The Lady Di décor theme

This year’s themes are very exciting, but I say that every year! Whenever I start a design or interiors project I have a jumping-off point – something that sparks my inspiration. For my main theme this year, it was a striking piece of silvery-grey ribbon embroidered with pearls, and the idea of platinum and pearls was born. I like my tree designs to have a different edge so for the tree topper I’ve used a tiara and ribbon; seeing this level of elegance, one of my clients dubbed it “the Lady Di tree”, (after British Royal, Princess Diana of Wales) and the name stuck.


 Christmas tree styling tips

The Lady Di tree features a dense display of decorations that create depth, including flowers, strings of pearls and baubles of platinum crowns and high heels

● The tree features stunning ribbons in shades of silver, grey and platinum, heavily beaded florals, and various pieces that drip down the tree, such as strings of pearls and ornaments in varying shades of precious metals.

● Mixing metallics is a very popular trend for 2019/20 and it has given this classic theme a completely new look. However, because the overall style is very elegant it won’t date either, so you can use it year after year.

● For the tree skirt, I buy fabric on the roll in Satwa and drape the fabric around the trunk.

● For lights, the rule of thumb is 100 lights per foot of tree but I usually add more! I also make sure the lights are placed deep into the branches, as well as around the outside for added depth.

● Think outside the box when it comes to your tree toppers. The tiara made from beautiful ribbon and beaded leaves adds an elegant twist to the top.

● For tree décor, I love using clear bubble baubles as they catch the light beautifully, and long strings of faux pearls look lovely when draped over the branches. I like to use a combination of round and long ornaments on the trees to break up the straight lines of the branches.


Festive table styling ideas 

Note the vases positioned upside down for this new purpose, while a large platinum Santa adds pizzazz as a centrepiece

● For entertaining, match your table setting to your tree. If you have a large table you can go bold with the décor.

● For a chic “Lady Di” table setting it’s all about layering. Over a sophisticated table cloth with a classic pattern, I’ve used an overlay of sparkly tulle and

a beaded table runner, layered with chargers and plates; each plate is wrapped using a silver-grey napkin to create a decorative band, as if each setting is gift wrapped.

● Each plate has a pale gold flower that matches the tree décor, and can be gifted to guests like a party favour.

● The side plate with a pretty bauble motif and the delicate silver snowflake napkin rings add a seasonal touch.

● For the centrepiece, I wanted a statement feature and when I saw the giant platinum Santa I knew he should take pride of place on the table.

● On either side of Santa, I’ve placed two tall glass vases upside down; each one is decorated with lights and a beautiful ornament inside the bowl of the vase while the arrangement on the top echoes that of the tree.

● For the chairs, I’ve used satin chair covers with a silvery sash and a rhinestone ornament on the back.

● Complete your dining room with a wreath decorated with pearls and silvery ribbons to match the tree, either on the wall or on a mirror.



Janet Waite, interior designer and festive stylist


Janet Waite is an interior designer and the owner and designer of Seasons by Design, which specialises in handcrafted holiday décor and styling. Every year, she turns her home in Jumeirah, Dubai, into a festive pop-up of beautifully adorned Christmas trees and matching table settings, wreaths, garlands and centrepieces for customers to buy. Janet sources her materials from Texas and crafts every piece by hand, making each item unique. She provides festive styling for residential homes, shopping malls and embassies, and this year she has styled Bloomingdale’s Home’s in-store Christmas campaign. Follow Seasons by Design on Instagram.


Read more from InsideOut magazine: 

6 Christmas schemes to take your holiday decorating to the next level 

A cosy Christmas home in Sweden with pink and pale grey hues 

Be inspired by this home with Scandinavian Christmas style