Now that November’s arrived it’s most definitely not too early to be planning your Christmas décor! But with so much to tempt you in the shops, how do you create an attractive, cohesive look for your home? Sometimes less is more, but at the same time if there’s one time you can have some fun with your home décor, the festive season is it – the key is finding a middle ground between smart restraint and extravagant sparkle! In this week’s blog we’re concentrating on your table decorations to give you some inspiration for making your celebrations meals and party buffets really stand out from the crowd.
Before you start, it’s a good idea to perhaps look at the pieces you already have and then plan your décor around those. For example, you may find that most of your existing tree and room decorations are in a silver hue so it makes sense to carry this across other areas of your home, including your table settings. Space is another factor; if yours is limited overly dressed can look fussy and you don’t want your accessories to overshadow your culinary creations! Rather, you’re looking to add a touch of sparkle here and there, or an unexpected, fun element that makes your guests smile. So, while a ‘maximalist’ style might suit your tree, when it comes to tables, less is usually more.
Christmas is such a special time of the year but for many us the panic to ‘do’ Christmas properly can detract from actually enjoying the festivities. So, this year make it your mission to relax by following our short-cuts to having a fabulous Christmas; little tips and ideas on everything from table settings to festive tipples that are big on style but short on effort.
Tempting though it is to splurge on gorgeous new baubles it’s nice to work with what you’ve got and update your decorations with one or two stand-out items. There’s something very special about seeing your children’s excitement as they set to work hanging familiar, much-loved decorations to the tree, decorations that almost become family heirlooms over the years. If you want to keep things a little coherent our bright Rocking Rudolf range sits perfectly with a traditional red and white colour scheme and includes vibrant Merry Christmas bunting that is a cost-effective way to update your Christmas décor. Then add in the co-ordinating wooden reindeer peg set for a new way to display your Christmas cards.
If time’s not on your side there’s nothing like festooning your home with twinkling fairy lights for an instant Christmas fix. Trail them around your banisters, use them to frame a mirror or string them across your mantelpiece. Paper-chains are another low-cost, DIY way to update your decorations. Take a look at our cute Party Penguin paper-chains, or make your own. Cut up some colourful card or scraps of funky wrapping paper and get sticking – a simple, retro-style way to add a burst of colour to a neglected corner.
Christmas tables – whether for a sit-down or buffet meal – are all about embellishment so have fun with your settings. Crackers are obligatory, of course, but if you want to add something a bit different into the mix, how about sprinkling your table with shimmering snowflakes or mini penguins? If lots of guests will be gathering around your table, we love the idea of bauble place card holders or tying a luggage tag around napkins and cutlery. Christmas tables should also be about fun and silliness. For something a bit different to the standard paper hat, add a sticker to each place setting, inscribed with titles such as ‘Washer Upper’ and ‘Prince Charming’. For an extra treat pop a Rocking Rudolf chocolate square on each plate.
Tipples and toppers
Looking for a simple show-stopper to toast Christmas with? Simply top a glass of peach juice with Prosecco to create the Italian classic cocktail, the Bellini – something a bit different to the more traditional Christmas bucks fizz.
Few people can lay claim to doing Christmas completely from scratch, but the secret to making things look special is all in the presentation. Don’t worry if your mince pies are supermarket own brand rather than home-made – removed from their cases and piled high on a cake stand, all you need to do is add an extra dusting of icing sugar and top each pie with a penguin or reindeer mince pie stick to add some festive flourish. We guarantee no one will mind that they’re not home baked!
The clear-up operation
Christmas catering can be heavy on the clearing up so make sure you’ve got a stack of paper supplies to see you through Christmas night and into Boxing Day. Perfectly adequate for cold buffets post-Christmas, our Rudolf and penguin plates take the strain out of clearing up and can even be recycled afterwards, allowing you to sit back, put your feet up and resist the lure of the dishwasher for at least a few hours…
Here’s wishing you a happy, stress-free Christmas!