Thursday, 19 December 2013

First Christmas In Our New Flat...

Merry Christmas to you all! I know I'm a bit early but there's not long to go now, so thought I'd get it in there :).

Those of you that follow my posts on here and/or follow me on Twitter (@GemsGemz86) will know that me and Si moved into our first flat together earlier this year. So obvs it's our first Christmas here :). It's been really exciting buying our first lot of Christmas decorations, decorating the place our way, doing our first proper full Christmas shop (we did used to help mom out when we lived with her), wrapping presents and putting them under the tree and creating our own traditions :). I thought I'd write this post and show you how we have decorated the place for Christmas and show you a few of the things we have bought.

So this is our living area with just the Christmas lights on and where we have the main decorations going on. So the tree was my first real tree, Si has had one previously with his family. It smelt gorgeous and looked lush when we first got it and set it up. We bought it on the 30th November and approx 2 weeks later it had died. It was a nightmare and we were pretty gutted about it! We got the tree from a local garden centre and there was some sort of guarantee on the trees there, so Si rang them up and they said if we returned it they'd exchange it. Si's mom took him to return it and I cleaned up the mess. When we had it up, I'd clean around the tree and a couple of hours later the floor would be covered again. It took me two hours to clean up properly whilst Si was returning it, filling one medium bin liner with piles of needles and then I hoovered the rest up, having to empty the hoover twice in the process. Some of the little bleeders had dug themselves into the carpet, so to do a good job and get rid of them all as best I could, I had to get down on my hands and knees and pick them from the carpet with my fingers :/. Not a pleasant experience I must say :/. Luckily, Si managed to get our money back and my mom's friend was giving up her artificial Christmas tree as her daughter had given her hers so mom brought that one up to us and we've now got that one all decorated (I took all the pictures in this post before our real tree decided to die, so I thought I'd just stick with them saves taking them all again :)). I think if we ever get a real one again (not in any particular rush we've both said ha), then we'll get one where the needless don't come out...I bet they are pricey though! The lights around the TV are just a pack of coloured lights that were £1 from Poundland and the ones on the window are those I used to have in my bedroom back at my moms, Si got them for me and they were £20 from Wilko's.

We have some of the traditional decorations on our tree like beads, coloured baubles (we decided to go for a red and gold theme), bows, stars and of course chocolates :), but there are some baubles/tree decorations that are a little bit different, so I thought I'd show you those a little bit more closely...

The glass bauble with the beads inside was a couple of quid from a local garden centre called Garden Land. It was the same garden centre we got our tree from. I thought it was so cute! The special couple bauble was also from the same garden centre but it was a gift from my mom :). It's a money box bauble! The star decoration was also from the garden centre and was a couple of quid. I wanted to get a few items for the tree that were unique, so everything wasn't all samey. The red and white baubles were from a PDSA charity shop, they were new stock and were about £3.50 for a pack of six, we got two packs. The Santa hat and the stocking decorations were from Poundland (the hat was on its own and the stocking decoration came in a pack of four). Lastly, the reindeer decoration came in a pack of six for £1 and were from Discount UK, which used to be our old Woolworths (I miss that shop!). At the top of our tree we have...a star! What do you go for? A star, angel or something else?

We also have a few more decorations and lights around the flat...

The Merry Christmas garland was £1 from Poundland and we found the lights in a back room of our flat when we moved in :)...ta very muchly to whoever left them here!

The snowman and the Santa were £1 each from Poundland (they light up), as were the Xmas letters (everything else is normally on the window sill but the candle holders Si got from work and the bowl and pot pourri was from Asda :)).

This set of lights was just £1 from Poundland. They don't look very bright in the picture, but it's cosy of an evening with them on :).

This is a window decoration and it is hand made. I got it from Birmingham Christmas/German market this year for £3.50. It's a lovely, unique decoration and sparkles when it catches the light.

We also got a few things for our dining table for Christmas (me and Si usually have Christmas at moms but as this is our first Christmas in our own place, we wanted to have it here and cook for my mom and sister, so they are coming to ours :)), aswell as a few other Christmassy bits and bobs...

