How many trees do you put up around your house?

Christmas decorating minds want to know.

I’m not sure when or where or how it all got started, but we are all in on the Christmas trees around here. Brace yourself when I tell you the current state of Christmas tree decorating here at Thistlewood.

Every year we put up nine full-sized trees in the house.



Did I just type that?

My plethora of Christmas trees and I have tons of ideas on decorating and branches and ribbon and unique think outside the box ideas. And today on Day 11 of “12 Days of Getting Ready for Christmas” Leslie and I are sharing all the Christmas tree decorating ideas.

Here are 14 Christmas tree decorating ideas just for you (you will NOT be disappointed—I worked really hard on the list and they are amazing).

1. Add birch logs to the branches of the tree

Add a little dimension to your tree by adding birch logs.

Take about 12 or more birch logs and insert them in the tree heading upwards.

You could also paint regular twigs white and use those instead.

Dining Room Decorations Christmas

2. Add silver platters to the tree

I collect vintage silver trays.

To add little bling to the tree, I simply tucked them in the branches.

The silver reflected the light and made the tree look extra sparkly.

Merry Christmas Thistlewood

3. Group three smaller trees together

Large trees are expensive.

If a large tree isn’t in your budget, why not make the same statement, but for a lot less money.

These are three white trees from the dollar store that I grouped together.

The largest tree is up on a box in the back to give the trio height.

Magnolia Christmas trees

Farmhouse Screen-in Porch Christmas

4. Update a scraggly tree with magnolia

I had boxes of these scraggly trees from the dollar store.

It doesn’t matter how much you fluff a dollar store tree, it’s just going to look like it’s been paryting a little too hard.


I clipped fresh magnolia and added them to the tree.

I’d spritz them every so often and they lasted the season.

5. Print on ribbon and decorate your tree

I love adding ribbon to a tree.

And what’s better than to make your own.

Here are simple DIY instructions on how to make your own ribbon.

Then drape it through the tree.

Red Vintage Christmas Tree

Vintage Christmas Tree

6. Add pom pom trim instead of ribbon

I found tons of red and white pom pom trim at a yard sale.

Instead of ribbon, I just draped the pom pom trim through the branches.

After Christmas was over, I took it off the tree and added it to curtains.

7. Add dried hydrangeas to the tree branches

I’ve actually added dried hydrangea to mantels and swags and greenery.

Here, it’s added to the tree branches.

Wrap a thin gauge wire around the hydrangea and wrap it around an individual branch.

8. Add a chalkboard star to the top of the tree

I love a star at the top of the tree.

Especially when it’s a chalkboard.

To create this look, simply tuck a chalkboard on top of the tree and draw a star on it.

9. Make your own dotted ornament DIY

I love making my own ornaments and this is one of the easiest.

Take a plain white ornament and add a sticker to the front.

Then dot around the sticker with a sharpie. Remove the sticker to show the outline of the ornament.

10. Make your own handmade ornaments

Here are a few more suggestions for using what you have to decorate the tree:

  • clip bingo cards onto the tree with clothespins
  • make a snowflake out of bedsprings
  • decoupage pictures onto wood blocks
  • use gift tags as ornaments
  • tie snowflakes onto a piece of yarn to make a garland

11. Add framed Christmas words to the tree

This was such an easy idea to fill up the tree.

Find frames (you may have them at home or you can find them at dozens of places without spending a lot of money).

Then print out Christmas words, add them to the frames and tie them onto the tree with a ribbon.

12. Use eucalyptus as a tree topper

This was one of my favorite trees.

The tree is full of blue and white ornaments and the top?

It’s simply eucalyptus stems tucked into the tree.

13. Make your own wrapped rope ornaments

I love the texture that jute adds to the tree.

You can make your own jute ornaments.

Simply take a styrofoam sphere, start at the top with a drop of hot glue and continue to wrap the rope until you’ve covered the ball. Add a drop of hot glue at the bottom to finish the ornament.

Red and White Christmas Tree

14. Hang the star from the ceiling

Looking for a way to make your tree the talk of the neighborhood?

Instead of just topping a tree, why not take your tree topper to the next level.


