A Cosy Home For Christmas

I am a real sucker for the Channel 5 Christmas B movies, the sort that star people like Hayley Duff and Nicolette Sheridan and are set in places where they have crisp, deep snow, acres of Christmas lights and the biggest trees you ever did see.

I’ve always loved these films and I think part of the reason for this is to do with the places where the characters live. They always exude cosy ‘Christmasness’, with roaring fires, huge sofa, windows with shutters and festive/alpine touches.

If this is your idea of decor heaven, read on to find how you can add your own cosy touches to your home this winter.

Adding Tier on Tier Window Shutters

Beautiful tier on tier window blinds not only add extra warmth to a room, but they look cosy and festive too. Wooden shutter blinds give your house a Nordic touch, and if you look at the range from Thomas Sanderson you get a design that is handcrafted and traditional looking.

Cushions, Lots of Cushions

Have you ever noticed just how many plump cushions festoon the sofas and chairs in Christmas movies?  Every sofa just looks like you would sink into it and not want to ever get up again.

Whether you decide to opt for plain and simple cushions that you can use all year around, or whether you go for a few seasonal options, it has to be said that cushions totally equal cosiness.

A wreath for the mantlepiece

All good Christmas films have a festive wreath on the fireplace that is a real statement piece. Home Alone had a wreath and stockings hanging above the fire, whilst even the minimalist style of the LA home in The Holiday had a festive wreath – it’s one thing a cosy festive home just has to have. Real greenery works best and can add a beautiful festive scent to your home too, but there are some really stunning artificial mantle wreaths, and many have twinkly lights that add to the magical Christmas aura.

A cosy throw

Your can transform your usual sofa into a festive version of your sofa with the addition of a cosy Christmas throw. These look and feel soft and comfy and cost very little, you can usually pick them up for less than £10 from stores like Matalan, Asda and Tesco. The throw can be worn over the top of the sofa, or thrown over the arm of a chair, and can simply be folded away once Christmas has gone.

Are you adding any seasonal touches to your home this Christmas?

A Guide To Christmas Occasion Dressing

Christmas calls for the best your wardrobe has to offer. If you’re lucky, you will get to go to lots of different events and occasions that call for many different styles of dress. For some, this can be a minefield – what do you wear?

Luckily, there are some fail safe pieces that always work this time of year, classic fabrics, prints and styles that you will be able to call on this Christmas, and pretty much every Christmas after that. These are pieces that I have in my wardrobe, not strictly fashion, but wearable, and workable for a whole host of Christmas occasions.

A Red Dress

I have a whole host of red dresses that I wear over the Christmas period. Red is, of course, synonymous with Christmas, from Santa’s suit, to Rudolph’s nose, to the berries on the holly wreaths that we hang on our doors. A red dress is a great choice for Christmas Day, to wear if you are going to a panto, and also for a family Christmas meal. I wore this dress last year for a trip to the theatre, and will be pulling it out the wardrobe again soon.


Juna Rose High Neck Red Spot Dress £50 Click to visit Simply Be

Simply Be Ruched Sleeve Skater Dress £35 Click to visit Simply Be

Red Shirred Bardot Bodycon Dress
£25.00 Click to visit Dorothy Perkins

*Tall Berry Red Velvet Knot Front Skater Dress
£25.00 Click to visit Dorothy Perkins

Something Christmas Themed

Obviously, Christmas jumper day calls for a Christmas themed top or sweater, but your Christmas themed clothing doesn’t have to just be a jumper. Contrado is a fashion company that focuses on allowing you to create your own clothes by using your own prints or photographs to create designs that can then be printed on anything from a dress or a top to a skirt or a bag.

As a lover of all things Christmas I decided to design my own skirt using photographs from Christmas past. The skirt could come in two lengths, so I chose the longer skater length rather than a mini skirt, and you can also chose whether you want your images in colour, black and white or, as I chose, sepia. Photographs can be rotated and cropped, they can be arranged in a variety of ways, and you can have a follow on pattern, or different images on the front and back.

The finished product only takes a few days before it is with you and ready to wear, and I think it is the perfect item for a trip to a Christmas Market, a Boxing Day turkey buffet, or a shopping trip before Christmas – it will certainly get you in the Christmas spirit.

Velvet

For me, velvet is the fabric for Christmas. I know that it is a marmite choice, some people just hating the feel of it, but velvet speaks of warmth and luxury, and yes, Christmas. You could chose a velvet accessory if you are not so happy to go all out velvet or just go for it. Perfect for any Christmas evening occasion.

M&S Collection
Velvet Sparkle Bodycon Midi Dress
£55 Click to visit M&S

M&S Collection
Velvet Pleated A-Line Midi Skirt £35 Click to visit M&S

Autograph
Velvet Plisse Round Neck Long Sleeve Blouse £39.50 Click to visit M&S

Sparkle and Sequins

And finally we have sparkle and sequins, aka what to wear on New Year’s Eve. The only rule of New Year’s Eve is that you should sparkle brighter than the tree!

PREMIUM Sequin Embellished One Shoulder Bodycon Dress
Was £69.00 Now £48.30 Click to visit Miss Selfridge

PREMIUM Black Sequin Trousers
£75.00 Click to visit Miss Selfridge

Dark Iridescent Sequin Skirt
Was £35.00 Now £24.50 Click to visit Miss Selfridge

 

 

 

Creative Christmas Gift Ideas For Dog Owners

Christmas is almost here, and if you’re still trying to complete your shopping for the holidays, it’s likely that you need a few good gift ideas for the people in your life. You may have a perfect present in mind for a few lucky individuals, but what do you give someone who absolutely dotes on his or her dog? It’s likely that one of your friends or relatives is a parent to a fur baby as recent statistics show that there are more dogs than any other kind of pet in British households, and 24% of pet owners own a dog. Instead of giving generic gifts such as a water bowl or a chew toy, let your loved one know that you have his or her pet in mind by giving any of this creative Christmas gift ideas.

Photo by Álvaro Niño on Unsplash

A personalized dog tag

Does your friend’s dog’s tag need a serious upgrade? Then give him a personalized dog tag to keep his pet safe at all times. Dog safety and health are important for pet owners, and apart from affording regular visits to the vet, insurance papers to cover pet emergencies, and dog training, a well-designed dog tag can keep a dog safe, especially if your friend’s pet has a tendency to wander. You can pick a stainless steel or enamel dog tag and have it engraved or printed with the dog’s name and the dog owner’s mobile number. Add a smart dog collar, and you’ve got a nice present that will be a hit with the dog owner and pet.

A dog photo session

Are you handy with a camera? Do you create Instagram-ready shots that are the envy of your loved ones? Then give the gift of a doggy photo session to the pet enthusiast in your life. It’s a great present for people who are longing to take great photos of their dog for posterity’s sake. After the photo session, print out some of the greatest shots and frame the best one. Wrap all of these up before giving to your friend or relative.

A pet gadget

There are a lot of new high-tech pet gadgets out there that will allow your loved one to track his pet’s whereabouts or enable him to video chat with his dog. There are even a few gadgets which will allow a pet owner to dispense a treat for his dog even if he’s not at home. Find out what you think your friend or family member needs before choosing a pet gadget to give this Christmas.

A portable or folding dog bed

If your loved one prefers to travel with his pet in tow, then get him a portable or folding dog bed. It can be used for camping trips, beach vacations, and anywhere else they love to go. When choosing a dog bed, make sure that it’s soft, comfortable, and is the right size for your friend or relative’s furry friend.

This Christmas, treat your favourite dog owner to any of these gift ideas. Your loved one and his or her pet will love receiving any of these gifts this holiday season.