This year my cozy apartment is living large with a stunning new blue and silver Christmas tree courtesy of Balsam Hill.  Here are some tips for decorating a tree beautifully filled with sparkle, color, and a touch of the dramatic.


How to Decorate a Stunning Blue and Silver Christmas Tree with Balsam Hill


Growing up, decorating for Christmas was a big deal in my home.  My dad was all about hanging lights on our front porch and creating gorgeous swags filled with miniature lights. My mom always had a DIY Christmas decor project and could be counted on to cover our tree with lights and ornaments and garland until it looked like one huge sparkly Christmas ornament. Seriously it took work to find the greens.

Although they really weren’t too keen on the idea, when I went away to college, I made my parents promise to not do any Christmas decorating until I got home for Christmas break.  I didn’t want to miss all the fun.


Create a classy blue and silver Christmas with these stunning ornaments from Balsam Hill. Great TIPS for styling and French country theme ideas


You would think that at some point I would grow tired of decorating my home for Christmas, but I enjoy it as much as I did in my college days, if not more than ever. That’s why I lept at the opportunity to partner with Balsam Hill.  Renowned for their exquisite trees and decorations I couldn’t wait for my Balsam Hill packages to arrive.


Pick up styling tips for creating a stunning blue and silver Christmas tree using Balsam Hill products


Notice the size of these boxes.  That’s because the ornaments I choose are huge.


Look at the size of these boxes from Balsam Hill!


A few months ago, we purchased a large area rug for our apartment.  We needed something that was more “us” to give our space a bit of color and style. The rug’s pattern and dark blue and gray tones nudged me towards decorating in a French country style.  It also influenced my ornament choices.  I almost flipped when I saw the Midnight Frost ornament collection. The dark blue ornaments were perfect and the whole collection set the stage for that gorgeous dark blue.  They are the largest ornaments I have ever used on a tree and definitely create more visual interest and drama on my narrow tree.


Unpacked Midnight Frost Ornaments from Balsam Hill Laying on the Rug Waiting to go on my Blue & Silver Christmas Tree


Trying to stay on theme, I fell in love with these etched French country ornaments.  Their reflective quality adds sparkle to the tree and compliments the frosty feeling of the other ornaments.


Gorgeous Balsam Hill Etched French Country Ornament Set Waiting to Decorate my Blue and Silver Christmas Tree


My next ornament choice was a traditional ball.  Described as “medium” in size, these Polish handblown ornaments are large and have the most beautiful finish.  I chose the matte white because their simple style does not compete with the other ornaments and they add more brightness to the tree.


I've fallen in LOVE with the stunning BH Essentials Medium White Matte Ornament Set for my Silver Christmas Tree


The 6.5 foot Berkshire Mountain Fir Tree with clear lights which I selected is narrow at 42 inches in diameter.  It gives the shape and feeling of a large full tree without taking up a lot of square footage… something that’s super important in an apartment.  At first, I wasn’t sure of the tree’s placement.  We experimented by moving around all the furniture but in the end, we broke the “rules” and moved the rug close to the wall,  popped out a small occasional chair, scootched my chest closer to the door and had more than enough room for the tree.

So often small apartment dwellers choose small trees and small ornaments. Don’t fall into the trap of small thinking.  This tree is definitely more dramatic because of my oversized ornament selections.  It definitely is a presence in the room and yet absolutely perfect in scale.

The crowning touch of the tree is this incredible 60″ silver Elizabeth beaded tree skirt.  Oh, my goodness, the sequins reflect the light beautifully and add another layer of sparkle.


Balsam Hill Tree, Ornaments, and Tree Skirt are Extraordinary and PERFECT with my Blue & Gray Rug - Hello Blue & Silver Christmas Tree


From the moment I opened the box, I was impressed with the attention the detail Balsam Hill had given to the Christmas tree.  Everything I could possibly need was thoughtfully placed in the box.


Opening the Tree Box from Balsam Hill


Clear pictorial directions are included in a booklet for safe keeping. Each section of the tree is wrapped in bubble wrap and tied up with ribbon.  I might have started doing the happy dance when I discovered that the tree came with a foot switch.  Once the tree is up and the skirt is in place there’s no hunting for the plug or creating some other sort of system to turn the tree on and off.  All I do now is run my foot over the tree skirt and give the button switch a little push and there is light… or darkness!!  Voila!


Unboxing my Balsam Hill Tree and Discovering a Foot Switch


There were even two pairs of gloves… one for small hands and the other for larger hands… for handling and fluffing the tree.  This is such a great idea, it’s amazing how they protect your hands from scratches, getting dried out and making the fluffing process all that much easier. And everything needed for replacing fuses and lightbulbs is included as well as extra caps for the stand and hooks for the light wires.  I was also pleased to see that a sturdy vinyl storage bag was included.  I’m about the details and no detail was overlooked.


