Next time: The Great British Christmas Card
Fragrance for the home
It's the time of year in my household when the question of whether to buy a real or artificial tree rears its ugly head again.
I'm for a real one, but my other half is undecided, which means I will probably get my own way. A quick poll amongst the Christmas buying team reveals most of us still fall into the 'real' camp, loving the informal shape and crisp smell of a freshly cut spruce or pine. However, as we all know, natural trees are getting pricier every year, not to mention the legacy of pine needles embedded in the shag pile.
If it's a while since you last considered an artificial tree, it's definitely time to look again. Traditional trees are our fastest-growing styles, thanks to advances which mean the tips of the branches can be made to look ultra-realistic. The foliage on these trees is more resistant to crushing, so they’ll last for years without looking shabby. One of our best sellers is the Vintage Blue 7ft tree, which has lovely silver-grey needles that are hard to tell apart from the real thing.
Many of our trees also come pre-lit, with wires that are discreetly hidden by the dense branches, saving lots of time and effort. My favourite is the 7.5ft Forest Pine , which comes complete with 500 soft white LED lights (which never need replacing), and a natural scattering of rustic pine cones. If you're short of space, then artificial trees are also available in slimline versions, such as the Aspen, which is available as a 7, 8 or even 10ft tree.
If all that's holding you back then is the lack of pine fragrance, then try a John Lewis Frosted Pine reed diffuser, which will fill your room with scent of a snowy Swiss forest. All that's then left for you to worry about where to store your tree until next year!