How lovely are your branches!.jpg

How lovely are your branches!

By LIZ GRIFFITHS [email protected]

The Christmas season usually means one thing – a house full of guests. Guests come and go throughout the festive season but there is one ‘guest’ that is a permanent fixture in your home – the Christmas tree.

Whether you go for fake or real, it is important to decorate your tree to your liking as it will be in your home for a couple of weeks (or unless you are like my friend whose Christmas tree goes up at the beginning of November!)

As in any type of decor, trends come and go. In the 1990s, it would have made no sense in having a real tree as you wouldn’t see past the ghastly streams of tinsel in tacky colours.

With the Christmas tree, it is very easy to “over do it”. It is easy to forget that the tree itself is a real feature in your home so make the most of the gorgeous green branches and enhance the tree rather than hide it among baubles and tinsel.

Having a theme for your Christmas tree decorations will add style and substance to your home. Choose shades of red and gold for a traditional festive theme or try something a little more modern with bright turquoise and regal purples for some added impact.

The first thing to do when decorating your tree is to place the lights on the branches first. White lights look chic rather than the coloured lights that can look a little on the tacky side. If you are not irritated by them, flashing lights will add some extra festivity to your tree – after all Christmas should be about fun!

Start to arrange the lights on the branches near the base of the tree and then weave the strings of lights along the branches close to the inside moving to the outer edges of the branches.

Coloured beads are a welcome feature at Christmas time – beads tend to look more modern, stylish and not as overpowering as tinsel. These should be placed on branches in the similar fashion to the lights.

Next up are the all important ornaments. You may choose matching baubles or try varied colours and styles. Don’t hang all the ornaments on the tip of the branches instead place some on the inside of the tree which will add depth.

Everybody has memorable Christmas ornaments that they use every year that look familiar and traditional hung between basic baubles.

Why not try and make your own decorations for the tree? Start collecting pine cones and spray them with sparkly coloured spray paint and just attach a loop of string. These will instantly add character and festive cheer to your tree.

Don’t forget the all important traditional chocolates hanging… they may not last long but are a festive must on every Christmas tree.