Thursday, 1 December 2016
Snuggle up with Winter woodland in your Christmas home
The Danish concept of Hygge: pronounced “heurgha”, which pays homage to the little things in life and encourages you to create cosy, warm and simplistic interior spaces, is definitely the inspiration for winter style at the moment. And here at The Contemporary home we believe that Hygge can even extend to Christmas decoration, more specifically through the use of natural materials, the use of warming candlelight and a welcoming in of nature that so defines the Scandinavian way of life.
Step forward the Woodland style, whereby natural light woods, bristle, bark and alpine inspired animals and evergreens take centre stage!
Snuggle down for some family time
Christmas is a time when we get to snuggle down as a family next to a roaring fire and spend some relaxing quality moments together. Help the family to nestle in this Yuletide with the addition of soft woolen throws and faux fur cushions scattered around your living spaces. Then fill your rooms with as many soft ambient lighting options as possible, keeping it natural and inviting throughout. We think that these log battery candles with star design are a clever alternative to real candle light if you have young children in the house. And this light up star ornament with LED’s would light up any dark corner of the house on these cold winter night.
An affinity with nature
With their cute little features and adorable postures, these woodland animals from the Natural bristle glitter animal tree decoration range are sure fire heart stealers. Kids will melt at their sweet little eyes looking up at them, and most adults will find it hard not to feel a tug on the heartstrings with these charming decorations. With a rabbit, reindeer, bear or mouse to choose from, you can invite the whole of the magic of the mountain into your Christmas home.
Another option for ambient lighting can be found in these two ceramic owl tea light holders. In soft toned stoneware fitting perfectly with the natural tones of the Woodland look, these winter birds are perfect for owl collectors and lovers, or simply a quirky way to introduce a bit of the natural world into your home.
If the idea of snuggling up in a country lodge appeals to your sense of wellbeing then maybe the addition of this fun Large wall hanging stag head could be just the thing to finish your room off with. This realistic looking stag head looks great on a feature wall such as a fire breast and also works perfectly in the hallway.
More trees please!
Nothing says Winter woodland more than evergreen trees, and in our opinion you can never have too many of them around your home at Christmas. Ok so we recognise that kiting your house out with a forest of natural Christmas trees could get a little pricey (and crowded!), so as an affordable and more space conscious alternative we have selected these Snowy trees on a log. Adorn bathroom shelves with these snow scattered mini Christmas trees, or place on a tabletop with the addition of some mini baubles for a naturalistic table centrepiece. Or for a real Woodland effect, arrange a selection of these reusable Christmas trees at different heights on pieces of log collected from your local woods and scatter natural pine cones all around them.
So get the fire roaring, light your candles, pour yourself a glass of your favourite wine and get out a board game to play with the kids. Surrounded by the heartwarming and comforting characters and materials of the Winter woodland and the charming simplicity of a night spent in together playing games. Never has hibernating seemed so appealing!
Thursday, 1 December 2016
A dog’s not just for Christmas!
Whether you’re a man’s best friend lover or more of a fan of our feline friends, there’s no denying that a house really wouldn’t be a home without our much loved furry house companions, especially around Christmas.
Ok so the cat has jumped up at a poor unsuspecting bauble and dragged the tree down with it in the process. The dog has found the kids stash of stocking chocolate and is now sitting sheepishly in the corner with bits of broken foil dubiously marking his trail. But hey it's no wonder they’re acting out of sorts, as the kids have been trying to dress them up in their new dolls clothes and Santa hats all morning!
Here at The Contemporary home we’ve curated what we believe to be the most adorable range of pet themed Christmas decorations on the market today. Cats, dogs, birds and horses, there's something for every pet owner and animal lover this Yuletide.
Pet and Child Proof decorations
If it's not one it's the other right? Kids, pets or both together as a joint effort smashing up your best baubles. Never fear there is a solution to your Christmas bauble conundrums! And it comes in the form off felt Christmas decorations.
Not only are these quaint Christmas decorations soft and therefore fully child and pet proof, but they also have a lovely crafty homemade feel to them that will really help to make your Christmas house a home.
Hand stitched little Scottie dogs sporting a seasonal tartan scarf, an adorable felt sausage dog, a tabby pussy cat, and of course all of your favourite alpine animals. These homespun christmas decorations are both pretty and practical and are guaranteed to keep on going for years.
Something a bit special - Keepsake Christmas baubles
So maybe your kids have grown up now, your pets are finally house trained and you're ready to once again embrace the adornment of your tree with delicate glass baubles. Well here at the Contemporary home we pride ourselves on not only having tracked down some of the most beautiful pet themed glass baubles out there, but also some of the quirkiest.
