Christmas tree decorating ideas: 15 fabulous ways to upgrade your tree

Get inspired by these Christmas tree decorating ideas – from Scandi to kitsch there's something to suit all styles...

colourful Christmas tree from Debenhams
(Image credit: Debenhams)

Looking for gorgeous Christmas tree decorating ideas that will make this your best tree EVER? Well you are in the right place because this year's Christmas trends, from understated Scandi to rainbow shades and kitsch craziness, are the best we've seen in all our years of trawling the Christmas (this, year virtual) shows, Pinterest and Instagram! 

If any year is the year to go big on the festive decor it's 2020, we all could do with a tonne of fairy lights, sparkling baubles, and gosh, maybe even some tinsel to lift the spirits. So, here, we bring you just some of our very favorite ideas to inspire you to get decorating your tree this weekend!

You'll find loads more Christmas decorating ideas in our gorgeous festive gallery. 

1. Add extra texture to your tree with ribbons

Christmas tree decor ideas

(Image credit: Home Studio List)

A  super simple Christmas tree decorating idea – tie ribbons to the branches. Sure, yo tend to associate this is more trad decor, but it can work in a modern space too, as this gorgeous living room proves. Just stick to your colour scheme and don't go over board, oh and keep the ribbons long and almost unfinished looking for a more relaxed, rustic vibe. 

2. Get a contemporary vibe with a white Christmas tree 

Christmas tree decorating ideas

(Image credit: Cara Irwin)

And if you want a really contemporary look this Christmas, a white tree is the way to go. Simple, chic and not too in your face, they bring just the right amount of festiveness without interrupting the modern scheme you have going on. Decorate with subtle colors and add some gold too for a glamorous touch. 

3. Go for a less is more approach 

holiday house tour - neutral holiday decorations

(Image credit: Jessica Sara Morris)

Again, if you aren't one for fuss in your decor take a minimalist approach to your tree decoration too. This simple tree just has a few decs really haphazardly almost thrown onto it, it shouldn't work but we think it looks great and totally works with the boho feel to this room. 

4. Add something unexpected to your tree decor

living-room-with-chairs-table-and-vintage-christmas-tree

(Image credit: Joyce Vloet/Coco Features)

Want some more unusual Christmas tree decorating ideas to copy this year? Look closely at this tree... can you see what's hanging from the bows? Teacups! So cute, and adds that kitsch feel that's been bang on trend in the last few years. We have seen a few usual 'baubles' this year – retro toys, mini photo frames, dried flowers, and we think they all add such a personal touch to a tree. Love it. 

5. Go for a cool-toned decs to match a frosted tree

Christmas tree decorating ideas: John Lewis christmas tree

(Image credit: John Lewis)

Cool-toned Christmas tree decorating schemes are bang on trend this season and look particularly stunning with an all-over frosted artificial tree. If your living room decor is on the cool side, even better. 

This festive decorating scheme has been created with the John Lewis & Partners St. Petersburg Unlit Christmas Tree , which has got to be one of the most convincing artificial Christmas trees we have ever seen. To keep with the whole cool look, decorate with blues, whites and frosty pinks. 

6. Create contrast in a dark room with gold tree decs

Christmas tree decorating ideas: Homesense Christmas 2018

(Image credit: Homesense)

Love a dark, moody interior? Choosing gold baubles for your tree rather than co-ordinating dark-toned ones will make the room feel still more opulent – and, of course, they look amazing against the emerald green of a Christmas tree. 

7. Have fun with kitsch Christmas decorations

Christmas tree decorating ideas: John Lewis & Partners Belgravia Pre-lit Christmas Tree

(Image credit: John Lewis & Partners)

Kitsch is this season's biggest alternative Christmas tree decorating trend, so why not swap traditional baubles for something a bit more colorful and light-hearted, because who wouldn't want a glittering balloon dog hanging from their tree? The kids will love this look too. 

