Make your tree look designer on a budget

By Amy Davis - Reporter/Consumer Expert

HOUSTON - As you pull out your Christmas decor and tree ornaments this year, maybe you're wanting to try a new theme or look. But buying all new ornaments could really set you back.  

Consumer expert Amy Davis went to the pros for tips on making your old tree look like a custom-decorated work of art on a budget.  

First things first. Don't spend a lot of money on a tree. That's a pro tip from HomeTalk interior decorator Rhonda McClesky.

"Because once you start adding stuff (like ornaments, ribbon, floral picks and sprays) to it, you kind of lose the tree," McClesky said.

The best filler for trees with holes are free. Pick up pine cones and sticks from outside.

"You can take your pine cones and spray those with gold glitter or frosted glitter and tuck those in," McClesky said. 

Save money by making ornaments with just a balloon, yarn and glue. 

"Soak your yarn in the Elmer's Glue and then wrap it around your balloon," explained McClesky. "You can roll it in glitter. You can spray paint it. Then you pop your balloon. Pull your balloon back out once your balloon is dry; and you have these really cool, handmade ornaments."

For a showstopping tree topper on her own tree, McClesky used a tabletop sign. She took the base off and just wired it to the top of the tree.  Using wire, you can use anything that makes you smile. 
To make your tree look taller, add a tall topper. 

"Those were actually just sticks from the yard," McClesky pointed to a spray topping one of her Christmas trees.  "And we can spray them with fake snow or flocking, and you can get extra height in your tree by using those."

She set the 7-foot tree on a box and secured it to make it even taller, wrapping a cowhide rug around the box instead of a tree skirt. 

Clear glass ornaments add class, and they can go with any color scheme.   

Hometalk decorators like McClesky work-year round to help homeowners design and decorate.  

"Just like we help you decorate your tree on a budget, we can help you transform any room in your home to suit your style," said HomeTalk founder Miriam Illinois. 

HomeTalk is offering free design consultations to customers in our area. They will send an expert to talk to you about what room or area you want to transform and help you come up with a plan for free. At the very least, you will get an idea of what your project will cost and how it can be implemented. Click here for the free consultation.

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