Deck the Halls: Holiday Decorating Tips

Halloween is just around the corner, which means it will be Thanksgiving, and Christmas before we know it. Already, department stores are sewn with the warming scent of cinnamon and decorations for this holiday season are adorning window displays. By now, most of you know if you are traveling for the holidays or staying home to host. If you’re planning on hosting the family for Christmas, there are some preparations that you can make for a comfortable, magical nook that could tempt even Santa Claus to linger for a mulled wine. It’s time to make your winter wonderland. Here are simple steps to create that perfect holiday feel while staying stress-free and keeping spirits bright.

Clear out the clutter

Before hanging the decorations and sending out the invites for the mulled wine mixer, you need to make sure your living space is as inviting as a house made of gingerbread. Christmas is a great excuse to round on all those outstanding chores. Give away surplus ornaments; they’re just gathering dust. Hire a carpet cleaner to revitalize your rugs. Paint that flaking door frame, and have the chimney swept in preparation for gathering around the fireplace.

Nail the tree

It’s the centerpiece decoration of the festive season, so don’t neglect to start the search or your perfect tree as early as possible. Real fir trees do smell divine, but their needles shed everywhere. If you don’t want to be vacuuming daily, consider going for high quality pre-decorated Christmas trees, available at stores like Tesco, which offers a wide range of pre-decorated Christmas trees.

Become a Christmas elf

There’s nothing like filling the long, cold, wintry evenings with a sense of purpose, and Christmas is the perfect goal to set. Make a simple, beautiful wreath with little more than wire, fir branches and a pair of pliers. Trace delicate silver snowflakes onto an organza runner to drape over the Christmas table.  Knit some thick, woolly stockings to hang from the fireplace, or make the ultimate Christmas pudding and stash it in the freezer.

A little extra

If your guests are leaving their homes behind to visit over Christmas, make their stay a delight with a few extra comforts to make them feel welcome. Stock the bathroom with fluffy towels, luxurious hand moisturizer and spare toiletries. Leave a scented candle and a stack of reading materials by the bedside. And the golden rule? Make more than one TV available to avoid disagreements on what holiday show/movies to watch are resolved easily and without frowny faces. Of course, at the most wonderful time of the year all that really matters is being with loved-ones. While getting everything spick, span and sparkly is a fun diversion, if your garlands wilt or the turkey gets cremated, remember not to take things too seriously. Stock up on ingredients for your fav holiday beverages to keep eggnogs flowing.