Decorating Christmas Tree with Ribbons

fnmrobertsDecember 2, 2011

Does anyone have a technique for using ribbon on their tree?

I have some 2" wide ribbon with wire edges. When I try light twists and placement, it just doesn't look right. Maybe I'm too critical. I'd like a whispy, just fell from the sky look, not structured.

Any tips will be appreciated. Going to be gone for the next two days so won't be able to acknowledge appreciation or respond to questions before early week.

TIA

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polly929

I used to work at a Christmas store when I was in HS. Here is what we did there with wired ribbon. At the top of the tree, we put a multi-looped bow that was stapled to keep in place. And hanging down from the giant bow, the ribbon was spiraled and hanging down. I don't know how to explain it real well and not sure if you will understand this. In any case, I just googled and found a ton of images.

Here is a link that might be useful: Christmas Tree w/ ribbon

    Bookmark   December 2, 2011 at 4:23PM
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Oakley

Polly, how do you spiral the ribbon? Today I played with different wired ribbons trying to spiral them and I just made a huge mess!

    Bookmark   December 2, 2011 at 4:32PM
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jab65

Wrap it around a can?

    Bookmark   December 2, 2011 at 5:06PM
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rafor

It sort of comes off the roll in a spiral shape. But I get what you mean, fnmroberts, about wanting it to look wispy. Seems to me if you work with it too much it looks staged and awkward. But I'm the first to admit that I am really bow challenged!

    Bookmark   December 2, 2011 at 6:44PM
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dawnp

I am including a link to my tree last year. It actually looked better than it shows in the photographs. I am linking to photobucket so you can enlarge the picture to see better.

My first tip would be to use 2 ribbons. I first tried with just the red and it looked blah. Also, I put the ribbon on first, before the ornaments. Start at the top like I did in the photo and start to wrap around the tree. What you do is attach it to the tree with wire in spots. You kind of "pouff" it out before attaching so it isn't tightly wrapped. Hopefully you can see in the photos.

I found directions somewhere last year that helped me. I will think hard as to where I got them and post the link here if I find it.

Here is a link that might be useful: Christmas Tree

    Bookmark   December 2, 2011 at 11:11PM
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WhiteRiverSooner

There are several youtube videos that show how to do this.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hv374w8Yph8&feature=related
Sorry, I don't know how to do more than one link. This one is a good demo, even though she is using a very large ribbon. As she says, it is easier to see what she is trying to show.

The linked one is good, too, and uses a normal sized ribbon.

Here is a link that might be useful: Decorate your tree with ribbon

    Bookmark   December 3, 2011 at 12:09AM
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mboston_gw

That is a really good link /WhiteRiverSooner. For some reason I always tried to make the ribbon strands start at the top and come all the way down. Starting them at different heights made it look better. I like the ribbon going vertically instead of being wrapped around the tree.
I think too that it looks better on a thinner tree than a thick tree like ours. Thanks for the link!

    Bookmark   December 3, 2011 at 7:34AM
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busybee3

i appreciated that link too!! thx!

    Bookmark   December 3, 2011 at 7:53AM
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Sidney4

I just got back yesterday from a business trip in New Orleans. The hotel in the French Quarter where I stayed had a beautiful tree that was decorated with ribbon. I snapped this picture thinking I might try this on my own tree. Its a little blurry for some reason but I hope you can still see they way they seem to weave the ribbon into the branches of the tree.

    Bookmark   December 3, 2011 at 8:13AM
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WhiteRiverSooner

Glad to help. Youtube can be a great souce for all kinds of demos, including cooking and diy home projects.

    Bookmark   December 3, 2011 at 10:14AM
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xantippe

Ooh, that New Orleans tree is gorgeous!

I use my ribbon very differently. I have a very gauzy 2"apple green wired ribbon that I wrap around the tree (in a spiral fashion) maybe ten times. I nestle it somewhat back among the branches. It adds depth and fills out the tree, but does not draw a lot of attention to itself.

You may want to have a more dramatic effect, but if you don't, this is a good way to go.

    Bookmark   December 3, 2011 at 11:14AM
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anitamo

I agree that YouTube is the place to go for tutorials on using ribbon on the tree. One I just watched used green pipe cleaners to attach the ribbon, and placed ornaments at that spot to hide the pipe cleaner.

    Bookmark   December 3, 2011 at 12:02PM
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terriks

That was a good video, but on a shallow note - was I the only one distracted by the somewhat messy kitchen in the background?

    Bookmark   December 3, 2011 at 12:22PM
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hhireno

I'm small minded and mean because I didn't watch the video until I read the above comment and then I was curious. To be fair, I've found it's so easy to overlook things IRL that are glaringly obvious when you look at the same scene in a picture. I wonder why that is?

    Bookmark   December 3, 2011 at 1:07PM
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deee_gw

I always notice stuff like that kitchen and then I feel horrible for being nosey.

    Bookmark   December 3, 2011 at 2:16PM
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jennifer_in_kansas

WhiteRiverSooner, thanks for the link!

J

    Bookmark   December 3, 2011 at 11:03PM
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WhiteRiverSooner

Your welcome, jennifer.

