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The most stylish Christmas decorating trends this year

christmas trends
Christmas 2023 trends to expectQVC

There’s no doubt about it – this year Christmas decor is destined to be bolder and brighter than ever. Championing makers and celebrating creativity is at the heart of all of 2023’s trends, with homeowners wanting to craft more, waste less and invest in quality pieces to create their own individual interpretations of this season’s key trends.

Nostalgia is a thread that runs through the 2023 Christmas trends, too – Berry Decadent is a dramatic, romantic and warming decor style with a touch of tradition. Trending for A/W 2023, these rich damson, claret and plum shades will drench your home in cosy, winter vibes. If you prefer something more pared back, the Festive Farmhouse look might be one for you, inspired by this year’s adoration for all things ‘cottage core’ – “this theme has an emotive, wholesome and reassuring style direction, with rural escapism at the heart of this story,” reveals Lisa Cherry, Christmas buyer at John Lewis. For a halfway house of modern minimalism with a touch of sparkle, look to the Nordic Glamour trend – a clean yet striking Scandi-style theme with gold embellishments.

For a more playful look, you can’t get more exuberant than the modern eclectic vibes of the Merry Mish-Mash trend – a bold and eclectic decor style that celebrates freedom of expression, picking up on this year’s key motifs of scallops, waves, candy stripes and vibrant colour combos. Another whimsical look is this year’s Frosted Fairyland, inspired by the magical nostalgia and enchantment of Christmas. Think mermaids and unicorns mixed with polar bears and penguins in a Sugar Plum Fairy scene of pearlescent pastels, frosted pines and wintery whites.

Still undecided? Read on to discover more about this year's top five trends, plus 20 ways to incorporate them into your home, from money-saving tricks and tips to savvy, sustainable buys.

Trend: A Merry Mish-Mash

christmas trends
Rose & Grey and Laura Laura Studio

“This year's big Christmas trend is all about embracing maximalist decor, infusing the holiday season with vibrant colours and bringing creative ideas to life,” says Lyndsey Goodger, head buyer and co-owner of Rose & Grey. “Stylists are increasingly veering away from the traditional reds and greens and instead opting for a brave kaleidoscopic mix of punchy statement hues. From striking ornaments to mismatched baubles, this trend encourages us to break free from the ordinary and celebrate the festive season with joy.

“Maximalism has officially taken centre stage as interior designers are layering textures, patterns, and colours more than ever. Taking inspiration from this year's resurgence of scallops, waves and stripes, expect to see a mismatch of colours from hot pinks and reds to sky-blue and green hues in a range of materials. Think soft cotton napkins paired with glossy tableware and bold paper crackers.

“So, whether you're adorning your space with bright tinsel, colourful twisted candles or paper trees and stars, this trend welcomes it all. It's a celebration of self-expression, and a testament to the idea that when it comes to spreading festive cheer, there's no such thing as too much of a good thing.”

Make your tree OTT

“Gone are the days of beautifully neutral and coordinated trees, with families now preferring to embrace their personality and eclectic mix of tastes in one festive explosion,” says interior designer Ann Marie Cousins, founder of AMC Design.

Play with pattern

To ensure this look is tasteful mish-mash and not car-crash, embrace tried and tested pattern combos that work – this year it’s all about bold candy-cane stripes, harlequin and chequered prints as well as wavy and scalloped edges. Think about how to introduce these in the form of table linen, vases, serveware and stripy candles for tablescapes, as well as stockings, cushion covers (stripes and ruffles are a big deal) and hand-painted patterned picture frames for living spaces.

DIY Paper chains

Is there nothing more festive than a paper chain? This childhood favourite will add a nostalgic twist to your scheme, plus it’s a great crafting activity that the kids can get on board with too. Opt for the classic coloured card in an array of bright hues, or you could even use bold wallpaper samples or leftover wrapping paper for a striking look. Paper chains are also a great eco-friendly alternative to tinsel for trimming the tree.

Print your own stationery

Up your gift wrap game with luxuriously marbled wraps and tags, or try out block printing to create your own expensive-looking wrapping paper for a snip. Check out Hobbycraft’s guide to marbling your own papers, or learn how to block print at home with the queen of print Molly Mahon, who stocks her own kits, plus ready-made designs, all of which make beautiful gifts. Molly also runs courses on Create Academy, where there’s a free tutorial to watch.

Trend: Festive Farmhouse

christmas trends
Hobby Craft

For those who adore the rustic charm of farmhouse decor, Christmas is the perfect time to infuse your home with its distinctive cosy vibe and nostalgic charm. Set to be huge this year, this trend is all about timber furniture, natural materials including jute, seagrass, linen and cotton mixed with sage greens hues, flora and fauna motifs and a touch of velvet.

