27 Christmas tree ideas – stunning ways to decorate your fir this festive season

There are so many Christmas tree ideas to bring home, from Scandi, pared back looks to all out colorful finishes with baubles, toppers, bows, ribbons and more to for a super trad feeling space to enjoy throughout the holiday season.

holiday house tour - neutral holiday decorations
(Image credit: Jessica Sara Morris)

Looking for gorgeous Christmas tree ideas that will make this your best tree ever? You are in the right place because this year's Christmas trends – from understated Scandi to rainbow and cool kitsch shades – are the best we've seen in all our years of trawling the Christmas shows, Pinterest and Instagram.

If there was a year to go big on festive decor, it's 2021. Because we all could do with a ton of fairy lights, sparkling baubles, and perhaps even some tinsel to lift our holiday spirits high. So, here, we bring you just some of our very favorite Christmas tree ideas to inspire your decorating scheme and the style of tree you'd like.

Stunning Christmas tree ideas to copy for the holidays

Christmas trees come in all shapes and sizes – from potted to 7ft tall, or uber faux in jet black or crisp white, there's a tree for all interior styles and more importantly, to suit your favorite Christmas decorating ideas also – whether you love classic wooden decs, glitzy baubles or even Disney-inspired designs. And, how you decorate your tree will set the tone for the rest of your home's seasonal decor.

‘The way you decorate your tree sets a tone for the rest of your decorations,’ explains Susan Spath, president of Kern and Company and principal designer of Susan Spath Interior Design.

‘Think about it: as your friends and family walk into your home this holiday season, the focal point will be the Christmas tree. When you’re planning the decorations for your tree, don’t stick with simple lights and ornaments.’

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 for 2021 is to tie ribbons to the branches. Sure, you tend to associate this is more traditional Christmas decor, but it can work in a modern space too, as this gorgeous living room proves. Just stick to your color scheme and keep the ribbons long and almost unfinished looking for a more relaxed, rustic vibe.

2. Nod to contemporary vibes with a white tree 

Christmas tree decorating ideas

(Image credit: Cara Irwin)

If you want a cooler look for the holidays, a white artificial Christmas tree is the way to go. Simple and chic, a white tree can make the perfect backdrop for a modern setup, bringing just the right amount of festiveness to a space but still enhancing a contemporary interior design scheme also. Decorate yours with subtle colors and add some gilded touches for a stunning finish.

3. Choose the less is more approach 

holiday house tour - neutral holiday decorations

(Image credit: Jessica Sara Morris)

If you aren't one for fussy decor, take a minimalist approach to your tree decoration too. This simple tree just has a few decs almost haphazardly thrown onto it. it shouldn't work but it really does and looks great with the boho-esque living room ideas in the space.

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! Cute and sure to add that kitsch British feel that we naturally have a soft spot for. We have seen a few usual 'baubles' this year – think retro toys, mini photo frames, dried flowers – and they are perfect to add a little character to your tree without a big spend.

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 here to stay. Make your display particularly stunning by including an all-over frosted artificial tree. If you've more modern living room decor that's 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 fake 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 or fairy 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 Christmas decorating scheme? The key is just to keep it simple, pick out a few decorations, stick to a color 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 Nordic decorating scheme

Christmas tree decorating ideas: Annie Sloan Christmas

(Image credit: Annie Sloan)

Nordic tree decor schemes are great for households that enjoy their decor a little more dramatic. Choose darks and decorate your tree sparingly with a single color 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 Lights4fun stars look haphazardly throw over this tree. They have a very discreet battery pack too that you can simply tuck in amongst the foliage.  

13. Tartan tree decs

Christmas tree decorating ideas: Dobbies Highland Tales Christmas 2018

(Image credit: Dobbies)

If you're after a traditional, cozy 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 DIY Christmas decorations to put on there? If you have 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. Stick to the classics

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! Perfect again a colorful wall or to cozy up your Christmas mantel decor furthermore.

16. Opt for oversized baubles for impact

white frosted Christmas tree with big bright baubles through the doorway , gold stocking and paper decorations

(Image credit: Wayfair)

We tend to use similar sized decorations don’t we, out of habit, but how about going big with some of them? This bold look with the large pink and green baubles creates a more dramatic look than if they were standard sized designs. It’s good to play with scale – it creates a more interesting look that’s bolder and more eye-catching. 

17. Who wouldn’t love pastel tree decs?

frosted Christmas tree with pastel decorations,, taupe wall, mirrored sideboard, presents

(Image credit: Dunelm)

Complete with pastel wrap, this charming living room is all about ice-cream shades and oodles of glittery gold fairy lights. 

The tree decorations are all in various tones of pink, lavender, green and vanilla with the odd teal accent. It makes for a very harmonious looking Christmas tree that really suits a muted scheme. 

18. Pare it back with handcrafted style decorations

Christmas tree with natural wooden and paper decorations, garland on mantle, open fire, armchair, presents

(Image credit: George Home)

If bright and glitzy isn’t your bag, then opt for a simple, more traditional feel that features Christmas decorations crafted from wood and the like.

