorating fun I invited some friends over and cracked open a bottle of bubbles. For me, decorating for Christmas has always felt like a social experience that is even more enjoyable when shared with others. Normally I don’t like drinking champagne from coupes (I’m far too clumsy!), but these champagne saucers have a small lip on them that makes it so easy (and feel oh-so-glam!) to drink from. I also like the modern and gently scandinavian feel to the Paddle nibble dishes.LSA-christmas-gifts-6
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The best thing about LSA International’s festive offering is the ease of ‘instant gifting’. True, I like a good wrapping session while watching Love Actually, but there are times when the hectic festive season takes over and I need to save time. That’s when I know I’m going to make use of these slip on, pre-made and tied gift boxes. I think they would be great to have in reserve for last minute Christmas gifts or to take as a hostess present. From everyday to stylishly wrapped in seconds – I love it! Plus, they look gorgeous as festive touches around the home. I styled up the Bon Bon jar with a series of super charming London themed baubles and it’s become a decoration I’ll now bring out year after year. What are your favourite christmas gifting and decorating ideas?LSA-christmas-gifts-10

// Photography by Will Taylor | Posted in partnership with LSA; all views my own

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These make-your-own clay Christmas tree ornaments and decorations are quick and easy to craft, making them an ideal DIY for the busy holiday season. The air-drying clay means that there’s no firing or kiln needed – you just roll, cut and stamp, and your decoration is good to go. These are perfect to use as personalised gift tags or as decorations to hang from your Christmas tree; you could make them for friends loved ones by personalising them with their Twitter handle or name. These are quite delicate, so be sure to gift them in person and handle with care! Here’s the step by step:

1. On a clean surface, roll out the pack of air-drying clay with a rolling pin.
2. Use cookie cutters to stamp your desired shapes and remove the excess clay.
3. Stamp the Twitter handle or name onto the clay, taking care not to snag or dent the surface with your fingers.
4. Use a darning needle to make a hanging hole at the top of the shape.
5. Leave to dry for at least 24 hours and then string with bakers twine.

Have you tried any stylish Christmas DIY’s this season? I’d love to know your ideas for making things personal!

// Photography by Will Taylor

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Everyday I see more Christmas trees popping up in the windows of my apartment building and gradually the whole neighbourhood is becoming more festive by the day, so it’s no surprise that I’m on a roll with the festive inspiration this week. While yesterday’s post focused on a beautiful pared-back organic Scandi approach to Christmas decorating, today’s post swings the tables to look at nine other looks. Whether you are yet to decorate for the festive season or are looking for a few finishing touches to your existing decorative touches, this eclectic mix of last minute Christmas decorations from Rakuten’s Play.com is guaranteed to offer one or two pieces that are ideal for your festive theme. With that in mind, I’ve picked out nine decorations to match nine different looks – here are my ideas on how you could incorporate each piece into your home this festive season:

1. Whimsical: If there’s a time fairytales really come to life, it’s Christmas so there’s no better time of year to invite a touch of whimsy int your home. These toadstool decorations have an instant Alice In Wonderland feel about them and would be perfect for adding festive charm to a children’s room.
2. Scandi: The antiqued effect of this hammered metal tree decoration ouzel understated Christmas style. For best effect, go for a minimal look by only decorating your tree with a sporadic smattering of these decorations and white lights – the simple approach will deliver style by the bucket load.
3. Industrial: If your home has a more rustic or masculine feel the chances are that many traditional Christmas decorations won’t go. No need to fear because these metal bells in a series of weathered seasonal shades will give a gentle nod to the festivities of the season without a hint of twee.
4. Luxe: These heart, star and tree shaped tree decorations key into the current market trend for metallics thanks to their copper effect coating. With this look a little goes a long way, so mix and match these shimmering metallic designs in with some exposed wood natural pieces to set the luxe look off and give it extra emphasis; if all the decorations are metallic then they would blur into one and loose impact.
5. Frost: Why not take inspiration from the sparkle of an ice blue winter frost and introduce a palette of blues to your Christmas scheme? If you like to opt for something different to the traditional fir tree, these decorations would look very striking on a snow-effect white tree because the white backdrop would make the blue baubles shine.
6. Organic: I like how this rustic twig wreath has been embellished with silver stars to give it a Christmas twist. Hang it on your front door for a stylish and understated festive finishing touch.
7. Natural: I must admit that I’m not a big fan of artificial trees but this option certainly does look very realistic, plus I know that when you have playful pets or crawling kids a real option is not a safe choice. So if you’re in the market for an artificial tree this natural looking design would be my choice.
8. Glam: Perhaps you like to go for an art deco inspired black and gold theme when it comes to bringing Christmas spirit into your home? If so, this sparkling glitter gold star would be the perfect tree topper for such a glamorous theme.
9. Country: This heart and star duo make for an ideal country house decoration; try hanging from the drawer pulls on a dresser for a small but stylish festive finishing touch.

Which look and decoration work best for your festive decorating at home, friends?

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