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INTERIORS


By Lorna Sixsmith


Christmas Decorating H


ow to keep your Christmas decorations looking fresh


Gone are the days when Christmas decorations were put up around 21st December. Now people are putting them up earlier and earlier, often as early as 1st December. Traditionally, decorations are taken down on 6th January and this still seems to be the case, therefore your Christmas decorations may be up for five weeks! How do you ensure they still look


impressive 4 weeks on, rather than looking bedraggled and rather sorry for themselves?


• If using a real Christmas tree, ensure


that it is in a pot and you can water it - this will make such a difference to the pine needles.


• Remove most of the decorations from the


Christmas tree once every ten days and re arrange - it is surprising how many fall in between the branches.


• Tidy up all the wires by encasing all the surplus


and loose wire that is near the tree in a box covered with gift wrap - it will masquerade as another gift under the tree.


• If your decorations are starting to look a little sorry for


themselves, replace their ties with some colourful French ribbon which will give them a new lease of life. Cutting the ribbon at different lengths will add more interest too.


• Christmas cards can become floppy after a couple of weeks and fall all


over the place - invest in a card display or hang them in a pyramid arrangement on the wall.


• Remove any dead flowers or leaves from the Christmas floral displays and


wreaths and replace with fresh ones.


Tree-less Decorating If you have a small space or would prefer not to have a Christmas tree, here’s some tips for making your home look festive without a tree.


• Use little Christmas figurines or decorations that stand rather than


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hang and place them on windowsills or your mantelpiece.


• Entwine some greenery (real or artificial) around the stairs banisters to


bring a festive atmosphere to your hall.


• Fill clear glass vases with brightly coloured baubles and place on coffee


tables and the dining table.


• Hang baubles to a string and hang across a wall for a vivid


feature.


- elaborate bejewelled stockings for mums look great on the mantelpiece and remember to pick up personalised Christmas stockings for the children - just in case Santa gets confused!


• Pretty glass candleholders with festive candles are effective too.


• Bring in colour with some red poinsettia plants


• Twigs of holly placed in white vases or bottles look very effective in a white


interior. •


Create a tree shape on


the wall with lights or with Christmas cards or decorations.


How to dress your


Christmas Table The dining table is going to be pretty full with lots of food and accompaniments on


Christmas Day so here’s some tips on how to keep it simple yet elegant.


ining table, set it with the place settings and decorations the evening


d• If you have a separate


before. Alternatively, have your decorations ready to go onto it after breakfast on Christmas morning.


simple - choose a table • •


Christmas angels are perfect for standing on mantel- pieces or console tables. €14.95 at Carrig Donn


• Purchase letters that spell NOEL or Christmas and display on a


wide surface like a mantelpiece or windowsill.


• Wreaths aren’t just for the front door - place one up along the stairs or over


the fireplace.


• Put your Christmas Tree on the wall with removable and reusable wall


decals that can be used year after year. You can even leave the tree there all year and just add the Christmassy details each December. These are a lovely way to add a Christmas theme to a child’s bedroom too.


• Don’t forget the Christmas stocking cracker at each place setting adds •


to the colour and provides lively entertainment between courses.


• Fill two tall vases with inexpensive Christmas baubles for some vivid


colour.


• If your ceiling light is above your dining table, hanging some red


ribbons or garlands from the light fitting creates a nice centrepiece without taking up any space.


• Sprinkle some coordinating coloured foil wrapped sweets along the table for


a ready after dinner treat.


Decorating is a lovely part of Christmas. Enjoy.


runner in a festive colour over a traditional white or grey tablecloth.


A tall candleabra will


stand tall above all the food dishes and won’t compete for space.


An elegant Christmas Keep the decorations


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