non-traditional Christmas tree

O (Non-Traditional) Christmas Tree

contemporary minimal Christmas tree -

mirror-ball Christmas tree decoration -

non-traditional Christmas tree

modern Chridtmas tree -

shoe shaped Christmas tree ornament -
Rubin in front of the Christmas tree -

Despite not being much of a ‘Christmas Person’, I was uncharacteristically keen to get the Christmas tree up this year: mostly because I view it more as a giant light than as a specifically “festive” decoration, really. When we took it down last, er, March, the living room looked really empty and bare, and everyone who came to the house walked in and immediately went, “Awww, where’s the tree?” So this year I had it up at the start of December, and I’ll probably leave it there until April this time, if I think I can possibly get away with it. (Without the baubles, obviously. I mean, take away the baubles and it actually IS just a huge light. That’s what I keep telling myself, anyway.)

(Aside: when people describe themselves as ‘A Christmas Person’, I always picture a giant, tinsel-bedecked human form, with mince pies and gifts gangling from every limb, and an angel balanced on top of its head. I find them somewhat sinister, these ‘Christmas People’. Actually, once I finish that book I haven’t actually started writing, I think I might turn my hand to horror and write one called Attack of the Christmas People. “They were hoping for a happy holiday season. They weren’t prepared for… the attack of the Christmas people!”)

Christmas tree aside, however, I haven’t been feeling particularly festive. By which I mean, “not even remotely festive”. That’s not unusual for me, of course – as I said, I’m NOT a Christmas Person, (In the movie version of Attack of the Christmas People, I’ll be one of the Scrooge-type characters who valiantly tries to fight off the Christmas People, before being driven mad by the endless repetition of Mariah Carey’s ‘All I Want for Christmas’, and last being seen attempting to throw myself off the top off a Christmas tree …) but this year I feel like December has pretty much passed me by, while I’ve been sitting at my computer, cranking out January-themed blog posts, with only a few breaks to frantically (and badly) wrap gifts and worry about whether we’ve bought enough of them yet.

Christmas gifts under the tree

(This year’s theme is iridescent paper, and bad wrapping…)

“Christmas just isn’t the same when you’re an adult,” Terry complained last week, and we had a short discussion about how the process of preparing for Christmas is so all-consuming sometimes that it completely eliminates the “magic” of the season. We were thinking about some things we could do to try and regain that feeling – I’ve noticed, for instance, that I seem to be the only blogger on the internet who isn’t roasting hot chestnuts, watching ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ and drinking mulled wine by the open fire, while feeling full of the joys of the season – but almost everything we come up with was met with the same objection, which was that I still had 15,000 blog posts to write, and couldn’t possibly spare the time to fill my heart with Christmas cheer, don’t be silly. (I WILL take some of that mulled wine, if you’re offering, though. Although, if you could just miss out the ‘mulled’ bit and make it regular wine, that would be even better…)

Anyway, that should hopefully change as from today, because last night I scheduled my final post for ShoeperWoman, which leaves me free to lap up all that festive cheer, steam-clean my house a few dozen times, and write this post, which I’ve been meaning to get round to for days, but I was too busy writing all of those posts for the first week in January. It’s honestly the ONE downside I’ve found to full-time blogging, seriously, but that doesn’t mean I’m not going to complain about it every chance I get…

But back to the tree! Because we’ve gone the non-traditional route with our giant tree-shaped light, we’ve kept the decorations fairly minimal. We also wanted to make them a little bit personal, too, though, so this ornament belonged to my grandparents:

vintage Christmas tree ornament

(“I mean, I THINK that one came from their tree,” said my mum when she handed it over, alerting me to the fact that I’m possibly attaching sentimental value to a totally random Christmas bauble…)

This one was purloined from my parents:

modern Christmas tree ornament -

These two were gifts from Terry’s mum:

personalised Christmas tree bauble -

personalised Christmas tree decoration -

And this one… er, I bought this one in Sainsbury’s last year. It has no special significance, other than that it’s a MAGIC REINDEER, OMG!

reindeer Christmas tree ornament -

This year we re-positioned the tree slightly, to have some of the branches hanging over the back of the sofa. It’s particularly nice at night (which I totally didn’t photograph, obviously, because indoor photography isn’t my forte at the best of times, let alone when it’s dark…), when it makes slobbing out on the sofa feel a bit like being in a magical fairy land. Which is nice when you’re watching teenagers take class A drugs on Skins, don’t you think? It’s what Christmas is all about!

So: I have eight days in which to turn myself into a Christmas Person, and I will do my best. I point-blank refuse to listen to Mariah Carey, though, and you can’t make me.

Christmas baubles in glass bowl -

[P.S. When I posted a photo of the tree on Instagram, I got a couple of questions about it: it was a gift from The Range last Christmas – they don’t seem to be carrying this exact tree this year, but they do have a nice selection of trees anyway.)

books by Amber Eve
  • You could totally get away with keeping that tree up (baubleless) all year round!

    December 17, 2014
  • Nicole


    Love it! I would definitely leave it up year round, switching out the decorations for each season/holiday.

