Tips For Making A Small Christmas Tree Beautiful & Meaningful

by Texas Homesteader ~ 

Whether you live in a tiny home or RV, or you just want to scale down holiday decorations, a small Christmas tree can be beautiful, meaningful & sentimental.

Come see how we really made our small tree shine!

Small Christmas tree can be beautiful and sentimental. #TexasHomesteader

Huge Trees Of Christmases Past

When the children still lived at home we always had a standard 7-8 foot tall Christmas tree.

It was fully decorated from head to toe with mass-produced glass-ball ornaments of all shapes, colors & sizes.

Sometimes it was even a fresh tree cut at a Christmas tree farm.

But when the kids were all in their teens we purchased a 7-foot artificial tree. Each year RancherMan would drag all four clunky sections of it down from the attic.

Together we’d assemble all the little branches – their exact trunk location based on their length.

Assembling and decorating that tree took quite a bit of time & RancherMan was NOT fond of this task.

Purposely Scaling Down Christmas Decorations

One year RancherMan had enough. He didn’t enjoy hauling down mountains of decorations nor the extensive time to decorate. It was no longer fun for him, or for me.

He pulled just the top quarter off of the tree since it was the only section that was permanently intact.

Then he stuck the plastic stand on the bottom of this tiny section and declared “From now on, let’s make THIS our Christmas tree!”

Just the top portion of our artificial Christmas tree is now our annual Christmas tree decoration. #TexasHomesteader

Although I initially protested mightily about having a 3-ft tall Christmas tree, I’ve found I really enjoy the smaller size of the tree now.

I’ve learned you don’t have to have a huge Christmas tree to make a big impact. Several simple yet sentimental decorations decorate our tiny Christmas tree.

And I love that the ornaments on this small tree are meaningful to me, unlike the fragile glass-ball decorations of Christmases past.

Set A Small Christmas Tree Up High

First of all the tree’s small size needs a little boost to bring it off the floor. So we bring out a small wooden folding table when it’s time to set it up.

Setting the small tree on top of a table brings it higher off the ground. It also helps disguise the fact that it’s so tiny.

To hide the folding table I wrap a deep blue tablecloth with snowflake designs around it & clasp the cloth in the back to hold it in place.

Now it’s time to decorate our tree.

Sentimental Decorations For A Small Christmas Tree

I have several things that I enjoy using for decorations.

  • Children’s Baby Spoons – One of my favorites is the tiny silver baby spoon used by our children when they were infants. A thin satin red ribbon hangs it on the tree each year.

What a wonderful, sentimental symbol of wonderful Christmases of the past and the blessings we’ve received throughout the years. It’s been on our tree every year since the kids were toddlers.

  • Collectable Ornaments – I also have a small number of gifted ornaments from the kids’ past such as “Baby’s First Christmas” from Hallmark and the like. But none of our decorations are fragile.

Hallmark collectable Baby's 1st Christmas ornament makes our tree sentimental. #TexasHomesteader

  • Festive Cookie Cutters – I like to use Texas-themed cookie cutters made of both metal and plastic. They are hung on the tree with a short length of twine.

I’ve been known to take them off the tree, wash them, use them to make cookies & then wash & rehang them on the tree. Now THAT’S a dual-purpose ornament!

Candy As Ornaments On Our Christmas Tree

And finally there’s my most fun decoration where I hang candy all over the tree – I call it “EDIBLE ORNAMENTS”. 

Sometimes I use bent paperclips to attach tootsie rolls or sweet tarts, but I always have festive candy canes as well.

The grandkids know that they are welcome to enjoy them each time they come to visit.

When Christmas is over I crush any leftover candy canes and use them for a sweet minty flavor in cookies or stirred into a cup of hot tea.

Sentimental Vintage Christmas Tree Topper

Topping the tree is the very same angel that topped our tree when I was a child. This angel was already VERY used when it was given to us.

Sweet neighbors who were updating their own decorations back in the late 1960’s gave it to our family when my parents were very young and just starting out. 

It topped my childhood tree every Christmas for many years.

Vintage foil angel tree topper is a sentimental part of my Christmas decorations. #TexasHomesteader

When mom & dad decided it was time to retire this old tattered second-hand ornament I begged for it. It’s adorned my tree every year since.

Aaaaahhhh…  sweet childhood memories.

Festive Christmas Packages Add A Finishing Touch

I’m not near organized enough to have my shopping complete & all my packages wrapped & under the tree yet.

But you can see that even with what I do have completed so far, the gifts actually help lend a festive mood around our tree.

