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Creative Christmas Tree Decorations: 6 New Ways to Deck Your Tree

This holiday season, take your tree from "ho hum" to "heavenly" by trying out one of these clever concepts.

Paige Green

The Giving Tree

This concept takes all the fun of an advent calendar and presents it in glorious 3-D. The baskets and envelopes hanging on the tree serve as the calendar’s “windows,” so every day in December a new one can be opened. Since bare is better when it comes to the tree, feel free to re-purpose an outdoors tree for this project. You can even just use a single sturdy branch supported in a bucket, and pair it with some cheap Christmas decorations. Here, The New Christmas Tree author Carrie Brown used a fruit theme for all the gifts and decorations, but you can let your imagination run wild. Race cars? Sock monkeys? Wind-up toys? The theme (or no theme at all) is up to you.

Paige Green

Popcorn, Peanut, Pretzel, and Pickle Tree

This is the perfect tree for the often-overlooked people who prefer the salty and savory over the sweet. Pretzels and strings of peanuts and popcorn are festooned on the branches, interspersed with glass pickle ornaments (you can find them on eBay) or small cucumbers from the supermarket (be sure to replace as needed). The hardest part about making this tree? Stopping your guests from nibbling on it. ‘Tis the season for Christmas cheer–these fun holiday games will keep you joyous.

Paige Green

Paperwhite Tree

By using only decorations made from cut white paper and fabric, this tree takes the simple and makes them sensational. Paper snowflakes, flowers, chains, birds, bows, and boxes bedeck the tree, highlighted by basic white lights. When creating your ornaments, play around with different textures of paper, from shiny wax paper to sheer tissue, and fabric to add some visual interest. Save money on Christmas decor by shopping at these stores. 

Paige Green

Birdland Tree

Here’s a tree for all the bird lovers out there. In addition to all your favorite avian ornaments, this tree sports feathers, nests, and small glass balls. Keep the lighting subtle (it’s not the time to break out your eight-color strobe) so that the focus stays on the birds and the overall effect is muted and natural.

Paige Green

Hansel and Gretel Tree

What if a gingerbread house exploded onto a tree? This tree would be the result. It contains every kind of candy imaginable, some of it strung into garlands and some tucked into paper cones, accompanied by an army of gingerbread men. A star constructed from glued-together pixie sticks and hard candies tops the whole thing off. This year, travel to these winter destinations to have the white Christmas of your dreams.

Paige Green

Shimmering Tinsel Tree

Having this tree on display would be like showcasing a waterfall in your home. An abundance of tinsel drips down from every branch, letting the lights and ornaments peek out from the silvery depths. Using only glass decorations adds to the shine. Author Carrie Brown recommends Lametta lead tinsel from Germany since it is heavier and less flyaway than the mylar variety.

Paige Green

Read More: ‘The New Christmas Tree’

All of these photos come from the just-published book The New Christmas Tree. You’ll find creative Christmas tree decorating ideas for 18 other Christmas tree themes, plus how-to information to craft more than 100 decorations.

Originally Published in Reader's Digest