INTO THE WILD

Very Kiwi and just a lit­tle bit glam, you can cre­ate the ul­ti­mate fes­tive camp­ing ex­pe­ri­ence us­ing ele­ments from na­ture

Your Home and Garden - - Room Reveal - Styling by Melle van Sam­beek. Pho­tog­ra­phy by He­len Bankers.

There’s noth­ing more Kiwi than a camp­site Christ­mas where the liv­ing is easy. Take the stress out of the hol­i­day sea­son by head­ing to your favourite camp­site or glamp­ing lo­ca­tion, then sit back and en­joy the in­cred­i­ble views. We set up camp at Wainamu Lux­ury Tents in West Auck­land, and added some fes­tive cheer and for­aged fo­liage to the lux­u­ri­ously fur­nished tents.

Keep your dec­o­rat­ing fuss-free and sim­ple so you can en­joy all that Mother Na­ture has to of­fer. When the sun goes down, spend your evenings toast­ing marsh­mal­lows around the camp­fire be­fore nod­ding off un­der the stars. Pure bliss.

FORCE OF HABI­TAT

Just be­cause you’re in the great out­doors, you don’t have to let your decor stan­dards drop. Choose a colour theme that’s in keep­ing with your sur­round­ings for a lit­tle bit of camp­ground style. We took our cue from the rolling green hills and trees, opt­ing for a muted pal­ette of neu­trals with hints of soft pink and green.

With the decor set­tled, it’s time to cre­ate what ev­ery camp­site needs: a fun zone for fes­tive drinks and board games. We dec­o­rated ours with a rug from Mitre 10 and an ot­toman from The Linen Store. The stool, stem­less wine glasses and mar­ble drinks tray are all from Citta.

BRANCH OUT

Have fun mak­ing your own Christ­mas tree – the more rus­tic and makeshift the bet­ter. We cut some long flower stems from nearby flax bushes and tied them into a tree shape with string, as seen above right. Lit­tle stars hand­crafted from twigs and string fin­ished the look, along with a few other dec­o­ra­tions we had to hand.

The pretty presents are wrapped in white and pale pink pa­per and tied with white string. The gift tags are made from for­aged leaves and flow­ers with the names of each re­cip­i­ent in­scribed in gold marker. The col­lec­tion of pine cones have sim­ply been spray-painted white for a Christ­massy feel.

BED­ROOM BOOST

Even when camp­ing, you can add some glam to your space. Our lux­ury camp­site in­cluded a bed and bed­side ta­bles, but even if you’re on a blow-up mat­tress, there is no rea­son why you can’t dec­o­rate your sleep­ing area with a cou­ple of pretty vases filled with for­aged fo­liage (don’t fill them with wa­ter, though; just re­place the green­ery ev­ery day or so). Our printed pil­low­cases are by The Fabric Queen, the throw and cush­ions are from The Linen Store and the star on the chest is from Bed Bath N’ Ta­ble.

Find­ing the way from the camp­fire to your tent is easy – and mag­i­cal – if you il­lu­mi­nate the path with a tealight walk­way

A STAR IS BORN

We made a star for the top of our tent and you can, too. Buy a sheet of MDF from your hard­ware store, draw a star shape and cut it out with a jig­saw. If you’re lucky, your friendly hard­ware store staff may be kind enough to do this for you.

FLO­RAL & HARDY

When it comes to mak­ing a wreath, take in­spi­ra­tion from what’s around you. We made a quick and easy toe­toe wreath by wrap­ping the fluffy fo­liage around a wire cir­cle. You could use any fo­liage that will eas­ily bend into shape.

FIN­ISH­ING TOUCHES

You won’t miss the twin­kling fairy lights on your Christ­mas tree at home if you hang jars with tealights in­side them from nearby branches.

The ad­di­tion of hand­made macramé bunt­ing will take your dec­o­ra­tions up a notch or two – but re­mem­ber to keep to your colour pal­ette. There are plenty of YouTube tu­to­ri­als if you fancy mak­ing some your­self. Stylist Melle van Sam­beek of Sailor and Scout made ours (you can see more of her dec­o­rat­ing ideas at @sailor_and_s­cout_home).

WALK THIS WAY

Find­ing the way from the camp­fire to your tent is easy if you il­lu­mi­nate the path with a tealight walk­way. Sim­ply fill brown pa­per bags with a lit­tle sand and a tealight can­dle each, then wait for sun­down to ex­pe­ri­ence the mag­i­cal ef­fect (don’t leave them unat­tended, though; and use bat­tery-pow­ered tealights if kids are around). •

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