Goodbye Winter, Hello Spring

Thursday, 20 December 2012

Gorgeous Decorations

With Christmas just around the corner, we’re turning our attention to decorating! All the glitter and sparkle certainly adds to our festive spirit, and there’s nothing like a fabulous wreath or beautiful tree to make us feel Christmassy. 

If you will be adorning your home this weekend, we asked Mary, stylist for the ilovegorgeous photoshoots and the lovely lady responsible for dressing our fabulous windows, for her best advice to help inspire you:

What inspires you when decorating the ilg windows for Christmas?

For an ilovegorgeous Christmas window, I start by revisiting favourite childhood books with illustrations that I have always marvelled at, like those of Edmund Dulac, which are full of beautiful imagery. 

There is also a 'feeling' in the air with regard to design and fashion; this often influences the choice of props.  Although, it is always important to tailor this to children, as some Christmas imagery is quite frightening- or is that just me? 

As the ILG Winter collection is either party dress oriented, with lovely fluttery hems, sleeves and plenty of sequins, or soft, downy and cosy knitwear, I have no problems!

What does your home look like at Christmas time?

At Christmas in my own home, I max out on the greenery - I love completely covering an entire wall with natural green and plenty of lights. I go around the whole front door so that you can hardly get through it, and sometimes it goes all across the ceiling and over the table so that people often have to pick pine needles out of their stilton! I buy blue pine for it's aroma, and larch which is my favourite: it's really bendy and has beautiful tiny cones scattered along its length. From my garden I cut Scot's pine, birch twigs and ivy.

Who helps with the decorating (if anyone)?

My children love decorating the house, although sometimes they flake out before the tree is finished, which secretly pleases me as I love to get stuck in! The Christmas box is truly enormous, and is full of decorations collected over the years, and it all has to go on. Some of these treasures have been going on the tree since 1900, and I love the feeling that they have had an outing with our family once a year since then! Some of the more unusual ones are fish shaped baubles from the 1920's, anti aircraft silver metal tape from World War 2, and glass poodles.

What is the best DIY decoration you have come up with or come across?

The best decorations are home-made with the children - they can be really simple- you can cover your tree in cotton wool balls and plain lights, or just gingerbread- so pretty. 

I also love to make salt dough shapes - paint them with poster paints (it's worth getting some neon poster paint for added ooomph) and glitter, and cover them in sparkly spots. Tie them on with off-cuts of ribbon or coloured wool.

Also the most unexpected things make great decorations: old lightbulbs; pieces of sea- burnished glass; odd chandelier crystals from junk shops; dolly teacups and tiny teapots; silver teaspoons and cookie cutters; bows, birds, stars and hearts cut out of brown paper or newspaper decorated with sequins and glitter- clip them onto the tree with old fashioned wooden clothes pegs (yes, you can go all Ilovegorgeous and coat the pegs with glitter too!).

What are the top things to invest in when you’re buying decorations and where are good places to find Christmassy things?
It's worth buying one or two really beautiful baubles every year to compensate for any casualties. These you can purchase quite cheaply in the post Christmas sales- the best are from Liberty's (although their amazing Christmas shop often sells out in November), or anything by Gisela Graham from any gift shop or department store. Weirdly some of the nicest I have bought have been from the Globe theatre shop on the Southbank.

 Another great place for Christmas decorations is Lidl; you can get boxes of little wooden Christmas figures for around £5.  They also do really lovely nostalgic chocolate Christmas tree decorations- cheap and cheerful, and the chocolate is surprisingly good!

What is your favourite thing about Christmas?

The best thing about Christmas for me is creating a magical environment with the children for all our guests to enjoy, and then party, party, party!  Enjoy!

If you're still searching for last minute presents and stocking fillers, take a look at our hand-picked list to make it a little easier for you.  ilovegorgeous sparkly party dresses are perfect to wear on Christmas Day - what a treat to find under the tree!

Merry Christmas from ilovegorgeous! 

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