It’s Throwback Thursday so I’m republishing one of my most popular holiday how-to post…
How To Decorate Your Christmas Tree Like A Pro!
When my store was open, one of the most attended workshops I did was called Decorate Your Christmas Tree Like a Pro. While everyone has their own style when it comes to decorating their tree, everyone also wants to know the tips and techniques that designers used to create those over the top trees. Well, today I’m going to let you in on our secrets….
1. DEVELOP A THEME–Every great design project starts with a theme, even decorating a Christmas tree. Having a theme will ensure all the elements work together and that the tree has major impact. Your theme can be as simple as decorating with only red ornaments or as elaborate as creating a rustic yet elegant lodge themed tree. And, even if your tree is decorated with different ornaments collected over the years, that too can serve as your theme! Whatever your theme is, it will serve as the foundation for your overall decorating plan.
2. LIGHTS FIRST–Lighting a tree is time-consuming, but doing it right makes all the difference in how your tree will look in the end.
* Start at the top of your tree and wrap the lights from the inside trunk towards the outer tips of a branch. Once one branch is covered, create two or three big loops of lights on that same branch back towards the trunk. Move to the next branch and repeat the process. Continue working your way around the tree, covering all the branches. Don’t forget to plug your lights in periodically to make sure they all work and the all the branches are covered well.
* You can adjust the density of the lights by wrapping the lights closer together or further apart.
3. ADD RIBBON OR FABRIC–While most people add ribbon to their trees, fabric is a great alternative. Ribbon, bows or fabric pieces will provide a backdrop for our ornaments and can be added to your tree in several different ways. One method is to drape the ribbon from top to bottom, tucking it into the tree at intervals. This will create peaks and valleys and create added dimension to your tree decor. Another great trick is to layer several different ribbons together and creating big loops with cascading tails (see top photo).
If you are using bows on your tree, make sure the size and scale of the bow is in keeping with the overall size of the tree….8 to 10 medium size bows on a 9 ft. tree is enough!
4. ADD DIMENSIONAL PICS OR SPARYS–This one element will do more for your tree than anything else will. Take glitter pics, feather stems or floral stems and place them around your tree randomly. Not only are your creating layers with your tree, but you are adding texture and dimension. On large trees, several styles of pic and be used together while on smaller trees it is best to use a single pic style in mass.
5. LAYER, LAYER, LAYER–Now it’s time to start adding ornaments. Don’t just place your ornaments on the surface of the tree, layer your ornaments within the tree branches. Place solid colored ornaments deep into the tree and hang the more colorful and ornate ornaments on the tips of the branches.
Vary the shapes of sizes of your ornaments
Vary the color tones, using shiny ornaments along with matt and textured finishes
Adding solid color ornaments will help ground the tree and create an element of consistency within your theme
Cluster small ball ornaments together with a wire and hang them in groupings for added impact
6. THE TOPPER–The top of your tree should really make a statement. Create a unique topper using pics and flower stems, several large bows put together or go add a whimsical element that supports your theme. If you have a traditional topper, use pics at the base of the topper to frame it.
A few other tricks of the trade…
* Use ornament spinners to add visual impact to the tree. These little gems plug into one of the light sockets and spin lightweight ornaments.
* Curl the tips of your artificial tree to give it a whimsical touch.
So there you have it, the ins and outs of decorating a Christmas tree like a pro!
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