A tree from start to finish...
Ok Flockers let's master the art of tree!
Step 1. Shaping The Tree
I shape my branches using an x and + pattern starting from the trunk of the tree and a Y at the end or the outside of the tree. So when you get to the end of the branch you would have made something like x+x+x+x+x+y. By doing your branches this way you will end up with a much fuller looking tree. Once I finish all of the first row of branches, I then add my clear lights. I also start at the trunk of the tree and work my way down the center and back to the trunk on each branch.
Step 2. Clear Lights
Although step one and two are done at the same time I felt it to be important to explain why I do my lights this way. I like the method of going from trunk to tip of each branch so that I don't have a lot of cords showing everywhere. This also leaves you room to use larger ornaments in the areas between the branches. This will give more depth to your finished tree.
Step 3. Colored Lights
In the case of this tree, I decided I also wanted to use some large colored lights. For this step I went in to my last x or + I made. Because the lights have clips made on to them I was able to just clip them to the branches. At the bottom of the tree I did anywhere from three to four lights per branch and decreased that amount the higher I go on the tree.
Step 4. Large ornaments
I love to use large ornaments to fill any voids or gaps in the tree. You can do this with any large ornaments you have. I use ball because they are typically cheaper and easier to find. I step back and look at the tree and start to place the balls in any open area I see. I place them as deep in the tree as I can get them and still be able to see them. This is what helps with depth.
Step 5. Sprigs
This is a step that I don't always do. Sometime I take large floral stems that have a more realistic look and place them at different places in the tree. Not only does this help mimic a real tree more but it also gives me someplace I can hang things that I want to stand out more.
Step 6. Ribbon and Mesh
This is the time I add in my mesh and ribbon. Although over the last few years I have stopped using mesh, I know a lot of people still use it. For this tree I went straight up and down the tree. Starting from the top I attach the mesh to the top using floral wire. I let the mesh fall to the floor, then start working my way down the tree tucking it in and wiring it at different places. On this tree I only did one piece of mesh going down each side of the tree. I have also done this with eight pieces of mesh which covers more of the tree. Once all of the mesh has been secured I then make loops out of my ribbon and wire it in to the same areas that the mesh is tucked in to the tree. I also make extra loops so that I can place a few throughout so not everything is in a straight line.
Step 7. The Topper
For the topper I always think bigger is better.. That is just my personal preference.
On this tree I used a tall whimsical Santa hat and two oversize toy soldiers (I believe they are about 18"tall). They are made from light weight tin so they are not very heavy at all. I wired them to the tree with floral wire.
Still Step 7. Picks
Now that the hat and Tin Soldiers are all secure I can add my picks. I LOVE picks, I don't believe that there is such a things as to many picks. I like to mix several different kinds of picks together. In this topper I have sequin curls, sequin sticks, tinsel twist, and glitter leaves all mixed together. There is no rhyme or reason as to how I place them, I just put them where I like them..
Step 8. More Picks
In this step I take more picks and go to all the areas that I placed my ribbon loops and insert picks around them. Once again, no rhyme or reason just the way you want them if you even want them.
Step 9. Ornaments
Now I start filling in the tree with all my regular ornaments. Place your ornaments in the areas you feel need them. You can hang on the ends of the branch or place in the tree. I do mix of in the tree and outside the tree. I'm all about depth when it comes to this step.
Step 10. Step back and look..
Take a step away from your tree, sit on the couch, or go to another room. Once you come back to the tree, sit and look at it to see if you notice any blank spots. Look at it with the lights on, the lights off, house lights on, and house lights off. The time away from the tree lets you see it for the first time again..
Step 11. Tree skirt
Add your tree skirt. I always do this last so as not to get it dirty while decorating the tree. Just because something is labeled as one thing doesn't mean it has to be used be used for that purpose only. The tree skirt I used for this tree is actually a black and white oversize hounds tooth curtain panel. I rarely use a tree skirt. I like my skirts to have a lot of puddle and flow to them. So don't be afraid to use what you have. I have used blankets, curtains, table cloths, and fabric. So do what makes you happy!
Final Step. Sit Back and Enjoy!
You have done all the hard work now enjoy it! Remember its your tree in your house if it makes you happy that is all that matters.
I hope that these steps help when it comes to making the "perfect" tree. Also no tree will ever be perfect and what works for me might no be the best thing for you. I'm here to give you some tips on what has worked for me. As long as it is perfect for you that is all that matters! Go Decorate You Flockers.