I’ve been so anxious to show you this teal and white Christmas tree theme inspired by Lake Superior, but you might be a bit confused because, although I like to do some wintry decorating, we don’t actually celebrate Christmas. We stopped celebrating way before my blogging days, so I’ve never shared a Christmas tree – this is a first for Dans le Lakehouse! Whenever I share a DIY ornament tutorial, I photograph it on the blue spruce outside and sometimes photoshop on some lights, lol. So why a tree this year?
If you saw the last DIY Christmas tree ornament tutorial I shared (the DIY painted birch slice ornaments), then you already know this story! This year my Mom decided she wanted a Christmas tree. We still aren’t technically celebrating Christmas. But after giving my Mom’s beautiful rental apartment’s living room and dining room a makeover, it was begging for some holiday cheer! And so was my Mom…
That spot between the fireplace and dining room was the perfect size and place for a tree and this year, which has been difficult for everyone, my Mom found the smell of a real tree and the glow of the lights irresistible. But the problem was that we didn’t really have any Christmas tree ornaments any more. So last week I went wild and made a bunch – some of them as a surprise for my Mom, but some of them we made together! These ideas had been swirling around in my head, so having a beautiful, live Christmas tree seemed like the perfect opportunity to actually make them:
- Maud Lewis Inspired Painted Birch Slice Ornaments
- Easy Alcohol Ink Ornaments
- Quick Beaded Wreath Ornaments
But not all of the ornaments are a DIY, so let me walk you through our teal and white Christmas tree theme.
We already had some “snow” topped turquoise glass ornaments from a sponsored campaign I did years ago. To supplement that handful of glass ornaments, we also had some handmade twisted metal icicles leftover from an event I organized when I sat on the board of directors for a non-profit (what feels like a hundred years ago). I can’t believe it, but I actually found something super similar on Amazon. Then I remembered I had some pretty baubles from my “installation” of cascading ornaments last year. The wintry little scenes we painted on birch slices paired well with the color palette of icy turquoise and white ornaments I had already. Then I made the alcohol ink ornaments in a deeper teal. To add more sparkle, I also whipped up some beaded “wreath” ornaments (just beads on wire, super simple). I chose mostly crystal and pearl beads so they really catch the light and play up on the wintry “ice & snow” theme.
In the end, this tree reminded me a lot of what our tree used to look like growing up: a little eclectic, with lots of homemade ornaments. But our tree was very traditional, with red and green and gold. But you know me! Given the choice, I chose a teal and white Christmas tree theme and my Mom is delighted! It looks beautiful with her decor, but it’s also still homespun, which has made us both a little misty. The “theme” is also loosely Lake Superior inspired, with ornaments reminiscent of ice and snow, coupled with those wintry little rural scenes we painted. But it’s much less polished than what you might see from other bloggers, who have showstopping trees that looks straight out of a department store!
After 13 years of not celebrating Christmas, I honestly didn’t even remember how to trim a tree. I forgot entirely about garland and we never did make or find a tree topper. I also didn’t remember just how many ornaments you need for a tree to look full and complete. I forgot about tree skirts, so we first grabbed a piece of white fabric but then remembered about this plush grey blanket my Mom keeps in her car for emergencies and we used that instead, lol. Plus we used the old Christmas tree lights, which my Mom kept and which work perfectly, but are about 100x bulkier than what is sold today! Amazing how technology has evolved and yet, I bought lights for outside last fall and they lasted exactly one season before failing irreparably. These are probably older than me and still work fine… So this teal and white Christmas tree theme is pretty, but also a little old fashioned. It’s perfect.
(Although, if Mom decided she wants a tree next year, I’ve already created an Amazon wishlist with some choices because I can’t resist a thing that sparkles. You can see all of my finds that will go with this tree theme here, but this glass ornament actually made my heart flutter and so did this moodier one, so I might buy them regardless because they really remind me of the lake when it’s temperamental).
Deficiencies aside, what’s important is that my Mom is thrilled! We had fun making the ornaments together and trimming the tree brought back memories. The end result is cozy and sparkly and we didn’t have to buy anything (other than the live tree itself). We still don’t celebrate Christmas (the presents are fake, my Mom thought they would look cute for photos). But I’ll admit that it is really nice to walk into her place and be struck by the warmth of the lights and the amazing aroma of the tree. We always had a real tree growing up.
I hope you enjoyed this tour of our teal and white Christmas tree theme! It was nice to partake in the merriment a little more this year. Seeing everyone’s trees online was sort of infectious. 2020 was just such a rough year, I think everyone has been searching for ways to eek out a little more peace and joy. No matter what you celebrate or how, I am wishing you all so much joy and all good things this season and beyond.