We used a thumbtack to hang a star tied to a ribbon from the ceiling.

I love decorating trees.

I love Christmas and thinking outside the box and getting creative.

But my favorite thing about all those evergreen branches?

Is when they hold an ornament with a story like this one. 🙂

And now?

Look at the beautiful Christmas tree ideas that Leslie has for us.

You can see them here.

12 Days of Getting Ready for Christmas

(what you might have missed)

Here’s what Leslie has been sharing

Want to know how to decorate your home for free?
Click here to get my FIVE BEST secrets.


  1. Image for BJ BJ

    Hello! Think a bit tired writing this post. Couple of repeats, so may have put text in the wrong place. It’s okay, we all have those moments.

    1. Image for patricia patricia

      We agree she's working too hard. Both the silver platters and the white birch logs were repeated. But hey, a good idea is worth repeating.

  2. Image for Kim Kim

    So many wonderful ideas! Love them all. Am also slightly envious of your storage capabilities ;) We sold the house with the huge basement and walk up attic so we've reluctantly become a one tree house. Have tried something like your magnolia branch suggestion: I bought floral picks of evergreen/pine tree branches, (on 75% clearance), and use them to fill in the sad gaps of my artificial tree. Works like a charm and it's as plush as can be. Thank you for all your suggestions.

  3. Image for JC JC

    So many creative ideas, KariAnne! Some of these I have used and some are new ideas that get me thinking! Nine trees!😳😁 I bet your home feels so festive. We don't have a basement or an attic so storage is an issue. We usually have two trees, one in our home, and one at our cabin. What I do have a bit of sprinkled around the house is garland, greenery, and candles. We will be going to our cabin for Thanksgiving and this year I will decorate then, so that when we walk through the door at Christmas it will be cozy and Christmasy. 😁 Thanks for sharing these inspirational pictures!

  4. Image for Kathy Menold Kathy Menold

    I can't choose which is my favorite. All so beautiful. We downsized a few years ago and now I just have one full size tree and this year am adding a 4ft table top tree to our family room. I have done all styles and numbers of trees and one year just had lots of little white lights and a star. The magic of Christmas is they always look beautiful no matter what the we do. Enjoy this magical season.

  5. Image for Karen Gaston Karen Gaston

    This was a marvelous collection of trees! I was wondering..I have a nice but older fica tree. Could it be decorated as is with the leaves attached? This must be your happiest time of year!

  6. Image for Lori H Lori H

    I had never read your previous 2019 post about your wedding shower and the ornament. I thought I was alone, the only one who ever held a party/gathering where none of my friends showed up I know that I'm not and you made me realize why I shouldn't feel bad for their loss:0) ! Ha!! I still don't host because of it..maybe one day. An ornament party?!?! What?! A wonderful idea that was and is!!! I hope that catches on. Love the trees and all your wonderful spirit the way your just! That's the way we all should, friendly and accepting.. maybe a bit silly to teach how life can be so much fun if we only just let it be.

  7. Image for Teresa Gonzales Teresa Gonzales

    I have seen these trees over the years and still marvel at your creativity! We usually have 3 trees and that exhausts me! You must be powered by the energizer bunny! :)

  8. Image for Nancy Gorny Nancy Gorny

    The Christmas tree in front of the Rail Road sign. There are two little white Christmas trees on the ottoman in front of the big tree. How did you make them? Are they made out of wood??

  9. Image for Suzy Suzy

    I have a vintage aluminum tree that is four feet tall. A couple of years ago, I went to all the local antique stores and bought vintage ornaments to put on it. I also have two green artificial trees, one is four feet tall, the other is seven feet. One way I decorate these is to put crocheted “snowflakes” on them.

  10. Image for Vicki Darnell Vicki Darnell

    Everything looks so warm and festive. Great job! BTW....what kind of dollar store are you finding the three white trees (and others mentioned)? Thanks and Happy Holidays!

  11. Image for Mary Mary

    Looking at those beautiful trees will definitely get one in the Christmas decorating mood! Did you make the small trees sitting on the ottoman in the pic that has the railroad sign behind the Christmas tree? I would love to know more about them!

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