5 Outdoor Christmas Decorating Tips For Your Home

Are you thinking of decorating the exterior of your house for this year’s Christmas holidays? It’s a trend that’s been growing for some years now, and new innovative lighting designs can be used to great effect to give your home a special and unique Christmas feel.

A few words of caution though, before you let your creative juices run away with you: safety is paramount.
First, electricity needs to be handled with respect. Make sure the lights you wish to install are specifically for outdoor use, and don’t be tempted to overload your electrical sockets – it’s dangerous and can cause a fire. LED lights are best, not only because they are more energy efficient and need less wattage than traditional incandescent bulbs, but also for their beautifully clear, crisp light output. 

Secondly, putting up and taking down outdoor Christmas lights on a building comes with a fair degree of personal risk. Are you working off a simple household ladder? If you do, make sure it’s in good condition and a stable position on a firm and flat surface. Also, it’s advisable to always work in pairs, so you have someone assisting you – two pairs of hands are safer than one. For high roofs, rooftops or other elevated areas, ladders are unlikely to be the right solution. You may be better off hiring a scaffold platform or tower, or even a cherry picker. The last thing you need this Christmas is a nasty accident.

With the essential safety concerns addressed, are you ready to add some festive fun and magic to the outside of your home? Here are 5 design considerations and decorating tips to help you make your home truly Christmassy.

1.       Highlight the building’s architectural features

When installing lights to the front elevation of your house, always start at the centre and work your way outwards to the sides. Look at interesting architectural details of the building to see what can be highlighted in the design scheme. Gables, rooflines, chimneys, arches, windows or similar features lend themselves particularly well. 

Combine horizontal and vertical features to achieve the perfect balance. Rather than covering the entire house in lights, perhaps pick out the roof outline up to the gable peak and down again, then highlight the front door outline to create a simple yet effective festive aesthetic.

2.       Create a professional, three dimensional effect

Whatever you do, it needs to really impress, especially at Christmas – so don’t skimp on lighting; the thicker your lighting garlands are, the more effective the result will be. Use large, bright LED bulbs spaced properly and evenly, every 30cm or so, and include cutbacks so that your house doesn’t appear two dimensional. Make sure the length is just right; you should have a bulb positioned right at the top of the apex, and no overhanging lights at the bottom – otherwise it just looks messy.

3.       Don’t forget to decorate your trees

Beautifully decorated trees add impact, especially when they frame the house. There are two techniques you can use to light up your trees in the front garden. Spiral/canopy wrapping encircles the entire tree (perfect for conifers), while trunk & branch wrapping highlights the main branches and emphasises the structure of the tree (ideal for deciduous trees). Both can look wonderful, as can mixing and matching the two.

4.       Classic white or colourful fun?

Whether you go for the traditional Christmas favourite all-white look or have fun with some on-trend colour is entirely up to your personal taste. This year, one of the popular colour schemes to emerge is a very festive combination of red, green and white. Then again, other colour contrasts can work well too – try silver and gold, or green and blue perhaps, to create an effective and unusual wow factor for your Christmas home.

5.       Add extra decorations to set the scene

For a bolder look, you can give your front garden a Christmas theme with the addition of festive characters – Father Christmas, reindeer, snowmen or penguins, angels and stars, or a nativity scene? The shops are now full of inspiration, with all kinds of fun characters and wonderful light designs to choose from – go and have a look.

Finally, complement your outdoor Christmas light display with some lush greenery to add an extra festive touch to your exterior decorations. Evergreen wreaths or garlands (either real or artificial) can be trimmed with ribbons, ornaments and lights to provide enchanting accents for windows and doors.
Article provided by Mike James, an independent content writer working alongside a selection of companies including MC Property Maintenance, who were consulted over this post.

How to Make a Good Impression to Potential Buyers During Your First Open House

The way you hold an open house plays a critical role in determining the value of your home. Without the right preparation and plan, you can easily send potential buyers out the door. If this is the first time you’ll be setting up one, here are some of the things you can do to make a very good impression.

Enhance your home’s curb appeal

Your driveway and walkway are as important as what’s inside your home. Since they are the first areas that your potential buyers can see, you have to make sure that they are in top shape.

Freshen up your landscaping by removing dried and dying plants. It’s also a good idea to re-do your exterior paint, particularly if it’s already peeling or extremely faded. If your front and garage door are already showing signs of wear and tear, now is the right time to get them replaced.

It can also help if you can clean your gutters. In case your home’s siding is filled with dirt and grime, you can pressure wash it. A fresh new welcoming mat can make a big difference, too.

Another thing to keep in mind is to make sure that your driveway is clear. You don’t want anything there that can obstruct the view of your home.

