Blogs (Media Centre)

Design tips for a festively fantastic Christmas


Design tips for a festively fantastic Christmas

11 December 2019

Decorating your home for Christmas has become a serious sport. From adding a sprinkle of Christmas cheer throughout your home to making sure your Christmas Day dining table makes the cut, TAFE NSW Interior Design Head Teacher Tim Neeve offers some sound advice:

Pick a style and stick to it

For a traditional Christmas look, stick with bold red and green, but don’t be afraid to use other colour palettes. Reflect the Aussie summer with a coastal feel, think simple timber tones, soft blues and whites. It’s your house and your style, so choose decorations that reflect your personality.

Think outside the shop

Don't just look in obvious stores for Christmas décor. Search op shops for unexpected elements and work in some of your own personal items to reduce costs.

One hero element

Have one 'hero' in the room such as the Christmas tree or table centrepiece and consider the placement. There's no point in hiding your styling work. Once the hero is chosen, everything else in the room should work to complement its scale and theme.  

Less is more

Remove items to add Christmas decorations. If your buffet is already covered in family photos or other decor, store them away and add something festive instead. This will also help you stick to your theme – you don’t want your regular style competing against your Christmas theme.

 Plan your Christmas dining table

Set your dining table early so you can focus on your guests when they arrive. I would recommend placing a runner down the centre of the table for decoration and keep the centrepiece low so people can talk across the table. Don’t stress if you don’t have enough matching place settings, add an eclectic mix of plates and cutlery.

Make your own

Make your own place cards for your dining guests as a personal touch. You can DIY with cards, tags and when wrapping presents. Mix and match Christmas paper with brown paper, ribbons and raffia so gifts are wrapped uniquely. Colourfully wrapped gifts under the tree are a great decoration.

Experiment and have fun

Add sparkle or lights to a design and wrap fairy lights around anything for an instant lift. Lights can be used to great effect indoors as well as outdoors – look for battery operated or solar powered to avoid messy cords.

To turn your passion for decorating and design into a career. To find out more about TAFE NSW design courses at

Media contact: Janelle Kelly, TAFE NSW Media and Communications Business Partner 0417 439 392