We had a grand time looking back into our stash of design mags for some holiday ideas that truly stand the test of time. Really, why mess with it if it ain’t broke? This year, we are loving the look and versatility of ribbon decor. We use ribbons frequently for packaging and enhancing displays at our gallery. It’s only natural to keep that going into the holiday season.
What else are we digging? Well in case you haven’t noticed, the 1960s want to come back into our shag-carpeted living rooms. Let them in with colorful bottle brush trees, aluminum trees and popular colors like pink, mint and silver.
When it comes to creative ribbon tying, Martha Stewart never disappoints. She and her editors use good-quality ribbon and that small investment will make an inexpensive craft or dollar-store wreath look stunning.
Two of our favorite ribbon techniques are the figure eight (center right) and the rosette (top right). Both of them look wonderful on wreaths; they are also great when you decorate your home with wrapped presents.
To make the figure-eight bow:
- Make a loop at one end of the ribbon and glue base of loop in place.
- Create loops on either side by going back and forth with the ribbon strand, making each loop slightly larger as you go. Make three complete loop on each side.
- Glue figure eights in the center where they all meet; let dry.
- Cut a second length of ribbon and knot it around the loops in the center; move the knot to the back.
- Insert 20-gauge wire in the back for hanging (such as on a wreath).
Vintage bottle brush trees
You can find these miniature trees (made with tapered bristles that resemble those on a bottle cleaner brush) in many stores and sites. They come in all sizes and colors. In fact, you probably already have some for your Christmas village. Another great way to use these little cuties is to create a mantelpiece forest.
Simply gather trees of varying heights, color and vintage and cluster them in a pleasing display; they look good on a small tray or just on the mantel itself.
We also found some wonderful tiny trees on Smile Mercantile. These little guys are perfect for wiring into wreaths or on gifts.
It’s important to spend time getting your traditional Christmas tree just right but why not continue the fun with other decorative trees? They can be natural or faux, big or small, festooned with jewels or simply dressed with dried flowers. The object is capturing the season with your own original sparkle.
This year why not add a few decorative trees to the one you traditionally decorate? Nothing big or pricey, just something to spice up the mantel, front entryway or dining room table.
If you’re lucky enough to have Aunt Marlene’s old aluminum trees from the 60s pull them out and show them off. We love the look of a galvanized shallow tub or large pie pan used as a base and filled with faux snow. Otherwise, you can find lots of reproductions on the market.