Everything you need including gloves is included in the Balsam Hill tree box


Assembly of the tree and lights was straightforward and quick.


Decorating Tips to Make Your Tree Sparkle

Style TIP 1 :: Place a piece of foam core board under your tree stand before you begin fluffing.

Once the tree was assembled, prior to fluffing it, I cut a piece of foam core board and placed it under the tree stand.  This is something that I’ve found has been so helpful to me in fluffing artificial Christmas trees.  It’s especially helpful when the tree stand is placed on carpet, but wood floors have small cracks that can be challenging to turn as well. I have found that I can rotate the tree as I fluff, easily moving the tree on its board while I stay put.  This is especially helpful when working on the lower branches.  It also means that I can work on the tree away from the wall and other furniture and then easily skootch it in place when I’m ready to decorate it.


Tree Decorating Tip that Really Helps - Silver Christmas Tree


Style TIP 2 :: Decorate the inside of the tree as well as the outside.

I’m a firm believer of decorating the inside of the tree as well as the edges.  It gives more visual interest, depth, and dimension to a Christmas tree.  To facilitate the process, I will use some inexpensive ornaments on the inside.  You can see that I actually hung them on the branches BEFORE I fluffed.  If I have a lot of ornaments I often will add more in the middle of the lower branches between those near the trunk and those on the branch tips. It’s also a great way to use the ornaments you’re not crazy about, but don’t feel right about leaving off the tree.


Tips for Decorating Your Christmas Tree


Style TIP 3 :: Take Your Time Fluffing the Tree

For me, the hardest part of having an artificial tree is fluffing it. However, it’s one of the most important steps, so be sure to allow plenty of time.  Put on happy music that will help you work quickly. Be sure to look at the photos online to see how your tree is supposed to look AND keep in mind how Mother Nature’s needled branches are arranged. I want my tree to look natural and to achieve that I need to give attention to fluffing.  I always start with a single branch and arrange the individual needle branches closest to the trunk and work my way out.  This Berkshire Mountain Fir Tree has branches grouped together… usually in threes.  Sometimes it’s easy to miss these branch groups.


On Happy Balsam Hill Fluffed Tree


Style Tip 4 :: Adding Ribbon Gives Another Layer of Visual Interest to Your Tree

This was the first time I’ve used 4 inch ribbon to decorate a tree.  This is not a large tree so at first glance I thought I should have paid attention and chosen a narrower ribbon.  However, the same techniques hold true for a wide ribbon as a narrower ribbon.  First… don’t shoot for perfection.   Ribbon adds life and movement to your tree so relax as you tuck the ribbon among the branches.  Second… don’t be afraid to cut your ribbon.  I make cuts with ribbon lengths between 3 feet and 5 feet long.  This allows you to play with your ribbon and it’s less wieldy to take around the tree.  It also helps your ribbon go farther.  Feel free to use a branch as a wire to hold your ribbon in place if necessary.

I’m quite smitten with this Platinum Pleated Lamé Ribbon I chose. It’s a wee bit warmer in tone than I thought it would be, but in the end, I couldn’t be happier. I didn’t select the paint color for my walls here in the apartment which is a warm white as is my loveseat, so it takes what would otherwise be a cool blue and silver look and softens it.


Adding WIDE Ribbon to the Silver Christmas Tree


Style TIP 5 :: Forget What THEY Say… Place Your Tree Skirt BEFORE Hanging the Ornaments

Once the ribbon has been arranged, it’s time to hang the ornaments.  Well… ALMOST!  Now is the time to scootch your tree in place… just where you want it.  Make sure your light cord and on/off switch are where you want them and THEN… add your tree skirt.  I know this seems early, but trust me, it’s easier to add the skirt now without ornaments in place, than later.  If you’re concerned that you’re going to step on it, etc., just fold it back a bit where you will be stepping.


Style Tips for Decorating Your Christmas Tree


Style TIP 6 :: Don’t Hang ALL the Ornaments on the Tree Tips

How do people have Christmas tree decorating parties?  I mean, there is no way to control where the ornaments are placed or what order they should be hung.  By now you’ve figured out that although I would LOVE to have a Christmas tree decorating party it would just stress me out and I’d have to take all the ornaments down and start over after everyone had left.  Because you now know that about me, you’ll totally get my ornament hanging process.  I hope. 😉

Remember how we placed ornaments “inside” the tree?  My goal is to not have all the ornaments hanging around the outside of the tree.  I’m not aiming for perfection… my goal is always visual interest.  With that in mind, I took the gorgeous matte white ornaments and tucked them further into the branches to start off.  These ornaments are simple and beautifully reflective, so they are perfect for tucking back into the branches a bit.