Clean your home

This is probably the most important thing you need to do if you want to create a good impression to your potential buyers. A home full of clutter isn’t only visually unappealing, but it can also make your property lose its value. It might even discourage people from buying your property.

Start off by removing most of your personal items from your home. It should be as sparse as possible even before you set it up on the market. Take away as much furniture as possible and leave only those items that you think can boost your home’s aesthetic appeal.

Remove all stains from your walls, mirrors and silverware. You want your home to be as pristine as it can be. If there are hard-to-remove stains, it’s a better idea if you can reach out to the professional carpet and upholstery cleaners in your area. They have the tools, materials and skills to remedy stubborn stains without the risk of damaging your household item.

Let more light in

Whether it’s natural or artificial light, you want your home to be as bright and illuminated as possible. This is to help your potential buyers get a good view of your home’s layout and floor plan. You can open up all your curtains and make sure that all light bulbs are functioning well prior to their visit.

Prepare some refreshments

This is probably one of the most overlooked things when it comes to preparing for an open house. Although not a necessity, offering something for your visitors to eat and drink can help make a good impression. It doesn’t have to involve complex and expensive food items. It can be as simple as serving freshly baked cookies and glasses of cool lemonades.

Add accessories if you can

You don’t need tons of accessories to highlight your home, but adding them where they matter can make a big difference. This includes adding vases of flowers and scented candles in your living room. You can also add extra storage spaces in your bathroom to organize your toiletries and towels.

It’s a good idea if you can replace any broken faucets and cabinet handles, too. You can decorate your kitchen with decorative bottles filled with spices and oils. You can also use recipe books and glasses to add character to the room.

Assemble your furniture

You might be keeping your furniture the way they are for convenience and comfort. However, for open houses, you might want to consider moving them around to maximize your space.

Stage your furniture so that people can move around without bumping into things. Take away large furniture, such as sectional sofas. Make sure that there’s plenty of room for them to walk around but avoid pushing all your furniture to the wall. You want to create a focal point, such as a large window or your fireplace.

Depersonalize your home

Tuck away your family photos as they can be distracting for your potential buyers. As buyers can also look into your cabinets and storage spaces, it’s a good idea to empty them out or organize their contents. Seeing them overflowing can create the impression that your home doesn’t have enough space to keep things neatly tucked in.

Remove your toothbrush and towels from your bathroom. You should also consider clearing your kitchen countertops , especially if you have tons of appliances there. You only need to have the essentials to emphasize your kitchen’s functionality.

5 reasons you need a glass staircase in your home

Glass is becoming a hugely popular material for use in interior design as well as part of modern architecture in general – and there are a whole host of reasons as to why this is the case.  Not only does glass bring a touch of luxury to any home or commercial building, but it is also superb for increasing a sense of space and for maximising light – and more and more homeowners are making the leap to installing glass staircases in their home.  But why is this?  We have a few reasons as to why you may consider a glass staircase or series of balustrade installations as part of your new-look home.


The flexibility and lightweight nature of glass allows for some truly fantastic bespoke creations – meaning that it’s often a manufacturer’s favourite material to work with.  Glass, unlike wood or metal, is much more open to being formed, shaped and designed in any way you see fit – making it a fantastic choice for a truly unique staircase.  As the staircase is often the first thing many people see when entering your home, you’re going to want to make a spectacular and unique first impression!


Many may perceive glass to be brittle or incapable of providing for such regularly-used structures as staircases – however, this simply isn’t the case.  Toughened glass is more robust than ever, and with manufacturing allowing for scratch and damage-resistant glass in recent times, it’s becoming more and more of an attractive choice for staircase installations.

Space Creation

The main benefit of installing glass in your home is an aesthetic one – after all, the look of glass walls, glass balustrades and staircases can hardly be equalled!  Further to this, the transparency of a glass staircase allows you to create more space within your home than you could ever imagine – it’s a clever illusion that can really transform the atmosphere in a room almost effortlessly.

Easy Maintenance

Glass staircases are, of course, the easiest to maintain – as they’re not only wipe clean, but are often made of toughened glass to lessen the risk of any long-term damage or scuffing.  Compared to carpeted or wooden staircases, glass models are surprisingly low-maintenance and certainly pay for themselves long term.

Light and Eco-Friendly

Glass staircases are by far the kindest to the environment in their manufacture and composition alone, and in addition to this, they’re extremely lightweight – while at the same time remaining durable and extremely hard to damage.  Taking both of these factors into account of course means that glass staircases are easy to disassemble and can be completely recycled once they’ve lived their course – but why would you ever want to remove a staircase that looks so good?

For more information on having a bespoke design – or to order your own glass staircase or balustrades, contact the team of experts at Elysion on 01629 820030 who are versed in years of the design, manufacture and installation of interior and exterior design solutions for homes and business throughout the UK.