Decorating for Christmas

Roughly fifty percent of our lights are sold from October 10th to December 10th. The other fifty percent are purchased for weddings, proms, birthdays, gardens, patios and parties.

Let’s take a look at the ways you can use lights for Christmas and we’ll discuss the other half of the year in another series of articles.

 

Indoor Christmas Decorations

The Tree

Christmas traditions begin with the Christmas tree.  At the center of your home, it's the place where thoughtfully selected gifts wait patiently to surprise your loved ones, where your family gathers for this year's Christmas photo and it sets the tone for how you celebrate Christmas in your home.

Subtly sparkling under the ornaments, bows and garland, the lights add the glow that reflects off a child's face on Christmas eve.

What lights should I choose?

 

Choose your tree first.  Traditional green, white, red and even black, Christmas trees are now available in a wide variety of colors.  You never know if a white tree will catch your eye so choose your tree first - and. early in the season.

Choose a theme. 

What theme will best represent your personality?

 

    • Traditional
    • One color theme
    • White, white, white
    • Silve or gold
    • Barbie
    • Lego
    • Vintage
    • Miami Deco
    • Retro 50's
Choosing a theme will help you make those hard choices related to color, size, shape, and quantity of lights.

 

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Decide LED or Incandescent.  Do you like the warm, charming glow of traditional incandescent lights or prefer the modern look of LED with the advantages of energy efficiency and cool operation.

Choose a size.  Mini or C7/C9?

 

  • Mini lights are smaller - around the size of a traditional incandescent Christmas tree light.  They range in shapes from small round balls, cylinders, to little faceted and diamond cut cones.
  • C7 and C9 sizes come in pre-wire strings or can be purchased separately - as bulbs and cords.  You can also purchase C7 and C9 bulbs in either incandescent or LED versions and install them in your own C7 (E12) or C9 (E17) cords.  These bulbs and cords are great for outlining and are usually spaced at 8 to 12 inches apart.  
  • This type of bulb on a Christmas tree looks wonderfully retro - especially if you use our painted or opaque bulbs.

 

Choose an LED shape.

If you choose to go the LED direction - great choice especially when you want cool operation - there are a wide variety of shapes to choose from.

 

    • Wide Angle (5mm, cylinder)
    • Mini Ice (M5)
    • Smooth M3
    • Smooth M5
    • C3
    • C6
    • C7
    • C9

Chose a spacing.
    • 2.5 inches - Popular for smaller trees and projects.  Also great if you want an over-the-top maximum number of bulbs.
    • 4 inches - Most popular light spacing for Christmas trees.  
    • 6 inches - Extra space between bulbs is good for when you want just a hint of twinkle on your tree.

 

 

Install your lights first.

Before you place your first bulb, take some time to install your lights first.  Experiment with how closely you want to wind up and down your branches.  Hide the plugs by making sure that you begin and ending at the base of your branches near the trunk.

Then you can add ornaments, bows, crafts, garland and other decorations that will make your tree your own.  

Purchase and extra strand or two of what you chose for the tree.

First, it's nice to have an extra strand or two in case you decide to wrap your lights a little tighter than you planned.

It's nice to have an extra strand of lights identical to the lights you've purchased for your tree in case the bulbs are damaged and you need replacements.

Use a color of extension cord that will blend with your paint colors.  There are a a wide variety of cords to choose from.  White, green or brown to blend with your trim.

Mantles

Choose accent items to complement your Christmas light theme. 

Now is the time to display those family treasures that have been part of your Christmas decor over the years.  If you don't have a closet full of treasures, try the closest dollar store.  Department stores frequently have clearance prices on Holiday decor during the Season.  Add a notable piece or two over the years and create your own family heirlooms.

Use battery lights sparingly and for hard to reach or fill containers.  Battery lights are targeted for use on short term projects like parties and showers.  Try to use 120 volt lights wherever you can.  Our craft lights have 36 inch lead wires that give you the ability to locate containers up to 3 feet away from an outlet.

Garland and Wreaths

Welcome your guests with a wreath.  Continue the theme you chose for your Christmas tree.  

 

    • Accent your stairs railings.
    • Spruce up your balcony.
    • Outline your door.

 

Christmas villages

 

  • Craft lights are a perfect choice.  
  • Battery lights for hard to reach places.

 

Containers

Glass blocks are fun and easy.  Frosted, unfrosted, filled with your favorite color of craft lights these happy squares of light can find their way under your tree, along a windows sill, accent your buffet table and act as the perfect Holiday counter-top night light.

 


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Here are the other types of decorations that you can use to expand upon this year's decorating theme:

 

  • Centerpieces
    • Battery lights are your best choice for centerpieces.
  • Curtains of light
  • Accent your dining room using rods and curtains you already have.

 

 

Outdoor Decor

Outline the house, the driveway and the sidewalk

 

 

  • C7 and C9 Cords and Bulbs
    • Pre-wired LED C7 and C9 sets
    • 18 AWG cords with C7 and C9 replacement bulbs 
      • LED or Incandescent
  • Icicles
    • LED or Incandescent

 

Choose a great clip.  Most installation clips are tailored for commercial usage of C7 and C9 bulbs installed on 18 AWG wire.  If you are using pre-wired sets, be sure to look at our LED All in One Clip.

Find just the right stake.  Perfect for smooth, crisp line around your driveways, sidewalks and flower beds. 

Wrap the trees.  Pick a color to go with your theme.

 

  • Trunk wrap net lights
  • String lights
    • LED or Incandescent

 

Decorate the bushes.  

 

  • Net lights make this job easy.
  • String lights work great if you install them randomly.

 

Swag the trees.  Wrap the leafy area of your tree. 

 

  • Mini lights 
  • Bulbs and cords

 

Walls of light.  Accent your garden's walls, fences and architecture with light curtains.

Yard sculpture

 

  • Replace and repair.
  • Upgrade to LED

 

Traditional VS CRAZY

See our Christmas lights personality calculator.

Your own light personality will determine the color and quantity of lights you choose for this season.  If you want an over-the-top light display and are starting from scratch, start  and work your way up. 

Many of our customers return every year to expand their displays.  We love to hear about this years plan for a new Santa, fabulous nativity or the latest in computer animation that will probably be viral on YouTube in a few weeks.

Animation

Only suitable for incandescent lights, LED light strings and dimmable LED bulbs.

 


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We hope that this article has given you a few things to think about as your prepare for the next Holiday Season.  Take a look at all of our useful Design Guides, grab a cup of coffee and start laying out your plans.

We look forward to seeing your photos!

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Shipping Policy

We are currently shipping Monday - Friday with most orders placed before 1:00 CST shipping the same or next business day.

Orders cannot be canceled or changed once they are placed. 

Delivery Timeframe Notices Regarding Air Orders

Orders placed via ground service should arrive in 1-5 business days depending on your zip code. This estimate does not include weekends, Saturdays, or major Holidays.  

2-Day air orders shipped on Thursday do not arrive Saturday but should arrive the following Monday. Next-Day orders shipped on Friday do not arrive Saturday but should arrive the following Monday. No orders are delivered on the weekend and the weekend does not count as days in transit.

Due to these unprecedented times, UPS and FedEx do not guarantee any method of shipping, including Air Service.

To ensure prompt shipping verify that your order is correct. Please do the following checks:

1. Confirm bulb bases and cord sockets match. 
2. Confirm 18 AWG wire SPT rating matches the SPT rating of plugs.
3. For bulk C7/C9 bulbs and cords orders, don't forget gilbert plugs, if required.
4. Double-check the wire color on all strings lights.