Year after year we see a number of houses on the streets around our home towns lit up with Christmas lights and other decorations. These displays are enjoyed by all and children love to be reminded that the 25th of December is drawing near.

But what happens past the front doorstep? Does this Christmas frenzy of lights and Santas sticking out from chimneys continue into peoples homes? I can tell you now decorating inside the home should be significantly different from the outside. This is a job for the professionals and most certainly does not involve your husband and father-in-law with a bunch of tools and a few beers on a Friday night.

Christmas decorations in the home should look elegant, exciting and festive all at the same time. The should light up your faces, and not your upholstery. Christmas decoration should have personality that reflect your family and the joy you feel in sharing Christmas together. Here are our top tips and trends for decorating this season:

1. It does not ALL have to be green and red.
Choose two feature colours for your decorations. It is natural to assume green and red would be the most festive, but I think purple and gold or blue and silver also look amazing at Christmas time too. If you love a white Christmas, I would use blue and silver to decorate your home and Christmas tree. A few white Christmas lights or candles will turn your home into a Winter Wonderland!

2. Family Photos and memories of past Christmases should be on display.
Especially when your children have grown up and ‘flown the coop’. They will appreciate being reminded of their childhood Christmases and the fond memories associated. Christmas is not just about gifts but spending time with loved ones and family. Having these mementos around will surely have everyone in good spirits, and be great conversation fillers for when extended family comes to visit.

3. Don’t overdo the tinsel.
There is a reason why we only use tinsel at Christmas time and that is because it really looks tacky when it isn’t used properly. Tinsel is like birthday streamers- you will most likely throw them out at the end of the event and they don’t really look elegant strung up all over the house. A little tinsel on the Christmas tree is okay but I wouldn’t make it a feature of the rest of the home.

4. Set the table!

During the Christmas period you are likely to have more visits than usual from relatives and friends sending their well wishes.

Be sure to have some home made biscuits and tea on hand! Have a nice table setting with a feature flower arrangement. I love Poinsettias (especially nice with a red and green theme or purple and gold). White lilies also look glamorous on a table and in the kitchen. Use your nicest cups and saucers to serve tea and really make your guest feel special.

5. Carols are nice. But try something different.
Some homes and even shopping malls play the same tired Christmas albums ever year. There are so many excellent Christmas albums that come out every year in all different styles. Try a jazz album or go for something you really enjoy. If its Bieber you like, play it! This will put you in a great mood even whilst entertaining. And chances are other people will enjoy listening to something new too (perhaps not Bieber then…)

Happy decorating everyone!