Festive Trends 2021 – 2025: Celebrating Christmas Your Own Way

Champagne Unicorns

Does the perfect Christmas really exist? Rejecting the norms of traditions, families are celebrating all things unconventional: expressing their personality and going with the flow. Uniqueness and eccentricity are now welcomed during the festive period, creating room for everyone to express themselves in their own unique ways. 

At TrendBible we recognise that a broader macro trend needs addressing more than once. It’s our job to find new and commercial angles that keep our clients relevant and in sync with their customers. Since 2020 we’ve forecasted this “do it your way” attitude towards festive trends and celebrations. Growing in popularity during the pandemic, this mindset has evolved year on year. We look back at previous commercial angles featured in our Festive Forecasts and how we predict this macro trend to develop through to 2025. 

2021: Sustainable & Subdued 

What we said:

In 2021 our festive trend Kindred, saw families pack up and transport Christmas, and all that comes with it; capturing the festive spirit wherever they go. Flat pack trees, DIY advents and cardboard play theatres unpacked and joyfully constructed, filled homes with homespun charm and festive cheer.  

What we saw:

West Elm, The Citizenry, Anthropologie

We predicted a heightening concern for the environment around the globe, with consumers taking stronger action on actively reducing their plastic use, particularly when it comes to packaging around the Christmas season. This resulted in glitter-free decoration, more natural materials and matt finishes becoming increasingly appealing for festive trends. Reusable advent calendars and decor that have continued value all year round appeal to the developing sustainable consumer mindset. 

2022: Inclusive Celebration 

What we said:

For our 2022 festive trend Loud & Proud, a ‘come as you are’ mindset emanates from the continued unravelling of discrimination and racial inequalities which gained significant exposure and momentum in the 18 months leading up to the season.  Thought leaders and designers from across minority groups brought forth a wave of new and inspiring allclusive approaches to decoration, celebration and styling for the holidays. 

What we saw:

Anthropologie, Selfridges, John Lewis, Talking Table

This dialled-up playful theme made a real impact at retail level, feeling particularly appropriate for Gen-Z shoppers. Large-scale sequins, colourful glitter and contrast-toned tinsel adorned trees and vibrant colour was splashed across gifting for a playful update. Games for all ages, bringing the family together, were a real focus for retailers. 

2023: Anti-tradition 

What we said:

For our 2023 festive trend All is Bright, time well spent’ is reassessed, with individuals looking to be liberated from rules and traditions; instead choosing to spend time in a way that brings happiness. Being present to experience things more fully over the holiday period becomes a key motivator. Low and no-alcohol options and Vegan or alternative ‘festive’ meals are embraced as people get comfortable with going against the traditional norms. 

What we saw:

Oliver Bonas, Jollity and Co, Ginger Ray, Meri Meri

Disco balls were a key feature across place card holders, tree toppers and baubles, all reflecting this trend’s anti-traditional spirit. Directional brands looked to upcycled tinsels while value brands opted for paper decor over foil, demonstrating the continued awareness of sustainability across the gift and greeting industry. We saw growth in vegan celebration and gifting this season, as householders look to balance their values and health with indulgence. This is particularly of interest to younger demographics. Research by UK retailer John Lewis/Waitrose found a fifth of 18-24-year-olds say they’ll be having a meat-free Christmas this year, while pre-orders of meat-free dinners are up +48% year on year.

How will this macro trend evolve for 2024 and beyond? 

We are continuing to track this evolving mindset. For 2024 and 2025, we expect to see a celebration of uniqueness and eccentricity influence the way people celebrate; embracing rather than shying away from the chaos. Seeking a lower-impact festive season, from both a sustainability and a personal perspective, householders will eliminate pressure and fuss in favour of quietness, restoration and even frugality. Familiar, humble and playful design references will stand in equal weight to the glitter and glamour. 

 “Brands should reflect the beautiful variety in who we are and how we choose to celebrate at this time of year. Encourage your customers to embrace their eccentricities as the things that make life interesting.” Naomi Pollard, Head of Publications, TrendBible 

Our Festive Forecasts are an inspiring, commercial trend resource uniquely focused on one of the most valuable retail periods of the year. Crafted to impact various celebrations – from joyful traditions like embracing the autumn season and ringing in the New Year to those rooted in religion and spirituality like Christmas, Thanksgiving, and Hanukkah. These festive trends are tailored to span a wide range of categories gift, greetings, tableware, decoration, food and beverage.

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