Christmas – a time of opulence, glitter and gold. Or for bright jewelled colours that collide and contrast. Then again, it could be the perfect time for muted metallics. Or how about natural wood, paper ornaments and chunky ceramics?

When it comes to decorating your home for Christmas, there is always a wealth of options and inspirational ideas to choose from.

All you have to do is decide which ones are right for you because at Christmas – as with any time of year – the only trend worth following is the one that suits your own taste and imagination.

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Design trends for Christmas 2018 are closely linked to interior trends, says Clinton Cordeiro, of CDC Design, who has trawled the biggest international design fairs, as well as Pinterest and major department stores around the world, to find out the latest ideas for festive decorating.

“Among all the tinsel and baubles, it becomes apparent that Christmas decor trends largely follow interior trends, with a few quirks thrown in for the holiday season,” says Cordeiro, who counts interiors store Bowerbird among his clients in Hong Kong.

There certainly are quirks aplenty. Food-themed decorations and accessories are now a thing – think sushi-themed or mince-pie tree decorations. Other tree decorations this year are a menagerie of animals not usually associated with the Christmas season.

How about some surprisingly attractive and festively dressed alligator and llama tree ornaments? Find them online at Libertylondon.com.

Indigo Living is riding the animal trend. “This year we have some dog and bird decorations that are beautiful and are fun year round,” says co-founder and executive chairman John McLennan.

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Also on offer are gold and silver reindeer statues in different sizes.

“I like to mix the reindeer with colourful baubles and some greenery on the dining table to make a spectacular centrepiece. This, with a few tea lights, is always a winner for Christmas,” McLennan says.

If you prefer crafted natural materials to glitter and glitz, take a look at the animals at TREE.

“We’re introducing a selection of animal figurines crafted from terracotta and finished with a winter-white glaze, that come in penguin, polar bear and lamb designs,” says managing director Kate Babington.

Retailers also report growing demand for eco-friendly products. “We have people asking for pre-lit Christmas trees so they can be reused year after year. Some people are looking for decorations that can be used for more than just at Christmas,” says McLennan.

If you like the natural look and want to add some understated elegance, try keeping the main colour scheme neutral and muted, Babington suggests. “Look for finishing touches in brown, beige, cream or white, and opt for pieces crafted from materials like wood or natural fibres.

“There is definitely an increasing demand and interest for green products in Hong Kong this year,” Babington adds. She attributes the trend to a rise in the appeal of wabi-sabi, the Japanese philosophy that celebrates imperfection and impermanence. Babington suggests seeking out recycled materials and timber, as well as handcrafted pottery.

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Scents also play an integral role during the festive season, says Babington. “From the spiced notes of cinnamon, ginger and cloves to the woodsy aroma of pine, there’s a fragrance to suit every taste.”

Do not forget to combine festive scents with a warm glow. Candles are a must-have at Christmas. Christmas Tree, Festive Spices and Winter Berries are among the festive scents available in Carroll&Chan’s range of eco-friendly Christmas candles. Made by hand from 100 per cent beeswax, the range is available at The Candle Company at 11 Lyndhurst Terrace in Central ([email protected]).

A Christmas tree idea that is trending this year is the rainbow. Decorate yours with rows of baubles in different colours to create a statement tree.

For ornaments of every shape, size and colour, fake trees, tinsel, Christmas paper, festive garlands, dried flowers, craft ideas and many Christmas accessories at bargain prices, visit Brighten in Flower Market Road in Mong Kok, where three floors of decorating heaven await.

For larger and more sophisticated pieces, check out the offerings at Tequila Kola, where soft and tactile fabrics including velvets, leathers and fake furs are on offer.

“In our hi-tech, fast-paced world, the desire for high touch is magnified,” says creative director Michelle Koller.

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She suggests keeping Christmas tree decorations to two colours for a stronger effect, and using place mats instead of table cloths to emphasise the textures of your tableware.

For a rich and opulent look, just pile everything on, says Cordeiro.

“Think golden candlesticks, crystal snowflakes – available at Bowerbird – fresh fir door wreaths and jewel-tone baubles. This year’s offerings include stunning pieces that look like you’ve borrowed from your jewellery box.”

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