A wreath on the door – that was it. Outdoor decorations done. But not any longer. Now there’s a bit more pressure to keep up with the Joneses. Yes, there’s been a growing trend in modern times to extend festive outdoor decorations. Many homes herald the season with twinkling lights in the trees and on the house.
We can add another layer to your decorating cake by giving you a few ideas about how to create your outdoor Christmas room. And don’t forget to wipe your feet on the way back in.
Sometimes stunning effects can be achieved quite simply and in far less time than you might think. Christmas decorations, especially baubles, can be purchased cheaply and will withstand the rigours of a British winter quite well. Why not purchase a budget pack of baubles in your chosen colour scheme and use them to hang from the lower branches of trees, bare-branched shrubs or even holly trees if you want to be particularly seasonal. Ensure that the baubles are securely attached using either standard ornament hooks or ribbons as the winter winds can put them through their paces. We’ve also been known to use silver and gold fir cones in our displays to add a little sparkle.
Take another look at all of the containers and decorative pieces you already have in the garden. Plant pots and urns, window boxes and empty hanging baskets can all be utilised to provide a weatherproof container for a display of winter greenery, berries and decorations. Fill the chosen container with soil. Strip back your greenery to leave a clean stem to go into the soil. Place the greenery into the container working from the outside in, positioning your feature branches or berries and decorations in the centre. Simple florist’s wire will help you attach the decorations or branches into their optimum position.
If you look at our Christmas Flowers & Greenery section you will discover how just a few red berries can go a long way to creating that festive feel. You could also provide an injection of colour or sparkle using decorations that will contrast beautifully with greenery. Also see the flowers section for further details on which type of greenery works well.
Perhaps it’s tricky to connect up lights for the outside of your home or maybe you prefer something a little more traditional. Why not create the warm glow of Christmas outside your home by using glass lanterns. Available in so many sizes, shapes and styles, they can be used to either frame your door at each side or as markers along your pathway. Candle lanterns, hurricane lamps, candle pots: there are many options to give the outside of the house a festive feel. There’s a variety of our favourite lanterns at nordichouse.co.uk.
The advantage of many of these lanterns is that they’re not just for Christmas but will work throughout the year, giving you an enclosed flame that’s safe from the wind and rain. The taller and wider pillar candles give a stronger, warmer glow and have the benefit of lasting many hours. They should see you through the festive season without the need for frequent replacements.
Oil fired lamps are another option. Often made from warm looking copper or icy stainless steel, they will help you set your winter scene. Taller garden torches also fired by oil are a dramatic way of lining a driveway or path.
Don’t forget, the humble tea-light can look so effective in hanging lanterns of various sizes. Suspend them from the bare, lower branches of a tree or perhaps a hook in a wall that supported a hanging basket throughout the summer. You’ll find a good selection of hanging tea-light holders at nordichouse.co.uk and stores such as The White Company. Candle bags, with their perforated patterns of hearts and stars, are flame retardant and can be used with tea-lights to illuminate pathways. You can find a number of styles at notonthehighstreet.com.
Wipe Your Feet
When stepping back inside from your Outdoor Room, don’t forget to wipe your feet. For that you will need a suitably effective doormat, perhaps one that offers you and your guests a festive welcome every time you step back indoors. We love the “Santa Stop Here” mat, available through notonthehighstreet.com. For mats that add colour, a word of welcome and are perfect for use throughout the year, check out bombayduck.com.