It is a few days to Christmas, classic hymns are already playing on radio and televisions stations - preparing us for the big day. If you haven’t yet prepared your house for Christmas, interior and exterior designers advise that you use the few remaining days to make changes to bring the festive spirit home. Here are a few ideas to get you started.
Hanging flowers on front door
Assad Tamale Kabugo, an interior designer, says, having Christmas themed flowers hang on the main door is inviting, especially if you have guests. He says the flowers can be designed in form of a wreath with Christmas lights. “Since the front door is the first thing friends and family will encounter, it will make your door stand out,” he says.
Kabugo says if you do not have natural flowers, artificial flowers can work. He, however, adds that a natural one gives a distinct fragrance to the home. If you wish, you can also have other doors decorated with small flowers.”
Use warm colours
Amon Gamparo, an interior designer at Cool Furniture and Interiors, says warm colours such as beige, cinnamon, charcoal grey, brown and smoke grey are ideal because they create a welcoming mood. The colours can be brightened up with throw pillows, rugs or curtains.
It might not be easy to change a sofa set at this time. If this is the case, Gamparo says you can opt for nice sofa covers. These can be in colours such as maroon or black or any other nice outstanding colours that do not necessarily have to blend with other items in the room. “If you choose to use a sofa set cover, accessorise with throw pillows, and incorporate wall hangings, a down or spot light directed to hit a certain corner, item or the wall for such lights add beauty to the living room,” he says, adding: “You can also add potted flowers placed in beautiful vases.”
Another quick way to bring the Christmas mood home is by having outdoor fairy lights. Kabugo says these can be put around the door, thrown in the hedge or wrapped around a tree trunk.
Thinking of bringing an instant festive feel to your living room, Gamparo says use throw pillows. These should have a stand out colour.
Potted natural flowers
Lillian Katiso of Maua and More, dealers in potted plants and garden accessories, says having flowers such as poinsettias is good. These flowers give a beautiful look given their red and green leaves. “These are good for both the interior and exterior during this festive season. These are best placed on a corner table with candles around them.”
Katiso adds that potted poinsettias can also be placed on the balcony, porch or verandah, or in the garden.
The plastic planters in which the flowers are placed can be wrapped with a nice decorative paper to enhance beauty.
Harriet Naika, a landscaper, says replacing old flowers with new ones at this time is paramount because the first glance at the compound will tell what the interior looks like. Have flowers such as croton, anthuriums, cactus, and depending of the size of the compound, you can also have palm trees.
Place marble stones and pebbles around the plants. Stones enhance beauty of the plant.
Have bells of different colours hang from the trees in the compound. The trees should be of medium height for easy decoration.
Ceciria Sewagude, a landscaper and dealer in interior decoration, says, there is nothing better than a good scent in the house during this festive season.
“Different scents like pine, cranberry, cinnamon and apple remind us of Christmas and can add a subtle yet perfect touch. You can have the candles in red or green. Place them in a decorative candle holder and hang them on the window side or main entry, or place them on the dining table or corner table,” she says.
Sewagude says you can also have the candles in a group for a more dramatic and cozy effect. Scented candles will make your entire home feel more seasonal. “Scattering candles throughout the home helps bring a sense of coziness alongside Christmas ambiance and memories,” Sewagude explains.
For small planters, Sewagude says you choose plants such as small aloeveras, peace lilies as these are good for décor.
The soothing sound of flowing water brings a good feeling. Fountains can be placed at the door or on a table in case it is small in size like table top fountains. Both indoor and outdoor fountains can be plugged into power to activate the flow of water. “Wherever the fountains are, avoid leaving them bare, flatter them with nice small potted plants with small white stones for added beauty,” advises Sewagudde.
Christmas theme colours
When it comes to theme colours for Christmas decorations, Sewagidde says you think around green, gold, white and red. There are a number of ways you can determine or choose a colour theme to follow with your Christmas decorations.
“Red, green, white, and gold are all traditionally used as festive colour themes and most decorations are sold in those colours. This does not mean that other colours cannot give your home a festive feel, you can incorporate blue, purple and pink for the interior,” she shares.
When it comes to colour theme, Kabugo adds that colour is one of the first elements that people respond to and is an integral part of any design project whether painting walls, installing flooring, upholstering furniture, or selecting art.
He says: “Blue relaxes your mind and reduces tension. The right blue will be soft, neutral, and restful.
Green symbolises nature and is visually soothing, creating a refreshed vibe. Violet brings inner balance and peace. Grey is a cool neutral that can provide a very soothing and cooling presence whereas pink brings calm and peace and can soothe the energy in a room.”
Paper as creative decorations
Faridah Babu, a self-employed interior designer, says soft papers can be designed into different decors. These can be done from home. You can apply colour to bring in a beautiful but ample ambiance. Babu says the home-made decorative items can be bunched together and tied on a staircase or suspended over a dining room. With the colours, she advises to think around traditional Christmas colours such as red green and gold.
Ruth Nanyondo, an interior designer at Rafo Interiors, says as you think of decorating your home this Christmas, hype your interior decor with bright coloured fluffy carpets or rugs but ensure to match them with other living room accessories such as cushions, curtains, or art pieces so that they do not look isolated in the room.
“Once a nice carpet is added as an accessory in your living room, add two to four throw on cushions of the same colour. You can as well choose to use these carpets as bedside rugs,” Nanyondo says, adding, “hype your bedroom and sleep like a king or queen this festive season. Blend two related colours of these carpets and a fluffy bed runner.
Also, throw in some simple lighting in the room and have Christmas with such glamour.”
Andrew Muyingo, of Ndeleya Arts, gives an alternative of incorporating art decorative items. Since time is essential in all our lives, everyone needs a clock in the house, or hotel.
They can be gifted to friends and family, according to him.
“These clocks are crafted artistically not only to remind us about our precious time but also bring more beauty.”
Daina Nakyeyune of Milly Little Things, says one cannot go wrong with religious ornaments when trying to bring a Christmas feel to a home. Ornaments such as artefacts with baby Jesus, mother Mary, St Joseph or father Christmas inscribed on them, and carvings. These can be placed on the centre table or on a corner table.
Mirrors widen small spaces which adds beauty, life, and value to your home. They can be hang both indoors for example, around dining areas, corridors, stairs sheds and outdoors around the fence.
These come in both clay and fiberglass according to your taste, and are best placed in gardens or indoors for big homes. They come in different shades, shapes and sizes.
Cecilia Sewagude, a landscaper and dealer in interior decoration, says, you can set your dining table with red, white or green napkins. These can be put in gold napkin rings.
These are basically for the table area, dining area, wall units and shelves, and best placed in homes, offices, hotels.
Wall half pots
These are basically wall hangings attached to the wall both indoor and outdoor. They are best for sitting areas, dining areas, sheds and even on fences. These come in fiberglass which is light weight, and does not break compared to clay.
These can be made out of papier-mache, clay and fiberglass, they are best placed indoor around corners of house. They are also good for hotels and lounges and can be used for outdoor décor functions such as introductions.
They are best placed in sitting rooms, shed areas, reception areas, as well as garden area.
These are nice in bringing a natural essence in the house. They come in different flavours such as orange, lemon straw berry, vanilla and chocolate. It is best displayed in a glass jar anywhere in the house.
These can be candle holders with a tee light candle inside. You can hang on a tree, at the balcony or door entry.