10' Snowy Alaskan Fir in the store window

Which decorations do I choose for a large tree?

A large tree can take huge, quirky decorations

Large trees look absolutely stunning and you can more easily achieve the ‘wow’ factor with a large tree than you can with a smaller tree. A large tree in this instance is classed as 210 cm (7’) and over. The bigger the tree the bigger the Christmas decorations you need. Small ornaments on a huge tree look absolutely insignificant. Don’t forget to use plenty of lights to really let your decs stand out; we recommend at least 100 per 30cm (1’) of tree. Large lighted items such as these Polestar lights really add a huge point of interest, the cool white especially stands out. This tree is 3m (10’) so the lights are the 160 LEDs; these lights are really useful as the individual arms can be moved to form different shapes, round ball, fan, spray, semi-circle.

10' Snowy Alaskan Fir with cool white LED Polestar 160 lights
10' Snowy Alaskan Fir artificial Christmas tree with the 160 LED light cool white Polestar

If you have bought a pre-lit tree the chances are it will have the minimum amount of lights, unless it’s the Ridgedale Infinity, so a few hundred extra will not go amiss. This 3m (10’) flocked tree decorated in blues and copper has 6 sets of cool white 1,500 Compact LED Indoor and Outdoor lights, 9,000 lights in total and it doesn’t look overdone. If your lights are multi-coloured try and keep your decoration palette to the same colours as the lights, otherwise introducing too many colours can result in a messy looking tree. Large lighted pieces, such as ratten presents, willow stars and hearts or candy canes look amazing on a tree and fill up a lot of space, especially on trees over 270cm (9’), which can be quite gappy around in the bottom branches.

10' Snowy Alaskan Fir artificial Christmas tree decorated in pale & dark blue and copper
10' Snowy Alaskan Fir decorated in pale blue, dark blue and copper

When you are putting on your decorations start with the pieces going inside the tree, choose something nice and sparkly for this so that it reflects the light and adds depth to the tree. You can also push really thick tinsel into the back of the tree, around the pole, which really reflects the light back and makes your tree appear better lit. If you don’t like tinsel consider using an iridescent organza in the same shade as your decorations. You can use it at the width it comes just scrunched up or you can tear it into narrower strips. If you are decorating with natural materials or going for a Scandi palette you could use hessian pushed into the tree. If your tree is a bit sparse consider increasing the number of branches by using lighted, decorated garlands; these work best with a natural woodland colour scheme.

8' Georgetown Fir artificial Christmas tree
8' Georgetown Fir artificial Christmas tree

Next start with your larger pieces at the bottom of the tree, as you go up the tree the pieces can become smaller and more in scale. You can create your own large pieces by making ribbon bows. Use two or three toning colours together to make large bows, make sure you get the wide wired ribbon as the non-wired doesn’t give you any structure. Floral branches are also great for filling gaps, wire several together to create a large piece with impact. If you don’t have any large baubles wire together two or three smaller ones to create a large piece.

A large tree really allows you to express your wacky side; try a cocktail tree with top hats, bow ties, canes, large cocktail glasses and swizzle sticks; if using glass pieces make sure you fasten them really securely. This would easily fit in with a show-stopping black, red, white and crystal theme. Try children’s toys mixed with large plain shatterproof baubles or a woodland theme with large stuffed animals and antlers, really the world’s your oyster when it comes to quirky Christmas trees. Wooden or tin plaques with a motto also fill a lot of space as do fabric Santas, plush snowmen and elves. You can also have trees in a tree using small brightly coloured fibre optics.

10' Snowy Alaskan Fir
10' Snowy Alaskan Fir

You can always add another dimension to the tree by inserting either natural branches or branches sprayed to reflect the colours of your decorations; leave them sticking out of the tree to increase the width. They can be a decoration in themselves or add your baubles to the ends to make the tree look even larger and more imposing. The tree topper needs to be equally impressive, a tiny angel or star just won’t cut it, so think massive bows and/or lots of floral stems and branches. The Polestar light also looks amazing as a tree topper.

Angela Slater
Daughter of a farmer so always used to producing something from the earth, whether it was animals or garden produce. Along with my work at Hayes Garden World I also have a smallholding, mainly breeding rare breed pigs. I also keep a few hens and grow vegetables for my own personal use. I gained a BSc in Conservation and Environmental Land Management. As a result of this I have a keen interest in environmentally friendly gardening.