    December 17, 2014
  • I love your tree – and basically if I owned it it definitely would be up all year, just without baubles outside of December. It’s a crime to take something that pretty down! The Internet has spoken. Sort of. I don’t get as into christmas as everyone else seems to and as you know I’m also afflicted with the inability to wrap a present well. I haven’t had any mulled wine this year or gone ice skating, which at this point is making me feel like a failure at life. But for me I think it’s to do with working – I can’t get into the Christmas headspace until I stip hauling my stressed-out self into the office. And on that note, only one day to go..! 😀

    December 17, 2014
  • Aunt fiona


    A couple of years back I tried the ” let’s change the tree up thing”. Bonnie walked into the house, I can’t repeat what was said. Blair had to bring the tree up from the basement. They don’t ever want to see anything but the tree with their homemade stuff on it. Still looking for the lip stuff. It’s a shame the family aren’t able to make it for Bonnie’s wedding. They would have loved to have,their scottish relatives there. Have a great Xmas. Xxx

    December 17, 2014
  • Amelia


    Amber, last year you inspired me to get a non-traditional Christmas Tree. I got a bay tree (cut in a round) and it’s so much classier than a traditional one! I think so anyway! And I wanted a bay tree anyway!!! Yours looks great and I love the personal baubles. I do the same and now only have personal ones – I donated all my generic ones to my work for the office tree. Merry Christmas to you and Terry and Rubin!

    December 17, 2014
  • This looks so chic, I love it! x

    December 17, 2014
  • Christmas definitely changes when you get older but it doesn’t have to change for the worse, savour the all consuming-ness of Christmas!! Love the tree, such a unique take.

    Heather x

    December 17, 2014
  • If you made me listen to that bloody Mariah Carey song we might not be friends any more.

    GORGEOUS tree.

    December 17, 2014
  • It has been hard for me to get into the Christmas spirit too. Your tree is lovely though!

    Silly Medley: Lifestyle and Travel

    December 17, 2014
  • TinaD


    Nice tree…(no dust, no sap, no allergies FTW!) I think the Christmas spirit is late to the party for lots of people; I don’t do a lot–a tree that gets smaller every year, a $2 wreath on the door, sticky toffee pudding for my mum and candied orange peel for whoever–but this year I don’t want to do even that. Maybe it’s going around, like the flu.

    December 17, 2014
  • Stacey


    I love that tree!
    Last year, we got a non-traditional tree. We’re calling it our Winter tree and it went up before Thanksgiving and will probably stay up until March. It’s pretty, adds extra light, and my puppy and cat love it. When it went down for the season last year, my cat mourned – went to where it was set up and *yowled*. We didn’t keep it up for long last year because we didn’t want to be one of *those people* whose Christmas decorations are still up in August, but this year, since it’s not being called a Christmas tree, it’s not a Christmas decoration!

    I am one of the Christmas people though (Though not covered in tinsel!). I love this time of year, mostly because I don’t go all out and stress out on decorations/gifts/parties. I let everyone else in the world do that and I sit back and enjoy their handiwork while I drive through enjoying their lights, listening to my non-traditional Christmas songs. Hmm, maybe I’m not as Christmas-y as I thought!

    December 18, 2014
  • Wow, like it so much, look very wonderful.

    December 18, 2014
  • I love the non-traditional tree, but I don’t think I’m “allowed” being creative with my trees until my daughter grows up! 🙂 Just love how your cute doggy blends in with the cushion! Ha so cute x

    Tatyana x
    Secret little Stars

    December 18, 2014
  • Selina


    I don’t celebrate Christmas so obviously I’m not a Christmas person. But something I hate pretty much more than anything is all of that damn Christmas music. HATEHATEHATE

    December 18, 2014
  • The tree looks lovely and you can easily leave it for the rest of the year.
    I am a Christmas person, I love mulled wine, mince pies, tree, decorations (not too many, just a few). I love celebrating, but this year we were too busy with the new house to get involved as much as I would have liked.

    Merry Christmas xo

    December 19, 2014
  • Moni


    To quote Gretchen Wilson: “… and I keep my christmas lights on on my front porch all year long…”
    I don’t have a front porch, but I have electric christmas lights (in the form of stars) draped over the window behind my TV-set and along the wall. And they have been there for the past two years I think…
    So no argument from me regarding this very pretty and stylish tree of yours. Like previous posters said: Leave it where it is. You could even decorate it differently to go with the seasons. I think it’s lovely.

    Merry christmas to you, Terry, and Rubin!

    December 19, 2014
  • I’m not in a particularly festive mood at the minute, either! Never mind, I’m sure we’ll get there. I love your non-traditional tree and would definitely keep it out all year round. xxx

    December 19, 2014
  • Love it so much…
    I have also found something special in this topic:
    Would say…”sweet home” 🙂

    December 20, 2014
  • claire


    oh, Rubin looks so cute next to that fluffy cushion! I suspect if he fell asleep and i didn’t have my glasses on, i would accidentally end up walking the cushion instead. he’s a cutie xx

    May 29, 2015