Christmas tree trends – fashionable ways to dress trees 2021

Make your Christmas tree shine this year with key on-trend decorating updates

This coming weekend is the one to get the Christmas tunes on and fetch the decorations out of the loft – because it's time to decorate! Many households may already have done so, but this weekend officially marks the occasion. Our Christmas tree trends are on hand to inspire those who've managed to refrain from putting the tree up already!

We know you're not going to overhaul your entire collection of baubles, but the high street have re-invented Christmas yet again with a few twists on our favourite trends. Meaning you can update your tree scheme with only a few special new pieces. Discover the latest decorating looks to make sure your Christmas tree look its very best for the holidays this year.

If you fancy giving your festive decor a refresh, then we've got the latest looks for dressing the tree – whether you favour a classic Christmas tree idea or something a little more glam.

Trend 1. Merry and Bright

Big Christmas tree decorated in neon lights

(Image credit: John Lewis & Partners)

If truth be told, this is the tree we all need in our lives – it's bold, it's unapologetic and most of all it makes us smile.

Create your own Insta-worthy tree with statement baubles and neon lights to up the ante for your Christmas living room decor idea in 2021.

Pop plain decorations in there too, so the fun shapes shine. This trend is playful and a great way to express how colour can add warmth and happiness to our homes. This style is ideal for a family household, the kids will love the brightness.

Style tip: Make it fun for all the family with a rainbow palette and ’80s retro style

Trend 2. Snow White Woodland Retreat

Large white Christmas decorated with silver and white decorations

(Image credit: Cox & Cox)

We're all dreaming of a white Christmas for 2021! For this trend think winter wildlife nestled in soft eucalyptus-green accents. Celebrate natural textures like wood, rattan and wool. Dress the tree from head to toe in laser cut wooden decorations and woodland creatures galore. Blond and whitewashed woods compliment a colour palette of soft creams and greys to update this neutral colour scheme, giving it depth and tactile appeal.

Style tip: Laid back styling is key, and a minimal palette of rich cream. Simple festive form decorates the tree, and interest comes through with texture. Dot a natural pom pom bauble here and there, use rattan details and textured ceramics to add layers of interest.

Trend 3. Fabulously Fun Retro

White large decorated Christmas tree

(Image credit: George Home)

Novelty decorations are only going form strength to strength, meaning it was only time before entire trees were decorated in quirky designs.

Think State Side Christmas with boldly coloured, fun elements – from burgers to candy canes. A touch of a vintage vibe is definitely apparent in the wrapping and decorations. Kitsch designs are everywhere with the injection of multicolours and unlikely characters, like cacti and rainbows, giving a thought provoking element of surprise, inspiring happiness and joy. This look is super fun and happy - ideal for family households where the kids can decorate the tree.

Trend 4. Classic Christmas red

Living room, with matching red Christmas decoration on the tree and the hanging stockings from the mantelpiece

(Image credit: Marks & Spencer)

After uncertain times we crave a familiarity and comfort form our decorating schemes. Red is the single most classic colour choice for Christmas – the colour Father Christmas sis dressed head to toe in and the colour of the iconic Holly berries, we associate with this time of year. Red is having a real resurgence as we strive to keep things simple and go back to traditions of Christmas' past. But of course to make this trend feel modern there are contemporary velvet decorations and tree topper ideas to add a touch of luxe.

Trend 5. Totally Alternative Trees

Alternative Christmas tree out of balloons

(Image credit: Ginger Ray)

A big trend for festive decorating in 2021 are alternative Christmas tree ideas. Popular as an extra tree, to that of the main living room tree, homeowners are looking to dress more than living rooms – seeking alternative trees to add fun to hallways, family rooms and more.

Jess Martin, party decoration expert at Ginger Ray explains the trend; 'Christmas 2021 is going to be a season of maximalism. For those who love going all out with their Christmas decor there’s a new novelty tree in town and it’s made entirely out of balloons!'