Style Tips for Hanging Ornaments on a Balsam Hill Christmas Tree


TIP 6 :: Think Outside the Star or Angel Box for Your Tree Topper

Personally, I don’t think every tree needs a tree topper and I also don’t think that a fluffy bow, angel, or star are required tree toppers for the more traditional trees.  When I selected my tree’s decorations, I couldn’t decide on a topper, so I decided that I would just go with the flow and see what happened.  It was the best choice I could have made.  Instead of hanging all the finials on the tree, I turned them upside down and stuck them on top of the tree.  It feels regal, gives an icicle look, and is a bit whimsical too.  All that was required was a light touch, patience, and some lightweight wire, though you could also use ribbon. Because these ornaments are handblown glass they are fragile.  They feel very sturdy, more so than any glass ornaments I’ve previously decorated with, but still, I was extremely careful in “hanging” these.  They were individually and carefully wired to the top stem of the tree.  They aren’t perfectly arranged, but perfection is overrated I keep telling myself.


Think Outside the Box for a Tree Topper. These Finials from the Balsam Hill Midnight Frost Ornament Set Become Tree Toppers


Style TIP 7 :: Hang Your “Featured” Ornaments Early for Maximum Exposure

I know that sounds funny, but if you have ornaments that are special, you want to make sure that they are evenly placed on your tree for visual interest.  You don’t want to squeeze them in wherever they fit.  Hanging them early you can place them exactly where they will fit and look the best.  I wanted to make sure the lovely finials from the Midnight Frost Set would dangle from the branches perfectly so I chose to hang them first.  There weren’t many left over after I used the majority of them as a tree topper.  Still, their placement was important to me and I wanted them to hang straight.


Strategic Ornament Placement


Style TIP 8 :: When you have an assortment of ornaments, choose to hang them according to color or style.

I selected 3 collections of ornaments for my tree.  Earlier I hung the beautiful Polish white matte ornaments, nestling them into the branches, plus hanging the few finials.  I have two collections left. The Midnight Frost set has four color groups and approximately 8 ornament styles so I decided to disperse them through the tree according to color.  First dark blue, then silver gray, then frosty white, then the sea glass blue. And finally, the clear etched French country ornaments are the finishing touch.


Beautiful Midnight Frost Ornaments from Balsam Hill are HUGE and Look AMAZING on my French Country Style Christmas Tree

EASY style TIPS to Give your tree a French country look with these Balsam Hill ornaments


The photos below show each the tree coming to life with each ornament addition.


Styling Tips for Adding Christmas Decorations to Your Tree

Styling a Christmas Tree by Color using Balsam Hill Ornaments

Frosty White Balsam Hill Ornaments Added to the Christmas Tree

Balsam Hill Sea Glass Ornaments Added from the Midnight Frost Collection

Finally the Blue and Silver Christmas Tree is Complete

Reflection ~ Color ~ Sparkle

I couldn’t be more delighted with how my tree turned out.  The ornaments are exquisite and I achieved the look I was after… a modern French country style.


Beautiful modern French country apartment living room dressed up with a Balsam Hill Silver Christmas Tree with Blue Accents


Ornaments as gorgeous as these aren’t just for the tree.  I reserved two rounds balls for my end table.  They add color and drama to an otherwise tone on tone styled vintage French provincial table.


Dark blue Midnight Frost ornaments add drama to the end table for Christmas - French country style decorating ideas


And I couldn’t resist creating a swag for my shutters with fresh greens and the Midnight Frost finials I’m so smitten with, topped off with a gorgeous bow made from the Platinum Pleated lamé Ribbon.  This is one of those quick and easy decorating projects.


Quick and Easy Christmas Decorating Idea that is a stunning idea for French country decorating at Christmas with fresh greens and decorations from Balsam Hill


Did you notice how the pleating of the ribbon in the bow replicates the louvers in the shutters?  And the color of the ribbon and the shutters blend beautifully.  I couldn’t have planned it better.  This was a very happy coincidence.

Decorating with blue at Christmas can be so very tricky as there are so many shades of blue.  It’s important to have a light touch and balance the blue out with other complementary colors and tones.  My rug, as beautiful as it is, has a blue that is less common.  Can you believe how well all the details came together?  I feel so very blessed and I’m so grateful to Balsam Hill for providing my tree, ornaments, and tree skirt.


Decorating ideas for how to style a blue and silver Christmas tree with a French country touch

I hope you were inspired to look at small space Christmas decorating in a new way.  Be sure to pin this post so you can refer to my style tips next year when you get ready to decorate your tree for Christmas.

