As of this weekend, it is now acceptable to have a Christmas tree in your living room, if you’re the kind of person that goes for such things. But how to dress it? For some sage advice on the art of decoration, we turned to the prodigiously talented Mr Simon Costin, one of the style world’s foremost set designers. In addition to creating immersive runway shows and presentations for the likes of Alexander McQueen, Gareth Pugh and Maison Margiela as well as fantastical, romantic editorials with photographic talents including Messrs Tim Walker, Nick Knight and Paolo Roversi, Mr Costin is a curator and collector of ephemera related to British folklore, and the director of both the Museum of British Folklore (which he founded himself) and Cornwall’s Museum of Witchcraft and Magic.
He’s also, it turns out, rather handy when it comes to a modern folk custom, decorating Christmas trees, and has proved this much this December with the dazzling festive fir he has created for London’s Edition hotel, inspired by the 12th-century Welsh myth of Blodeuwedd, a woman who is created from flowers then transformed into an owl. Now, we’re aware that not everyone will have the means and space to carry off such a feat, but we also think most will benefit from Mr Costin’s wisdom when it comes to trees. “At the end of the day you should try to have fun and create something that reflects your personality, not something copied from a magazine,” he says. “Be bold about it, it’s only once a year.” If you’re in any doubt as how to do this, scroll down for Mr Costin’s five-step guide (as well as some extra tips and tricks).