While some may yearn for a white Christmas, in Australia we’re truly blessed with our long, lazy summers and holiday period overlapping the festive season. Balmy weather, beach swims, backyard cricket and barbecues are all part of the Christmas package downunder, and hosting is made all the more enjoyable in singlets and sandals as the kids swim in the pool until twilight. When it comes to setting the scene for entertaining, coastal styling not only complements the Aussie climate, it’s also cool, calming and so conducive to relaxing with family and friends. From timeless timbers to fresh linens, we’ve got some great coastal Christmas styling inspiration to create an easy, breezy backdrop for your holiday hosting.
“Natural timbers that look gently sun-kissed and faded, together with rattan and cane, make a superb base for your festive spread,” says Heather Nette King, who styled the Early Settler summer 21/22 outdoor collection. “And chairs that combine woven elements with durable, linen-look seat covers hit the mark perfectly, combining comfort and practicality with the most on-trend look.”
Natural timbers that look gently sun-kissed and faded, together with rattan and cane, make a superb base for your festive spread. — Heather Nette King
Create a fresh and inspiring setting in the dining room, living room and deck with contemporary Christmas colours in harmonious hues of sage, sea blues, teals and pinks. And tie your indoor and outdoor spaces together by integrating your calming coastal palette from the tree-trimming to the tableware.
Gorgeous wicker, cane, bamboo and rattan baskets and trays add to the beachy vibe and can also serve a multitude of purposes. “Big baskets make the perfect stylish holders for Christmas trees — both real and fake,” says Heather. “Or use smaller ones to place little trees along your festive table.”
Timber grazing boards and platters look amazing when piled high with the most delicious fare — you can even add a platter of festive bon-bons to your spread. — Heather Nette King
Have a grazing platter or two ready to put as soon as your guests arrive with fresh local fruits, cheese, crackers, olives, prawns and sliced ham.
“A shared platter or two on a table is such a delightful way to begin or end a meal,” says Heather.
“Timber grazing boards and platters look amazing when piled high with the most delicious fare — you can even add a platter of festive bon-bons to your spread.”
When you’re ready to take the festivities outside, have a sumptuous seating area set up for your guests to enjoy with a cool drink. Soft furnishings in neutral tones add to the soothing coastal ambience, such as linen-look alfresco sofas, and invite the luxury of indoors outside. Add colour and freshness with some sea-blue accessories or tropical décor to create a resort-like atmosphere.
“Fresh white metal is also enjoying popularity this year, as it gives a contemporary and fresh vibe to the natural colour palette,” says Heather. “And cushions with botanical prints in nature’s hues will add not just comfort but an extra layer of styling to your scene.”
String some Christmas bunting to infuse a festive flavour and some festoon lights so celebrations can spill into the evening as the kids play barefoot cricket on the lawn. And don’t forget a Bluetooth speaker to play your Christmas playlist or cool summer jams.