Adding Christmas ribbons to your Christmas decor will go a long way. I think it just adds that extra pizzazz sometimes. Of course, ribbons are versatile and will always make a statement. Their multipurpose use make them a highly sought-out piece of Christmas tree decor for the holiday season.

Christmas tree with ribbon

If you’ve admired other people’s Christmas trees and wondered how exactly they got their ribbon – whether it’s a burlap ribbon or a velvet ribbon – to look so perfect and in place, you’re not alone! Notice how there is always that one person in your family or friend circle that works magic with ribbons? It may feel like it’s just not fair! But this year, that’s all going to change.

In this guide, we will walk you through how to decorate a Christmas tree with ribbon and arm you with all you need to know! We will give you tips on how to decorate with ribbon, answer frequently asked questions about it, and hopefully give you the confidence to master the art of the Christmas ribbon!

Step by Step – How to Decorate a Christmas Tree with Ribbon

Step 1: Fluff and Shape Your Christmas Tree

The most important step to achieve the best results with your Christmas ribbon is to fluff out your tree’s branches. Whether you have an artificial or fake tree, you’ll want to make sure that the branches are shaped to create more volume and look thicker than they are. This is the trick to getting your ribbon to lodge securely in place. Pull apart the wire of your artificial tree branches. Don’t be afraid to pull them up and down to fill in all the empty gaps. Don’t forget the inside branches and make it look the fullest possible before attempting anything with the ribbon.

Step 2: Add One Layer of Christmas Ribbon Around the Tree

After shaping your tree branches and making sure your pre-lit lights work (if you have to add your own Christmas lights, do that before touching the ribbon), you are ready to add the first layer.Adding the first layer of ribbon is good to start with before any ornaments because it gives a great starting point for your tree decor. Armed with the different colours and types of ribbon that match your colour theme, you are now ready to start.

As the base, you want to choose the ribbon that you’ll be using the most on your Christmas tree. If you want to create loopy patterns, take the ribbon length you’ve cut, pinch the ends together, and stick them into a gap between the branches. Mesh-wired ribbon will simply stick to the inside needles. But if you have a satin ribbon, you probably need to bend an inside branch to secure the ends. Once it’s tucked in, you can smooth out the tuft so that it’s billowing out and not wrinkled. Work down and create similar-sized tufts around the tree.

If you want to wrap the tree with ribbon, start at the top, secure your ribbon to a top branch, and work your way around the Christmas tree. Secure the ribbon in between branches so that it doesn’t fall out of place. Take time stepping back to make sure the ribbon is evenly distributed.

Step 3: Add the Big Ornaments and Embellishments

After the base ribbon is secure and in place, you can add the large ornaments to see how it fits in with the Christmas tree and ribbon. You can find an assortment of ornaments and embellishments that suit your theme and complement your ribbon designs.Examples of big ornaments are big baubles, Christmas florals with stems, angels, and more! Hang and insert these large embellishments between the ribbon tufts you created in the previous step. Make room for more ribbon and don’t overcrowd your tree.

Step 4: Add the Second Layer of Complementing Ribbon

Choose a second or third ribbon style. This can be complementing colors to the base ribbon you placed or a contrasting texture. Again, make sure they suit the theme and keep in mind that they have to create smaller loops than the first ribbon. Any second ribbon you go in with should accent the first and can be a different material if you choose.Use the same technique from the first round of ribbon and create smaller billowed loops. Make sure they are not too tight. If you can see the ends from where you pinched them on the inside, it’s totally fine and you can cover them up in the next steps! Even out the ribbon so that they are distributed evenly across your Christmas tree.

Step 5: Add the Filler Ornaments

These ornaments will likely be your small- to mid-size balls, glass ornaments, shaped, DIY, and novelty ones.With these filler ornaments, you want to fill in the gaps – where there aren’t any ribbons. Again, you don’t want to overdo your decorating, so step back and look at where there is a cluster of decorations and where you can space it out. You’re likely to have a lot of filler ornaments, so don’t be afraid to go in and fill up any gaps you see.

Step 6: Hide the Christmas Tree Ribbon Backings

If you look closely, you’ll probably see a lot of your ribbon backings. To hide this so that your guests will see a crisp-looking tree, you can add smaller elements to efficiently cover it. After the small ornaments, you can go in with accent items like artificial berries, feathers, or pine cones. The point of these accent elements is to hide the tricks you’ve implemented to keep the ribbon intact. You don’t want any of your guests to see all the work you’ve put into creating the most magical tree they’ve ever seen. Make it look effortless! 

Step 7: Add Your Tree Header

Most likely, you’ve anchored some ribbon up at the top of the tree. This means you have to be extra careful when you’re placing your tree header. Your tree header can be your family’s favourite star or angel.Or, staying in the spirit of Christmas ribbon, you can tie any extra ribbon you have into a magnificent bow and place that as your header! Search up any tutorial on how to create the perfect big bow with your wire ribbon and you’re all set to finish off your tree with a bang! 

Step 8: Step Back and Make Sure Your Décor Looks Clean

Now it’s time to admire your work! Throughout the whole decorating process, you should be stepping back to make sure the Christmas decor and ribbon look balanced and in place. You don’t want some areas to be overcrowded while some are bare. Take your time with the decor. It will pay off in the end. If you were stepping back and making sure your tree looked neat and clean throughout the whole process, this last step shouldn’t take too long or be difficult. You can step back, adjust some spots, and go back to admire your handiwork! Using ribbons doesn’t have to be hard if used methodically and carefully!

