A very happy holiday from your favourite Scottish Santas! We’re gearing up for the season and, as normal, we’ll be dispensing holiday style tips on both sides of the Atlantic! Here are a dozen clever ideas with a cash conscious twist.
1. Table Centrepieces A great way to add drama! Try a jewel-toned glass bowl with floating candles and flower petals to bring a romantic touch. Or place several dwarf Poinsettias down the centre of your dining table —they look particularly good in shiny gold pots. But remember “eye lines”— make sure your centrepiece isn’t so tall that guests can’t see each other as they catch up on gossip and devour your turkey!
2. Napery Add glamour and sparkle to your table by using napery with metallic finishes to reflect candle glow. Good table dressing is all about providing magical sparkle across the entire surface. For kids, attach stickers or other adornments to personalize place settings. For adults, put charity lotto tickets inside store-bought crackers. For a couple of dollars you’ll be helping others and, who knows—they might just get lucky!
3. It’s a Candle Scandal Don’t just plonk down a candelabra and hope for the best —learn to build drama! A tall candelabra looks even better with lots of tiny tea lights clustered below. Or try storm lamps for a change of mood. And remember to be “candle safe” —don’t leave your waxy lovelies unattended.
4 Charge Ahead Using “charger plates” will add colour to your table and transform food presentation to the max. Work the colour scheme of your “chargers” across the rest of your room. Black chargers add extra punch to a gold dressed table (and vice versa) and cranberry will enliven a white scheme.
5 Glass-Tastic Arrange white mini-lights in a vase as a talking point and unusual festive lamp. Simply switch on and let the twinkling begin! Sometimes, it’s not what you’ve got —but how you use it that makes all the difference! Or place a snaking line of sparkly votives along an eye-level shelf.
6 The Three R’s REINVENT: Got a bunch of dried flowers that have seen better days? Spray paint the best ones white and silver and arrange in a large clear tank vase filled with white painted pebbles. REINTERPRET: Tie cute Christmas gift tags displaying guests’ names around wine-glass stems as name cards. RECYCLE: Cut up last year’s Xmas cards with pinking shears and attach to glasses with ribbon! Waste not, want not!
7 Hey Sugar! If you’re creating a winter scene and you need to make the illusion of a snowy background —forget the fake snow—instead try ICING SUGAR. Sprinkle over your décor and hey presto: instant snowstorm!
8 Colour Tips: KISS (Keep It Seriously Simple!) When it comes to room décor, our best advice is to use colours that complement your existing scheme. Stick to two colours (like red and gold or blue and silver). Christmas should be cohesive and tasteful. But feel free to try less traditional pairings, too!
9 Tree Décor When decorating your tree, position baubles into the “depth” of the branches and not just on the outer edges— this will create a “fatter”, more complete look. And remember this vital order—lights on first, garlands second and ornaments third.
10 Pass the Sniff Test Remember that olfactory titillation is important too! Use dreamy scented candles, cinnamon aromatic oils, room pomanders or clever plug-in fragrances with rotating exotic smells. Burn a few of these and have some mulled wine brewing as your friends arrive!
11 Festive Focal Points Cram your fireplace mantel with pine cones, evergreen boughs and flickering tea lights. Dress with clementines and cinnamon-stick bundles tied with jolly green or red ribbon. Simple, but gorgeous!
12 Less is More Remember to exercise (a little) restraint when it comes to decorating and keep the sparkle to your focal -point area and tree— that way your decorations won’t suffocate your living space. And don’t go overboard with tacky tinsel or else you’ll give yourself a holiday migraine.