It’s time to get your Christmas Tree up and decorated now and after such a dreadful year for many of us, it seems fitting to make a special effort to bring back a bit of festive sparkle.

christmas tree

The Pendrill Christmas Tree 2020.

After the tree itself, the lights are the next consideration. You may like me have drawers full of boxes of lights of all colours and styles. Every year I seem to see something new that looks better. I have currently opted for the small white lights on the thin wires, which I think look great. Beware though with these; they get easily tangled and the wires can snap.

The fun bit must surely be adding the decorations…. Some opt for a varied mish mash of decorations, others all very colour coordinated, traditional or modern, expensive or cheap, shop bought or made at home. With such a mind-blowing array of decorations available in shops and online it’s not easy to know where to start. I reckon how you decorate your tree says a lot about you (as well as your budget). This got me thinking about what I like on my tree. And the answer is variety from traditional baubles to the most eye-catching crafted decorations. From cheap and cheerful to budget . My other half has banished any tinsel on it this year, which he says is ‘old fashioned’, even though I insist most shops still sell it.


Delightful sparkling moon decoration.

I thought it might be fun to get my close-up lens on and take a detailed look at exactly what’s on my tree, where it came from and why I chose what I did….

The fist shot is of my most recent acquisition, from Ashton Hall Garden Centre. This gold crest of moon decoration certainly caught my eye and was something a bit different.


Unusual pair of glass flamingos.

Some ornaments are gifts from loved ones, as was this unusual pair of glass flamingos.

Handmade glass sheep.

This hand crafted glass sheep made me smile when I saw it in the window of a shop in Carnforth. I liked the idea that it was fun and hand-made locally.


Leaping reindeer.

Barton Grange Garden Centre near Preston always has a spectacular range of Christmas tree decorations. This evocative silver leaping reindeer made a very nice addition this year. I liked the detail and sense of movement, as if that’s just the sort of photo I’d loved to have snapped.


Owl bauble.

Back at Ashton Hall Garden Centre the other week, I couldn’t resist this very appealing owl bauble. I always think, what will best catch the light when choosing decorations, so think reflections and sparkle! Who says a Christmas bauble has to be just round and shiny?


Elvis is on the tree.

From the sublime to the ridiculous. Surely only in the USA could you find an Elvis Christmas decoration. Kitsch or not, on a holiday in New York some years ago, I spotted this and couldn’t resist.


Australian bauble .

Another decoration from afar and a souvenir of another holiday, to Australia, I loved the beautiful detail painted on this bauble. What could be nicer at such a cold time of year to be thinking of happy holidays far away? Sadly I had a second even more dramatic glass bauble of the Sydney Opera House (as you do) which alas hit the hearth and smashed. Try as I might I haven’t yet secured a replacement on the internet.

Over the top?

Some ornaments are a bit over-the-top and ‘camp’, so I couldn’t resist this sparling golden crown; attribute perhaps to some of the many Royal visits I photographed in my press days.


Little drummer boy


I tend to put smaller decorations nearer to the top of the tree to give balance and I have several of these dinky little drums. This for sure is a nod to my youthful days when I used to play drums in a band.


Snowman with a sound.

As a child I remember being fixated with some large bell ornaments on the family Christmas tree. They gave such a lovely sound when knocked. So I had to have a bell on my tree and I found this little snowman bell.


Colourful copper and enamel.

Back at senior school, I proudly made this in the art class, from copper and enamel. Many years later I found it in a drawer and decided that the fuchsia inspired ornament (originally meant to be a pendant) made a perfect and very personal Christmas tree decoration.

So there you have it! I hope you have enjoyed the stories behind what’s on my Christmas tree. What’s on your tree this year and why not turn it into a festive photography project? whether you are photographing ornaments or using the tree as a great backdrop some family portraits have fun!