The season for festive hosting is soon approaching, which may mean it’s time to think of how you’re going to bring Christmas indoors this year.

Decorating for the festive season doesn’t always have to mean gaudy patterns and bright reds. 

Not sure you want to change your living room into Santa’s Grotto come December? We’ve got some subtle and chic changes to bring cheer to all your festive get-togethers this year.

Table Decorations

When it comes to hosting – festive or otherwise – the dining room is often the centre of the activity. Which means the table should be the star of the show.

So that’s where you should bring in decorations for your hosting space. The base of your table decorations should be the tablecloth or table runner. 

A table runner only runs along the centre of your table, and is a classic festive option. It works particularly well if you have a wooden or a table made of natural materials. The runner adds decoration while still showing off your table, giving a rustic feel. 

a table set for festive hosting

If you do have a wooden table, a red table runner can add a flash of colour without overwhelming a space.

On the other hand, a table cloth can give you full coverage of a table. For this option, it’s best to go for a piece with minimal decoration so not to be too gaudy. You can even opt for glitter for a festive choice!

You can even coordinate the crockery and glassware on your table to your tablecloth. Or even use statement pieces that have festive decorations on them.


Once you have your base sorted and decided, you can build on top of it for your table centrepieces. When it comes to festive hosting, you want your table to look inviting – but not too full so people aren’t able to eat or sit comfortably.

It’s best to dot your centrepieces around the middle of the table, along your runner or where a runner would sit. 

a table set with red napkins, candels and roses for festive hosting

Candles are a classic and elegant choice for a table decoration. It can bring soft, cosy light and you can choose scented candles to help bring that festive feel. A warming cinnamon, or spiced orange is still Christmassy without being too cloying for when you eat.

Centrepieces can work best when you’re using natural elements. This again works well to keep the rustic feel, and is easy to do in a cost effective way. Using fir tree branches, pine cones or even just twigs tied in a ribbon and placed in a statement vase.

Festive Rugs

It may be that you want to bring in some more permanent pieces into your home. Ones that work within your interior, as well as your festive hosting plans.

The festive season is synonymous with cold weather, and cosy warm interiors to hide away in. Which may mean a rug is a good piece to bring into your home if you have wooden, tiled or linoleum floors. 

There’s nothing quite like warming your feet on a plush rug, and placing one within your hosting space can help bring comfort and warmth to your interior and celebrations.

Try something like this noble house rug in brown.

beige brown noble house rug in abstract patterns in a living room

With a pile height of 4cm, it’s sure to bring comfort to cold toes. If you’re feeling particularly daring, opt for the red version for a truly seasonal piece to complement your festive hosting.

Festive Cushions

If you’re choosing to host a more relaxed affair this season, or if you have an open plan space, the living room can’t be forgotten about.

In a living room space, you still want to ensure the room is still comfortable to relax in. Plus, it’s likely you’ll already have a Christmas tree in this space. So it’s good to add a few additional bits, but in a subtle way.

For example, cushions are a great and easy way to add some seasonality to your decor. They’re a touch of design that can be easily switched out if no longer appropriate come Spring.

We love this sequin encrusted cushion in gold for an alternative to red or festive shades, while still bringing that glamour. 

a gold sequin cushion on a grey sofa

Christmas is nothing without a bit of sparkle and glitter. If you can’t be kitsch at Christmas, when can you be?

Which brings us to our next style. Because if there’s something more Christmassy than sequins, then it can only be velvet. The fabric that exclusively comes out for this time of year.

The Harley Velvet Striped cushion is velvet and gold. The perfect accessory for a festive hosting interior!

the harley striped velvet cushion in gold and black on a white cut out background

The Mantlepiece

If you’re lucky enough to own a fireplace or a mantlepiece, this is the perfect space to add some festive cheer. 

A roaring fire is another perfect component to a cosy festive hosting space. So building your decor around this is the best method.

As it is around a fire, you want to be careful that what you use to decorate is far enough from any flames or heat. Plus, it’s always a good idea to choose materials that aren’t overly flammable.

a mantlepiece decorated for festive hosting with evergreen and stockings

Using the mantlepiece is a safe area to elevate decorations in your living room space, to bring a festive feel. Sticking with a rustic theme, using holly, ivy or evergreen plants to snake across the mantelpiece is a charming and chic way to add some seasonal fun to your home.

Add some string lights, and even some stockings to hang to make the space homely and inviting.

If you don’t yet have a fireplace to decorate, check out our guide to buying a fireplace, ready for the next festive hosting season.

The Front Door

A first impression always counts, even when creating an interior that’s perfect for festive hosting. So you should always ensure that your door brings the same warmth and cosiness you want to emulate from the inside.

A wreath is a good starting point to add some seasonal decor to your front door, but you can always go further than that.

a red festive front door with floral wreaths on the door and windows

One idea is to stick baubles on your front door, in a shape of a Christmas tree. This is a kitsch yet chic way of bringing Christmas to your front door.

You could also cut out homemade snowflakes to stick on your door, or on any glass you have surrounding the door. If you are going to stick them directly on the door, ensure you use white plastic or something that can withstand the weather.

If you’re feeling particularly daring, you could paint your door a cherry red or a forest green shade to bring some cheer to your home.

For some more inspiration, check out our top 15 Christmas Door Decorations!


What’re your festive hosting plans for the season? Whether they’re intimate get togethers or parties full of extended family – we hope you do it in style!