Above, armfuls of seasonal foliage in a substantial, water-filled container can be added to and refreshed over the festive season. Hang a nosegay composed of the same plants at the window and complement the look with a berry-strewn wreath. As final finishing touch, follow Scandinavian tradition and lay a branch of fir on the doorstep as a natural doormat on which guests can brush off their shoes before entering the house.
Copper lanterns, small, £9.99; large, £14.99, both Dobbies. Red berry and blackberry wreath, £35, John Lewis. Berry arrangement, from £50, Scarlet & Violet. Malmesbury planter, £40, Garden Trading.
Follow the star
Show guests the way to your home with decorative lights. Here, three woven metal stars make an eye-catching contrast against the yew hedge, while a rope of mains-powered outdoor lights entices visitors through the arch.
Metal light-up stars, £20 each, Cox & Cox. Battery-powered outdoor fairy lights (on gate), £8.99; mains-powered outdoor lights (on ground), £19.99, both Lights4Fun.
Ring the changes
A frosted pine cone wreath will make a smart statement on any door. For an additional touch of festive glamour, add your own details, such as the shimmering silk rose and ribbon seen here.
Pine cone wreath, £55, Cox & Cox. Enchantment flower clip in Champagne, £3, John Lewis. Wired organza ribbon, £1.20 per m, Jane Means.
In a word
For a more contemporary treatment, battery-powered letters can be used to spell out the Christmas message of your choice. A string of large-scale, mains-powered outdoor lights simply hung gives this playful look extra impact.
Carnival letter lights, £58 each, The Little House Shop. Outdoor festoon lights, £29.99, Lights4Fun.
Layers of interest
Build up the festive momentum of the coming days, beginning with faux pieces such as the wreath and two pre-lit trees shown here, and add to the display with fresh flwoers and accessories as the key dates of the season arrive.
Pre-lit white and glitter porch tree, £100; pre-lit bush, £100, both John Lewis. Snowberry and twig wreath, £56; Barrington hurricane lamps, £85 each, all Oka.
Words and direction Arabella St John Parker
Styling Sophie Martell
Photographs Ben AndersTweet