“This year’s festive farmhouse trend is an extension of the nostalgia-inspired movement cottage-core that’s all about bringing back pastoral aesthetics and activities,” reveals Dayna Isom Johnson, Etsy trend expert. “For 2023, homeowners are opting for Christmas decor that is reminiscent of a time before tech, one that was filled with the simpler pleasures in life and returning to a wholesome rustic lifestyle. To get the look, shoppers are leaning into warm tones, cosy textures, foraged decor and vintage pieces, like ruffled soft furnishings (up 35%*), gingham bedding (up 34%*) and natural linen placemats (up 5,980% *). In line with this trend, single-use and disposable dining items are trending down by up to a third, with shoppers placing greater emphasis on sustainable options and heirlooms for the future.”

Forage for decs

A bracing winter walk is the perfect opportunity to gather plenty of seasonal produce to recreate that country-cottage vibe. Look for evergreen foliage such as ivy, holly, mistletoe and eucalyptus and conifer branches including fir, pine and cypress to add depth to your wreaths, door swags or floral arrangements, while berries such as rosehips, hawthorn, pyracantha and holly will add colour. Wooden bowls packed with moss and candles or glass vessels filled with pine cones, chestnuts, cinnamon sticks and dried orange create simple centrepieces, while fir cones can be used to make garlands, or as table-place settings. A suspended branch above a dining table wrapped in foliage and lights with hanging decorations could make a fabulous festive feature, or fill a tall vase with twigs and hang paper or ceramic decorations for a rustic look.

Pull together humble tablescape

Start with a simple linen tablecloth followed by a white cotton runner and jute placemats as your base layer, and add handcrafted glazed stone tableware. Interior designer Emma Deterding’s top tip is to use inexpensive Ikea tea towels as napkins, tie them with festive ribbon and add a brown luggage label for each place setting, while Home Barn founders Sarah and Sally Wilkie suggest using antique accessories and ceramics, such as vintage candlesticks, stoneware jugs and Spode-style platters to make a home look as though it has been curated over the years.

Get Krafty

This brown paper staple is perfect for Christmas craft activities while also saving the pennies – and the planet. It’s sustainable, 100% recyclable and biodegradable, while 2.3 million pounds of wrapping paper ends up in a landfill every year. Presents can be wrapped in brown parcel paper and simple twine to achieve that rustic look, with salt dough tags and festive foliage for a final flourish. At just £1 for a 6m roll at The Range, you could even use it as a disposable table runner, using chalk pens to decorate it.

Create a rural retreat

Take the country cottage vibe into the bedroom with layers of cosy knits and tartan throws thrown over your everyday linen bedding for that festive twist. Mix Arts & Crafts inspired floral prints with sumptuous velvets in accessories such as cushions and stockings to create a cosy feel. Finish with jugs and vases of fresh foliage, perhaps even a handmade wreath on the door or garland wrapped around the bedstead, scented candles and warm-white fairy lights for a subtle glow.

Trend: Nordic Noir

christmas trends
Rockett St George

“By pairing a timeless Christmas decor trend like Nordic style with seasonal sparkle, you can create a show-stopping festive scene that has all the necessary glitz and glamour but will also stand the test of time for the future,” reveals Jane Rockett, co-founder of Rockett St George. “A few Scandi favourites that never date are stars, monochrome baubles and, of course, reusable paper decorations. As the staple decorations in your collection, these versatile classics are easy to update with the latest trends.

“Colour palettes inspired by the earth are one of our favourite trends from the last few years. From terracottas and warm mustard tones to Mediterranean olive green, these rich natural hues are perfect for introducing an indulgent and cosy feel to the more minimalist Scandi aesthetic. In addition, a pop of gold makes earthy hues and monochrome palettes sing and ties everything together with a sprinkling of the magical maximalism that Christmas is known for.”

Add texture

Given this look is predominantly monochrome, texture is key; layering soft furnishings such as faux fur, boucle, linens and velvets is an easy way to add winter warmth. When it comes to accessories, look for wooden beaded garlands, rattan accessories and metallic decs, as well as black candlesticks and neutral vases in clean, abstract shapes.

Choose dried floral centrepieces

To create this pared-back look, consider dried floral arrangements in on-trend rusty-reds or olive greens over shop-bought bouquets. Not only will it create a more contemporary vibe, dried bouquets are a more sustainable solution, allowing you to reuse them again and again. Brands including Beard & Daisies and Design By Nature have a great selection of arrangements for the festive period.

Embrace paper decs

An affordable way to add instant impact is to pile on the paper decs that can be neatly folded away for future years. Look for oversized stars and honeycomb balls in varying shapes and sizes that can be used to decorate an unused fire hearth, a doorway or hung above a dining table via a table hanging rail.

