When it comes to Christmas, Susie Reid Thomas Creative Director of Twilight Trees is an expert on décor. We’ve chatted to Susie and asked her advice as to how to create the perfect Christmas vibe.
What atmosphere do you go for at Christmas?
Whether following a theme, a trend or tradition, I think that creating a warm energy is key. The Danish called it ‘Hygge’ and it’s that wonderful cosiness evoked by a crackling fire, candlelight and a large glass of red.
What are your tips for making a home timelessly festive?
Lighting is so important; it creates atmosphere and accent but is also an easy one to get wrong. Warm white lighting is a must in the home, nothing else will do.
I try to create pockets of interest throughout the home and always work with odd numbers, for some reason it just works better aesthetically.
Mix faux with real and never underestimate the art of foraging! There is something hugely satisfying about decorating with natural elements that you’ve collected yourself and it’s a fantastic way to get children involved.
Any other elements that you think are important?
I think scent is hugely important and it’s incredibly powerful when evoking memories. We have a wonderfully realistic faux Christmas tree at home but the one thing I miss about the real ones is the smell of pine. I’ve recently discovered ‘Scentsicles’ which you hang from the tree and really do smell like the real deal. I also love a scented candle and I’ll be burning the Twilight Trees ‘Tobacco, leather and cognac’ candles this year which deliver a sense of classic opulence.
You’re a Mum of two boys, do you let them get involved?
I tend to let them decorate them their bedrooms and give them free reign. They can go crazy and express themselves in any way they want. I also let them choose one special decoration each year which is a tradition that they absolutely love.
What advice would you give to someone planning their decorations for this year?
I’d say invest wisely. Buy timeless pieces in classic colours that you can use year after year and then add a few key pieces each Christmas.
How do you dress your table?
Varying heights is a clever way of adding dimension especially when creating table displays. When dressing a table it is also imperative to ensure that people can see to each other across the table! You can have the most beautiful table centres but if people can’t chat then you’re better off without them.
Any other tips?
Wrapping is another element that can add value to an experience without costing a fortune. Just spending that little extra time and making your presents look beautiful just gives it that feeling of both luxury and care. Plain brown paper is economical but can be dressed with different ribbons and I think always looks sophisticated and thoughtful.
What are your thoughts on outside décor?
I think outdoor decorating is hugely underrated. I’m not talking ‘in your face’ style décor but some warm white lighting can be a wonderful way of bringing outside in. Twilight Trees are obviously my number one option when it comes to LED options.
Overall what advice would you give to someone trying to dress their home in a sophisticated yet cosy way.
I’d say mix up textures, heights and tones. I choose one colour each year and use that throughout an overall natural colour scheme. I use that colour palette in varying tones throughout. Fresh foliage like Eucalyptus, foraged branches and pine cones and dried orange and cinnamon sticks are wonderful. Use accents of light throughout the home and finish it all off with the warm glow of candlelight.