8. Go all out on colour with rainbow decorations

Christmas tree decorating ideas: John Lewis, Rainbow Bauble Wreath £25, Matt and Shiny Coloured Baubles from £2, Wrap, Tags and Ribbon from £2


(Image credit: John Lewis)

While we may encourage you to pick a co-ordinated color scheme for an elegant tree, there are no hard and fast rules that state you have to do what we say. In fact, you can go to town, because the rainbow look for Christmas trees is a big trend this year. 

9. Add interest to the bottom of the tree

Christmas tree decorating ideas: 6 Foot Evergreen Tree £15 Wooden Dinner Candle Holder £7.50 Slim Light Up Ceramic House £15 Light Up Ceramic House £15 Woodland Bunny Objet £7.50 Woodland Fox Objet £7.50 4 Pack Woodland Animal Decorations £15 LED Wooden House £4 6 Pack Copper Swirl Glass Baubles £10 20 Pack Gold Decorative Glass Baubles £19.50 36 Pack Gold Mini Shatterproof Baubles £3 Bronze Bell Star £5 Light Up Star Tree Topper £12 Light Up Woden Star £15 Small Light Up Wooden Star £8, all Marks & Spencer

(Image credit: Marks & Spencer)

Keep the bottom of your tree from looking bare (that is, before all the presents are there) by decorating it with string lights and ornaments. This tree has been livened up with lights and light-up stars, but you could surround the bottom of your tree with giant paper baubles too.

10. Go for a minimalist Scandi look 

Christmas tree decorating ideas: Garden trading Christmas dining room

(Image credit: Garden trading)

Prefer a Scandi decorating scheme? The key is just to keep it simple, pick out a few decorations, stick to a colour scheme and just let the greenery be the focus. Ikea is always our go to for subtle, Nordic-style decs, plus they are really affordable too. 

11. Create a dreamy (new) Nordic decorating scheme

Christmas tree decorating ideas: Annie Sloan Christmas

(Image credit: Annie Sloan)

The Scandi trend for Christmas tree decorating is in full swing; want yours to be the very latest in Scandi style? Go new Nordic (yup, it's a new twist – still Scandi, but darker). Decorate your tree sparingly with a single colour for a really striking look. 

12. Let the lights do the talking 

Christmas tree decorating ideas: Lights4fun Christmas tree with star lights

(Image credit: Lights4fun )

How about leaving the baubles in the loft this year and just go to town on the lights when it comes it's decorating your Christmas tree? We love how these Lighs4fun stars look haphazardly throw over this tree. They have a really discreet battery pack that you can just tuck in among the foliage.  

13. You can't go wrong with tartan tree decs

Christmas tree decorating ideas: Dobbies Highland Tales Christmas 2018

(Image credit: Dobbies)

If you're after a traditional, cosy tree decorating scheme, take inspiration from this gorgeous living room, complete with deer-shaped and tartan tree decs.  And if you're feeling crafty, you could even make your own – got an old checked shirt that's doing nothing? Get your needle and thread ready. 

14. Mix red and blue for a contemporary twist 

Christmas tree decorating ideas: red and blue Christmas tree decorating scheme by Maisons du Monde

(Image credit: Maisons du Monde)

Want an instant update on classic red Christmas tree decorating ideas? Mix up your traditional red baubles with cool blue-hued ones, and your tree will instantly look that little bit more exciting and contemporary. 

15. Or just go for a classic red Christmas tree decorating theme 

Christmas tree decorating ideas: John Lewis Christmas tree

(Image credit: John Lewis)

You can't really go wrong with a classic red theme can you? It's lovely and warming and just so darn festive! If you are after more traditional Christmas decorating ideas, we have rounded up a load in our guide, so head over there next.  

Hebe Hatton
Hebe Hatton

Hebe joined the Real Homes team in early 2018 as Staff Writer. As a renter, she is always looking for creative ways to make her flat feel like home. She loves boho and 70's style and is a big fan of Instagram as a source of interiors inspiration.