These delightful decorations hark back to a time when they would have been carved from wood and hung with string. Keep the fairy lights simple and be inspired by this scene that’s very natural and full of country cottage charm. 

19. Choose a stylish 'junk food’ scheme

red and white Christmas tree decorations, frosted tree, wrapped presents

(Image credit: George Home )

Love pizza, popcorn, coffee, hot chocolate and candy cane? Well, this set of decorations is the epitome of all things that ‘may’ be unhealthy, but also glorious. We love the red and white vibe too, it’s simple yet very effective and looks fabulous on a faux frosted Christmas tree. 

Follow the theme into your wrap selection and tie up your gifts with multicolored ribbons.

20. Enhance dark interiors

black Christmas tree with gold and white decorations, fairy lights and presents

(Image credit: Cox & Cox)

There are definitely more options these days if you want to stand out from the crowd. A black Christmas tree is one idea that’s perfect if you want to embrace your dark and moody interiors. They look fabulous draped in fairy lights, in fact, the more the merrier, we love this black, gold and white scheme – it’s truly dazzling. 

21. Choose sustainability and opt for paper decorations

Christmas tree with paper decorations

(Image credit: Rose & Grey)

Gone are the days when most baubles were made of glass, the majority are plastic, so if you want to take a more eco-friendly approach to decorating your tree then consider paper designs. 

This tree is entirely decorated with recycled paper decs and we love the simplicity and cohesiveness of this look. Make it even more perfect by popping eco-friendly gifts for Christmas for your loved ones underneath. 

22. Choose an icy blue theme for a contemporary look

white frosted Christmas tree with teal blue decorations, garland on mantle and fireplace

(Image credit: Studio)

If you love an ice queen theme then consider this uber cool look that’s definitely chilly. The teal blue decorations with the frosted tree set the wintery scene perfectly. Match your wrap to the theme and add in a hint of silver as an extra element.

23. Go for rich and opulent tones

red and gold Christmas tree with red living room walls, red and gold decorations, orange sofa

(Image credit: Dobbies)

If your scheme already has tons of red then adding gold to the mix will create a lovely warm festive scheme. Look for decorations that have a textured finish as well as smooth baubles – as with all things interior it’s good to mix up shapes, sizes and patterns for interest. Another color that works well with these shades is rust as it links really well to red and gold.

24. When your interior scheme is monochrome...

white Christmas tree with fairy lights in a monochromatic scheme

(Image credit: Mel Bean Interiors )

When your existing interior scheme is quite specific – like this monochromatic scheme, it can be hard to know what style of tree to get. This white frosted tree does the trick, it keeps it simple and all the fairy lights add warmth. The baubles are subtle so they don't distract from the rest of the scheme, add a splash of color with your gift wrapping instead. 

25. Fluff it up

classic Christmas tree with trad decorations , presents, garland, sofa, leather armchair, console

(Image credit: John Lewis)

This tree's decor is full of woodland creatures – if you look carefully you’ll see deers, pheasants and numerous birds.There’s well cared for poinsettia too with berries and the odd pear. All of the quintessential elements that make up a classic Christmas with a hint of countryside too.

26. Add meaningful touches

Classic Christmas tree with iconic decorations

(Image credit: Kern & Company)

'‘To create a luxurious holiday lifestyle I like to decorate my trees with only the finest ornaments so elevate your tree by adding Baccarat crystal snowflakes and hand-painted Jay Strongwater ornaments,’ explains Susan Spath, president of Kern and Company and principal designer of Susan Spath Interior Design.

If your budget is on the tighter side then look for Christmas tree decorations that are vintage for that truly authentic look.

27. DIY your Christmas tree

wooden Christmas tree with baubles and wrapped presents

(Image credit: Habitat)

If you love the minimalist look you might not want a faux or real tree that’s covered in decorations. 

A pared back, yet contemporary design like this will suit a modern feel much more. We love the simple colorways too – brown paper, white and silver wrap that matches the baubles and wooden tree, perfect!

What's the best way to decorate a Christmas tree?

We asked Mel Bean, founder and interior designer at Oklahoma based Mel Bean Interiors for her top tips on decorating Christmas trees:

'Much like designing a room, it’s important to have a clear vision before beginning to decorate a Christmas tree.'

'Once you’ve settled on a concept, ensure that every choice, from ornaments to gift wrap you plan to use under the tree is working towards that vision. Sometimes this means using a limited color palette and layering textures. Think outside the box when decorating your tree.  I have used vintage black wooden necklaces to drape on  branches, and mixed with the right ornaments if felt very holiday appropriate!  Be sure to use a variety of sizes when selecting ornaments.  A few giant round ornaments mix with more traditional sizes beautifully and ensure it does not feel monotonous.'

What should my Christmas tree theme be?

Your Christmas tree theme should be whatever you like best, and be guided by your interior style. Forever popular is the candy cane tree in red and white, hotly followed by the rainbow technicolor option and of course, the classic red, gold and green stays a true winner for the holidays – suiting most households.  

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.

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