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Decorating Your Christmas Tree With Live Flowers

If you have taken the effort to obtain a live cut Christmas tree, have you considered using real flowers to decorate your tree. There are number of ways to achieve this, and while we may be heading into winter, there are still a lot of flowering plants to choose from. If you have some early flowering Christmas (or Winter) Box, you can use several small sprays to liven up your Christmas tree – the perfume from the Box creates a great atmosphere.

Bright coloured Camellias add a big splash of colour if used judiciously while the yellow flowers of Winter Jasmine really stand out against the darker green foliage of your Christmas tree. The Christmas Rose is another that flowers well in winter, and it too looks great scattered throughout a tree. The downside to using cut flowers is that they do tend to wilt within days, so you do need a steady supply. There is an alternative.

One flower that I have seen used to great effect is the Winter Flowering Pansy and Violas. These are available in a range of colours with the Pansy flowers growing to more than three inches in diameter. The Violas are much smaller, but none the less effective. If you can find the smaller flowering Pansies then consider them, they are easier to use and easier to keep alive. So how do you keep them alive?

You can find finger pots in your local nursery. These are small thin pots, no wider than an inch, yet perfect for a single Pansy or Viola. Transfer your flowering plant into a finger pot, then carefully attach the pots to the stronger branches of your Christmas tree. You’ll be surprised at how light these potted plants are, and how far out you can attach them. If you don’t like the site of the pot hanging on your tree, cover them in a matching material – better yet, use cellophane to wrap the base of the pot attaching with an elastic band at the top of the pot. This will prevent water from dripping out of the pot – and yes, to keep your flowering Pansies and Violas alive, just water regularly.

Live flowers sprinkled throughout your Christmas tree together with LED lights (they don’t generate as much damaging heat), a few baubles, and garlands will turn your Christmas tree into a stunning display. And best of all, after Christmas, you can plant out your flowering Pansies and Violas.

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What’s Behind Your Christmas Tree?

This may sound like a silly question, however, I’ll ask it anyway. What’s behind your Christmas tree? Having a well decorated Christmas tree can be spoilt by a poor background. Professionals, when photographing decorated Christmas trees, often use black curtains as a backdrop. The Christmas tree really stands out and photographs really well. If you go to shows where decorated Christmas trees are on show, you’ll notice the same.  You could hang a black curtain behind your Christmas tree, however, you don’t need to go to that extreme. Just stand back and look at the space either side and behind, then consider what you could add to finish the effect. Here are a few suggestions:

  • A Christmas wreath – this is the simplest addition. Hang a Christmas wreath at a height and distance that adds to the overall effect of your Christmas tree. This is particularly useful if you have a wide light coloured wall behind your tree. It also looks good hanging from a curtain rail in a window.
  • Potted colour – while winter may be approaching, you can still find garden shops with flowering pot plants. Place these on a stand to one side of your Christmas tree. Find flowers who’s colour complement your Christmas tree. If you have a wide wall behind your tree, you could try placing potted colour either side of your Christmas tree.
  • Baubles – hang two or three large baubles, or a single ball made from large baubles, to one side and just below the height of your Christmas tree. If you are using several large baubles, vary their height. To make a single ball using baubles, using a hot glue gun to attach baubles around a central bauble.
  • Garlands – garlands made from anything that catches your imagination can add to interest to your Christmas tree. Hang several garlands below each other in a wave shape rather than using straight lines.
  • Christmas lights – hang net lights behind your Christmas tree. This doesn’t add a lot to your tree during the day unless you have a dark background. However, it can add a touch of magic at night.

Of course, you could mix and match those ideas, however, our suggestion is simple – less is more. Your Christmas tree is the star of the show, anything else is designed to complement it and to help it stand out. It’s always a lot of fun putting it altogether however.

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Using Christmas Decorations To Brighten Up Your Home

While we traditionally decorate a Christmas tree with a wide range of decorations, you don’t have to stop there. Christmas decorations can be used anywhere in the home, it just takes a little imagination and the desire to do something different. One area of the home that always looks great when decorated is a staircase. Consider some of these ideas, and if you don’t have a staircase, take the ideas on board and use them to affect elsewhere.

