Pippa Middleton inks Christmas guide

Decorations, first impressions and food are all key to a perfect, if not quite royal, Christmas, according to Pippa Middleton.

The younger sister to the Duchess of Cambridge has written up her top 10 must-dos for the forthcoming festivities in the latest edition of her parents’ Party Times magazine.

Pippa’s tips, although penned under the title “10 Tips for a Perfect Family Christmas”, are simple enough that they could be used by anyone hosting a festive event this year – including at Christmas party evenings.

Her first tip certainly could be applied in any situation; make a good first impression.

“Welcome family and neighbours by lighting pathways with tea light garden lanterns,” she writes, according to News.com.au. “LED light sticks and fairy lights wrapped round tree trunks or branches.

“Have guests met by a beautiful red berry wreath and windows decorated with silver snowflake cut-outs, reindeers and Christmas trees using snow spray.”

Pippa also recommends making a Scandinavian fantasy gingerbread house “good enough to eat”, filled with sweets. This will appeal to children she says, and also act as an excellent table centre-piece.

It’s possible that young Middleton may well use this tip herself, should she drop in on brother-in-law Prince William and sister Kate as they spend their first Christmas as man-and-wife together at Sandringham this year.

Should she pay a visit to the royal couple, it’s unlikely that any guests there will go away empty handed. Pippa also says it’s important to treat your helpers as well as your hosts.

“Fill gorgeous Santa treat bags with little surprises as going home gifts. Arrange the gifts on a tray and keep them hidden before going home time! Have a few spare for siblings and helpers,” she added on PartyPieces.co.uk.