Tips to Decorate Your Tree with Ribbon

Before you get your hands on some Christmas ribbon, let’s go through some tips to better prepare you for this challenging feat!

Tip 1: Choose a Theme

The theme of your Christmas decorations are very important to how it all turns out. It’s best to brainstorm and decide on a theme before you go out and buy new Christmas tree decor and ribbons.

A theme will help you organize all your wild ideas and narrow them down to the best fit for this year. It will also prevent you from overspending on decorations when you do your Christmas shopping.

Tip 2: Choose the Right Christmas Ribbon

Now that you’ve chosen a theme, you are ready to buy the best Christmas ribbon to fit your home decorations! You will probably be overwhelmed when you visit the Christmas decor area of your department store. There is a myriad of options for ribbon, coming in all kinds of colours, sizes, measurements, and materials.Keep an eye out for “wired ribbon.” This is the best type of ribbon to wrap around your tree and form loops and bows. Wired ribbon is notoriously known for holding its shape and being easier to work with than other ribbons.

The ideal width of the ribbon you should use is about 2 ½ inches, but you can use a little wider or narrower if that’s what you’re equipped with. In terms of how much ribbon you’ll need for your Christmas tree, you’ll need about 63 feet of ribbon for a seven-foot Christmas tree. Professional decorators use this as a golden rule: You need at least nine feet of ribbon per foot of the tree.

Tip 3: Prep the Tree

Fluff out the tree so that it looks fuller. You want to shape the branches to cover any gaps. This may take a while to do, but it will give your tree the best results once you are done with your decorations.You want to make sure the lights are already strung before you start working the ribbon in. Lights are always the first step. If you have an artificial tree that has pre-lit lights, make sure you test it out before adding any ribbon. 

Tip 4: Decide on Cutting or Not Cutting Ribbon

If you choose not to cut your ribbon, you need to anchor the ribbon at the starting point. Twist one end of your ribbon around a branch near the top of the tree and wind it downward by weaving the ribbon in and out of the branches. You can repeat this in and out looping and winding pattern until the bottom of the tree. Take your time with this and make sure it looks balanced on your tree.If you want to cut your ribbon and make looped designs, cut your wired ribbon to about 20-30 inches – make sure they are even – and pinch them into a bundle. Start at the top of the tree and work your way down, tucking them into some gaps between branches to create loose clusters around the length of the tree.

If you want to cascade your ribbon down the tree – called vertical draping – start by anchoring the lengths of the ribbon at the top of the tree. Let your ribbon fall naturally toward the bottom. Tuck some parts into the branches to make room for ornaments.

Tip 5: Experiment with Color and Texture

With so many colors, textures, and materials of ribbon available on the market, you don’t have to limit yourself to just traditional Christmas colors anymore. Try experimenting with different colors that suit your decor theme! Stick to wire ribbon because it’s the easiest to play around with.You can use a combination of purple and blue for a pop of color, green and gold for a regal look, or shades of blue and silver for a frosty look! Try out solid color ribbons, plaid, and shimmery ones. You will surprise yourself with the different colors and textures that complement each other!

FAQs about Christmas Tree Ribbon

 Q: What ribbon is used for Christmas trees?
It is recommended that you use wire ribbon on Christmas trees. These are the easiest types of ribbons to work with as they can easily bend, twist, and hold into place.

There are so many textures of ribbon available on the market. You can go for mesh, glitter, burlap, tartan, metallic, or shiny satin. Once you have a theme in mind, you can focus on what ribbons will go best with that theme!

 Q: How do you make a Christmas tree look thicker with ribbon?

There are so many variations of how you can dress your Christmas tree up with ribbon. It will naturally make your tree look fuller and thicker.

Creating tufts that billow out from the tree is a coveted look that will make your Christmas tree look full. Many people choose to wrap the tree with ribbon, going down in diagonal spirals which will fill up any gaps and automatically make your tree look thicker. It actually is how I prefer to do it too when we use Christmas ribbon.

 Q: How much ribbon is needed for a Christmas tree?

This depends on how many different kinds of ribbons you will be using. You need about nine feet of ribbon per foot of tree. So, this means for an eight-foot Christmas tree, you need about 72 feet of ribbon. This is just the base. If you want to add another ribbon that accents it, you should buy another 72 feet garland.

It’s good to do all your ribbon shopping in one go and buy a lot of ribbons. Since it’s multipurpose, you can even use the extra ribbon to tie bows around the house as decoration or even to top a wrapped Christmas gift with!

Final Thoughts

Christmas ribbon is seen as a decoration item that is only handled by professional decorators. However, this is not true at all! Ribbon can be used by even first-time decorators. It’s time to let go of the anxiety of using a luxury decor item and start embracing the endless possibilities that await you!

If you’ve reveled at the beauty of ribbons and just didn’t know how to incorporate them into your own Christmas decorations, you’re probably feeling stumped and discouraged. Hopefully, this guide taught you a thing or two on how to decorate a Christmas tree with ribbon and gave you all you need to know to do it yourself.

This guide gave you a step-by-step on how to dress your tree up with Christmas ribbon, gave you some tips on how to choose the perfect ribbon for you, and even answered some frequently asked questions about Christmas ribbon.

You have all the knowledge you need to dive right into wrapping your tree! Be prepared to wow your family and guests! In addition, don’t forget to wow yourself. And remember to have fun!

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