Baubles are normally tied to a Christmas tree, yet they can look good anywhere. Tie a Christmassy ribbon to baubles and hang them from a staircase railing. Mix the colours around, or use contrasting decorations with just the one colour bauble. You can add red and white Santas, white stars, or white angels for contrast. Don’t fall into the trap of hanging everything the same length. Vary your length including allowing some to hang below the staircase to the supporting wall. Use your imagination and be sure to stand back constantly to review your handiwork. Don’t have a staircase – use the same principle to hang baubles of varying lengths in your window – that looks great too, especially at night from the outside with the interior lights highlighting them.

If you have a cut Christmas tree, cut the bottom branch or two off, trim them back a little, then run them down the length of the staircase railing. The green foliage looks good if offset by red, gold or silver baubles. Don’t forget to hang a length of foliage down the newel at the foot of the stairs.  You can decorate the foliage as well, however, use small decorations. There are two problems with using a branch from your Christmas tree – you need to be sure your tree still looks proportionate with missing lower branches, and, more importantly, the branch used on the staircase will suffer from needle drop.

Finally, add a string of Christmas lights. LED lights are best for this as they generate less heat and are more hardy. You could also consider rope lights or icicle lights depending on the size of your staircase. If you can place your decorated Christmas tree alongside your decorated staircase, the overall effect is terrific. Christmas decorations are not just for Christmas trees; they can be used anywhere you like.

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Welcome Your Visitors This Christmas With A Well Decorated Front Door

Decorating a front door for Christmas used to start and stop with a Christmas wreath. Then plastics took over and we had all sorts of decorations including the plastic Santa mask. You can do a lot more than that and the end result is a front door that really does welcome your visitors. It doesn’t take a lot of work and it needn’t be expensive. Here are a few tips that may give you ideas on how to brighten your front door this Christmas.

  • Icicles – For a simple look, hang a traditional wreath on the door, then hang white icicle lights above the door.
  • Garlands – here, you can really use your imagination. Create a colourful garland using any form of greenery for the base. You can often buy these from garland bases from florists. Create a matching wreath to hang from the door, then hang the garland from the door frame. If you have themed your Christmas tree, then continue the theme to your front door.
  • Potted Christmas tree – buy a small potted Christmas tree, decorate it and place outside rather than inside.
  • Wreaths – not one, but two, three or even four wreaths. This will depend on the size of your door. The best effect is a large well decorated Christmas wreath in the middle with smaller less decorated wreaths top and bottom with the edges just touching.
  • Rope lights – frame your door with rope lights. These have a lit length of eight meters so that’s plenty of light to frame your doorway.

You can really use anything to decorate your doorway. Use a little imagination, or take a walk around your neighbourhood to see what others are doing this year. A well decorated doorway always looks inviting, and it certainly works as a conversation starter.

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Are You Worried About Electricity And Christmas Lights?

I know there are a lot of people who worry over Christmas lights. The factor that concerns them the most is the electricity in the lights – and it’s not the cost that worries them. Every now and then we hear about a house fire over the Christmas period. Sometimes the cause of the fire is attributed to lights on a Christmas tree. This is unfortunate because, while the lights may have caused the fire, it is often the negligence of the user that is at fault. If Christmas lights are well cared for, and if they are used properly, they should never be a cause for concern. Modern LED lights cause even fewer problems as they generate little heat and use minimal amounts of power.

There are alternatives to the traditional Christmas lights. These are battery operated lights that run off three AAA batteries. Because they are LED lights, they use little power, generate little if any heat, and the batteries last for quite some time. Battery operated lights are not as long as normal lights, generally having only 20 lights over 2 meters. You could put that too good use by stringing up several different colors together making for an interesting effect.

Battery operated lights are convenient for areas where there is no easy access to mains power. They also allow you to decorate your tree and to then move it to wherever you want it without having to trail power cables behind you. Standard Christmas tree lights are safe when used correctly. Obviously, once you deviate from what is considered “safe use,” you could be asking for trouble. If in doubt, then check out battery operated Christmas lights