And they’re all wrapped in a way that prevents mountains of trash from heading to the landfill on Christmas morning.

She takes this unassuming, small Christmas tree and turns it into something beautiful, meaningful & sentimental. #TexasHomesteader

You see, I’m using colorful cloth such as bandanas and reusable cloth bags to wrap our gifts.

 I’m even quickly making my own denim cloth bags by repurposing RancherMan’s worn jeans.

Small baskets made of denim. #TexasHomesteader

And of course we also present low-waste gift baskets filled with our homemade goodies.

All of these methods of wrapping our gifts are environmentally friendly.

So our gifts are festively presented and there’s NO TRASH! You know I love that.

She takes this unassuming, small Christmas tree and turns it into something beautiful, meaningful & sentimental. #TexasHomesteader

By employing these tricks of decorating we have lots of festive punch in our home while keeping to a bare minimum the sheer volume of decorations.

And that means less that must be packed up and hauled into the attic at the end of the season too.

Now you know RancherMan loves that!

What about you – do you have sentimental decorations that you are sure to use each year?


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24 thoughts on “Tips For Making A Small Christmas Tree Beautiful & Meaningful

  1. Lisa from Iroquois

    I’ve had a small tree for years. In fact one year I was heading to my parent’s for the holidays and my married sister was headed for Disney World with her kids. At the last minute the kids started worrying about needing a tree in order to have Christmas so my little tree got tucked into a suitcase, decorations and all, and went to Disney World.

  2. Karen Del Tatto

    You’ve given me a wonderful idea!!

    This year we have our daughter, son-in-law and nine month old granddaughter living with us. They have their own living room space downstairs where they bought a full sized live tree and decorated it. They will spend their evenings downstairs as a family to enjoy the tree with their sweet baby.

    However, Lexi spends most of her time upstairs and in our living room and we are trying to figure out the best type of tree to put up since she is crawling, standing and getting into everything! lol. I had toyed with the idea of getting a table top tree, but the jury is still out on that. But! I LOVED your idea of having a small tree that only held sentimental ornaments. Wow! What a special idea that is!

    I’m not sure if it will happen this year, but eventually I may just have a “sentimental small tree” for our Christmases.

    Thanks for sharing!

  3. Terri Presser

    I just love your little tree it is really cute and you have done a great job with it. We don’t have a tree at Christmas, this is something we decided a few years ago, we put up a nativity instead and put our presents around that. This kids have a great time playing with it. I love hearing about peoples traditions and how they do things, we can learn so much from others, without the judging. Blessings to you and thank you for sharing at Good Morning Mondays.

  4. Jamie | anderson + grant

    When it comes to a Christmas tree, I think that having one that makes you happy is more important than the size. Sometimes the stress that comes from putting out what is expected ruins the spirit of the holiday. I love that you found a way to make your smaller tree work for you and your husband! Enjoy your holiday!

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      I agree – some people really love the big glorious fully-decorated house and if that’s what brings them joy – WONDERFUL! Like you said, it’s when you try to mold what makes you happy around what’s expected that trouble starts. We’ve finally found our holiday happy place… 😉

  5. Erlene

    We actually bought a smaller 4ft. tree this year, which is in another area of the house and I hope that this will become our new tree when the kids get older. I think your tree looks great.

  6. Felicia

    I laughed when I read about you only using the top part of the tree. This year I took our old 9ft tree that was to tall for our new home and made that baby a 5 ft tree. I only used the middle and the top. You would never know my tree was missing a section. Thanks for sharing over at the Snickerdoodle Sunday.

  7. Karen

    I think you have a great idea. Although we haven’t cut our tree yet this year, we are considering a much smaller version. With the addition of my mom’s china cabinet and dining table that I inherited this past year, there is simply not as much room for a large tree as we had last year. I’m really loving the idea, and your post has encouraged me more that smaller is just fine!
    Thank you for bringing your post and sharing with us at Wake Up Wednesday!

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      We all have different views on beautiful, Karen. My mother puts up a grand tree every year, loaded top to bottom with finery. It’s beautiful, but not what I want here at home. I love our tiny tree and its sentimental ornaments. And although I enjoy decorating for Christmas, I don’t really enjoy doing it en masse like I did when the kids were little. We’ve struck the perfect plane of decorating for us – festive, beautiful and sentimental while still being being quick & easy. To each their own!

  8. Stephanie

    I’ll happily sit in the “tiny tree club” with you 😀 I bought a 4′ Christmas tree last year and I can’t imagine going back to the 6′ ones I had in the past. It’s assembled in 5 minutes. It’s decorated in 20. It’s pre-lit, so yay no light strands to untangle. It’s also black instead of green or white, which looks amazing when lit with white lights, and the ornaments really stand out. Plus, being so small, I can do a different theme or color each year without breaking the bank.

