Disclaimer: today I’m sharing how I decorate my Christmas tree. This is in no way saying it’s the way to decorate a tree. I’ll leave that to Martha 🙂 In fact, every year there are things I wish I could improve on or change (yeah, I’m that crazy person). If you like how it looks, keep reading to see how I achieve it! ** This post also contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links. There is no additional cost to you to purchase from my links.
By far, my favorite thing to decorate is the Christmas tree. I think your tree really shows your personality, and it’s the perfect way to express yourself around the holiday season. Our everyday decor is a little colorful, so to kind of balance it, I have a white tree with different shades of metallic ornaments. Every year I consider doing bright and colorful ornaments, but for now, I’m sticking with the metallics.
Every year I change one little thing on it. This year, I pulled out some pink candles that I put on the mantel. So naturally, I wanted to incorporate pale pink in our Christmas tree. So I incorporated a few ornaments to add a little touch of it (holla, spray paint to the rescue in my house again!).
We have a white Christmas tree with iridescent accents, and we got it from Target. Fun story, we had your typical green tree until a couple of years ago. My Dad gave it to us the year we were married. He also took me shopping to buy my first ornaments, beautiful flowers, reindeer and birds that are covered in silver glitter. Such a sweet memory!
As grateful as I was to have a full-size tree, it had so many issues. Every year we had to finagle it to fit in the stand because it didn’t have the original one. It would take us several hours to perfectly place balled up aluminum foil in the stand so it wouldn’t tilt one way or another! And the lights would go out in different sections and we’d have to investigate what individual light was having an issue. It was a nightmare!
Two years ago, we got it to stand up straight, but we were having issues with the lights, and after a couple more hours, we just gave up and headed to Target on Black Friday to get our very first new tree of our own. Saying goodbye to our hand me down Christmas tree was actually kind of sad, but I absolutely LOVE white trees, so I’m in love with what we have now!
Let’s get decorating!
I twist my burlap garland around the Chrismas tree first. Try to keep it at the same angle all the way down. Also, try to keep it somewhat the same distance apart (typically the garland at the top of the Christmas tree is slightly closer together). I always have the hubs help me with this.
Something I started doing last year is to pinch the garland every foot and a half or so. Just take a branch, and fold it up around the garland. This kind of poofs the garland out and gives it more dimension. Using a branch obviously only works if you have a fake tree. If yours is fresh, you could take a wire or a ribbon and tie it.
Fun fact – this burlap was used to decorate the gazebo we were married under, and I incorporate it into our Christmas decor every year.
Accent with Ribbon
One year I decided to add a little flair and I tied some strands of metallic ribbon throughout my tree to add a little extra texture. Alone it doesn’t make a huge impact, but once I get everything on there it helps to fill in spaces and add a little pizazz! I simply combine a few colors together, then tie them around the branches throughout the Christmas tree. The best part? You just leave these on when you box the tree up at the end of the holidays, so you only have to do this once!
Make Ornament Clusters
I started doing this a few years ago, and I love the impact it makes! If you like your ornaments placed perfectly symmetrical, this may be a tip you want to skip. But if you’re like me, and think the more ornaments the better, this is an excellent tip.
Take as many ornaments as you want (I have groups of 2-5), and group them together. I use different sizes and colors/finishes. Take a piece of string or twine and pull it through all of the round loops that should be at the top of each ornament (kind of like making a bracelet), then tie it together. Once you’ve got as many clusters as you like, simply hang each cluster by a hook.
I like to put these in more open spaces on our Christmas tree to fill them in, so that’s why I do this at the beginning of my decorating sesh. When I take the tree down, I leave the clusters intact and store them in a box, so they’re ready to go again next year.
Place Special Ornaments
Next, I like to place any special ornaments on the tree. I typically get these each year on the day after Christmas! Target and Kohl’s are the best stores I’ve found. Every once in a while the department stores still have specialty ornaments left. Most of mine are either birds, leaves, or shabby chic themed ornaments, and of course, the ornaments my Dad and I picked out!
