Now that you've found your perfect tree that will showcase all of your lovely Christmas decorations, it's time to get decorating! So where to begin?
First, determine the overall look you're trying to achieve. If it is simplicity you're going after, stick to one or two colors and start with stringing your lights. Add on decorations and ornaments slowly and as you see fit. If your style is more dramatic and colorful, outline your plan of attack first, lay out all of your decorations and go one step at a time.
Generally, follow this order to get the best overall look out of a Christmas tree. First, start with the lights. Go from the base of the tree and wrap the lights all the way to the top. Use one or many colored strands this is entirely your preference. It's best to use about 100 lights for every vertical foot of tree.
Next, it's time to layer on your tree garlands. Again, there are no rules on keeping all the garlands the same; uniformity is not the name of the game here. This time, start stringing from the top down, and make sure to space the garlands out evenly and hang loosely on your tree. From ribbons to beads to tinsel, use about 2 strands of garland per foot of tree length.
Now it's time for the best part: the ornaments! Start with hanging your most important ones, then go on to the largest ones and then finally fill in the gaps with small and medium size "fillers" such as icicles or shiny balls. Create depth in your tree décor by hanging your ornaments both on the branch tips and closer to the trunk.
Most importantly, have fun with the process. There is no right or wrong in tree decorating and you can always move things around to your liking. So gather the family, spin those CD's, sip that mulled cider and get decorating!
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