  9. Jennifer Roe

    We are collecting sentimental ornaments! My kids create new ornaments each year.

  10. Janet Pesaturo

    Nice post. After our kids have moved on (which is in just a few years), we’ll either have a small tree and use our favorite few ornaments out of the huge box that we’ve been using for years on a large tree…or, we’ll just decorate one of the spruce trees in the yard with edible ornaments for the birds! Some years we’ve done both.

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      I love your idea of decorating a spruce outside! We purchased a live tree for our Christmas tree years ago and planted it in the yard after Christmas – we used to decorate it like you with edible ornaments for the birds. Aaaaahhhh good times. I’d love it if we could get an evergreen to be happy around our house here at the ranch, I’ve planted and lost so many trees I’m afraid to try again. (not sure what’s up with the soil around the house but…)

  11. JaneEllen

    What would we do without our memories of childhood Christmas? The older a person gets the better those memories are and are so cherished.
    I love your little tree, smart way to make use of part of it, it look so cute with the ornaments you dressed it in.
    We have one of those trees you put together, used it once, there it sits out in shed.
    We weren’t going to have a tree but then I changed my mind and made one with a tomato cage, string of led lights and some faux pine garland I could get to in shed. Mr. Furry Kidz decided he wasn’t in mood to get all boxes out so I dug for what I could reach. I put ornaments on it I’d made and some from $tree. Looks pretty cheery. We have small living room so moving things around to accommodate a tree wasn’t what I had in mind. Tucked it into small spot by window and it seems quite happy there. Really easy to take down when time comes. Enjoy your holidays, wishing you and yours Merry Christmas

  12. Pat

    A small tree sounds nice. I like yours. We had a small 4 ft tree one year, when the kids were little.
    Sometimes…less is more! I for one love the way your tree looks and the step stool does not go unmentioned. I love it!

  13. Linda @ A La Carte

    I have so many sentimental ornaments, I’m afraid a small tree couldn’t hold them all. Still I like the idea of a simpler Christmas. Thanks for sharing at TTF!

  14. Jeannie Marie & Company

    We do use the same ornaments year after year, but the last three years we only used clear icicles on a silver aluminum tree. It’s even smaller than yours is. I love having it. The larger tree was such a chore to take down it often drifted into February before I could tackle it. Now everything gets put away the first week of January.

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      I’m like you Jeannie, it was such a chore after Christmas to take it all down, pack it all up & haul it back up into the attic that if often stretched further into the new year than I liked. Now it’s ‘bada-boom, bada-bing’ DONE the first week of January. 🙂

  15. Practical Cents

    I just did the opposite this year and upgraded our Christmas tree to a 6.5 foot. I had a 3.5 foot tree for 10 years and I loved it. So easy to decorate. This year I wanted a bigger one for our new house. Thankfully I bought it during the after Christmas sales and paid very little for it. But I’m going to keep my small tree for when I’m ready to downsize again.

  16. Diana

    What a great little tree! I would love to down size the tree but we are not ready for that quite yet. The kids love making all kids of ornaments so our big tree is very full. I also love your wrapping. I have tried to use fabric for wrapping but I ended up with a very messy looking gift.

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      Diana, I really don’t enjoy wrapping gifts but I’ve found the fabric-wrapped gifts are actually more fun for me. Perhaps the secret lies in the thin fabric of a bandana? The bulkier fabrics seem to be messier for me as well. (although I wrapped a couple of gifts in denim and LOVED it!)

  17. PK Kirkpatrick

    What a beautiful Christmas story. The part about the angel brought tears to my eyes. I also have so many special ornaments, many of which were made by my children when they were small, as well as the ones made by my grandchildren. Every Christmas at least one of my children brings me a new ornament. Now I have a very large family so, needless to say, I need a large tree to hold all my Christmas memories. It takes a full day to decorate, but I put on the Christmas carols and spend the day enjoying this holy season and its many blessings.

  18. victoria witte

    I think Rancher Man has the right idea about the size of trees. We have three cats and so long ago decided that decorated or undecorated trees just weren’t for us. Does save dragging out all those ornaments and rearranging the furniture to accommodate it.

    We have enough decorations on the mantle, front door, kitchen sitting room, garage, etc. to make things look festive. Of course I haven’t done any of that decorating as yet. I usually do it today since it’s my birthday and is close enough to Christmas to keep us from getting tired of all the decorations by the time to take them down comes along.


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