Christmas for busy people is all about balance. Everyone wants their place to look fab and wowie when visitors pop by for a cheeky festive fizz. But nothing is worth a head spin overload. Good friends will still love you if the canapes are shop-bought – it’s all about the people. Kate Rose, founder of Tutti&Co is mad about Christmas and lets us in on some insider tips for making things look Instagram-lovely without too much hassle.
Head to the craft store!
Yes, you know the one – a craft danger-zone (don’t take the kids!) – but the place to find all the bits and pieces to ‘do’ festive.
Buy: bias-binding in toned shades for parcel-wrapping. This makes your bows floppy rather than stand-up stiff.
Buy: spray paint: gold, silver and white.
Raid the garden
Leaves look lovely softly sprayed – even dead leaves and twigs. Eucalyptus is already soft grey-green – a spray of white adds a nice tone.
Big twigs can be sprayed – then wrap some sparkly lights round them – neat wire lights are best for this and look great.
Raid the fridge
We can’t get enough of oranges! Dry them either in a drying oven if you’ve got an Aga or slice on trays in the airing cupboard – or sliced and lie on teatowels on the radiator – this gives off a lovely aroma.
Use the slices decoratively in bowls or spray them gold to give a really rich and opulent texture.
Kate has the luxury of designing her own wrapping paper for Tutti and this year’s designs are softly textured watermarks and gentle graphics which nod to architectural structures.
When you’re wrapping a selection of gifts, use toning coloured papers in plain and patterns and lashings of ribbon for a really nice effect.
Kate likes to add a sprig of rosemary or a bit of pampas grass, herbs, or those aforementioned gold-sprayed orange segments to the top of the parcel for an extra luxe touch.
The focal point
If you’ve got a fireplace then make a festive centrepiece. You’ll never go wrong with masses of candles but it’s easy to add something new and a bit wowie for the festive season.
A bespoke foliage arrangement will look and smell lovely – but needs a bit of upkeep and attention. Make your own ‘curation’ with some easy additions for the fireplace.
First off: remove everything from the ‘normal’ mantlepiece – candle, vases and pictures. That leaves you with a clean slate when it comes to decoration.
Kate’s Tutti prints with their dusky metallics add some softness and a bit of shimmer as well as giving some height and presence. They’re also a pretty reasonable addition (star print £5 and larger geometric print, £10).
Make the most of your winter walks and gather as many acorns as you can – foragaing for festive greenery, twigs and trims is great fun.
Kate’s filled a glass sweetie jar with acorns and nuts, some of them sprayed for a bit of shimmer. The glass looks grand and effective – but it’s a simple hack. It’s worth having a good hunt through the kitchen cupboards for vases and kilner jars that you can fill with other seasonal goodies such as baubles or even silvery shells and stones.
Copper and moss wreaths are a year-round addition to this Tutti household (£25 each). They can stand alone, in clusters or be embellished with greenery or jewels.
Also on the mantlepiece are silvery sprigs of eucalyptus from the garden softly sprayed with white.
Kate adds her favourite Tutti Xmas tree decorations to the mantlepiece (these are £22 for two and will transfer to the festive table).
When it comes to luxuries, Kate adores the Jo Loves tree-scented candle and her Ebay best buy – the vintage sledge which acts as a very cool platform for her perfectly-placed parcels.
The stockings are from another favourite store – Anthropologie – and setting the scene alongside the roaring fire are a Tutti brass hanging candle, £12, and geometric candle holders (£6 each).
Make your festive breakfast table fun with simple place settings that are bright and beautiful – again, with the addition of dried and sprayed orange slices on prettily-tied napkins.
Layer up the pancakes and sprinkle with snow flurries!