Styling a Christmas Tree: Tips From a Professional

Photo: @halfway_wholeistic

Christmas is coming! This is the time of year when we find ourselves spending hours styling our trees with lights, ornaments, and tinsel. However, this task can be daunting for beginners or those who aren't feeling inspired this holiday season. If you want to knock your Christmas tree decorations out of the park, here's how you can style your tree in the best way possible.

Choose A High-Quality Artificial Tree
One of the best things you can do prior to decorating is to invest in a high-quality artificial tree. Real trees are less expensive, but they require water to stay healthy, which means more work on your part. Plus, they're not always ideal or sturdy enough to support your decorations. In contrast, an artificial tree will cost more money upfront, and it will allow you to recreate your theme every year without having to worry if it will fade in beauty.

Shape And Fluff Your Tree
By shaping and fluffing your tree, you will be able to make it look full of life, creating a natural-looking tree. Start by adding the tree's base first, and attach each section on top of each other until it forms the tree base. Then work from the bottom up, making sure each branch has enough space to hold your ornaments. It would help if you also fluffed branches that are sticking out to create the illusion of a fuller tree, which will give it an attractive appearance.

Decide On A Theme
Before you actually start decorating your tree, it's essential to choose a theme. Your theme needs to be something that will tie everything together. This could be a color, ornament collection, a specific interest, or even your favorite pastime. For example, if you live by the beach, you might consider choosing a beach theme for your tree, choosing blue, white, and tan elements to create the perfect beachy theme.

If you're lost and need some inspiration, it's a good idea to check out resources like Pinterest, blogs, or magazines to help create direction on the theme that feels right for you. Once you determine a theme, it will help you decide what you need to purchase to decorate your tree.

Set Up The Lights
Lights are typically the first thing you should set up on your tree. However, if they're not placed correctly, it can be difficult to adjust them later down the line. If you're not interested in putting lights on your tree, you'll want to instead consider purchasing a pre-lit Christmas tree.

If you are stringing your own lights, you'll want to make sure all of your lights are working before hanging them onto the branches. This will save you time and effort when trying to fix any issues that come up. Then, carefully drape the lights on your tree to create a nice aesthetic look that will allow for easy decorating later down the line.

Start With Classic Ornaments
As you start decorating your tree, you should first hang classic ornaments on it. These will be your base ornaments, which will add a sense of charm to your tree. You can choose decorations in the same color scheme, from the same collection, or with different styles.

Decorate With Ornaments From Large To Small
After you've finished decorating your tree with classics, it's time to move on to more detailed ornaments. To create a balanced look for your tree, start by placing the largest ornaments on your tree first, working on tucking them into the tree to add depth and a layered look to your tree. Then, continue working until you get to the smaller ornaments, which can be placed at the branch tips to achieve a draping effect.

Add Details To Your Tree
Once you've added the base ornaments onto your tree, it's time to add details. Depending on the theme and color you've chosen, you might decide to add or forgo the details we mention below. Some of the most popular additions to add to your tree includes:
Ribbon: Ribbon is one of the easiest ways to add color and charm to your tree. It can be tied around the branches, used as a border for ornaments, hung from the top of the tree, and more.
Candles: Using real candles is a very European-inspired trend that has grown in popularity over the past couple of years. Candleholders can be placed underneath ornaments to create a focal point, hung on the branches to illuminate them, and even tucked into your tree skirt for an extra festive look.
Garland: Garland typically adds a cozy, rustic feel to your tree. You can use the garland as an accent or layer it around other decorations on your tree for added texture and dimension. Some choose to add popcorn and cranberry garland, while others may opt for pre-made wood garland.
Pinecones: Pinecones are a staple of the holiday season, and they can be beneficial for adding festive touches to your tree. You can use them as ornaments on their own, tuck them into ribbon borders around your tree, or even wrap garland with pinecone accents.

Choose Your Tree Topper
Once you've finished decorating your Christmas tree, it's time to add the finishing touch: a star or angel on top of it. You can opt for a traditional color scheme with this part of your decorations by choosing silver, gold, and white elements to make up this piece. 

Finish With A Tree Skirt
Finally, you'll want to add a tree skirt. This will really tie the whole look together and give your entryway or living room an inviting feel for when guests come over during the holiday season. You can choose any material, color scheme, or pattern that complements your overall theme.

There's no need to stress when it comes to styling your Christmas tree. Decorating the tree is meant to be fun, so take your time choosing ornaments, adding colors and finishes that you love.

These are just a few ideas for styling the Christmas tree this year—if you have any others we didn't mention, feel free to share them with us!

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