And it doesn’t get much more idiosyncratic than this range of carnival style glass dog baubles! Bedecked in sequin clad tutus, and feather headdresses, these delightful dog decorations make a fun keepsake gift idea for a dog lover or collector. Choose from a Chihuahua, Pug or Dachshund, to add a decidedly flamboyant flair of fun to any Christmas tree.
Cute puppy decorations full of character
Who can resista puppy with their big brown droopy eyes, their enthusiastically wagging tails and their adorable little facial expressions? Our darling range of Christmas puppy decorations all have their very own unique character to them and include a Collie dog, West Highland terrier, Pug dog, Terrier puppy and even a Dalmatian! A delightful range of realistic looking little puppy dog decorations that are sure to steal the hearts of all those who lay eyes upon them.
Christmas Gift ideas for Pet lovers
And of course the pet appreciation doesn’t need to stop at your Christmas tree. We’ve come up with a whole range of ideas for Christmas presents and stocking fillers for pet lovers; so that you can spend more time walking the dog and less time walking round shops.
Take for example this decorative ‘All you need is love and a cat sign’ that makes a perfect stocking filler idea for cat lovers. Or These fun Dog fridge magnets that come in a set of three. And if you think that your dog has a right to join in the Christmas fun too then why not get him his very own Christmas sack to cram full of lovely doggie treats and goodies.
And when all the fun of the big day is over then we all know that there's no better way to finish of the festivities than by curling up in front of the fire with your after dinner tipple of choice, the family all around and the household pets sat snugly on your lap or at your heels, ready to while away the rest of this oh so special of days.
Friday, 25 November 2016
Iridescent white - a subtle shimmering of Christmas delight for your festive home
Defined by soft glistening pastel tones that shine from a snow white base colour, the inclusion of iridescent white touches in your Christmas home add both elegance and a gentle winter seasonality to any corner of the house.
How to create a fairytale Snow White Christmas tree
Create an enchanting Christmas tree filled with delicate glass baubles, softly blinking fairy lights and feminine touches such as feathers, pearls and laces.
Mix and match clear glass baubles that are each individually decorated with their own pretty white motif. Snowflake designs, polka dots, winter alpine scenes and glitter ball are just some of the many ideas in The Contemporary Home’s Iridescent white bauble selection for you to play with. Each with pretty glitter highlights or pastel undertones that catch the glow of your fairy lights perfectly.
Instead of tinsel why not compliment the look with strings of faux pearls in cream, baby pink or a soft metallic, or really create a Snow White effect with the addition of feather boas in the same tones. For the ultimate feminine Christmas tree, make delicate bows out of vintage lace and top the tree with an angelic Christmas fairy straight out of the fairy tales.
To make the look more neutral simply combine iridescent white baubles with ice blue and silver decorations, creating a cool winter kaleidoscope of snowstorm inspired colours. Finish with an iridescent snowflake tree topper and even a light smattering of snow spray on the branches of your tree for a Christmas tree straight out of The North Pole.
Christmas dinner table centrepieces
An eye catching Christmas dinner table centrepiece is sure to delight your festive house guests and make sure that this oh so important meal shared with our loved ones will be one to remember.
What better way to create a magical ambience than with the use of soft candle light. We think these gorgeous round glass tea light holders in either a starburst or forest scene design are the perfect place to start. And starting at only 5 each, you can afford to lay a good few of them along the centre of your table without breaking the bank.
For really large tables you could even add a little centre gathering of white sparkly table top christmas trees, surrounding their base with a few natural pine cones sprayed with a complimentary white glitter. For smaller dinner tables simply arrange these trees on a side table or window sill in your dining room, leaving more space on your table for the all important roasties!
And here's not forgetting the place settings! Tired of Christmas crackers that are overpriced and under deliver? Why not really go that extra mile for your guests this year and present them with a beautiful ceramic Christmas favour as a reminder of the day instead. Just some of many ideas for this are: White ceramic reindeers, sold in a set of two; A white ceramic tree; A light up snowy street scene dome; Or even a white bisque snowflake tea light holder crammed full of after dinner mints. Whatever you pipe for you can be rest assured that these elegant Christmas accessories won't end up being swept up with the paper hats for the bin at the end of the meal.
A contemporary white Christmas
We all know that often more is less and this rule can even be applied to Christmas with the use of a few cleverly chosen and placed key decorations.
One such key piece is this Large white ceramic stag head, beautifully cast in a angular form giving it a wonderfully contemporary feel. Best set against a strong coloured feature wall such as a brightly painted chimney breast, this large christmas wall hanging is a masculine and modern take on the iridescent white look. It also makes a fabulous Christmas Statement piece for entrance halls or to hang on a kitchen wall.
Likewise our Set of two ceramic polar bears work equally as well making a fun table top decoration or set along a mantelpiece as they do as an alternative way to ‘tart’ up your Christmas cake.
