Ok, so I’ve seriously been resisting writing this post for weeks now, as I’m not so keen on generating any kind of hate mail. But this ‘thing’ is just dying to come out, and I simply have no choice but to tell you how I really feel about Christmas. Ready? Let’s go. Oh and, by the way, this post has nothing to do with design. Just consider it to be a special one off Design Free Friday post, ok? Anyway, back to the story.

Unless you are living on another planet (or perhaps in a non-capitalist country as I did during my childhood), you would have been absolutely bombarded with super intense Christmas hype, no? Christmas decorations were out at all major retailers since September (what is that about?), the carols are well and truly on rotation in shopping centre car parks, on Tee-Vee, on the radio, even on the streets… Every paper/ magazine/ blog under the sun is talking about Christmas gift guides, pretty much every person you talk to will ask you – Have you done/ started/ how are you going with your Christmas shopping?


Bloody hell.

I’m OVER it!



I think that we have seriously lost the plot and are completely missing the point of Christmas. There is so much bullshit that goes hand in hand with Christmas nowadays that it’s completely ruining the actual meaning of it. So much pressure to buy, buy, buy and plan, plan, plan. I don’t know about you guys, but my work ramps up like crazy leading up to Christmas that I barely have time to scratch myself, let alone come up with 4,782 meaningful and thoughtful gifts for every single family member/ friend/ business associate/ client you are supposed to buy a gift for. Give me a friggin’ break. And how about the countless Kris Kringles or Secret Santas? All they generate is stress and pressure to buy something for $5/ $10/ $20. Since when is obligatory, meaningless, wasteful and impersonal gift giving Christmas? I personally call that stuff LAND FILL. Not Christmas.

Let’s not even go into discussing the stress which excessive Christmas gift giving creates for the families who are less fortunate and not in the position to keep up with the Joneses. What the hell are we teaching our children with this ridiculous behaviour? We have managed to turn a sacred religious holiday into a commercial extravaganza.




What happened to those days when Christmas was all about spending quality time with our family and  close friends, sharing delicious food prepared with love and care, and shutting out the rest of the world for a little bit while we give and receive the ultimate gift of love, time and undivided attention?

Am I just tired, super cranky and completely missing the point here? Perhaps. Also, I would like to acknowledge that the true Christmas spirit isn’t entirely extinct, even though I’ve just painted a pretty bleak picture. The other day one of my beautiful friends posted this as her Facebook status:

I just bought a Xmas present for the Wishing Tree Appeal at K-Mart. Some little girl will score a Barbie, and I score warm and fuzzies. Do it!

Yes, do it indeed. It was honestly one of the nicest things I’ve seen/ heard during this Christmas season. That, and . Amazing.

Anyway, what do you guys think?


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В интеренете нашел полезный портал , он описывает в статьях про акриловый лак для дерева www.kompozit.ua

About The Author

Dana Tomić Hughes
Founder & Editor

Dana is an award-winning interior designer living in Sydney, Australia. With an unhealthy passion for design, Dana commits to an abnormal amount of daily design research. Regular travel and attendance at premier design events, enables Dana to stay at the forefront of the design world globally. While she is super serious about design, Dana never takes herself - nor design - too seriously. Together with her life and business partner, Dana is Boss Lady at Studio Yellowtrace, specialising in Design Strategy, Creative Direction and Special Projects. The studio takes a highly conceptual and holistic approach to translating brands & ideas into places & experiences.

17 Responses

  1. Avatar
    Linda from OEKE

    You couldn’t have posted a more accurate description of my feelings right at this minute. I am completely bogged down in work and have been working days and nights for 2 weeks straight now trying to finish ‘desperately must have by christmas please’ brochures and umbrella orders, haven’t even started the christmas shopping (yet, the list seems to be getting longer and longer with ‘have you bought for??’ comments) .. and well, family, yes, generally meant to be family time – but MINE are driving me insane with no compromise on times/meals/feelings – so in the end, I won’t even be spending the day with them. Just my other halfs family.

    SO. Christmas to me this year, a mixed bag. My boys are the most important aspect of christmas – and if they are happy, then I am happy. I am (trying) not to worry about anyone else.

    note: I admit to adding to landfill re: kindy teacher gifts. they were handmade and thoughtful – but when I saw the teachers desks with presents piled high, I did wonder what the hell they would do with all those $10 items !!!

    another note: after christmas each year my boys take all their older toys (still in good knick though) and we put them in the brotherhood collection. makes for a tidy house and a warm heart!!

  2. Avatar
    Jane C.

    Dana…what a relief!! I seriously thought I was the only two-headed person getting around at the moment, and that is exactly how I’ve been looked at when I’ve vented my current stance on the whole Christmas palava…. When I’ve confessed I am in full-blown Christmas ‘denial’ in the past days, I’ve been made to feel that I am some evil, harsh-spirited meanie!! Now don’t get me wrong here….I love Christmas!! I loved Christmas….
    Since losing my Mum a few years back, Christmas day can never be the same for me because it was Mum who represented Christmas so strongly for me. She made Christmas her own in her loving, generous, selfless, magnificent way!! She gave everything she had to give to everyone else. And by that I don’t mean presents!! The gifts she gave were such that everyone she came in with will never forget. She baked for complete strangers, visited the lonely, organised airconditioners for those too needy to do so themselves, she spent time with people too isolated to get themselves out of their homes, she sang carols with her choir at various refuges and aged care facilities, she opened her heart to people who had lost their way, she captured the true essence of Christmas with every gesture within her capability and not just as Christmas but all year round. Yet she still had enough time and an endless supply of love for all of us…she had an amazing capacity to make you feel as though you were the most important person in the world!! She gave that gift to everyone she met!!
    I miss her desperately and cannot fathom Christmas without her here and as time goes on, Christmas becomes less and less meaningful for me…. but the reality is that I have two children and know that I have a responsibility to pass onto them some of this same Christmas magic that I was fortunate enough to experience. It’s just that I am competing with the bombardment of superficial crap that is so increasingly appealing to our kids and without which they feel somehow incomplete or different from their peers….. so therein lies my challenge!!
    I must try and get that Christmas tree up in the next couple of days…..

