Photo by Cecile Perrinet-Lhermitte from the Nov/Dec 23 MFCH Magazine
One of the most admirable qualities of French style is that it emphasizes the brilliance of natural beauty, rendering it extraordinary. Everything from the culture’s approach to fashion and makeup to the way they craft food and wine follows this ideology. And at this glorious time of the year, the same technique is followed when it comes to decorating the home for the holidays à la française.
No matter the season, French homes and gardens emit an air of organic refinement in their embrace of the area’s natural surroundings. So, when it comes to adorning the house with a dash of holiday spirit, take inspiration from the outdoors.
Read on to unwrap classic holiday décor ideas that can be found both in chic Parisian apartments and cozy Normand country homes. As you deck the halls, use these simple French styling tips to achieve a seasonal display that would make Madame Noël proud.
Click the images to shop some of the products pictured from the MFCH Boutique.
Layer neutral ornaments with pops of color
Varieties of ornaments tend to collect over the years, making for a jumbled display over time. However, you can pull the look of the whole tree together by balancing the existing trimmings with double the number of round ornaments in neutral colors like white and silver. This will fill out the centerpiece and make the colorful décor stand out more.
Find simple and delicate round ornaments on the MFCH boutique, hand-blown by master glassmakers in eastern France.
Don’t be shy on natural greenery
The Christmas tree doesn’t need to be the only fresh element in the house. Sprigs of foliage and garland look just as lovely on the table and woven through the staircase as they do hanging outside.
Tie on small pinecones or red fruits and intersperse candles around the vegetation inside the house to enhance their presentation. You can even use flora from around the garden to create your own wreath – click here to learn how.
Deck the halls (and the tables) with holly
Evergreen holly is not only charming seasonal vegetation, but also a symbol of peace and goodwill. So don’t hold back! Holly’s vibrant red winterberries make for a delightful pop of color in areas that seem too monochrome. Tuck in a few sprigs of the berries to liven up your winter greens, whether they are hanging on the walls or artfully placed along the table.
You could also place balls of holly and mistletoe in antique braided baskets – these forest-colored options are ideal for Christmas.
Get festive with napkins and table runners
Perhaps now more than any other time of the year, friends and family are gathering around the table to share meals and memories of the past year. Make these moments extra memorable with a fun and festive table setup!
Recall the fresh décor around the house with conifer tree napkins or a holly and mistletoe table runner from the MFCH Boutique. If you prefer to have less cleanup at the end of dinner, use linen-quality disposable napkins from French brand Françoise Paviot featuring festive holiday designs.
Set the table with fine glassware
The holiday celebrations are a perfect excuse to put out the best glassware. Besides, wine just tastes better when it’s drunk out of a fine chalice. But beware, there’s a chance that the joy it brings will convince you to leave out the nice glasses out all year round!
If you’re looking for fine French glassware, La Rochère is an excellent artisanal brand with origins dating back to 1475. On our boutique, you can purchase both clear wine glasses and gorgeous colored water tumblers which look stunning next to a glass butter dish and small antique ice bucket.
Brighten the space with candles
There’s something particularly magical about candles scattered around the home at this time of year. While they don’t exactly provide much heat, they certainly “warm” the energy of a space. Plus, the flickering flames provide additional animation to the electric twinkling lights strung around the room.
Scented candles are always a good idea, energizing the space with soothing smells. Neutral white candles and candlesticks then make for great filler pieces that immediately elevate the rest of the décor.
Incorporate some of these ideas into your holiday decorating routine to add a jolly French touch. To shop for more French holiday decorations, check out unique and festive finds on the MFCH Boutique.