Tips on how to gown your private home and have a good time Christmas like a celeb this 12 months
Liz Taylor of event management firm Taylor Lynn Corporation (TLC) has more than 30 years of experience organizing high-profile A-list events and knows what it takes to create the perfectly dressed room for Christmas. Liz is often asked to apply her creativity and event dressing skills to the homes of her celebrity clients. If there is anyone who can offer a glimpse into how the rich and famous like to spend Christmas, it’s Liz.
We met her to find out this year’s hottest celebrity festival trends, along with tips on how to dress your home in this exclusive celebrity style.
First from the blocks
If you’re reading this and haven’t got your decorations in place, you are way behind this season’s celebrity set. No sooner had it come to November, the Queen of Christmas, when Mariah Carey had declared it was time to celebrate, and the rest quickly followed.
“This year it was a race to see who could decorate the halls the fastest,” begins Liz. “We took calls in October to attract homes, which is certainly earlier than I’ve ever seen before. After the year we all had, people want to spread some joy and happiness – what better way to do that than dressing your home from its most festive side? “
Liz sees that the traditional Christmas themes are reviving among the celebrities.
“Many of our celebrity customers choose a very traditional scheme over a sleek ‘Vogue’ minimalism. Maybe because they spend their lives year-round keeping up with the latest, stylish trends. The focus changes at Christmas. It’s an abundance of forest green, gold, and bright red embellishments. Mixed with garlands of frosted leaves, berry branches, pine cones and seasonal scented candles. Victorian-inspired festive train sets or nutcracker toy soldiers add nostalgia. The mood is tradition and family. “
“For those who want a more contemporary yet homely feel, the look is very Nordic with lots of texture for winter warmth. Warmth is a key attribute even in neutral color schemes. Go for winter whites or even a more daring black scheme. Bring soft gray tones or copper and brown tones along with woolly footstools or a cozy love seat and faux fur pillows – yes, some people rent furniture for Christmas too. “
Glamorous black tie
Last Christmas Kim Kardashian posted an Instagram of her “sister team” with the tagline “If Kourt Throws a Party We Bewitching”. It is time to follow suit.
Liz continues, “Another celebrity trend this Christmas is very glamorous. Perhaps because those black tie events aren’t happening this year, celebs want to recreate this high-end event at home.
“Make your Christmas day a black tie affair, and that means you have to dress up to the nines – even if you stay here. We don’t need an excuse to look amazing, but this Christmas is a great time to kickstart the style inserts.
Liz suggests planning the day like it’s a black ball. Start with bites, cocktails, smooth jazz, and maybe even a harpist (socially distant, of course). There are plenty of restaurants and professional caterers offering upscale dining packages at home during the Christmas season. To save stress and ensure a five-star experience, Liz recommends ordering a delivery for Christmas dinner.
“At our events, especially at Christmas, it’s all about how the table is dressed. My celebrity customers choose heavier, more expensive fabrics like velor or velvet instead of white table linen. These exude luxury and channel the Hollywood glamor of the 1920s. Use tapered candles or vintage candelabras set in seasonal foliage to create a height in the center. “
At Christmas time, Instagram is full of celebrities posing in the snow. Whether in matching Christmas pajamas or on the slopes of Courchevel with snowsuits and snowmobiles. With no vacation trips going on this year, a trend is to bring the annual ski trip home. Embrace the best of glamorous ski lodge style with a winter white theme.
“You might have seen the 12 pound carpet hack that changed living rooms across the country. A simple, small, round, fluffy white rug that was added under the tree. And actually adding textures is a very quick and easy way to design your Christmas room. Many celebrities want a very cozy feel, that is, layering furs, blankets, and chunky knitwear next to rustic woods to create that chalet-chic feel. Add a snow-covered tree as a finishing touch.
Liz emphasizes the importance of lighting in mood. “You can mix and match different sizes and shapes of lightbulbs, but stick to warm white to keep it chic and elegant. Candles in storm glasses are a must in this design. “
“Don’t forget the outside area either. Especially important in the age of social distancing. Create a cozy gazebo adorned with a canopy of white lights, patio heaters, or an outdoor fire pit and rug. For après-ski raclette or fondue, served with copper mugs of mulled wine, schnapps or a champagne cocktail. “
Make an entrance
One of Liz’s clients, actress Michelle Keegan, is one of the many who has drawn her homes and she sure knows how to make an impact.
Liz adds, “A huge sparkling archway adorns the front door, flanked by life-size toy soldiers on either side – what a way to welcome guests.
“You may not have the exact taste of Michelle, but an arched doorway is easy to recreate at home without costing thousands. Garlands are very popular this year and look stunning as a festive facade. Carry the look throughout the home by incorporating green spaces, garlands of eucalyptus, ivy, and gypsophilia over a fireplace and staircase wherever possible. Or my absolute favorite look – a floral canopy over the Christmas table.
“To keep this trend more cautious, try a simple oversized wreath on the door. Frame it with some large lanterns and holly on either side. “
Any celebrity worth their money will already have their festive Instagram posts made and planned. So why not start planning yours?
“Remember that the background is almost as important as the subject (unless you’re Adele, of course). If you want to party like a celebrity, you need a beautiful setting for all of the selfies you will post during the day. You can choose a corner of your home that is beautifully decorated or choose a bespoke background with a hand-painted scene.
“Last Christmas, Adele took an oversized snapshot of snow-covered London and invited Santa and the Grinch to their celebrity soiree. Dressed from head to toe in black satin showing off her new slender figure, she sure made sure it was a photo opportunity for all the right reasons. “
Liz believes that many celebrities will focus on individual details rather than grand plans.
“You might think that the celebrity world is all about oversized installations and that it is overdone. But often it’s the fine, finer details that define or end the day. I love reinventing big ideas in creative ways. A dessert plate with miniature espresso martini and bite-sized dessert. A thimble full of mulled wine, served with canapés. Or an espresso cup of hot soup for outdoor celebrations.
“However, when it comes to Christmas trees, in the world of famous Christmas decorations, bigger really is better. Floor to ceiling is the only way. With a tree this big, you may need help decorating it properly and of course we event planners can be of help here.
“Remember, celebrities are often looking for that element of fun too. So try to hang the tree upside down. It creates a unique focal point and topic of conversation! “
Liz Taylor’s famous career in event planning has built an impressive portfolio that includes celebrity weddings, fundraisers for charities like Children in Need with Gary Barlow, and grand gala dinners like the Winter White Gala at Kensington Palace for HRH Duke of Cambridge. Visit tlc-ltd.co.uk or @taylorlynncorporation to find out more.
All images courtesy of Taylor Lynn Corporation