by Maria Bargellini
If you read part one of this post you should have a good idea of any considerations that have to be made prior to picking a technique. If you haven’t read part one of “How to light a Christmas tree” click here.
The Scallop Wrap This is the most common or “old fashion” way of stringing lights on a Christmas tree. The lights are scalloped on the tree in the same way most people put garland on. Part your tree in 3-4 evenly spaced sections, ie every 2 feet on a 6 foot tree. Use the branches to hang lights and let them hang in between. Make sure that your wraps are not too tight as it may cause a problem when placing ornaments. Also make sure that they are not too lose, especially close to the ground were curious little fingers and paws can get tangled in them. Some people like to twin garland around the scalloped lights.
The Triangle Technique It’s not as common as the scallop style but it’s almost as simple. Separate your tree into 3-4 vertical sections. Each section will get a string of lights. You then start at the bottom with one end – go straight to the top then back down creating 2 sides of a triangle. Then you take the remaining lights and Zigzag the lights within the triangle from the bottom to the top. Connect the next string to the end and start making another triangle. Keep in mind that your next 3 triangles will be sharing a side with the previous triangle. You should have about 4 triangles on your tree, but that may vary by the width of the triangles.
W Wrap: This isn’t a widely used technique and it is commonly used by Christmas Light installers. This technique is fairly simple and easy to wrap up when the season is over. To use it connect 3-6 (depends on brand and type) strands together and put the connections at the very top of the shrub or tree letting the full length hang all the way down. Space them evenly and wind the Christmas lights up and down the tree in a linear pattern in between the original strands. Make sure the linear runs are not rigid and are laid into the tree in a “wiggly” fashion.
Branch Wrap: This is the most commonly commercially installed style of wrapping trees, used most by professional Christmas Light installers and Christmas tree manufacturers, it is more difficult but makes for a great looking Holiday Display. Starting from the bottom you will wrap your mini lights around the individual branches loosely to about 3-4″ from the end then loop back toward the inside of the tree and on to wrap another branch. Do not wrap the lights to close together as you will need space for lights when you double back. The branching structure of the tree will be apparent in natural trees and in artificial trees it will not show as much.
The Tornado: Tornado wraps are very common. It is usually used for shorter trees and when there aren’t a lot of lights available. You can start from the top and wind around your tree in a circular patter until you reach the bottom. Trees with dense branching structures are tough to do this way. This technic is best when used on a deciduos tree that is fairly short. A tall tree will be difficult as it will require you to move your ladder a lot- a whole lot.
No matter which technique you chose to light your Christmas tree I’m sure it will be a great display. No matter what color you use, how many lights you use or what you put on your tree, a Christmas tree decorated with love is always a beautiful tree. Note: Wear gloves whenever you handle mini lights as they do contain lead. never let children handle or put wires in their mouths.