I never noticed the kitchen. I never notice things like that, as I am so focused on the subject matter. Or maybe I am not very observant.

    Bookmark   December 4, 2011 at 9:19AM
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ellendi

terriks:LOL that's what you get when you are TKO!

    Bookmark   December 4, 2011 at 2:03PM
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terriks

I used to take pictures of houses for real estate flyers and to put online, and I was very picky about my pictures. I would remove clutter and sometimes slightly rearrange furniture to get a good shot.
Of course I can overlook clutter and dust bunnies in my own house quite easily, but I always move stuff when I take pictures.

    Bookmark   December 4, 2011 at 8:20PM
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zipdee

I used the really wide Deco mesh ribbon this year as a garland, I think it's like 21" wide. You pull it together, bunch, wire and so on down the tree. It's so fun to use and makes the tree look like it's wearing a tu-tu. :) Then I tucked a 2" inch ribbon deep into the tree to help fill in the tree.

Full tree :

Close up, you see the deco mesh, then just 'glimpses' of the other ribbon inside the tree.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2011 at 6:02AM
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terriks

Beautiful tree zipdee, and I'll bet that it looks spectacular in person, especially with you red and white walls.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2011 at 12:44PM
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dawnp

Love it ZipDee! You did a great job!

    Bookmark   December 5, 2011 at 12:47PM
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fnmroberts

Thanks to everyone for your responses, dialogue and examples. WhiteRiverSooner, your video link is very helpful. Guess I'm internet deficient as I never even thought of googling for information.

Hope everyone has success decorating their own tree.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2011 at 2:34PM
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zipdee

Thanks Terriks and Dawnp! The deco mesh is very fun and easy to work with. I've been trying to think of a new project to use it for, sadly I don't need more wreaths.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2011 at 4:53PM
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rilie

I personally think the mesh ribbon like Zipdee used is 1000x easier to work with than the more narrow, typical wired ribbon. It looks like they used the mesh on the New Orleans tree also. That's what I've used for the last 4 years or so, but bought some new wired ribbon at Micheal's this year to 'change things up' a bit. I've started the tree 3 times now, and it's still not done. An exercise in frustration, for me anyway.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2011 at 5:48PM
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allison0704

I used two rolls of wired ribbon this year that I found in my holiday boxes. Next year, I hope to find some ornaments with some length.

Here is a link that might be useful: my tree and mantel

    Bookmark   December 6, 2011 at 10:47AM
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bleigh

Don't know if any of these photos will help. These are three trees I decorated for a client a few weeks ago. Unfortunately, my photos are horrid as her house was still in shambles and I couldn't really get the images I wanted without tons of clutter in the way. Terriks I feel better now about avoiding all the mess.

Anyway, For the first tree I just wrapped and tucked the wide deco mesh. The second, I used a narrow more delicate mesh and two wired ribbons. I started at the top and just draped the ribbons down, gathered and wrapped, and on every other wrap I would make a bow (just loop and wrap with branch or wire) and then drap down. For the center draping I did make a larger bow towards the center. The little tree I did the same technique as the second tree.

You can also go back with any extra ribbon and tuck in a few tails or streamers where you've tucked your ribbon on the tree. This will help with a wispy look. Give the tails a gentle or tight curl (a can is a useful tool if you can't do with your hands.) Or don't worry about draping your ribbon like a garland and just make loops and tails and tuck all around the tree. I hope this makes sense.

    Bookmark   December 6, 2011 at 11:14PM
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terriks

Bleigh, those trees are gorgeous! I especially love the first one. Can you buy the wide mesh ribbon at any craft store?

    Bookmark   December 7, 2011 at 12:02AM
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bleigh

Terriks, where I live you can get the deco mesh at Hobby Lobby and Michaels. Michaels is only carrying red and gold, but HL has a little more variety. Seems like the standard price per roll is around $10 at these stores. Smaller florists shops are carrying them as well but are much more expensive. Look around online for "Poly deco mesh" too for more variety and good prices. Just watch out for shipping. Would recommend at least 2 rolls for a 6-7 1/2 ft tree.

Noticed you saying you used to take interior photography for real estate flyers!! That's one of the things I wanna' do when I grow up. In fact, I'm getting ready to take new pics of my house today for the MLS...trying to avoid nuclear glare windows (don't you just hate that?).

    Bookmark   December 7, 2011 at 9:51AM
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ratherbesewing

My local Sam's Club had 21" mesh ribbon for about $7 in gold,silver,green, and red. I tried using it on my stair garland, but found it too wide and returned it. I should have tried it on the tree :(

    Bookmark   December 7, 2011 at 12:28PM
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zipdee

Terriks, I found mine at Fred's for $7 a roll, they had red, gold and green. My 8 foot, kind of skinny tree took 2 1/2 rolls.

Bleigh, wonderful job on those trees, they are beautiful!

    Bookmark   December 7, 2011 at 1:18PM
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dawnp

Thanks for posting Bleigh. I am not sure if you saw the other post where someone was searching for your previous tree(s) photos. We found the post.

You are very talented and decorate the most beautiful trees!

    Bookmark   December 7, 2011 at 4:06PM
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