“A few years ago, we used a branch covered with hanging baubles and fairy lights over one of our Christmas tables. We were so pleased that so many people wanted to recreate it at home, and every year since, we’ve played with new ideas based on that look, from pinwheels to what we’ve done here. We’ve teased a few life-like stems around the branch, like burnished red rosehips and russet-toned snowberries. It helps to give it more colour and texture. Wrap them tightly enough and the inner wire should hold them steady, but you can always use skinny cable ties or baker’s twine if you’re worried. Add battery-powered strand lights around the main body of the branch if you want it to twinkle too, like Goring or Grosvenor.
“The suspended branch idea won’t work for everybody. If your ceilings are sky-high then you won’t get the effect, but otherwise, so long as you’re happy for there to be two or three (depending on the size of your table and branch) hooks in your ceiling (you can paint them the same colour as your ceiling to help them blend in, and take them out again afterwards), then it’s not too difficult to set up. You can use twine, ribbon or clear and strong wire to hang it – you want it at a height that’s low enough to create some drama, but not so low that whatever you hang from the branches is going to get in the way. Here, we’ve used lots of our hanging glass tealight holders (Kate comes in different shapes and sizes, so it’s nice to mix them up) and a few of the Jasmine hanging stars and hearts. You can snip the twine and use velvet ribbon to create a hanging loop too if you’d like a touch of decadence.
“Because of the warmth of the bark, we wanted to make this scene more about cosy, comforting, rich colours. That’s the real message here. The warming colours of Christmas. We’ve gone for another table runner, but we had this one made using our Lorne fabric whose tonal plaid pattern felt especially fireside. And, instead of lots of glass and metallics, we’ve chosen to show greenery in our Sorrel pots and candlelight on our textured stone candlesticks. These are all ways to reinforce the rough texture of the tree bark, helping you to tie the whole look together. But to stop it from feeling too outdoors-y, we’ve used the most rust-hued cushions and blankets than any other scene. As soon as you walk into the room, you’ll get this cosy, outdoor fire feeling, that’s wintery and warm at the same time.”