Emily Buckley, editor in chief

If you walk through the doors of a department or home décor store during the holiday season, you’ll surely notice the beautiful Christmas trees on display. In fact, Lindsay Almond, a decorator at Tai Pan Trading in Logan, says that the most frequent questions they get asked are either if the decorated trees are available for purchase, or if someone can come decorate their tree at home for them.

Since not everyone wants to, or can afford to do either one of those things, Lindsay and Kelly Hensley, the Tai Pan Trading store manager, have developed a list of eight steps to help you perfect your tree decorating.

  1. Fluff and position the tree. Separate the branches, alternating them in all directions so you can hang ornaments with ease. “You can make any tree feel a lot fuller if you take the time to fluff each branch,” Lindsay said.
  2. Lighting. While most trees come pre-lit, the experts at Tai Pan like to add additional lights to their trees to make a bigger statement. When adding additional lights, they wrap around individual branches rather than around the tree itself.
  3. Ribbon and garland. If you want to make your tree appear taller, hang the ribbon or garland vertically.  Start at the top and tuck the ribbon in and out of the tree, starting at various points throughout. You can also opt to wrap around the tree, but still tuck in and out to keep it from looking too uniform. Lindsay suggests using different textures, widths, and styles of ribbon, layered and combined, to create a unique look. “The key is making it hard to tell where the ribbon and garland starts and ends,” Lindsay said.
  4. Hang focal points. Hang your larger ornaments or focal point decorations in a staggered fashion throughout the tree, leaving room for smaller ornaments to be hung later. Don’t feel limited about what you can use to decorate your tree, anything from Santas or sleighs, to airplanes or nutcrackers goes. The key, Lindsay says, is to make it represent you and your style. Consider small children or pets who may be around the tree when deciding where to hang breakable decorations.
  5. Fill it in with smaller ornaments. Incorporating one color, shape, or theme of smaller ornaments throughout your tree helps unite one-of-a-kind ornaments.
  6. Secure the decorations. This is especially important for large or heavy objects. Use floral wire or long ornament strings to secure the décor. It looks better to have decorations closer to the branch ends, instead of stuffed deep inside the tree, which is why securing is an important step.
  7. Add picks, florals, and sprays. These make great fillers and add dimension and texture to the tree. You can tuck them in anywhere on the tree, starting at the top and waterfalling down.
  8. Take a step back. Step away and look at your tree, allowing your eye to spot sparse spots or areas that are too cluttered.


“The bottom line and overarching theme,” Lindsay said, “is to make sure you love your tree. Don’t be afraid to try new things or themes. Whether it is picture perfect or full of memories, or somewhere in between, your tree should represent you and your family, and add happiness to your holiday season.”