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Decorating Artificial Trees

5 Reasons Why I Love Artificial Trees!
1.  I can put them up at any time. 
(If I wanted, I could put trees up at Halloween...not going to, but just saying I could.)
2.  I don't have to remember to water or worry about spilling water or having water on the gifts.
3.  I don't have to add lights.  (My artificial trees come pre-lit--yes!)
4.  I don't have to vacuum needles, live with bugs and pitch or worry about my tree falling over!
5.  I always know what my tree will look surprises when opening up the tree.

5 Reasons Why I Don't Love Artificial Trees!
1.  They don't smell real.  (I use scenty stuff to try to make up for it.)
2.  They don't look as pretty.
3.  The artificial trunk and poles look bad. (Really bad.)
4.  Big, bare spots are common.
5.  They're a pain to store away for the rest of the year. order to try to make my very convenient artificial trees look better,
I've come up with a few little tips.

Tip #1:  Store trees in those big canvas Christmas tree storage bags.

These bags will make your life so much easier--just ask my AH (awesome husband)! 
They come with sturdy handles and zip close.  Some bags even have wheels on the bottom to roll around.
Plus you can also get quite a few mini trees in one of these great big bags. 
I got mine at Target on the after Christmas sale a few years ago.

Here is artificial tree #1 straight from the storage bag sitting in our family room.
  It's old, short, a little lopsided, has lots of holes.  It needs some major 'fluffing' up!

Tip #2:  Keep a pair of garden gloves in your tree storage bag. 

Put on the gloves and start the 'fluffing'.
You can thank me later when your hands are 'scratch free' from setting up the tree!

My trees were purchased (about 7-10 years ago) on clearance.
I wish I had 8 foot + trees, but I don't. 
To make my trees a little bit taller (every inch helps, right?) I use phone books.
Tip #3:  Place phone books under the tree.

I put one phone book under each prong of the tree stand.
(If you're worried about the tree slipping, you can duct tape the stand to the book.) 
 AH doesn't understand why I need my tree taller--but it's important, really!

Tip #4:  Add lots of filler!

Don't just put ornaments on...add filler to bulk up the tree.
Ribbon, beads, berry sprigs, garlands, etc.
(I call these things filler--I'm not sure what the rest of the world calls them?)
I like to use big, wide ribbon with a wire edge. 
I also love these red wooden beads. I look for them at thrift stores and snatch them up!
All those berry sprigs that you can buy on sale, are perfect for filling in the holes of the tree.
I love the texture they add as well, sticking out from the tree.
*Notice the matching colors of my 'filler' items---we'll get to that tip later.

See, my tree is looking 'fuller' already---and I haven't even added the ornaments yet.

Tip #5:  Use lots of ornaments!

I love to load up my trees. 
This year the kids and I counted how many ornaments we put on our family room 'kid' tree.
Want to take a guess?

163 ornaments!  Yep!  We love ornaments! 
No ornament gets left behind.  I've saved all the ornaments the kids have made over the years,
plus AH came to marriage with quite a few ornaments of his own! 
His mom gave him an ornament to hang on the tree every Christmas while growing up.
She even wrote the year on each ornament.
(My mother-in-law is pretty 'awesome' herself!)
We also like to pick up an ornament when we travel to new places. 
It's fun to see that ornament and remember our trips.

One very full Christmas tree!
Now, take a look at this next one.

Here's artificial tree #2 (straight from the storage bag) in our formal living room.

Here's the filler I used to help 'fluff' it up.

The poinsettia bushes fill the holes very nicely, plus they add some great color,
which brings me to my next tip...

Tip #6:  Go with a color theme.

Our family room tree had a red color theme going on, even though our ornaments were every color.
I brought the red out in the 'filler'-- red ribbon, red beads, red berries, red tree skirt.

This tree has a cranberry, gold and white theme going on.
Cranberry colored ribbon and poinsettias.
Gold ornaments and curly sprigs.
White and gold ornaments.
All my fancy, elegant ornaments are put on this tree.
I've always loved angels, so I've got quite a collection of angel ornaments.

And there you have it!  How I survive with artificial trees.
However, it seems sort of funny to end with 6 tips and not 5 or 10.
Hmmm.  You would think I could come up with 4 more tips?
OK, I'll try.

Tip #7: Decorate the entire tree, even the back that may not show!

This way no matter where people are sitting in the room, playing on the floor, walking outside the house, the tree will look great from every angle.
(I always think it's funny when people don't decorate the back of their trees.)

Tip #8:  Wrap with the color theme of your tree.

For our cranberry colored tree, I try to use gold and cranberry colored paper and boxes.
For our red family room tree, I try to wrap the gifts in red paper.
(Truth be told, if someone sends a gift and the paper color clashes with my tree--
I've been known to re-bag or re-wrap the gift.  That sounds kind of crazy, doesn't it?) 

Tip #9: No presents? Use stuffed animals or empty gift boxes.

If you don't have presents wrapped and ready right when you put your tree up (like me),
Put stuffed animals under the tree. They fill the space and look adorable!
Decorated gift boxes (like the ones found at Costco), look nice even when they're empty.

Tip #10:  Enjoy your decorated artificial tree
 with no water, vacuum or worry! 
There, I did it! 

Ten tips for decorating with artificial trees.
Got any tips for me that I left out?

Want to see more trees around our home?
Coming soon: Our Snowman Tree and Baseball Tree



  1. The tree looks real! I love the plethora of ornaments. :)

  2. I like to raise my tree up too! Check out my blog to see how I make my 7' tree touch the ceiling!

  3. What about the baseball theme tree??? That one's my favorite!

  4. You did a wonderful job decorating your tree!! It looks beautiful!! New follower here. Would love it if you would stop by and share this at my linky party going on right now :)

    Have a great week!!

  5. Both your trees are beautiful. I too use artificial. I am allergic to the tree sap but I so miss the smell of the fresh pine. I do manage a couple wreaths each year but buy pre-made so I do not have to worry about getting the sap on my arms and hands.

    Love how you have used so many fillers. Great idea.


  6. cute post!! I follow few of these tips...1. I call them fillers
    2. I wrap the gfts in matching paper...color theme...


  7. Wow you did such a great job. I would have never thought to use those color combos for but they work beautifully. Great job! I'll be pinning this to my Christmas decorations Pinterest board, if you won't mind. Regards - Prasad