Tutorial

Oh Christmas Tree

It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year…

Yes, it is Christmas season again and that’s why I am presenting you with a simple Christmas Tree Tutorial. For most of us, the tree will be a focal point during the holidays, which is why it is important to fix your tree properly!

So on to the tutorial:

STEP 1 – Get your tree up! If you have a tree like ours, there is some assembly required. I like to do this in advance so the tree branches/leaves get a chance to settle. This is especially true for trees (real or fake) that have been tied up.

STEP 2 – Decide if you want to put lights on. I confess that for the past 5 years, I did not put lights on out of fear of fire. This year, I looked for lights with the quality assurance seal, as well as the low-heat type of bulbs. There is so much to choose from now, so look for the one you want. You also have to decide how much light you want.

Personally, I used around 9 boxes (100 bulbs per box but these were the rice lights, so the bulbs were quite small). Remember to read the instruction on how many strands can be stuck together safely. Then just wrap the lights around all the branches, starting from the inside. A quick tip is to open the lights and stand back every so often so you know you are distributing the bulbs evenly.

STEP 3 – Choose your ribbon or garland. Decide on your color theme before buying the ribbon. This year, I wanted to put ribbons (even though most of the trees in the malls do not have it this year, boo!) Rule of thumb is 1 roll per foot, but since I wanted more bulk, given my somewhat skinny tree, I doubled up the thick ribbon. Just make sure you get ribbons with hidden metal wiring, as this makes it easier for you to fluff up the bows later. Don’t forget to buy wiring which you will use to attach the ribbons on to your tree branches.

STEP 4 – Starting from the top of the tree, you can make loops with the ribbon, and tie the middle on to a branch. How many loops depend on what you want. If you want a bow with 4 smaller loops as a final product, do 2 big loops. If you use 2 types of ribbons like i did, 1 big loop is enough. When you tie it in the middle, tada! you have 2 separate portions, which you can fluff up in different directions. Continue on either going down directly, or diagonally, as I have done. Remember to put an allowance for the ribbon between the bows as it will make your tree look fuller.

STEP 5 – Now that you have all the lights and ribbon on, you’ll see that your tree looks pretty full already. Since I have quite a stash of decorations, I sorted all the gold and red as I wanted a tree that has more gold with splashes of red. I try to make sure that each branch has a decor, but I try to put 1 type at a time. Example, I put on all my medium gold balls first, so it is evenly distributed throughout the tree. Then I do smaller balls, etc.

For decors with a bit of green leaf or needles, I try to put these deeper within the tree to cover up the empty spaces. For things like bunches of glittered leaves, I try to put it out more, as this creates more dimension. Just remember to step back every so often to see how balanced your tree looks. As a rule of thumb, you will need around 12-24 decor pieces per foot, depending on the size of each decor. I would definitely buy the bigger balls next time to create more drama, although I won’t use a whole lot, maybe a dozen for the entire tree.

Tada! Now all you have to do is put up a tree topper (I still don’t have one!!!), and a tree skirt. Also, since I am extra paranoid, I put a fire extinguisher near my tree. Please don’t forget to pull the plug off the lights when the tree is unattended too! Now sit back and relax, enjoy your tree and fill the bottom portion with gifts!

For this tutorial, please take note that:

1. I used a 7 foot tree – a really old one at that. I think the tree has been around since 1989, so you can see that proper storage will make things last a long time.

2. I used whatever decorations I have. Since I’ve been buying small quantities for a few years, I have accumulated quite a bit.

3. Make it a fun activity with your loved ones! You can trim the tree together and save time and effort!

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