‘Tis the season for…..doin’ it for the ‘gram! Chances are if you read my blog you are either one of two things (or both): an interior fanatic who loves changing things up at home and / or addicted to interiors on Instagram. There is nothing like a bit of festive inspo on Instagram when it comes to this time of year (although the vast amount of ‘Christmas In November’ on Insta this year has rightly had a few people shudder in horror.)
This Christmas I was lucky enough to collaborate with House Of Fraser, styling a few of their Christmas collections in my home. What I would say is, minimalists, look away now. When it comes to Christmas, I like the style to be full-on. I’m also quite a traditionalist, which I know is probably not the most ‘trendy’ thing when kitsch has been king at Christmas for a good few years, but I love traditional Christmas decor. I think owning a period home and all the features that embodies means that traditional decor really sings in this setting.
Anyhow, while styling for this collaboration, there were a few props and tips that I kept using over and over that I felt really worked to evoke that Christmas spirit in the images. I thought I’d share a few of these styling tips with you, in case you wanted to style up your Christmas table for guests, or if you just wanted to create a seasonal shot for Instagram!
Design Your Drinks
To serve up drinks that look especially seasonal, I found wrapping some twine around a tumbler glass and slipping through a sprig of cinnamon was an easy way to give a festive twist to a mulled wine or cider. Cinnamon sticks can be easily picked up in the herbs aisle of the supermarket, plus they can be resused over and over.
For prosecco, a sprig of rosemary and few pomegranate seeds work wonders. The pomegranate seeds move around in the glass with the fizz so they don’t all sink to the bottom. Again, these items can be easily purchased in the supermarket when you are doing your Christmas food shop.
2. Be A Maximalist
As the avid interior instagrammer knows, a full-room shot with lots of stuff in it is always more popular than a zoomed in shot, so make the most of what you’ve got! All the products featured in the image above are from the Merry Tales collection available at House Of Fraser (dog not included).
3. Pay attention to presents
Wrapped presents are essential to any styled Christmas shot. I can’t tell you how many empty cardboard boxes I’ve wrapped over the past few years for Christmas photos for the blog! Go next level when wrapping presents - use twine or ribbon threaded with baubles, add natural decor like rosemary sprigs or pieces of pine, holly and fir cones. Get a glue-gun and get creative!
Bring The Outside In
I love to use natural elements at Christmas in my styling. I bulk up on logs, twigs, fir cones, and bunches of eucalyptus. I also dry out hydrangea heads, orange and apple slices , plus berries. Drying out items is really easy. Bake orange and apple slices in the oven so they dehydrate, or leave hydrangea heads hanging over the cooking for a few days. If all this sounds like too much effort, get yourself down Hobbycraft and buy up all these things pre-done for a couple of quid.
Food is so good for Christmas styling! There are a few items which you only find during the Christmas season, such as mince pies and fruit cake, so use them to evoke that Christmas feeling in your photos.
Invest In Tiny Metal String Lights
This is a new one for me this year, but House Of Fraser sent through these little metal string lights which give off this dim, warm light. They are different to the usual fairy lights as the light is just little dots rather than bulbs, which means they don’t ‘blow out’ your images with bright light. Instead, they give off just the right amount of Christmas sparkle!
Baubles are not just for the tree
Use baubles everywhere! The smaller ones are better, but scatter them on the table to fill up any gaps and string them on ribbon for gifting. Fill up bowls in your home with baubles as a decoration. If you want to get really creative get your glue-gun out again and make an indoor wreath with them all bunched together!
I hope you like my traditional Christmas styling tips! What do you use to evoke that perfect Christmas ‘look?’ Let me know in the comments section below….
Please note that I collaborated with House Of Fraser on some paid Instagram content, but this blog post is organic and not sponsored.