Christmas display at Hayes Garden World
Angela Slater
Daughter of a farmer and market gardener so have always had a connection with the outdoors, whether it was keeping animals or producing fruit, vegetables and cut flowers. Along with my work at Hayes Garden World I also have a smallholding, mainly breeding rare breed pigs. I gained an HND and BSc in Conservation and Environmental Land Management, as a result I am an ardent environmentalist and have a keen interest in environmentally friendly gardening. In my time at Hayes I worked for several years in the Outdoor Plant and Houseplant areas

How to decorate a small Christmas tree

Small Christmas trees can look as stunning as a huge showstopper

Living in a confined space doesn’t mean you can’t have a spectacularly decorated Christmas tree. A 3ft or 4ft tree can still look fantastic. The answer to having a beautiful tree, whether small or large, is to pile on the decorations. It need not cost a fortune just buy some good pieces and fill in using cheaper packs of plain shatterproof baubles. Placing your tree on a table or on the windowsill will make it seem more impressive.

Christmas display at Hayes Garden World

First of all, decide which tree to go for real or artificial; in the long run an artificial Christmas tree represents better value for money as our top-quality trees will last at least 15 years. Then there is the question of do you want a pre-lit artificial tree or are you going to use your own lights? There is no doubt a pre-lit tree saves hours of untangling the rats nest you threw into a bag last year and then arranging them along each branch, so you get an even coverage. Click here to read the blog and watch the video showing how to put your own lights onto a Christmas tree. All our pre-lit trees come with low voltage LED lights which cost very little to run, are cool to the touch, important if you have small children, and should last for around 50,000 hours. We also do trees with battery operated lights which are ideal if you are placing the tree away from a power point. All our pre-lit trees feature white lights so adding your own can easily personalise the tree and instantly make it look more spectacular. If you are having a classic red and gold colour scheme, try putting red or amber lights into the centre of the tree to really give it depth and to illuminate your baubles. If going for a traditional cold Arctic palette use blue lights in the centre. Winding iridescent or shiny tinsel inside the tree also gives your tree depth as the light bounces off the tinsel onto the decorations.

Christmas display at Hayes Garden World

When choosing your baubles and decorations go for a selection of sizes and try and stick to just two or three shapes, difficult I know when there is so much to choose from. If you are not sure what colours go together just click here to read the blog explaining how to choose the colours for your Christmas tree. Start decorating your tree from the bottom with the largest baubles and work your way to the top finishing with the smallest. The traditional tree topper is an angel, fairy or a star but you can add a little extra height by inserting some artificial floral stems. You can also insert some of the same stems into the tree to give coherence to the whole design. Click here to read the blog explaining how to decorate a tree on a budget by making your own decorations or using vegetation foraged from your garden or the countryside.   

If time is not on your side and you don’t have hours to decorate the tree opt for one of our pre-lit, pre-decorated small trees; some of which come with snow tipped branches, berries, leaves and cones. All you need do is dress out the branches, add a pack of shatterproof baubles in various sizes and  plug in; the ultimate time saver.

Snowy artificial Christmas tree at Hayes Garden World

Now all you need do is to disguise the tree stand; some of our small trees do come with a decorative basket or sacking bag. Add a few Christmas presents wrapped in paper to tone in with your decorations. If you don’t have any suitable presents to wrap just wrap some empty boxes. If you have a cool white palette of decorations you can disguise the stand with snow blanket, snowballs and a sprinkling of iridescent snow. Piles of toning shatterproof baubles can add interest to a basket or burlap base. Winding some battery operated lights through the baubles or snowballs will make your tree seem taller.

How to: How to decorate a small Christmas tree

This guide will show you how to decorate a small Christmas tree.

Place your tree

The first step to making a small Christmas tree look spectacular is to give it more height by placing on a small table or windowsill.

How to choose the decorations

Choose a simple palette of colours, don't go for a lot of different colours, one main colour and two toning colours is ideal. Picking just two or three baubles in a lot of different shapes and sizes just results in a messy looking tree. Go for a great number of just a few styles. The more decorations you have the more spectacular the effect.

Don't just think about baubles florals, ribbon and small figures can fill gaps. You can also use architectural seed and flower heads from the garden, either leave plain or spray with a metallic colour such as copper, antique gold or snowy.

How to position your decorations

Start at the bottom of the tree with the largest decorations and gradually work up the tree until the smallest are at the top.

How to add extra height

Use florals as a tree topper, just tie in a bunch and secure to the tree. Disguise the base with snow blanket or a filmy gauze and place some lights to shine through. Enhance with snowballs and baubles.