I’m Dreaming of a Kiwi Christmas

Bring on the sunshine and blue skies. I’m not wanting any snow this Christmas. Instead I am planning on having a good old Kiwi Christmas this year, an outdoor meal with my family. Spending Christmas Day with loved ones is what the season is about. We’re just lucky here in NZ that we can do it in summer! I recently catered an amazing Kiwi styled Christmas function. I loved it so much, that I’m going to share exactly how I did it with you!

Deck the Halls with Boughs of Pohutukawa

DIY; it’s in our blood and it is definitely in mine! To create your own Kiwi style Christmas, start thinking along the lines of casual meets glamourous, handmade meets repurposed. What I did was I took a selection of tables and chairs outside. I then covered the main table with a handmade tablecloth and matching napkins I made with fabric purchased from Femme de Brocante in Rangiora. I set the table with matching dinner plates and gold rimmed wine glasses for a bit of glamour. The cutlery was distinctively mismatching and I found that from local second hand stores. On top of each plate, my handmade napkins were placed, each tied up with twine and featuring a hand stamped card. I found the twine and stamp set at Cressy Lane Gift Shop.

In the centre of my table I placed a simply gorgeous arrangement from Lizzy Lauder, where it was made within an old seed box. It contained a mixture of real and artificial flowers and foliage, as well as ferns, wire pine cones and holly. I’m so lucky in that I have a wonderful area around my home where I can source not only inspiration, but also accessories to style my tables with too.

I used paua shells to display food in and popped colour co-ordinated crackers on the table. You could fill these crackers with goodies of your own, such as homemade chocolates, vouchers for hugs or even that winning Lotto ticket. It’s all about the details and this year, forget hanging your Christmas stocking on the mantel piece because I’ve got an even better idea: use a flax kete bag instead! A woven flax bag is the perfect alternative to wrapping paper and being reusable and made from sustainable materials, is a great option for our environment too.

Forget the Snow – We’ve Got the Sun!

Nostalgia is all well and good, until of course, you can’t ever replicate it. Back in the days when some of our ancestors lived in Europe, Christmas was a time spent indoors where chestnuts did roast on the fire. With many of the events mentioned within carols and stories unlikely to happen for us, it is time we got onto planning a Kiwi themed Christmas for ourselves. Here are Miss Lilly’s Boutique Café’s top Christmas tips:

  • Have things your way – don’t like steamed pudding or Christmas cake? Find a recipe for a special cake you do love. Use this as your holiday season cake instead.

  • Create your own traditions – nowhere does it say that we must sing carols around our trees inside or make a snowman on the lawn to have a ‘proper’ Christmas. Find something that you and your family love doing, whether it is cricket at the park or a treasure hunt dig at the beach. The first time is always the hardest, but each year you can tweak your new tradition until it suits you all.

  • Take Christmas outside – a hot roast dinner with all the trimmings tastes wonderful, but we don’t need to eat it inside sweltering from the heat. Carry your dining table outdoors or set up a picnic rug instead.

  • Set the scene – if there ever was an appropriate time to decorate your table and home, it’s at Christmas!

This Christmas, remember it is all about spending quality time with loved ones. Merry Christmas from Miss Lilly and her team of Creative Food Extraordinaires!

Please head over to Lizzy Lauder facebook page as she did all the amazing flowers for this table display