'A balloon tree is the perfect option if you have allergies, pets or if you just hate hoovering up all the pine needles. Plus there is no need to faff around with baubles and lights! Kids will love helping to put this up- just remember to order a balloon pump too…'

6. Eclectic Opulence

Traditional Christmas tree decoration and a open fireplace

(Image credit: Future PLC)

This sophisticated look is the perfect alternative to the traditional Christmas colours. Here the stars of the show are peacock colours, with accents in gold to add that super-glam glow and hints of teal for interesting highlights. Look out for contemporary finishes, such as ombre and oil slick. This theme will set the scene for entertaining and see you right through 'til New Year's Eve celebrations.

This trend is both opulent and luxurious and its warmth is perfect for those cosy nights spent beside the fire. Peacock blue is not only the colour of the moment for home enhancement but its depth provides a fantastic backdrop to ensure your Christmas lights sparkle.

Style tip: Complement this luxe look by piling on lavish greenery. Build up a garland with flowers (real or faux) in rich tones.

Trend 7. Heavenly Renaissance

Blue living room, with a decorated Christmas tree

(Image credit: Matalan)

For this look layer antique golds with vintage-inspired designs. To give the look an undoubtable on-trend touch for 2021 incorporate celestial symbols and decorations. Go all out with a gold tree! Or if you have a tree already, just stick to gold and metallic decorations.

A dusting of glitter and a sprinkle of sparkle, brings a glamorous touch to this ultra luxe theme. Velvet so soft to the touch in blushing rose, combined with grey mauve undertones, makes this a very sophisticated look.

Style tip: Add sparkling tassels and decorations with a grownup flavour as a playful touch.

Trend 8. Ice-cool Pastels

Dark living room with a white armchair and a decorated Christmas tree

(Image credit: Future PLC)

This modern romance scheme is a mix of sparkle and shimmer, with delicate ice-cool pastels hues and pretty shapes. Understated delicious pastel tones create a calming yet captivating look – as trend set to be hugely popular for fans of a Glam decor. Don't forget to use plenty of warm fairy lights for the magical Christmas twinkle.

Style tip: Hang groupings of large decorations from varied lengths of string or ribbon to create a staggered display

9. New Nostalgia

Traditional living room with a large decorated Christmas tree with presents under the tree

(Image credit: Wilko)

Keep your family traditions going with gorgeous Christmas decorations to remind of bygone times. Take pleasure in dressing your home with spruce boughs, berry sprays and pinecones dotted around. Add tartan ribbons to wrapping, knitted stockings to the mantel and light special candles and lanterns giving off that familiar scent of Christmas.

This trend offers a fresh take on a traditional story. Tartan checks and stylish berry patterns are brought together for a modern twist on a timeless trend.

Style tip: Add velvet baubles as a key addition to this trend for an easy and affordable way to inject sumptuous textures this Christmas.

What colours are going to be big for 2021?

'A snowy white look is always a favourite with our customers' explains Jason Billings-Cray, Christmas Buyer at John Lewis & Partners (opens in new tab). 'Modernising the look is simple, warm neutrals can be layered with soft blue tones and silver to give the look depth.'

'Festive reds and greens are laced with gold for the traditional colourscape which look brilliant with fresh foliage and dried fruits. Outside of these classic colourways, we have everything from sophisticated blush and golds to lush turquoise and neon pink, there really is a look for every home however you like to express yourself at Christmas.'

What style of tree is on trend for 2021?

'At the moment our Brunswick tree is the most popular with its classic bushy and conical shape' says Jason Billings-Cray. 'The tree's outer tips are accurately moulded and coloured to mimic a real spruce tree.'

'But our all white tree is proving popular with customers looking for a full icy white look. This full and fluffy white tree, with lifelike needles, is the perfect background to make colourful decorations "pop".'

Which trend will your tree being wearing this year??

Tamara was Ideal Home's Digital Editor before joining the Woman & Home team in 2022. She has spent the last 15 years working with the style teams at Country Homes & Interiors and Ideal Home, both now at Future PLC. It’s with these award wining interiors teams that she's honed her skills and passion for shopping, styling and writing. Tamara is always ahead of the curve when it comes to interiors trends – and is great at seeking out designer dupes on the high street.