Click here for more Christmas decorating ideas and Advent inspiration.

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  1. Your tree looks absolutely gorgeous, Diane! I love the colors you chose and the way that you wove everything together perfectly. And that swag….stunning!

    p.s. I’m going to have to remember the foam board tip for next year. You are a genius!

    • Thank you, Mary Beth! It was such a blessing to have these wonderful items to work with.
      Glad you like the foam core board tip. It’s a lifesaver for me. I’m always about making a task easier. 😉

  2. Julie Briones says

    Lovely, Diane! Love that you shared in such detail. Very fun to read, and very helpful! Merry CHRISTmas!

    • Awww… thanks Julie! You know it was very time-consuming to write, but I wanted to share some of the tips that I use. So glad you found it a fun read and helpful too.
      May your Christmas be filled with JOY!

  3. Gwen says

    I loved this post. This would be my tree choice and ornaments choices too. I’m like you. I thought I’m supposed to go little because my house is little. Our trees have gone bad this year so I’m thinking next year a narrow 6’ tree will be best. I love the table with the crown. The crowning touch!! I thought the ornaments were orbs next to the trees on its top. Your rug is perfect too. Is it still available?
    May you have continued blessings upon blessings in 2018.
    Let there be Light. I now love that verse. My verse for 2018. And I would wish you’d keep it up through traditional January 6th!! It’s so beautiful. I had to drag our small tree out and it was shedding severely just going that far! Yet the lights still work!! May your tree last many years to come. I know I can find this on your page. I think it was the best tutorial ever on how to decorate a tree?

    • Thank you, Gwen! I’m so sorry that your trees have gone bad. It’s one thing to have lots of dropping needles with a fresh tree… but an artificial tree… that’s just wrong. 😉
      Thanks for noticing the crown. I purchased it at 50% off at Hobby Lobby for around $13… quite a deal. I LOVE that it has the nativity in relief around its circumference. King Jesus has been my mental theme for Advent this year.
      “Let there be light” is such a great verse. You shine brightly, my friend! It’s so appropriate for you.
      Merry Christmas!!

  4. Wow, your tree is gorgeous and those large ornaments are stunning! Thanks for those tips. I’ve always had a real tree but am so tired of the mess so I think next year we’ll start using an artificial one. The Balsam Hill trees are always so pretty! Hoping they have an after Christmas sale, lol!

    • Thank you so much, Angie! You’re right, fresh trees are wonderful and not-so-wonderful. When we started traveling during the holidays I pretty much gave up on one. This is the nicest artificial tree I’ve ever had and I think they are 50% off right now. 😉

  5. Carol says

    Its beautiful. Doing this next Year.

  6. Susie says

    Beautiful Diane! I love the color combo and would LOVE all those ornaments. It’s a fab collection. Your tree is perfectly deocrated and absolutely one in a million! Merry (day after) Christmas! XO ~~ Susie from The Chelsea Project

    • Oh, Susie… you know how to make a gal’s day! Thank you so much for your kind words. You are the BEST!! xo

  7. Diane, it’s absolutely beautiful! Thanks for sharing! You are one of the features at the Make it Pretty Monday party at The Dedicated House. Hope you have a beautiful week ahead! Toodles, Kathryn @TheDedicatedHouse

  8. Lucy Beliveau says

    WoW! Your blue and silver Christmas tree is stunning, Diane!! The size of the tree is perfect and I like how you encourage all of us to work at fluffing the branches of an artificial tree. You are so right! It makes all the difference in the world!! The ornaments are so lovely and although they are large, they are still so incredibly delicate!!

    You always present us with such wonders, Diane! This post was not only informative but beautiful and interesting! Your home is so lovely and I love the swags on your shutters!! They are perfection!!! Merry Christmas, My Dear Friend and thank you for starting my day with such fun Christmas Cheer!!???

  9. Destiny Hart says

    It’s like you brought to life everything I’ve been dreaming of through the years of the perfect Christmas tree. Thank you.

    • Awww… Destiny you are so sweet to stop by with your encouraging words. 🙂 You absolutely made my day! AND I hope that your Christmas tree is a beautiful as YOU!

  10. Kaitlin says

    Diane…I LOVE this tree! And I LOVE Balsam Hill! I can’t wait to place my order and get started on my new beautiful Christmas tree….but I also HAVE to ask you….WHERE DID YOU GET THAT GORGEOUS RUG!?!?! I’ve been searching and searching for the perfect rug for my blue dining room and that is exactly what I’m looking for! Please please please share the info with me!!! Thank you!!

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