Bring on the sparkle

In order to dial up the glamour, consider adding on-trend fringed tassel garlands to mantelpieces and stairwells over traditional leafy designs, and add gold-rimmed glasses and crockery to tables, metallic barware for post-dinner cocktails and traditional Scandi motifs such as trees ornaments and paper stars in gold and bronze finishes.

Trend: Berry Decadent

christmas trends
QVC

“This festive season, I'm expecting to see brilliant berry tones take homes across the nation by storm,” says Debbie Williamson, co-founder of furniture brand Swoon. “A wintery, deeper evolution of the Pantone colour of the year Viva Magenta – crimson, damson, and cranberry shades are set to be hot this winter, replacing the traditional red associated with Christmas.”

“If you are looking to embrace a romantically cosy Christmas decor scheme this year, deep berry shades should be on your shopping list. Drape your display with crimson baubles, claret accessories and deep cassis accents, creating an almost edible exhibit of delectable berry hues.

“To enhance your damson display with a festive sparkle, pair dramatic berry tones with rich gold and copper accents. Add warm-toned twinkly lights to your tree, golden candlesticks to your mantlepiece display, and decadent warm metal accents to your front door wreath.”

Make a mantlescape

This trend is perfect for creating an opulent display that will transform your fireplace into a festive focal point. Use foliage in abundance, with berry stems and various-sized baubles in pink and damson tones, suspended from your garland at different heights using velvet ribbon for a luxe look. Complete the look with groups of candlesticks and a few choice ornaments, such as the traditional Nutcracker figure.

Swap to fabric wrap

An easy way to create a sumptuous look is to ditch the traditional wrapping paper and sellotape and use fabric to wrap your loved ones’ gifts instead. The Japanese art of furoshiki has been going since the 7th century, but it’s having a resurgence thanks to the demand for a less wasteful, more eco-friendly wrapping alternative. A pile of presents covered in beautiful fabrics will look a lot more decadent under the tree – Sostrene Grene has a range of fabric wraps, or try FabRap’s range of organic designs.

Raise the bar

Home bars are one of the biggest trends for 2023 – use a drinks trolley, sideboard or dresser to create a glamorous DIY cocktail station that will wow guests. Create a deco vibe with pink and berry-toned highball glasses and Champagne coupes, paired with metallic barware accessories including cocktail shakers and ice bucket. Add a dish or vase filled with leftover baubles and fairy lights to complete the look.

Scale it back

If you don’t want to go all-out berry, it makes a great accent colour if you’re existing decor is neutral, pink, green or blue, with the rich pinky-reds complementing sage and forest greens, teal-blues, navy and plaster pink, for example. Look for cushions that have berry-coloured florals or stripes, with an accent tartan throw or Welsh blanket that picks up the berry colour, or perhaps a lampshade, as well as baubles, stockings and presents wrapped in William Morris-style prints or plaid designs that merge these rich jewel tones together.

Trend: Frosty Fairyland

christmas trends
John Lewis

“This theme is reminiscent of those Christmases we celebrated as a child, full of wonder, charm and make believe,” says Lisa Cherry, Christmas buyer at John Lewis. “It draws inspiration from archive prints, encapsulating ethereal winter scenes with magical frosted landscapes and enchanting creatures.

“Think glass swans and fuzzy owls meet wooden penguins and arctic foxes. Trim the tree with hand-beaded ornaments and frosted glass decorations dusted with bio-glitter alongside those made from natural materials, including cork, wicker and recycled glass.”

Create a wintery scene

Capture the magic of the snowy, starry winter sky by bringing it indoors. Contrast inky blues and aquatic tones with classic light whites and shimmering silvers to add sparkle and shine to the room. For a contemporary twist, consider introducing pops of blush pink – a somewhat untraditional colour, the shade symbolises love, affection, and kindness, leaning perfectly into the Christmas spirit of giving. Don't forget to add an unmistakably Christmassy ambience to any space with the glow of warm twinkling fairy lights.

Add a touch of sparkle

Use iridescent baubles in candyfloss pinks and icy blues, as well as mercury votives and ribbed glass vases to help recreate that frosted feel, with snow globes, glitter balls and beaded ornaments with arctic and fairytale creature motifs to add a touch of magic. Add shimmery soft furnishings, plush pastel velvets and thick faux furs to complete the look.

Craft paper snowflakes

Dress your windows with garlands of paper snowflakes to instantly bring that wintery feel indoors. This simple but effective craft is a great one for kids to get involved in – hang lengths of your delicate designs on string, or simply stick straight onto the windows

Make a sweet centrepiece

Get the Sugar Plum Fairy vibes with a large bowl or ‘treasure chest’ filled with glittery pink and gold shatterproof baubles, frosted pine cones with classic Christmas sweets in shiny wrappers hidden inside for a magical treat.

Perfect your Christmas decor this year.

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