Sunday, December 2, 2012

Create a Designer Christmas Tree

Hi Friends,

Add panache to your holiday decor and give your tree an updated look. A coordinated color scheme, large topper and over-sized ornaments are the secrets to designer Christmas trees. Try using ornaments and ribbons in shades of gold, silver and white or a combination of copper, tan and silver to add style and sophistication to your holiday tree.

1. Light your tree using the instructions above. Next, create decorative sprays. For the front of a full standard tree we recommend no fewer than five clusters, and seven works the best. Bundle three stems of artificial flowers, fruits or leaves together and tie the stems with string or floral wire.

Eye-catching ideas include:
silk poinsettias in pink, gold, purple or red
white magnolias
ivy, ferns or magnolia leaves
silk oak leaves dipped in copper, gold or silver
fruits and berries
cheery yellow star sprays.

2. Leave six or seven inches at the top of the tree for the topper. Tuck a floral spray in the upper left side of the front of the tree (below the topper area) by inserting the stem into the branches. Secure by wrapping twine or floral wire around the stem and branch.

3. Move to the right side of the tree and insert another cluster into the branches; secure and then return to the left - creating a tilted zigzag across the front of the tree as shown.

4. Next, drape garlands of ribbons, beads or pearls and connect the clusters. Don't be afraid to twist two or more ribbons together. Be bold and mix unexpected patterns and colors or twist plaid and check ribbons or gold and silver beads together. French-wire ribbon works best because you can bend and twist it into shape.

5. Next, add solid color glass balls. Place medium and large ornaments (usually reserved for the middle) near the top of the tree. The trick is to nestle them into the tree so that they don't jut out and look awkward. If you have a live tree you can trim the branches to create a niche for the ornament. If it is artificial, bend the branches down or toward the back of the tree. Begin at the top of the tree and work your way to the bottom. Hang decorations within the branches, near the trunk of the tree to add dimension.

6. You can also add oversized decorations such as large angels or violins in gold or white. These can be as tall as 12 inches. Secure them to the limbs with floral wire. Hang ornaments on alternating branches so they aren't in straight rows across or down the tree. Finish decorating the tree.

Note: If you want to use additional decorations on your designer tree, use items that are similar in size and finish - for instance, 3-inch snowflakes and icicles made of cut glass, or French horns and stars of brass. Hang them near the ends of the branches and don't skimp on the quantity. More is better for a designer tree.

Like the name implies, toppers sit atop a holiday tree in place of or in conjunction with a star or angel. They are large and sometimes outrageous. You can't go wrong creating a topper as long as you follow this rule: More is better! Toppers are accented with long feathers, stars on wire, glitter sticks or netting and ribbon.

1. Once you've hung all the decorations, it's time to top your tree. Toppers look more complicated to create than they are. If you aren't an accomplished bow-maker, pay to have them made when you purchase the ribbon. Floral supply houses and Christmas specialty stores may have a minimal charge for this service. If your tree stands in a corner and you decorated only the front, you'll need only one bow. Use two bows if you decorated the entire tree, and three if you like the extravagant look of a huge topper. Secure the bows to the top of the tree with floral wire.

2. Around the bow or center of the treetop, insert and secure decorative glitter sticks and/or long feathers. There is no hard-and-fast rule about how many you should use, so stand back from the tree and continue adding until you get the look you want.

Courtesy of HGTV

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Live well,

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