Welcome back to my monthly style fix where I offer my advice to help you make the most of your home on a budget. My message is to not let a budget stop your desire to create something luxe.
This month, I will celebrate Christmas in style with strong Nordic design influences that succeeds in being both minimalist and classic. True to tradition, I keep our decorations up for as long as possible, not only to hang on to the Christmas spirit but the greenery that I introduce throughout the house is hard to throw away. So I shall hang onto every single candle, bauble and fresh flower till at least the 6th of January.
Create a winter wonderland with an abundance of paper stars, candles, homemade wreaths and fresh flowers.
This design trend works so well in any home, especially ones limited on space. Nordic styles have the ability to expand the room with only very few objects. So, whether you choose paired down white, natural and metallic decorations or to make a few simple ones of your own, the result will be faultless. Scandinavian style is big on incorporating natural elements in the home so draw on a few of these ideas below by using greenery, wood and herbs. Group items together of various sizes to creating a layering affect. It works wonders on the eye.
Sources from top left: Isala Baubles, set of 3, £14.95, nkuku.com | Ceramic Heart £6.50, nomliving.com | Six Sparkle Filled Glass Star, £15.50, coxandcox.co.uk | Cinnamon Snowflake Decoration, £4.00, nomliving.com | Snow Drop Baubles, set of 4, £12.95, nkuku.com | Set of 3 Open Decorations, £10.00, anartfullife.co.uk | Sumptuous Sheepskin Decoration, £12.50, coxandcox.co.uk | 12 Handmade Grey Glass Baubles, £35.00, coxandcox.co.uk | Vintage Bauble with Squirrel, from £5.95, thegingerpear.co.uk | Lul Star, set of 3, £12.95, thegingerpear.co.uk | Ceramic Angel Snow White, £7.00, nomliving.com | Antique Gold Baubles, set of 4, £14.95, nkuku.com | Concrete Star, £2.00, anartfullife.co.uk | Ceramic Reindeer Snow White, £6.50, nomliving.com | Remote Control Candle Tree Lights, £35.00, coxandcox.co.uk
A wreath, the holy grail – make your own using thick gardening wire entwined with blue pine and eucalyptus sourced from your local florist and throw in some snowberries, pussy willow and rosemary. You could buy a budget wreath and luxe it up with gold spray paint.
Play with scale and opt for an oversized one. Alternatively attend a wreath making class and push the boat out. I just love Blomst florist in E17, London. They offer original bouquets with beautiful, seasonal, fresh and fragrant hand picked blooms, direct from Holland @blomst_london_e17
Make simple cube decorations to hang above your table, from lights or along the mantelpiece, using minico’s templates http://www.minieco.co.uk/paper-decorations-winter-edition/ , super cute and they can double up as an advent calendar.
- Paper stars and open-out decorations to hang anywhere you desire
- Fill clear plastic baubles with fresh rosemary and eucalyptus
- Gather pine branches or snip a few from your tree and place in a vase with a few baubles. This can make even the bathroom look festive
- Paint bare twigs black or white (or leave natural if you prefer) and embellish with decorations cut from card, sprayed gold and hung from twine
Sources from top left: Large Black Paper Start Decoration, £9.00 | White Fold Decoration, £10.00, both from anartfullife.co.uk | Driftwood Tree from driftwoodwales.co.uk | Twelve Wooden and Metallic Stars, £12.50, coxandcox.co.uk
Hunt in the garden for hydrangeas, herbs, berries and foliage and dress the base of your banisters (which is often easier than the handrail) using cable ties. A tip: grow your own rosemary outdoors from a small potted plant sourced from a garden centre. Choose these over supermarket-sourced rosemary as it is harvested in a way that allows it to continue growing, so they grow big, and are perfect to use at Christmas cut fresh from the garden!!
The Scandinavian design is known for its elegant simplicity and lots of light so Christmas is perfect to introduce this theme with tons of candles and fairy lights
1. Place tea lights and white pillar candles in a bed of pine branches or rosemary on mantelpieces and adorning tables.
2. Fill your space with fresh flowers. Scatter vases filled with white tulips, white hyacinths and eucalyptus surrounded by candles.
3. Use a curtain of fairy lights to hang all along a hallway or over a bathroom mirror for a winter wonderland throughout the home
4. If all the decorations are too much for you to bear remember a tree can be beautiful dressed in merely twinkling lights and nothing else
White kraft paper by Clairefontaine or simple brown parcel paper is beautiful and inexpensive dressed with butchers twine and some greenery, pair it down or dress it up.
For a personal touch make your own gift tags. You can download and cut out your own using a template online. @ellaclaireblog has some lovely ones (see below). Use good quality paper or card.
Something I do every year, despite not wanting to spend another penny on Christmas. However you can’t deny you can make some amazing purchases in the January sales. No other time of year will give you the most value for money.
We tend to have our own little traditions but if you don’t why not start one. A friend once told me how the elves brought to the doorstep, on Christmas Eve, pyjamas for her little one. Since then I’ve adopted this tradition and it’s almost better than the big man himself. The Elves sprinkle their gift with a few magic metallic stars.
Until next time.. Ruth x
Credits: Written and curated by an interior stylist Ruth Daniels from Milla Decor, please follow Ruth on Instagram @milla_decor.