Lynn O’Rourke: I am going to have to make up festive ground

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DESPITE promises to myself that this would be the year I would be organised enough to greet Christmas with a smug grin and a cheery wave of a beautifully wrapped present, it hasn’t happened.

The season to be jolly has overtaken me and it’s only the second week in December.

Having escaped last weekend to the truly fabulous Aikwood Tower in Selkirk for a family break, I am clearly going to have to make up some festive ground this weekend. Inspired by the simplicity of the stylish decor at Aikwood, snow on the ground outside and a roaring log fire, I started feeling all Christmassy without even trying. So much so I rashly promised my daughters we would get their little Christmas trees out a week earlier than usual and put them up, because clearly I don’t have enough to do on the present-buying/card-writing/gift-wrapping/party-planning and house-tidying front.

Aikwood’s elegance has me thinking simple whites, pine cones and lots of greenery. I tell my daughters. “But what about the tinsel?” youngest daughter wails. I have no idea what she is talking about. “The 
tinsel you promised to buy. To make my head.” Ah, she means halo, for the nursery nativity. So, buy tinsel and add halo-making to the list. Maybe I’ll be ready in time for next Christmas.

If you are looking for festive inspiration, take a look at Scotland on Sunday’s Pinterest page (, where we have a board dedicated to some of the most stylish Christmas looks around.

This week we see the modernisation of a lovely Perthshire farmhous. Converting a steading that had stabled horses allowed Claire and Mark Murray to extend their cottage, resulting in a fantastic family home. And read how the gardens at Cawdor Castle remain true to their heritage.