What is the one most beautiful thing we decorate with at the Christmas season than our tree? Each year, I am a child again as I pull out each ornament carefully to hang on the tree.
My tree is made up of many layers and has developed over a number of years. I have made little changes here and there but it is a classic tree done in a Victorian style. It will not change with trends although there are new ornaments every once in a while. I like the idea that things return each year with the holidays. There is something very comforting about this tradition.
Those who followed my previous blog may remember that Charles Dickens himself influenced the look of my tree. I love the short story he wrote called 'A Christmas Tree'. This set the tone for my yearly search when I started to put together my own tree. Look for an excerpt at the end of this entry.
Along with the more serious ornaments are a few whimsical ones like this elf that was a gift from my mother.
My tree has ornaments that I have collected from many countries but also many ornaments that were given to me as gifts.
You will find many ornaments with The Nutcracker theme. I love this ballet and watch it each year. There are ballet dancers dancing among my boughs along with nutcrackers themselves.
Another love is vintage looking Santas. I rarely add ornaments anymore but this year found 3 of these beautiful reproduction vintage Santas at a little Christmas shop in Germany while we were on vacation.
I think the diversity of ornaments makes a tree something magical. You just want to keep looking to see each and every ornament. Hiding away among the branches is the German pickle ornament. Whomever finds the ornament first is said to have good luck throughout the coming year. My friend Saskia found it last year and she can tell you that the legend of the German pickle is true!
To get the Victorian look, I use three layers of various ribbons, candle lights, overflowing ornaments, pearl garland, berries, tulips (a reference to living in Holland) and red and white poinsettias. It is not a tree that is put up in a short space of time but each year we are glad we did take the time.
"I have been looking on, this evening, at a merry company of children assembled round that pretty German toy, a Christmas Tree. The tree was planted in the middle of a great round table, and towered high above their heads. It was brilliantly lighted by a multitude of little tapers; and everywhere sparkled and glittered with bright objects."
from 'A Christmas Tree' by Charles Dickens