With all the talk about Christmas and trees and suchlike, I thought it was about time that I shared my ideas on the alternative Christmas tree. Not only are Christmas trees a bit of a waste of tree life, they create a lot of work picking up the needles (especially if you have six furry kids, like I do) and the plastic ones are very expensive and need a good amount of space to store the things throughout the year.
We have never really been greatly into decorating for Christmas, we had a tiny tree for a few years way back in 2002-4 and then things became less and less decorated as we got older. That was until the other year when I ventured into the world of the alternative Christmas tree and gave Christmas blinds a go.
It is a simple way to bring some Christmas cheer into the house and only uses a few clothes pegs to secure it to the blind strings. We also made sure that they were energy-efficient LED lights and placed them on a timer to make sure that they weren’t on all of the time. There’s not much point them being on during the day if I’m up in my studio and can’t enjoy them.
The other reason that we go for the alternative Christmas tree is because of the six meowies. If you have cats, you might be aware of the chaos that can ensue when they are let lose on exciting climbing frame with loads of bouncy, swinging, noisy things dangling from it! We have seen many an artificial tree come to a sore end of the season with the cats battering it! (sorry Mum!)
The one and only Christmas Easel
Getting into the swing of things with the Christmas blinds we decided that we would expand our Christmas decorations (on the cheap) so came about devising using my artist easel as the basis and building on that. Luckily our Eucalyptus needed a prune last year, so we snipped away at it in the pouring rain one cold December Sunday and brought the branches in safely wrapped in a towel.
After a bit of a dry and de-bugging, we were able to arrange and tie it to the tree. The smell of the eucalyptus was amazing and an unexpected side effect.
We finished it off with some warm LED lights, a Christmas Mouse that my best friend Anne made for me and some other bits and bobs from around the house including some 4D paper shapes my sister made for me and the Cubebot that Jit brought back for me from a work trip. I think by using the gifts and things from around the house made the decoration a lot more personal.
Angel Mouse and Cubebot
If you look carefully, you might notice that the tree has a willy! It is a microfibre cloth penis that I made years ago that has been the talk among our friends ever since and because of that just had to be a part of the tree decoration.
This year’s alternative Christmas tree
Unfortunately and kind of fortunately, our Eucalyptus had to come down this year, so I have had to get my thinking cap on how we will embellish the Christmas easel as our alternative Christmas tree. Luckily, one night the other weekend someone ‘deposited’ a rather large branch in a neighbouring street. After walking past t a few times I realised that it was in fact our Christmas tree in the making! So I dragged it back to our garden and it is awaiting the weekend when we crack open a bottle of mulled wine, crank up the Chrissy tunes and get decorating!
Here is the branch in it’s current glory…
It might not look like much, but keep your eyes peeled for my Christmas post next week and I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised by what it will become. At least I hope that you will be surprised and pleased the with results of the left branch alternative Christmas tree easel!
I’m actually starting to feel a bit festive now – I even did a spot of shopping yesterday for making things! *shock horror*
Looking forward to getting crafty with my branch
Do you go the alternative Christmas tree route or the traditional style? Have you got your decs up already?
Let me know in the comments – help me get in the festive spirit of things! 😀