Christmas time is my favorite time of year! Each year I count down the days until I can put up my trees, they are my favorite creative outlet and each one is a labor of love and a work of art. I’ve learned a lot throughout the years, I want to share with you the steps I always follow when creating my trees. You can see my favorite tree last year and my Christmas 2015 home tour I shared with my friends over at Magnolia lane.
Step One ~ I start off by determining my color scheme, sometimes I opt for non traditional colors and I match the tree to the decor in the room. For the tree I’ll be decorating today, I chose to use a Blush and rose gold theme.
Step two~ I look for several items when I’m putting a tree together.
- Ribbon (I like to use at least two different coordinating ribbons on the tree.)
- Large or oversized ornaments.
- Unique ornaments.
- Floral stems or garland.
- Christmas stems or picks.
The amount of ribbon and ornaments varies on the size of the tree. This tree is a 7.5′ tree, I used 3 different ribbons (use at least 2.5′ wide) on the tree (I set a few aside for later). I purchased several packages of inexpensive shatterproof balls in different colors, I added those to a collection of gold ornaments and a few blush ornaments that were passed to me from my mother. *tip look for items you may have to work into your tree to cut down on costs. I also try to incorporate meaningful ornaments into each of my trees.
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Step three~ ***Pro tip when you are fluffing your tree, keep an eye out for burned out bulbs. They put a strain on the entire strand and they’ll all burn out faster.
Once my tree is up and fluffed and I’ve double checked to be sure all the lights are working (easier said than done sometimes!) Then it’s time to start ribbon. This is a hard one to master for some. I am showing you the method I use. It’s personal preference, but I don’t like to wrap it around the tree, or use bows. I feel like my eye tries to follow where the ribbon is going. In my opinion, if it’s trailing down the tree, or spiraled around the tree it draws the eye. If it’s not symmetrical that’s the first thing you notice. Again, that’s just my personal opinion and preference.
I usually start by overlapping two different kinds of ribbon, if I have one that’s larger it goes on the bottom.
I make my first loop, you’ll also need light gage wire and wire cutters.
Wrap the wire around leaving the tails long enough that you can add another loop.
Because I’m not making a bow, I want my second “loop” to be a little longer than the first. Take the uncut portion of the ribbon and pull it up to meet the first loop. Make sure you’re not flipping it up so that the back side is showing. Leave the tail of the ribbon hanging down the tree and use the wire to secure your loops near the top of the tree.
Next you’re going to take the tail that’s trailing down and tuck it into the tree so there’s an even larger loop.
I clipped the ends of the ribbons to start another loop elsewhere, but you can also run the ribbon through your tree and pull it out in a different spot. After I finish with that set of ribbons I move on to my third option if I have one. Starting loops in different spots on the tree cutting the tails to trail just a bit.
If the ribbon wants to curl I try to let it fall naturally in some spots
***Pro tip Use the branches of your tree to hold your ribbon in place. Most trees have branches that are easy to bend and manipulate, I wrap them around the ribbon deep in the tree so you can’t see the end of your loop.
Step four~ After the ribbon is done I start with my largest ornaments first. I lay them all in like piles before I start, that way when I’m adding them all at once I can be mindful that I’m placing them evenly throughout the tree.
Using different sizes and shapes of ornaments on your tree adds interest.
Step five~ Floral stems make great fillers, once you are done with ornaments look for any bare spots and added greenery.
(I apologize for the terrible lighting) I usually just shove the stems in the tree, no need to wire them. This tree has long branches so I like to place the florals on top of the longer branches, leaving them hanging out just a tad and always drooping a bit downward.
The best place to tuck a few stems is right in the fold of your loop so the tail runs down under it.
I almost forgot! Use the extra ribbon you set aside to coordinate with your gift wrap.
I love to hear what inspires and if you found any of these tips useful! Enjoy the Holiday season! Check back for more Christmas posts and tours!