Monday, January 3, 2011

How to Really "Trim" the Tree

I realize it's the NEW YEAR, but I'm not done with Christmas.

Last blog I mentioned I'd talk a little more about trimming the tree--so here I go.

A few years decades millennia ago I read an article by a hoity toity designer about trimming a Christmas tree.

That idea rolled around in the back of my mind until this year when I remembered to try it.

Conventional wisdom says a "Good" tree is tall and full and dense and shaped like a perfect triangle.
We always search the lot until we come away with the fullest, roundest, densest tree we can find.
...and then I struggle in leather gloves to stuff lights up inside it to give it that wonderful glow.  I finish by arranging the ornaments on the outer layer.  The bells don't jingle, Mickey Mouse's arms and legs don't dangle and there's no place to hang the 6oz Santa face.

In 2004 we had a super thick one. You can see  the Santa Face here with all the wires running around on the outside of the tree. 

Not good. Why?  Because we had to have that big-fat-thick-heavy tree.

Well no more!
Mr. Hoity Toity Designer had it right.
By trimming he meant cutting it with garden clippers.
He culled out the branches he didn't want and shaped the tree so it would show off the ornaments.

Here's my Much Improved 2010 Tree.

It's a little lop-sided but I think it was one of the prettiest trees we've ever had.--Maybe you needed to have seen it in real life.

We started by picking a not so dense tree.
Then I went to work with the garden clippers.

 I started in the middle because there was a ghost of a layer already in place and I didn't know what I was doing.  I clipped, working my way around the tree and then moving on to the next "layer". 

I admit it's scary to hack out almost a third of the Christmas tree, but what the heck. If it had been a disaster, we'd have decorated it anyway and acted like we didn't know any better.

So Faithful Blog Followers, put this idea in the back of your mind and bring it out in a few years. I hope you'll be as happy with your "trimmed" tree as I was.