Christmas colour schemes to create your festive look this season

It’s not all just reds and greens - find a new colourway to style your home this Noël
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  • Here comes Santa Claus…and here comes time to get your home ready for the holidays! The first step in creating your own winter wonderland is settling on which of the Christmas colour schemes you’ll be basing your look around.

    Choosing a colour focus doesn’t just created a more pulled-together look, but it’s actually something of a lifesaver. Once you’ve settled on your scheme, choosing your decorations and accessories is a breeze.

    Even if you don’t want to go for a full colour drench, accents and highlights in a cohesive scheme will elevate and strengthen your Christmas ideas.

    Christmas colour schemes

    ‘A huge part of any interior design is choosing your colour palette,’ says Rachel Epstein, Interiors Expert and Creative Director of CARME Home.

    ‘The traditional Christmas colours of red and green, and more recently gold and silver, will always be favourable. However, Christmas 2021 will see us steer away from the traditional, and colours like dark blue, green, brown and pink will be introduced.’

    Read on to discover your new favourite Christmas colour scheme.

    1. Layer with playful pastels

    Pink living room with Christmas tree and pastel decorations

    Image credit: Amara

    Pinks are going absolutely nowhere from our homes – and Christmas is no exception. Make like the Sugar Plum fairy and layer up the softest pastel shades.

    ‘Give your home a sophisticated and elegant feel, with hints of snowflake whites and icy blues,’ says Sam Hood, Chief Creative Officer at AMARA. ‘Combining jewelled pieces with a sprinkling of sparkle, the collection will transform your home into a magical winter wonderland.

    2. Choose a fresh white and green combo

    White dresser with green Christmas foliage

    Image credit: Future PLC

    Capture the serenity of a snowy forest with gathered foliage, rustic wood and green decorations in a soft white setting.

    Teaming your fresh whites with natural greenery warms up the bright neutrals. This also feels like a more contemporary take on the more traditional Christmas colour schemes which we’re all used to.

    It’s a great look anywhere in the home, but the tops of dressers and Christmas mantel decor will feel energised and refreshed with this combination.

    3. Go moody with terracotta reds

    Terracotta red living room with Christmas tree

    Image credit: Annie Sloan

    Add some drama to your home this festive season by turning to sultry terracottas and burgundys.

    A more grown up take on the classic Christmas reds, this deep brownish-red works beautifully when paired with fir tree greens. It’s especially effective and warming in the evening, so light generously with candles for the ultimate cosy night in.

    4. Express yourself with rainbow brights

    White and black staircase with colourful flowers and presents

    Image credit: Wayfair

    Throw tradition to the wind when selecting which of this year’s Christmas colour schemes to experiment with.

    Add joy by liberally using your favourite rainbow bright shades in your decorating. Mix and match colours, but make sure that one has dominance. If you choose pink, for example, different tones of pink throughout will help keep the look feeling designed rather than too random.

    Nod to classic festive decor by updating elements like garlands with colourful flowers instead of natural foliage.

    5. Look to soft greens

    Green living room with green furniture and Christmas tree

    Image credit: Laura Ashley

    Christmas living room decor is one of the biggest jobs when styling your home for the holidays – not least because it’s where you’ll be spending a lot of your downtime.

    Create a restful retreat from the madness by choosing a soft, sage and eucalyptus green tone. Less dramatic than the usual ‘Christmas green’, this calming shade provides the perfect backdrop to make your tree pop this year.

    Pair with mustards and coppers for an on-trend finish.

    6. Go all-natural with taupe

    Hallway and staircase with white and taupe paper decorations

    Image credit: Future PLC

    Not every home wants their colour scheme to stand out too much. Take a more subtle approach with taupes and creams.

    A softer look than the usual festive neutral – white – shades of tan work wonderfully well with green foliage and touches of metallics.

    7. Create a vintage scheme with burnished jewel tones

    Staircase with garland and Christmas baubles

    Image credit: Future PLC

    Take inspiration from history and decorate your home with muted, burnished jewel tones this Christmas.

    The aim here is to look for duskier takes on your classic jewels – think garnet rather than ruby red, aquamarine over sapphire and malachites instead of emeralds. Pair with oxidised silvers and bronzes for a sophisticated look.

    8. Add texture to white

    White living room with Christmas tree

    Image credit: The White Company

    Prevent an all-white scheme from looking flat by carefully layering up textures.

    Add in a mixture of soft and hard baubles to your tree, and decorate the room with all manner of white textures. Sheepskin rugs, chunky throws and faux fur cushions all help make a purely white scheme cosy and welcoming rather than cold and pristine.

    Use the best Christmas lights in warm, rather than true, whites to complete the look.

    9. Create warmth with copper tones

    Copper decorated tree next to mustard sofa and fireplace

    Image credit: Future PLC

    Metallics needn’t mean blingtastic, as this bronze decorating scheme proves. Burnished bronze and aged brass tones can welcome a more sophisticated tone, to the glam look an elegant edge.

    Warming tones of bronze pair perfectly with current on-trend mustards and rust shades.

    10. Tone down sparkle with greys

    Fireplace with silver grey decorations and stockings

    Image credit: Marks & Spencer

    We love a metallic at Christmas, but not every home style is crying out for glitter.

