The pumpkins sitting on my front porch have started to succumb to the frost.  While the first snowfall’s last remains slowly vanishes on my window pane, the soothing sounds of Christmas music ricochets off my walls coalescing with the sounds of the crackling fireplace.  Christmas has certainly come early in my home (as always)!  We love the holiday season and typically start interior decorating for Christmas just after Remembrance Day.  

The first thing to always go up is our Christmas tree!

It’s a family affair every year that includes hot chocolate, holiday music and a rebirth of joyous discovery every single time I open the boxes of ornaments that have been stored away just waiting to shine once again.  I love seeing the looks on my kids faces when they see an ornament they remember making or buying that they love or unearthing “new” ones (that they were just too young to even remember) — a special memory engrained in each one.  I cherish these moments because I know there will be one day when they won’t excitedly jump for joy when I ask them to put up the Christmas tree with me.  I truly hope that never happens.  So for now, I’m grasping onto these moments, every single year. 

My son’s first ornament.
Hand-made clay ornament we bought for our daughter at a restaurant/pottery shop we fell in love with during an unforgettable romantic getaway.

The Christmas tree is the heart of the home and takes the spotlight during the holiday season.  One of my favourite things to do every evening is turn the lights off, sit with a cup of tea and just bask in the radiance of the Christmas tree.

With this time of year, along with the charm, magic and beauty in it all, it’s also a very difficult time financially for many.  Holiday decor takes up a huge chunk of that for some, but it doesn’t have to.  I learned along the years that it’s actually quite simple to create the tree of your dreams with just a few simple additions.  Check out my tips below to inspire you to be more frugal this holiday season and still have the gorgeous Christmas tree of your dreams.

Easy & Inexpensive Ways to Create a Beautiful Christmas Tree

1) One size doesn’t fit all.

In the case of Christmas Tree’s, one size definitely does not fit all spaces.  Sure I’d love a big, puffy 10ft tree but for my space where I’ll be placing the tree, it just doesn’t make any sense.  Look at the where you plan to place your tree and select a tree size – whether real or artificial – that will be suitable for that space and still leaving enough room to walk around it and for gifts underneath.  We have stayed loyal to a lovely (very real-looking) artificial tree that was handed down to us from a family friend when our son was just a baby and thankfully it’s still doing it’s job!  Real trees are always more inexpensive but if you prefer artificial trees, why not buy used? Check out Kijiji.ca or join a few Facebook Buy & Sell community boards.  You’ll be surprised what you’ll find and you’ll save some big bucks too (perhaps for an extra little gift for yourself?)

2) Set the Theme.

Whether you prefer the traditional holiday colour scheme of green, reds and golds or something different or eclectic like deep purples and silver or blues and golds, make sure you figure out what style you are trying to achieve first (check out magazines for inspiration!) before you shop.  Rule of thumb is to look at what your decor style is currently in the space you’re planning to put your Christmas Tree and work with that.  I have a lot more warmer fabrics and furnishings in my living area this year so I decided to swap my frosty blues, silver and white theme for Champagne Golds, silver and white with some subtle hints of blush.  This worked out great because I already had silver & white decor from my last theme and all I needed to stock up on was more champagne gold ornaments and decor pieces.

3) Shop Wisely.

Okay this is a given but if you’re like me, the minute I step into a department store and see all the sparkly beauty around me, I want it ALL!   Reminds me of this viral Facebook video I recently watched of that little toddler boy sitting in a grocery cart with his mom being extremely expressive and gawking at all the Christmas decorations.  Did you see that one? So adorable!  Well, that’s me.  And I’m sure many of you.  As beautiful as they all are, let’s not carried away, okay?  
Focus on getting some essentials like one large package of basic round ornament balls in your new colour scheme, perhaps some garland, and don’t forget important additions like the tree skirt (if your current one doesn’t match your new decor) and a tree topper.  We always use the same Angel every year, which thankfully goes with most colour schemes.  Once again, why not go pre-used? Ornaments are NOT cheap, so maybe you’ll find some good deals on used ornaments that match your colour scheme?  Make use of holiday sales when they happen.  I recently stocked up on new ornament basics at my local Michaels with their current holiday sales (buy one, get one free, 50% off Christmas decor, etc.).  I ensure I subscribe to my favourite shops email lists so whenever there is a sale, you get notice in your inbox right away! 

4) It’s All in the Details

On top of your basic ornaments, make sure to purchase a few larger sized and different shaped ornaments that will stand out and be a contrast to the basic round ball ornaments on your tree and place them in areas of your tree that are most visible.  Also, make sure you add your own unique touches with ornaments.  For example, dragonflies and butterflies have a very sentimental meaning to me and my family so I found packages of gold butterfly clip-ons and dragonfly ornaments and added those all around my tree.  We also love owls so we bought a few of those as well.

Now here’s the real secret to a jaw-dropping tree, or maybe it’s not really a secret; however, it’s a MUST when putting the finishing touches to your tree.  PICKS and CLIP-ONS!  Lots and lots of them!  I purchase lovely flowers, branches and berry clip-ons or picks in piles in my colour scheme (once again, Michael’s has some great deals and picks!) and add them throughout my tree, particularly in areas of the tree that may have some gaps.  The idea with the picks is to place more on the sides of the tree and more towards the top (kind of like the tree is growing more sparkly little arms on its side).  It gives a nice radiant touch.

I also pack up packages of grippy and sparkly snowflakes I can just add in more empty spots on the tree.  Many of my clip-ons, picks and ornaments I’ve picked up at, wait for it, the dollar store!  Yes!!! I literally will walk out of a dollar store having spent less than $10 on packages of clip-ons and picks that I needed to complete my tree and make it look amazing.  

If you like the snowy look, pick up some artificial spray-on snow and add them to some of the tips of the tree. 

The main focus is to try and fill in gaps on the tree and mixing up the sizes and shapes of your ornaments.  Make your Christmas tree your holiday masterpiece!

Hope these were helpful and if you decide you want to switch up your colour scheme again next year, sell some of your gently used ornaments/decor pieces that no longer match and use that to buy towards your new ones.

Enjoy holiday decorating and don’t forget to make it uniquely special to you (and your family!).

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