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How to Decorate a Real Christmas Tree

When asked about their favorite Christmas memory, often people will say that it was decorating the tree. Decorating your real Christmas tree is a fun way to take time out and really enjoy the holiday season. Whether it’s with family or friends, or with a beloved pet and a mug of hot chocolate, it can be a special time.

When it comes decorating your tree, the phrase “to each his own” certainly applies. It doesn’t really matter how you decorate your tree, because everyone has their own style and the activity is what counts. However, here are a couple of tips if you are looking for some help.

If you haven’t already, start at the very bottom of your tree by covering the tree stand with a decorative tree skirt. Not only does this look nice, it will catch any falling needles and provide a foundation on which to lay your gifts.

The first thing to go on your tree should be the lights. Lights are typically offered in three colors: clear, solid color, and multi-colored, and come in many shapes and sizes. You can choose simple lights or lights that offer patterns of light like intermittent flashing. Generally, you will need about 100 lights per vertical foot of tree. Now, this is just an estimate, you can certainly use more or less depending on your preference. When you begin to wind the lights around the tree, it’s easiest to start at the top and work down, and work from the inside out.

Garland or tinsel is the next step. Christmas garlands are traditionally made from boughs of real Christmas trees, which is great way to spruce up an artificial tree. Tinsel is an artificial garland, typically made from metallic plastic, and can be used to add some serious sparkle to your tree. Again, it’s easiest to start at the top of the top and work down, and drape the garland near the trunk and also towards the edges.

Next comes the really fun part: placing the ornaments. If you have simple large ornaments, like glass or plastic balls, you should place them first. It’s best to place them deep within the tree to create depth, but also you can fill in any “holes” in your tree. Then you can place all your other ornaments, anywhere you’d like.

Some people like to have “themed” trees and you can do this with color or style. For instance you could use clear lights, silver tinsel, and glass and silver ornaments to achieve a silver theme. Or you could use pink lights, white lace trim as garland, and miniature dancers and slipper ornaments for a ballerina themed tree. The possibilities are endless.

Last, but certainly not least, is the tree topper. While traditionally a star or an angel, this can be whatever you want. It can be fun to offer the topping of the tree as a prize, perhaps to the most well-behaved child or to the winner of a Christmas game.

Regardless of how you decorate your real Christmas tree, the important part is that you have fun, because you are creating special memories that will last a lifetime.

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