  3. Avatar

    I agree whole heartely, the worlds become mad with Greed, and we feel guilted into particapation in order to ‘stimulate our economy’ – lets all buy useless shit we don’t need in order to keep our greedy western capatalist ideas alive.

    Spend time with your loved ones and appreciate the blessed life the majority of us already live in this country.

  4. yellowtrace

    Linda, Joe & Kate – thank you so much for your comments and for not making me feel like I an oddball evil meanie. When I hit publish on this post, I was having second thoughts like you wouldn’t believe, but your positive feedback has reinforced the fact that many of us feel trapped by the vicious circle of Christmas which we’ve all inevitably helped create over the years. I am as guilty as the next person for having contributed to ‘land-fill’ in the past. I just hope we can all be a bit more mindful of what we do now and in the future.

  5. yellowtrace

    Oh Jane. Your message made me so emotional, I am still fighting tears. Your beautiful mum gave you the most precious gift of love by being a shining light of example over the years. As difficult as it is to imagine this time without her, you are very lucky to carry this gift and these beautiful memories of her in your heart.

    This is precisely how I was raised, this is exactly what Christmas means to me and all this ever-growing meaningless pollution becomes more and more difficult to bare every single year. I fear how I will cope with it all once I have children of my own. How will I teach them what Christmas is all about, with all this commercial propaganda all around us? It is absolutely absurd to me that we now have articles, books and segments on television which help people deal with “Holiday Stress” and “Christmas Hangovers”. This is absolute nonsense, utter insanity!

    Merry Christmas to you and your family. May the love of your dear mum shine through you for the rest of the world to see.

  6. Avatar

    I totally agree Dana. Christmas is so overly commercial and feeling obligated to buy presents for people you usually only see once or twice a year, drives me insane. Spending time with family and friends and enjoying great food and company is the most important thing. I couldn’t care less about gifts. Donating to charity or helping out at the local soup kitchen or homeless shelter pays dividends (good karma anyone?).

    On the other hand, I love homemade gifts that come from the heart. A tin of homemade biscuits or sweets beats anything bought from the shops. As a society we definately need to get back to the true meaning of Christmas.

    Merry Christmas Dana xxx

  7. Avatar

    Ditto ditto ditto!
    I do admit to spoiling my own kids a bit but, for the past 5 years or so, everyone else gets a World Vision Smiles gift or a Rainforest Rescue gift.
    We all have too much “stuff” so why waste hard-earned money giving people more stuff when we can help out someone or something else that needs it more.
    Merry Christmas and all the best for 2011.

  8. Avatar

    THANK GOD!!!!! I have been quietly stewing this year! I really think that Christmas is getting OTT! I won’t even go near the local Westfield- it’s completely ferral!
    The older I get- the more I recognise that Christmas is the ONE time of year that I get my whole family in one room- and luckily for me- that’s the best thing I could wish for! Frankly- I’d happily ditch the presents all together! I don’t need any more landfill!!
    This year, the only thing on my Santa list is: To have my family all together- to eat together, and perhaps have time for an afternoon nap.
    I don’t want this crazy pressure of trying to find presents, which don’t exceed the AMEX, but still deliver my loved one a moment of joy- and don’t end up in Landfill!! Personally- I’d like some one to call the whole thing off, and replace it with just one day a year, that we all spend together, eating, enjoying some bubbly, perhaps a nap- and of course- the essential Christmas Eve fight over the Carols in the Domain v’s the Kings Choir on ABC, or A Very Lampoons Christmas!

  9. Avatar
    Tifany Cage

    Aw, this was a really quality post. In theory I’d like to write like this also – taking time and real effort to make a good article… but what can I say… I procrastinate alot and never seem to get anything done… Regards

  10. Avatar
    Brittany @ The Aubergine Notebook

    Definitely. It seems like each year has to be bigger and better then the year before and it’s just getting ridiculous. Being thankful, spending time with loved ones, doing service, and remembering the reason for the holiday in the first place should be at the top of our lists.

    Merry Christmas to you and a Happy New Year!

  11. Avatar

    I enjoy your writing every time i visit your blog, do you work as a journalist some time? Keep up with the good blog.

  12. Avatar

    I just read this after your Christmas post today (in 2011) and I agree too.
    I love Christmas, I love putting up the tree, decorating our house, listening to Christmas music (good stuff like Frank Sinatra!), eating food and drink I probably wouldn’t normally do and most of all, seeing people I don’t get to see much. This year is the second year in a row that my husband and I can’t afford Christmas presents because he’s a uni student and we have a mortgage, and some people just don’t understand! It does make me depressed at times. And as Nina said in the comments above, I avoid shopping centres too. They just get nuts!
    This year we have decided to open our house to not only our family, but anyone who is “family-less” or needing a place to go on Christmas (people we already know). When we have kids, I’m going to teach them this – that Christmas should be about celebrating life, the end of the year, seeing our loved ones (or remembering the ones that are gone) and should not be a competition about who got the best plastic toy!
    Hope you have a relaxing time with your loved ones this Christmas, Dana.


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