I got these gummy paper strips for £1 from Poundland and there were loads in the pack and four different designs. I was unsure of what to do with them at first but loved the designs, I didn't know whether to make a garland for a wall, above a door or what, but when playing around with them I created this little decoration for the back of our dining table chairs :) makes it that little bit more Christmassy!

I loved this salt pot when I first saw it at Garden Land. It was only £1.99 and I thought it would look good on the dining table on Christmas day. I didn't bother getting a pepper one aswell as no-one here really has pepper on their meals and I'll just use this for Christmas, put it away and bring it out again every year. I think this is actually a pepper pot as it has three holes instead of two, but they didn't have any with two holes, so I think people must have already snapped them up. I got a few disposable items for Christmas evening when we have sandwiches, a few bits of party food, cheese board etc. These plates were £1 from Discount UK.

The napkins were £1 from Poundland and the cups were £1 from Discount UK.

I wanted to make some home made Christmas cookies/biscuits so I picked these cutters up for £1 from Discount UK. I also picked up a pack of two festive table covers for £1 from Poundland. I love the whole Nordic style, so I couldn't resist.

Sticking with our red and gold theme this Christmas, I picked up four place mats for £1 each from Discount UK and a pack of 4 drink mats for £1. Also at Garden Land, I got these two festive Yankee Candle wax tarts (Christmas Eve and Apple & Pine Needle), they smell amazing! They were £1.25 each.

There were also a few bits that I've seen about that I liked the look of and either haven't had the chance to pick up, saw such items after we'd bought all of our decorations and we didn't want to go over the top or my local stores didn't have the items available but I still thought they were worth mentioning and there's always next Christmas :).

I saw so many of these types of trees in my town centre but as it was our first Christmas in our new place we needed a main tree let alone any side trees ha! So we gave a tree like this a miss this year but I think they are beautiful and definitely something we'd look into getting next year as an extra to our decorations. This particular type is from Garden Site and the price ranges from £37.99 to £72.99 depending on the size that you want. I'm not sure if you have a Discount UK store near you but I've seen some in there during the run up to Christmas (couldn't find an image on their website to show you) and again they range in price. Do any of you have a tree like this?

I think it will be cute to have something like this for next year. We're getting married in September 2014, so this will probably be something we'll look at getting for next Christmas knowing me and Si :). It's sweet! You can personalise it with any message and it's only £12.99 from Gone Digging.

Me and Si love travelling, so we'd love something like this for our tree. It's £5.95 for one from Not On The High Street and you can choose from black, cream or green. I know over the years we are going to probably build up a nice little collection of unique Christmas baubles and decorations!

Lastly, I'm sticking with the Nordic/Scandinavian theme with these lush items from Tesco. The nearest Tesco to me don't have these items in for some reason. Tesco have quite a few lovely Christmas items to be honest, they are all on their website, I think I need to get to a bigger Tesco to see their full range though. These two items are fab and would look lovely in our front room, fitting in nicely with our theme. The cushion is £10 and the throw is currently £16.65.

Such lovely items don't you think?

How do you decorate where you live for Christmas?

Have you bought any new decorations this year?

Thanks so much for reading!
Gem XxOo
Images courtesy of Garden Site, Gone Digging, Not On The High Street and Tesco.


  1. How adorable!
    Im envious.. desperate to have my own flat again, it all looks so cute.
    Have a lovely christmas :)


    1. Aww, thanks lovely :). We've loved buying all the decs and making the place all Christmassy! It's been fab :). Thanks so much for reading and taking the time to comment. Have an amazing Christmas too! xx

  2. Thank you for the lovely comment Gemma :) I'm so glad you found my blog through etailPR, I'm so sad to leave the company. But so excited for my travels!

    Hope you had a fantastic Christmas and have a great time celebrating New Year! xx

    1. I had a lovely Christmas thank you, really chilled and full of fun, food and drinks with the fam :). Good times! Hope you had a good one and have an amazing New Year!

      Aw, I bet. You're gonna have a ball though. Have an amazing time and I'd love to hear how you're getting on :) xx


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