An alternative Christmas : softly spiced wonderland
Update your Christmas entertaining style to create a warm, welcoming celebration for loved ones with fresh croissants, luscious homemade jam and delicious, iced spiced coffee.
Piece together a dreamy table setting with pretty layered neutrals and playful, yet carefully considered details for a wonderfully fresh, festive look.
Take inspiration from the thoughtful Japanese tradition of wrapping gifts in pretty tonal fabrics or tea towels which are also beautiful (and useful) addition to any gift. You can also rest easy knowing that you’re doing your part in caring for the environment by saving on wasteful disposable wrapping supplies.
Use your favourite festive decorations alternated with dried flowers as place holders or napkin rings. Not only do they they provide a talking point, but also doubles as take-home treats for guests. These last a while so you can buy these weeks ahead of time and hang them upside down to dry.
Select a charming tree alternative like a rustic ladder or even an old chair and decorate with a delicately arranged floral feature. It will bring that festivity to your dining space and create that center-piece that traditional Christmas trees serve.
Make your very own floral feature at home:
You will need
Selection of toetoe, greenery & dried flowers of your choice
Seed lights (optional)
1. Create your framework
Starting from the top rung of the ladder, use string to create an ’S’ formation down to the bottom rung, tying it to each rung as you go. This will create the base formation to build your arrangement around.
2. Find your center point
Chose a point 2/3 down the ladder where the string is closest to the right hand edge as the center point to create a visually appealing asymmetrical formation.
3. Build your base
Starting from the center working out, follow your string guide and start placing the toetoe, securing it as you go with floristry wire. Some will organically bend and fall in different directions, so instead of trying to manipulate these, work with what you’ve got for the best end result.
4. Bulk it out
Once you have the main structure attached, weave more toetoe into bulk it out. Fill the gaps and try to keep the form as organic looking as possible. You may also want to consider weaving seed lights throughout for an extra festive flare.
5. Finish it with florals
Using the integrity on the toetoe, weave in the largest flowers first using the center point as your base. From here, place your smaller flowers and foliage securing them with floristry wire as you go. Continue to add and build until you’re happy with the shape and volume.
Spiced iced coffee
Spice up the mood for celebration with a delicious, delicately spiced iced coffee. This can be done days beforehand to save time and let you enjoy time with your guests (recipe below).
1/3 cup ground coffee
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1/8 tsp ginger
250ml sweetened milk
Combine ground coffee with the spices in the filter basket of your coffee maker. We used a Chemex, but you could also use a french press, drip coffee maker, pour over or any other preferred brewing method.
Prepare the coffee as usual.
Pour brewed coffee into large ice cube trays and place in the freezer.
Place 2 or 3 ice cubes in a glass and top with sweetened milk.
5. Sweetened milk
Mix a few tablespoons of condensed milk with regular or nut milk in a jug. Adjust the ratio to suit your taste.