    Consider using various tones of greys for a cool and modern take on sparkly silvers. Pair with fairy lights and lashings of seasonal foliage to keep the look warm.

    11. Introduce on-trend jewel tones

    Blue living room with red sofa fireplace and Christmas tree

    Image credit: Future PLC

    Create a captivating Christmas scheme with the introduction of richly saturated rich jewel tones. From emerald green, sapphire blue, ruby red, amethyst purple and citrine yellow.

    The fusion of warming shades helps to add a decadent touch to festive decorating. Any of the on-trend tones pair well with existing gold or bronze decorations. As seen here the jewel hues are enhanced beautifully by darker wall colours, especially on-trend in recent years.

    12. Go for gold

    Grey living room with pink sofa, fireplace and Christmas tree with gold decorations

    Image credit: Joanna Henderson

    Don’t be afraid of a little bling! From soft, aged tones to brassy and rich bronze shades, gold adds warmth and elegance. It’s a no-brainer at Christmas, but gold can be used as an accent colour all year round to lift and finish a simple room scheme.

    If your room is neutral, a gold-finish lamp or metal-frame side table will add polish without introducing a colour contrast.

    13. Emblazon your home with blue

    Blue living room with Christmas tree and gold decorations

    Image credit: Dominic Blackmore

    A diverse colour that adds warmth and richness to the home, blue is fast adopting a place in our Christmas festivities.

    From midnight skies to icy aquamarine, this pigment is surprisingly festive when styled well, and goes beautifully with traditional Christmas golds and silvers. Compliment a navy wall with baubles in varying shades of blue.

    14. Mimic the snow with wintery white

    White dining room with fireplace and oversized decorations

    Image credit: Dominic Blackmore

    Many have long been scared to use such an unforgiving colour in their Christmas scheme, however its sparseness provides a striking look.

    More really is more with white so stack it up high and experiment with different textures and materials. Try this look in the dining room where white tablecloths and china are a great start.

    15. Add decadence with gold and black

    Gold living room with Christmas tree and metallic decorations

    Image credit: Simon Whitmore

    Enchanting, alluring, seductive, gold is a bold colour with an even bolder personality. If you are feeling daring smother your walls in a rich, gold patterned wallpaper before covering the fireplace and tree with gold decorations.

    Complete the look with bewitching accents throughout the room.

    16. Add monochrome to your home

    Fireplace and black painted wall with white Christmas wreaths

    Image credit: Chris Everard

    Black and white is an extremely fashionable Christmas concept, and styled well it can be very warming and festive.

    Try adding discreet twinkling fairy lights to add some sparkle to the dark room and position beneath modern, metal wreath wall fixtures.

    Finally, full bushy trees are a thing of the past for the fashion pack so go for a sparse tree adding softer, wooded tones to the room.

    17. Try dusky pinks

    Grey living room with Christmas tree, garland and pink decorations

    Image credit: David Brittain

    With the growing popularity of the pink poinsettia, this pigment is quickly gaining its place on the Christmas palette. As a softer alternative to red and a warmer one to white, this shade covers an enormous spectrum, so homeowners are sure to find a tone they love.

    Compliment a grey and pink living room with shimmering pink baubles and wrapping paper, or add a rich, velvety arm chair if you dare.

    18. Shimmer with shiny silver

    Grey living room with Christmas tree and silver decorations

    Image credit: Dominic Blackmore

    Associated with dazzle, silver must make it into your home this Christmas. The cold but glitzy colour creates a look that mimics an uber stylish winter wonderland.

    Create a bold centrepiece in the form of a shiny mirror and accentuate the shade by dotting silver candles and pots throughout the room. Finish the room off with a shimmering cushion and sparkly baubles.

    19. Go traditional with red and green

    Green living room with red and white Christmas decorations

    Image credit: David Brittain

    The colour of Father Christmas’ jacket, winter berries and Rudolph’s nose, nothing says Christmas like a splash of red, especially when partnered with lush green foliage.

    Choose a traditional Christmas decorating idea this year with rosy red candles, tree decorations, blankets and wrapping paper. Hang a garland made with real pine and dotted with red berries for a fully festive feeling.

    20. Play with a purple palette

    Dining table with pink and purple Christmas decorations and place settings

    Image credit: Dan Duchars

    This rich wintery colour is warm and glam. Traditionally associated with magic and mystery, we couldn’t think of a better colour to incorporate into the home at this special time of year.

    Another great alternative to traditional red and its deep hue looks great combined with bright pinks on the Christmas tree and on your dining table.

    What is the Colour scheme for Christmas 2021?

    This year, everything is on the cards for Christmas, but the leading trend has to be cheerful brights. With us all – hopefully – being able to host friends and family once more, go for a truly joyful Christmas colour scheme with all your favourite bright colours. The other main trend for this year is the more subtle colourways – pastel pinks, taupes and burnished jewel tones.

    What are the basic Christmas colours?

    The most traditional Christmas colours have to be red, white and green. Basically, look to seasonal nature and you’ll find the basic, classic Christmas colours. The red of holly berries, green of evergreen foliage and fir trees and white of mistletoe and snow.

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