Sunday, December 11, 2011

Easy Christmas Decorating Tips

I’ve been reading blogs and there are quite a few women out there who say they can’t decorate. I’m not a pro by any means, but I can throw things together to give my house a festive appearance.

One thing I decided on a long time ago was a “theme”. What I mean by that is, I decorate only in gold and burgundy. No red for me; it just clashes with my décor. I also purchased most of my decorations during After Christmas Sales when everything was 50% off and now have more than I actually need. And since I'm so anal, I keep a list of items I'll need, things that need fixed (I make some of my own decorations) or items I want to add, for the next decorating season, so when November rolls around the following year, I can be ready and maybe grab a few before everything is picked over.

Keep in mind, that just because it's NOT Christmas, doesn't mean it's NOT a Christmas decoration. Angels, for example, are sold year round and if you find one that matches your décor, buy it, especially if it's on sale (I LOVE a bargain!).

Okay, enough of MY anal-retentiveness, let’s get started with YOUR tree. First, if you don’t have a pre-lit tree (like I did until the damn lights burnt out!), or you get a real tree, you need to string on the lights (if you’re like me and hate this job, then have your husband do it!). Once the lights are on, get some wired ribbon. Yes, the kind you would use to wrap gifts. It’s absolutely wonderful for Christmas tree decorating! It’s easy to manipulate and can be placed in those pesky “bare” areas if needed. What I love about wired ribbon is it comes in different widths and so many colors and patterns. Pick something you think you’ll want to use for a couple years and buy enough spools to do your tree, and enough for garland, centerpieces, etc. Now that you have your perfect colored-patterned-wired ribbon, tuck and twist it into the branches as you wrap it around your tree.

After the lights and ribbon, you'll need to add your ornaments. Hopefully you won't have all the SAME size. Dimensional ornaments add substance to your tree! (But if you do, that's okay, you can get some really great ornaments at half the price when Christmas is over!)Starting at the top and working your way down and out, add your ornaments in an array of places, you don't want conformity. If no one can SEE the back of your tree, hey, do like me, and don’t bother! Let’s not stop with ornaments. You can set or hang little sleighs, Santa’s, angels, even reindeer throughout your tree. They really spruce up that Spruce! Get creative here, have the kids make ornaments, or hang those little picture ornaments, or anything that holds special meaning to you and your family (One year we did a “fun” tree and decorated it with all my boys' ornaments and they made “lego” spaceships which I hung with bows. It was great!).

 Other items you can add are poinsettias, pinecones and fruit. Grab a bushel of fake poinsettias and separate them, placing them in your tree in sets of three. Add your fruit (my favorite is grapes) and pinecones, placing them near the poinsettias (or whatever flower you like). You’ll be amazed at how picturesque your tree will look!

As far as decorating your house. Purchase poinsettia candle rings and set them about—in between picture frames, on shelves, next to knick-knacks, anywhere that needs a touch of Christmas. You can always use them for actual candle rings, but I have Christmas candle holders so like the rings to add a touch of Christmas throughout the house!

Oh, don’t forget your lighted garland. It always looks nice on a stove, a bathroom sink, around a mantle, archways, and along railings. Lighted garland looks great just about everywhere!

The important thing is to EXPERIMENT and most important, have fun with it.

When I’m decorating, I keep in mind that less is more. You don’t need A LOT of decorations to make your home a Christmas Wonderland.


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