A gold star hangs from a christmas tree.

How to Decorate Your Tree Like a Pro

8 Steps to get the Perfect Christmas Tree

If you’re looking to level up your Christmas tree this year, look no further. We’re giving away our secret sauce of tree decorating, and how you can get the look yourself. We promise, anyone can do it! Follow the 8 simple steps below to create your dream tree this holiday season.

A wicker basket filled with a variety of items.

Step 1: Prep

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 4+ inch wide ribbon
  • Large, medium and small bulb ornaments of different colors, shapes and finishes
  • More unique, sculptural, intricate ornaments
  • Picks of branches, leaves, florals, etc.
  • Green pipe cleaners (trust the process!)
  • Ornament hooks

Step 2: Fluff

If you’re using an artificial tree, it’s so important to fluff when it comes out of its box! A whole year of hibernation will flatten the branches and make the tree look straggly. Take the time to spread out each of the needles to give the fullest look. We recommend wearing protective gloves for this—you will thank us later!

A christmas tree in a living room with a fireplace.
A christmas tree decorated with white and gray ornaments.

Step 3: Lights

We will always recommend warm white lights for your tree, but depending on your home’s aesthetic you may choose to use colored or cool white lights. Whichever you choose, make sure they are consistent throughout the tree and that major cords are hidden if your tree isn’t pre-lit. Pro tip: wrap the lights in sections around each branch for the most impact.

Step 4: Clusters

Possibly one of the best tricks up our sleeves is clustering! Use the pipe cleaners to connect 3 or 4 round bulbs of varying sizes and colors. Mix and match as much as you can, and make sure your largest bulbs are used in clusters. These will serve as the baseline fillers of the tree, so attach them using the pipe cleaner all over the tree near the middle of the branches so they are nestled into the tree. Pro tip: feel free to use your cheaper or less-gorgeous bulbs for this, as they won’t be the star of the show!

A christmas tree in a living room with a fireplace.
A close up of a christmas tree.

Step 5: RIBBON

There are three ribbon techniques we love to make your tree stand out.

Billows: Believe it or not, “billow” is a technical term when it comes to tree decorating! Use a 20 inch mesh-style ribbon cut into 14 inch lengths. Twist the ribbon together at the base to create a billow and stick them into the tree wherever there is a gap in the branches. The goal is for the ribbon to look like it’s all connected in and around the tree.

Triple-Loop: Use a 4-6 inch ribbon cut to 24-36 inch pieces. Create 3 loops and staple or paper clip the ends together, then fluff up the loops. Stick them in the tree at different angles.

Spirals: Use another 4-6 inch ribbon cut to 24-36 inch pieces. Create a spiral by wrapping it around your hand and pull each end to unravel. Drape it between branches organically.

Step 6: Tip Ornaments

Now for the star of the show, the tip ornaments! These ornaments will go on the very end of each branch tip, giving them front-and-center attention. Remove the string or ribbon that ornaments may come with and replace with an ornament hook. This will allow you to attach the ornament at its base to the branch. You can always use decorative ribbon over the hook. This is especially helpful for those heavy ornaments. They can be all different sizes, shapes, and trinkets. Mix it up as much as you can while staying in your color scheme! We recommend 6 of each kind.

A christmas tree decorated with gold and silver ornaments.
A christmas tree decorated with silver and gold ornaments.

Step 7: Picks

Picks of flowers, berries or branches add lots of dimension to your tree. We recommend 6-8 of each kind, dispersed throughout the tree, top to bottom. Insert the picks so they follow the same line as the branches. Cluster different picks together foe more variation. Don’t be afraid to let them stick out a little—this will make your tree really pop!

Step 8: Top + Bottom

Finally, your tree needs a finishing touch on the top and bottom. Decide what kind of tree topper you are—a star, an angel, or maybe an ‘explosion’ like this example. Use some of your picks to create a fountain-like look at the top. For the base, a cozy-looking skirt or a structured, clean-looking collar will finish off the look. Here, we used a white furry blanket wrapped around the base in place of a skirt!

A christmas tree in a living room with a fireplace.