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Glowing Christmas Tree Decorating Ideas and How-To Guide

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My sister’s glowing Christmas tree and mantle decorating are meant to be seen by the world and I am happy she agreed to a Christmas home tour where she is sharing how she accomplishes some of her amazing Christmas decorating.

She and her family get a real tree each year now that the kids are older.  May I present my sister Sandra who could easily be an interior decorator.  My heart melts each year when I see her Christmas tree and I think yours will too.  This is Part 1.  Enjoy the show!

11 to 12 foot Christmas tree - Glowing Christmas tree decorating guide This is a real tree that is about 11 oar 12 feet tall.  Of course an artificial tree can be used.  Caution it must be a very strong tree to hold up all these lights.

Step 1 to string a Christmas Tree - Glowing Christmas tree decorating guideSandra, how do you get the lights to look so beautiful every year?  How exactly do you do it?  

First step is the lights.  Start at the bottom of the tree. Wrap the lights around each branch starting near the trunk working you way out to the tip of each branch. Then, work your way back on the same branch or the one next to it, level by level around the tree until that level of branches are complete.  Move up to the next level of branches at the trunk only. Never extend a string of light upwards unless you are at the trunk of the tree. This is so the following layer (steps) can be easily applied.

How to guide for Glowing Christmas tree decorating guideHow many lights are there on this tree Sandra?

This year’s tree has 4,700 clear mini lights.  The most I have done is about 5, 500.

weave gold and silver ribbon into the branches - Glowing Christmas tree decorating guideNext step….Ribbon

Add Ribbon. I used Gold, Silver and a transparent white-wired ribbon. These have patterns that are varied in style and texture.  This makes it interesting.  On the bottom where there is more open space I use a wider ribbon.

weaving the ribbon onto Xmas treeWeaving the ribbon

Weave the ribbon through the branches in a wave-like pattern. Again, starting on the inside and working around the tree. You can move between levels as needed to create balance.  Switch ribbon styles and colors to create balance as well.  I don’t bring the ribbon out to the tips of the branches.  This layer is an inside layer to this design.

how to decorate clear and opaque beads on Xmas treeBeads

Next add beads.  I used clear and opaque clear strings of beads.  These are shiny and create shimmer.  They are hung in an overlapping pattern.  Secure the string with a green twist tie or green wire.  Hang from tips of the branch, let the string of beads drop without hitting any branches (so they hang freely and somewhat swing) and secure to another tip.  Continue this top to bottom until you are happy with the look.

adding ornaments to Christmas treeNext layer…add ornaments.

Start on the inside of the tree with basic glass balls.  Gold and silver.  I use tons of these!  They create a lot of depth in the tree and with so many lights it helps the tree glisten.  Then, add additional ornaments as usual. Gold, silver, white, and clear.

Christmas tree cloud skirtThere’s sweet Annabelle sleeping on a Christmas cloud of Comfort and Joy.  Close up of some of the gold, silver, white, and clear ornaments.

Glowing Christmas tree how to guideSkirt the tree…

Skirt the tree with whatever you like and a tree-topper of your choice.  This year I went with a huge bow and lit it up with a small bulb and a snow skirt.

huge bow lit up with a bulb - glowing Christmas tree decorating guide“Huge bow Christmas tree topper lit up with a small bulb.”

How to decorate guide Glowing Christmas tree

Sandra’s Christmas tree makes the magic of Christmas come alive.  

If you liked Glowing Christmas tree decorating, on Sunday, December 23rd, when you have a minute to kick your feet up on the recliner, stop back for Christmas Mantle decorating ideas.  I promise not to disappoint and for now…


See Part 2 of Glowing Christmas Tree Decorating Ideas and How-To Guide – The Mantle

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