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Best Christmas tree decorations 2023: Xmas baubles, garlands and lights from £5

Want to spruce up your Christmas tree? Here are this year's best tree decorations

Many of us have fond memories of decorating the Christmas tree when we were nippers. A ritual in its own right, adorning the fresh (or artificial) branches is a marker that the festive season has really kicked off and that it’s not long until the big guy makes his annual visit (that’s Father Christmas, not your rotund Uncle Pete).

There’s still something really special about handling those delicate ornaments and arranging them around the fairy lights (and fear not if the kids get in there first and hang them all in clusters at the bottom – you can always do a bit of re-distributing when their backs are turned).

So whether you’re after a traditional Nordic theme, a silver and white winter wonderland or a contemporary colour fest, read on to find the best Christmas decorations for this year.

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Decorating a Christmas tree

What kind of themes can I decorate my Christmas tree in?

There are many options – the sky’s the limit, really. Among the most popular are:

Rustic: if you’re going for a traditional theme, look out for the natural, hand-crafted look when it comes to ornaments, usually made from wood, metal or fabrics.

Contemporary: You can go minimalist and stick to one colour (even one type of decoration) or opt for a range of modern decorations. Decorations should be bold and bright colours can work well, especially ones that aren’t usually associated with Christmas – think pink, purple or blue.

Frosty: silvers and whites look striking on a Christmas tree. Look out for snowflake themes, glittered decorations and clear glass decorations.

Retro: Who says tinsel went out of fashion in the 1970s?

Kitsch: Some might say pineapples or cactuses have no place on a Christmas tree, but with a kitsch look, anything garish goes. A look that may not draw on vintage styles, it’s always eye-catching.

American: A red-and-white combo, including candy canes, can give a gorgeous aesthetic, inspired by the American Southwest.

How do I decorate my Christmas tree?

Always – and we mean always – start with the Christmas tree lights. This means you can distribute the lights easily and evenly without knocking anything else off the tree, as well as hiding the wires. Don’t forget to make sure you can reach the plug socket when all the decorations are up. Next up, go for your strings of beads or pearls and tinsel, if you’re using them. Again, focus on even distribution. Now’s the time for garlands and ribbons. Pop the fairy, star or other treetop decoration on the tree so you don’t have to send the baubles flying off later on. And finally, hang your baubles and other decorations around the branches.

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The best Christmas tree decorations you can buy in 2023

1. Sass & Belle Christmas Cheer Shaped Baubles: Best novelty decorations

Price when reviewed: £10 | Check price at Amazonbest christmas tree decorations Sass & Belle

Sass & Belle nail kitsch Christmas with their extensive range of novelty baubles available from Amazon’s Small Business Storefront (which allows you to support independent sellers and small business but with the convenience of Amazon). Choose from Mince Pie baubles, Retro Rollerskates, a Saw, Octopus and more, but we’ve bagsied this Christmas Cheer Set. Featuring an eye-catching gin, whiskey, Prosecco and red wine bottle, these quirky decorations will attract attention with their jewel tones and tongue in cheek design for an up-to-date take on tree dressing.

2. Sirius Star Tree Topper with Lights: Best star for the top of the Christmas tree

Price when reviewed: £30 | Check price at Trouva

Stars should shine bright, and this one certainly does. You’ll need two AAA batteries (not included), but once you pop them in the neat battery holder, you’ll have a fabulous star with 30 LED lights – the crème de la crème of tree toppers. Thankfully, it has a timer function to save you climbing up and down the tree on a daily basis and there’s even a remote control (available separately). At 15cm x 15cm it’s a good size (including the vertical stand that slots onto the top branch it’s 26cm “tall”), but we would recommend this size of star for a tree with a thicker tip so there’s no chance of it sliding down or toppling off.

Check price at Trouva

3. Winter Scented Ceramic Bell Decorations: Best large contemporary tree decorations

Price when reviewed: £20 | Check price at The White Company

Spice up your living room with this set of eight beautifully scented baubles, which lend a delicious fragrance of cinnamon, clove and orange zest to your room. They also look gorgeous, thanks to their large bell shape that creates a striking contrast against the green pine needles of your tree.

As you would expect from The White Company, these baubles are also really well-made, with lovely details including a slim, but strong rope for hanging from your tree’s branches. Includes a mini “Winter Home Spray” meaning you can refresh the decorations’ scent throughout the season.

Check price at The White Company

4. Manta Makes Baby’s First Christmas Bauble: Best keepsake bauble

Price when reviewed: £9.95 | Check price at AmazonPerfect for a traditional Santa’s workshop theme, this keepsake etched wooden decoration is a lovely way to mark a baby’s first Christmas. It comes with laser-engraved writing – personalised before checkout on Amazon – surrounded by a collection of very cute festive critters and finished with a red polka dot ribbon.

You can get cheaper alternatives, but this is less fragile than a glass bauble, which might matter with little hands trying to decorate the tree with it in years to come. This solid walnut decoration is made from sustainably sourced wood in the New Forest, England and measures 10cm x 10cm.

5. Mariah Angel Tree Topper: Best inclusive decorations

Price when reviewed: £27 | Check price at March Musesbest christmas tree decorations March Muses

While a white Christmas may be welcome weather-wise, it’s not what we want to see represented on the tree. And that’s why two Croydon women are on a mission to make the festive season more inclusive with their brilliant range of Afro angels and Black Santas to adorn your Christmas fir. We love the cherubic Nat King Cool decoration and the Diana angel but the besequinned Mariah tree topper is a showstopper.

All decorations are handmade and have had close attention paid to skin tone, hair design and body shape to ensure that diversity is reflected across the range so that everyone can enjoy the holiday magic.

Check price at March Muses

6. Gold Mistletoe Garland: Best tree garland

Price when reviewed: £7 | Check price at Party Delightsbest christmas tree decorations Gold Mistletoe GarlandNow we love a bit of tinsel but not everyone does. If you’re after some classy Christmas cheer to brighten up your baubles but don’t want tinsel ruining your painstakingly curated decorative theme, perhaps this thoroughly more understated garland will work for you. Matte gold foil mistletoe leaves are strewn across gold 5 metres of string, with pure white mistletoe berries providing the finishing touch. It’s subtle but still glam, and best of all, it’s at a bargain basement price.

Check price at Party Delights

9. Not on the High Street Knitted Santa Hat Tree Topper: Best unconventional tree topper

Price when reviewed: £26 | Check price at Not on the High Street

Some people think it’s a toss-up between a fairy and a star when it comes to what takes pride of place at the top of the Christmas tree. But this handmade decoration shows you can be more imaginative, with the hat of the Big Guy perching on the top branch. At around 25 – 30cm tall (each one is handmade so sizes vary a little) it’s slightly bigger than we expected, but without being domineering, and it’s satisfyingly chunky, with a lovely fluffy pompom.

An original, fun idea, it looks great and the 100% Merino wool means it will last you many Christmases to come. You can’t wash it, but you can dry clean it (although you might get a few odd looks when you pop it on the desk of the dry cleaners).

Check price at Not on the High Street

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