This last Thursday the Sweetwater Daughter and I had so much fun decorating a Christmas tree for the Auburn Homes Festival of Trees.  This is the third year that we have participated in the event.

This annual event raises money for Senior Living facilities and services.
It is a wonderful organization….which we learned first hand when my mom was there.
Thankfully, her stay was short and now she is back living independently at home.

Each year, designers are invited to design Christmas trees that are display around the community.  It is an honor to be invited each year.

The first year, we did a themed tree using the children’s story “The Mitten” as inspiration.
 Last year, we did “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” for the Christmas Carol Theme.

 Our theme this year was “And All That Jazz”!

One of the best things about participating in this project is seeing all of the other ideas that people have.  Sadly…..we didn’t take photos of the other trees….too busy with our own!
These are the “take away” ideas that we have learned through the years.
Use BIG things!
The 16 inch musical instruments and felt and glitter top hats have a lot of impact!
One of the other trees used actual bird houses.

Love, love, love these snowmen!

The lantern for a tree topper is fun too!

This woodland theme with fun birds and bunches of birch is pretty and dramatic!
Even inexpensive Nutcrackers can be wired into the branches.
Pack in those inexpensive plain ornaments!
Our 7 ft.  tree has 200 plain gold, silver and black ornaments.  They are tucked way into the center of the tree to hide any gaps in the branches.  They are grouped in bunches and laid on the front parts too.  Lots of glitter and shine with very little expense.  Check out the thrift stores for even better deals than the big box store.

Don’t be afraid of non-traditional color!

Apple Green, Fuscia, Bright Blue, Pink and even Orange!

Unexpected color can result in trees with high impact!

Stick some STUFF in the branches!

Birch branches, berry branches, glitter sprays, feathers, and artifical grape leaves were just some of the interesting things we saw on this year’s trees.

Tucking the sprays into the branches of the tree so that they “explode” outward makes the tree look rich and full.

Our tree had tinsel picks with music notes on them.  These were tucked in everywhere.

Ribbons and Bows Oh My!
It felt really strange not to use any ribbons or bows on our tree….but it didn’t fit with our plan.  That doesn’t mean that you should forget how much impact a bunch of perfect bows and ribbon streamers can have.

Check out these older posts for a couple of tutorials for making beautiful bows.
Well…..decorating the Festival tree let me get my holiday decor fix…
oohh and putting 200 ornaments up made my fingers pretty sore….
It is a good thing it will be a couple of weeks before it is time to decorate the Sweetwater tree! 
HMMMM….I wonder if I can come up with something new and interesting?
Wait and see….
In the meantime, I hope you got some inspiration.  
Have a Wonderful Day!