CHRISTMAS is a traditional affair for Nikki Hunt and her family. "I believe in creating memories for my children," says Ms Hunt, founder of interior design company, Design Intervention.
That means using the same decorations each year to seal the images of a family holiday in the minds of her two teenagers. Ms Hunt, whose husband works in the finance industry, says she wants them to look back fondly and think, "No one does Christmas like my mum and dad. Hopefully they will return each year - no matter where they may be living in the future, and eventually with their own families to enjoy Christmas with us."
As the couple hold an annual party for friends, colleagues and clients on the first Friday in December, their house off Bukit Timah will be decked out by then.
The decor is confined mainly to the living area on the first floor - stretching from the foyer through to the dining and family rooms, as well as the verandah.
A wreath hangs near the ceiling in the foyer while dark red velvet fabric drapes hang from the second floor. In the living room, gold ribbons are draped across the ceiling, giving the room a luxurious touch. An Art-Deco inspired chandelier which Ms Hunt designed herself has battery-operated candles on it to create a romantic mood. As Ms Hunt believes in the more the merrier, the candles are surrounded by red flowers, berries and acorns.
Even though the Christmas tree stands in a far corner of the room, it calls out for attention with its red, gold and silver baubles and ribbons. Decorating the tree is a family affair and because it is the same year after year, "sometimes we end up hanging the same ornaments in the same spot", says Ms Hunt.
At the verandah, garlands of ribbons and baubles line the window frames. Red ornaments provide a contrast to the black and white striped furniture. The verandah looks out onto lush greenery of the estate, and with the windows slightly misty thanks to the afternoon rain, plus the warm light from the candles, exudes a cosy cottage feel.