For a really contemporary take on the Iridescent white theme, why not suspend a collection of a dozen different glass baubles at different lengths via thread from a square of trellis or mesh and then hang it from a ceiling hook in the corner of the room.
Whether you just use a few key pieces from this beautiful Christmas style, or you go full out by creating a theme for a whole room or even your whole house! This elegant interior style for Christmas offers enchanting pieces of decoration that are sure to bring your Christmas home alive with the spirit of the season.
Friday, 25 November 2016
Saturday, 19 November 2016
Mix and match gold tones for an very on trend Christmas style
Champagne gold, burnt gold, bronzed gold, antiqued gold and rose gold, all of these beautiful seasonal tones have the same attributes in common; warmth, elegance and an air of luxury that lends itself so well to the Christmas home.The wonderful thing about the new gold glow Christmas style is that you can now be opulent and even audacious in your decorating choices without looking overtly tacky or chintzy!
Sumptuous champagne coloured Christmas accessories will turn your house into a real regal affair this Yuletide. We love these Champagne coloured reindeer decorations that just gleam with all the affluence of a cosy mountain lodge or grand country house.
Wonderful D.I.Yideasfor using gold in your Christmas home
One of ourfavourite ideas that we’ve come across for handmade Christmas decorations incorporating gold, are these beautiful gold dipped feathers. Simply dip the top end of the feather in some gold glitter glue and then tie the feathers from their base with some gold or clear thread along a branch and suspend the branch from a window or along a wall.
Spraying stones with a gold paint and then decorating them with pretty snowflake designs once dried, are a fabulous activity to do with kids and look great dotted around the house.
Another activity kids will enjoy is creating gold tea light holders out of jam jars. Simply cut out some festive stencils, such as stars, in a sticky back plastic and stick them onto your jar. Next spray the jar with some of your favourite tone of gold or metallic paint and then once dry carefully remove the stickers to reveal the clear glass beneath through which the candle light can shine. Make into a lantern by wrapping some galvanised wire around its rim and forming it into a handle shape.
And for a more sophisticated decoration, why not make some eye catching gold star garland decorations. Start by cutting out a good quantity of stars from a few sheets of gold card; next proceed to sew the stars together into an extra long garland with the space of a star separating them. 2-3 metres of garland should do it depending on the final effect you’re looking for; finally cut the garland into 3-5 equal lengths and suspend out from one larger central star attachment, fixing each starburst trail lightly to the wall in an interesting hanging arrangement.
Going for gold: A gold themed Christmas tree is a winner!
Top your tree with a large gold holly tree topper angel, looking so divine she could have been sent down from the heavens to look over you. And don't forget to dot some atmospheric gold candle holders around your mantelpiece and windowsills to create the warmest and most luxurious looking space on the street!
Friday, 11 November 2016
Love them or hate them? There’s no denying that this most controversial of Christmas dinner staples just screams of festive seasonality!
Cooking with Sprouts
So nobody likes a soggy sprout boiled within an inch of its life, sitting there feeling sorry for itself and cowering in fear next to the proud as punch pigs in blankets or golden roasties. However with a bit of TLC and imagination you can transform this humble leafy green veg into a regal side dish that will stand up to even the most pompous of potatoes.
Perfect for a Boxing day hot buffet to accompany a roast ham, or make them into a Vegetarian main with the addition of quinoa:
For the ultimate winter comfort food, just add cheese:
If you need a light and healthy winter mid week meal, or an impressive winter salad for a buffet:http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/cheesy-sprout-fondue
Thinking outside the (Veg) box!: Brussel sprout Christmas decorations
Layers of delicate green leaves, a festive green colour and a perfectly formed little bauble shape, Brussel sprouts make an eye catching and playful alternative to your standard Christmas decorations that are sure to get your festive house guests talking.
Our tongue in cheek range of Brussel sprout Christmas decorations are cleverly made from realistic looking silk, allowing you the decoration without the deterioration that using real sprouts would incur.
Start with your front door and really stand out from the crowd, decorating your front door with one of our spirited Brussel sprout wreaths. Available in either a traditional circular design, or a distinctive heart or star shape. We even have a mini wreath, perfect for hanging off kitchen cupboard doors or for your fridge door.
Creating a festive food themed Christmas tree
Why not create a deliciously fun themed tree this year by combining all of our festive foodie favourites. Think Christmas pudding baubles, candy canes, strings of handmade popcorn garlands, and of course a good half a dozen of our individual sprout decorations, prettily tied up with a festive red ribbon.
These individual sprout decorations also make a great addition to your Christmas dinner table decoration. We like to use them as a convivial alternative to the traditional napkin ring. Made even more playful if they end up at the place setting of a non sprout loving family member!
In fact these alternative christmas decorations can be added to just about anywhere. Think about hanging them from a kitchen or dining room house plant, tying them around storage jars on display, or even using them to adorn your gift wrapping when presenting a gift to a foodie.
