From blue branches to floating trees made from baubles, our favourite stylists and creatives share their Christmas style secrets and how they’re decorating their Christmas trees this year
Erena Te Paa
The queen of elegant, beautifully executed DIY projects has proved once again why she holds this title. Erena Te Paa‘s floating Christmas tree is a testament to her refined style and meticulous attention to detail. Check out her Instagram to see the full video of how she created her tree.
What was your tree inspiration this year? My main inspiration was the joy of being more organised and the extra time that afforded me. I normally leave Christmas planning to the last minute so with more time came the desire to challenge myself and get more creative.
What have you used for your decorations? An assortment of gold, white and clear baubles. The clear baubles are refillable and as I had an excess of dried flowers so I decided to use those inside and to add a personal touch.
How did you decide on a colour theme? I am a lover of warm tones and neutrals so I went with what I love!
Fake tree or real tree? There is nothing quite like the smell of a real Christmas pine tree but I normally go with the reusability of a fake one. I guess however this year, I went with another option!
What was your tree inspiration this year? I was inspired by super retro foil trees, decked out totally over the top! My Grandad used to work for a tin foil company and they made tinsel trees as promo items back in the 60s so a glitter tree is so nostalgic for me! This is my first one in my own home.
What have you used for your decorations? I had a bag of vintage metallic streamers and random bits – like the red spiky things that I’ve collected from op shops over the years! As well as an eclectic mix of others I collect – nudey ladies, jellyfish, prawns, cat faces, ice creams. The paper lanterns are reused too and make good filler until I get round to wrapping some presents to go underneath.
How did you decide on a colour theme? I was inspired by the pops of blue I already had in this room and how it contrasted with the orangey-red walls! When I saw the blue tinsel tree at Republic Home in Ponsonby I just fell in love and knew it was the one.
Fake tree or real tree? Fake, because it’s so sparkly! But honestly I love both, you can’t beat the smell of a real tree. I always have a small real tree somewhere in the house but for practicality and creativity, I love my fake trees. Our house gets very hot and I don’t like a sad-looking tree after 4 weeks!
Just like her home, artist Maiko Nagao has taken a considered, natural approach to styling her Christmas tree. With an amazing $2 op-shop tree find and dried hydrangeas from her garden, she’s nailed a stylishly sustainable look this year.
What was your tree inspiration this year? This year I managed to pick up a nice preloved Christmas tree for $2 at our local op shop! I also wanted a challenge to create a beautiful tree without having to buy anything else. I felt inspired to find a way to reduce consumption especially during this time of year.
What have you used for your decorations? I used dried hydrangeas from the garden and that’s it!
How did you decide on a colour theme? Who knew dried hydrangeas have the most beautiful earthy colour palette?! Each flower has its unique texture and tone which compliment each other perfectly.
Fake tree or real tree? Fake tree because we couldn’t pass on a $2 preloved tree!
If you’ve ever visited Cowshed 488, you’ll know Georgina Skinner has a knack for simple and elegant contemporary farmhouse styling. Hailing from England, her tree is accordingly decked out with beautiful British decorations.
What was your tree inspiration this year? My tree inspiration has been the same every single year! Mum! The way my mum dressed our tree growing up was beautiful. So elegant and now with social media etc, I throw in a mix of things I see online and what mum used to do.
What have you used for your decorations? Our decorations are mainly from England. The White Company, Fortnum & Mason and then the odd Warehouse dec thrown in too! I try to mix up whites, silvers, golds, some fun colour such as British reds and a dash of mirrored and glass decorations.
How did you decide on a colour theme? I’m not a huge fan of garish coloured tinsel’s on trees unless done right and I’m not the person to do it. I want to see my tree day and night and feel like it’s pretty to look at and organised. If there was stuff everywhere that was very bright, I don’t think I would feel as at peace around it.
Fake tree or real tree? Growing up in England, it was always a real tree as you are never far from being able to access one, however here being rural, we have gone fake due to it being a little tougher to get a lovely real one. We think about picking our own in the future when we have kids so that we can make a Christmas adventure out of it in the bush, but for now, we will stick to 1st December, the fake one goes up!
What was your tree inspiration this year? I loved the tree featured in Jess from @hallweneed’s house in the festive Your Home in Garden Magazine. Hers was super large and floral, but I thought I could do a smaller version to suit our home.
What have you used for your decorations? I’ve used artificial flowers, baubles, hanging ceramic stars and fairy lights.
How did you decide on a colour theme? It was an easy task, because I just chose colours that I’m loving at the moment! I basically went with a sunset palette – warm white, gold, mustard, blush pink, burgundy and mauve.
Fake tree or real tree? Fake! I usually do a real one, but this year I’ve been shooting Christmas content since August, so I needed a good quality tree that I could put up and take down over quite a few months.
Words by: Bea Taylor. Photography by: Erena Te Paa, Evie Kemp, Maiko Nagao, Georgina Skinner, Julie Stuart