Make sure to space these out all over the tree, so each section has some of your favorites!
Fill in with Extras
I have a ton of your typical ball ornaments in multiple sizes (that aren’t part of clusters). Additionally, I have glitter covered pinecones, snowflakes, bells, etc. I use these ornaments that I have multiples of to fill in the tree. And I mean FILL!
Do not hesitate to reach your arm inside of your tree and put ornaments on the interior. I also tend to place multiple ornaments on one branch. Just make sure they’re different sizes/textures to really mix things up!
When I’m placing multiplier ornaments on, I start at the top of the tree and work down in a diagonal pattern. Once I reach the bottom, I go back to the top, shift over, and start the downward diagonal pattern again. This helps to ensure you have the ornaments that have multiples dispersed evenly through the tree. Once again, don’t place all of the ornaments on the outside edges, stick them inside the tree, in the middle of branches, and on the tips of branches. You want to create dimension!
Place showstoppers last!
For me, my showstoppers are my tissue paper tassel ornaments that I created to give my tree a little punch last year. Want a tutorial? Let me know in the comments below! For you, maybe it’s oversized ornaments (I seriously want some of these and I’m going to check out Dollar Tree to see if they still have some left!), or glittery foliage that you stick down into the tree. If you want it to stand out, place it last.
To finish everything off, we put our topper on last. Ours is a glittery snowflake, that, you guessed it, my Dad passed down to me. We then get everything into place and put down our tree skirt. It’s a piece of burlap that we also used as table covers at our wedding. I just cut it in a circle and cut a slit so the base would fit around.
Additional Tips and Tricks
A. Soo…I have a major confession. I don’t decorate the back side of my Christmas tree. Like at all! Our tree sits in a corner of our living room, and all though it’s in front of a window, the window overlooks our backyard. I’d rather make sure the tree real estate that is visible gets tricked out as much as possible. That’s why decorating the inside of the tree is so important. If you don’t decorate the back and don’t decorate the inside, your Christmas tree might look a little whimpy.
B.We are, unfortunately, last minute Christmas shoppers. Meaning, we don’t really have presents under the tree until the week before (and if my husband is shopping for you, your gift won’t go under the tree until Christmas Eve!). It makes me sad to not see presents under the tree, so I like to fake it.
I have a beautiful bag in gold and silver metallic that serves two purposes. One, to make it look like we’ve actually done some Christmas shopping. Two, to cover our subwoofer and cords next to the tree :). My second trick is these gorgeous stars that I bought from Target for next to nothing (I’m talking a buck or two) the day after Christmas a few years ago. I originally intended to hang them from the ceiling next to the tree, but they were bigger than I expected. So I put them together and lay them below the tree.
I also stick any bags that we acquired from gifts the previous year that fit our decor and wrap some kraft boxes with metallic ribbon. These perfectly fit our rustic glam theme and require very little effort.
C. Do you want to switch up your decor, but don’t want to pay to replace your ornaments? Spray paint, glue/mod podge, and glitter are your Christmas miracle. I’d say about 40% of the ornaments on my tree have been spray painted, covered with glue or glitter or wrapped in twine depending on my mood that year.
D. Change what you want throughout the season. I try to decorate our Christmas tree the day after Thanksgiving. But I can be a fickle girl. If you don’t like the way something looks, just change it. I find myself rearranging ornaments and making more DIY ornaments for the tree as the season progresses. Like I said earlier, my Christmas tree is an expression of my personality, so I like to add to it where I see fit.
E. Another money saver – don’t be afraid to check out the Dollar Tree for ornaments. I have so many ornaments from Dollar Tree in my house, it’s not even funny. If their selection or colors don’t go with your decor, break out the spray paint and glitter like I said before. They often have large ornaments that really make an impact, and for only $1 you can’t beat it! Check out the Dollar Tree Christmas Catalog here for more ideas.
I can’t wait to share my entire 2017 Christmas Home Tour with you soon. In the meantime, check out last year’s Home Tour here.
What colors/scheme do you use to decorate your Christmas Tree?