Getting rid of those unwelcome wafts!
So whether you adore these green globes of goodness or loathe the appearance on your plate of this most controversial of winter veg, these feel good festive decorations are sure to bring a smile to the face of any houseguest and become a family favourite (at least on the decoration front) for many years to come. Just don't try and add them to your bubble and squeak whatever you do!
Tuesday, 1 November 2016
Modern Scandi to Christmas Traditional – Nordic Christmas style has it all!
So lets face it; Christmas is the time when style choices can often become divided. From the Glitzy chintz lovers to the pared back Modern minimalists, we all have our own idea of what constitutes a well-decorated Christmas home when the festive season is upon us. However, one factor is constant in the ever-changing style fads and tinsel clad walls of Christmas decorating, and that is that the Nordic style is very much here to stay.
So what is the Nordic Christmas style?
Characterised by gentle neutral tones, natural materials, clean soft lines, an affinity with nature, and of course red and white! The Nordic style is one that somehow manages to transcend the decades, linking the traditional with the modern in a way that only the Scandinavians know how to do. Never forgetting its roots, yet somehow seeming fresh and fitting to our current times. Investing in Nordic for Christmas is the one style that you can rely on still loving in many years to come.
Take for example The Contemporary Home’s Red and white Scandi knitted cushion that would look just as fitting placed on an old wooden rocking chair by the fire as it would teamed with a collection of natural hessian, fur and soft grey cushions of varying sizes, making a modern snug in a corner of the house for Christmas house guests to lounge on.
Something as attractive and charming as our Nordic Christmas heart candleholders are a prime example of how the simplicity of Nordic can be so versatile. We like to line a few of these up along a windowsill filled with bouquets of hand picked wild flowers, ferns and berries. Or fill a collection of them with brightly coloured scented candles or mixed metallics to create a modern pop art style festive display along a mantelpiece or down the centre of a Christmas dinner table. Or simply place one next to our 1950’s inspired red an white Merry Christmas standing sign, for a retro inspired touch for a side table.
The Nordic Christmas style in the Kitchen
Soft materials, a typically Nordic colour palette and the Nordic landscape can all be found in the Contemporary felt advent calendar that is one of our hottest additions to this years Nordic Christmas collection. This large hanging advent calendar is a prime example of how effortlessly this style synergises the contemporary with the classic, and would look great set against a bold feature wall of a blocked out colour.
Presenting your Yule tide house guests with a delicious mince pie is a sure fire way to warm their hearts as they shake off the rain or snow from their hair. Christmas ceramics are not only decorative, but also functional, and really show you’re passing Christmas visitors that your home is well and truly in the Christmas spirit. Our Nordic red cake stand has 2 tiers so you can offer mince pies on one and some scrummy Christmas cake from the other. And of course in true Scandi style it’s prettily decorated with a folksy white reindeer and snowflake trim.
Kids love Nordic!
And don’t forget to welcome them in with a festive door wreath as they enter the house. Why not take a long and wide length of hessian fabric and weave it in and out of a wire ring to create a natural scrunched up fabric base to which you can then apply a corsage of wild berries, snow sprayed leaves and pine cones. Haven’t got the time? Don’t worry! Our Red berry and green leaf wreath is so realistic looking that they’ll never even know. And it has the added advantage of being able to be brought out year after year.
Maybe it’s the connectedness to nature with its clean and naive stencils and motifs of reindeers, birds, and alpine trees that draw children to this classic Christmas style. Or maybe it just boils down to the simple fact that it’s the home of Santa and a fun filled land of snowball fights, wooly mittens and sledges. Whatever the reason children seem to go mad for all things Nordic!
Take for example our adorable Nordic Santa Decoration. Kitted out in a little felt suit, with a fluffy beard and a little wooden nose. Kids instantly fall in love with this soft Santa. Why not create a red and white themed tree with other decorations such as our Nordic red and white bird bauble and combine with natural wooden decorations for a soft and cosy look. Quirky trees are more your thing? Mix it up a bit by contrasting red and white with a third colour such as teal, to create a modern twist to your traditional tree.
And lets not forget how special the ritual of advent can be made by incorporating little gifts, sweet treats and treasure hunt missions into the wooden draws of an advent calendar house. The contemporary home’s Red wooden advent calendar house not only looks great at the base of your fireplace as a piece of Christmas interior decoration, but it will also become a much loved part of your children’s cold December mornings for many years to come.
So whether you’re a fan of modern Scandinavian design or more of a Christmas traditionalist, it’s clear to see that there really is something for everyone in this most versatile and charming of Christmas styles. So here’s hoping that you all have a very happy Christmas and a very Nordic noel! Now who’s up for a snowball fight?