How To Wrap Ribbon on a Christmas Tree to Perfection

It's one of the easiest ways to trim the tree.

Choose Your Ribbon

First, choose your ribbon. Conte uses 10-inch thick wired ribbon to create a fuller look on the hotel's trees, but you may want to consider scale and personal preference. If you wish to do something daintier or your tree is relatively small, you may choose a slightly narrower ribbon.

We're all about volume, so we'll stick with Conte's recommendation on this one. Regarding how much ribbon you'll need, it will vary depending on how you wrap your tree, but Christmas Central suggests using about nine feet of garland per foot of the tree. For example, a six-foot tree may require about 54 feet of ribbon. Check out the chart below for a guide to how many yards of ribbon you'll need per tree height.

Start at the Top
"I work my way down a tree. Don't start in the middle, because going up and down will disturb the decor or even break ornaments. And wear an apron, because evergreens prick clothing.". Ball & Albanese

Choose Your Ribbon Size

How Much Ribbon You'll Need for Christmas Tree Chart
Southern Living

How To Wrap Ribbon on a Christmas Tree

Start with a tree already strung with lights but not yet decorated with ornaments. The lights will act as a sort of guide for where the ribbon will go, pointing you to places on the tree that are in most need of being filled out with the garland.

Anchor your garland by twisting a strand of ribbon around a branch at the top of the tree. Be sure to start on the back so the first twist doesn't create visual clutter on the front of the tree. Give the ribbon a little tug to ensure it's secure, then begin winding your way down the tree, alternating between looser loops that fill out the tree and tighter ones that hug the tree more closely and maintain its shape. Repeat this in-and-out looping pattern to the bottom of the tree, stepping back every few loops to ensure the tree looks the way you want. Avoid wrapping the ribbon too tightly, as that will make the tree look too orchestrated or carefully decorated.

Wrap Ribbon Vertically

If you don't want to wrap your ribbon in a spiral, another option is to hang it vertically. If you want to turn your ribbon vertically, start by cutting long, varying lengths of ribbon. Then, anchor each ribbon at the top of the tree and let them cascade down. To keep ribbons from stiffly resting on top of the branches, work your way down each length of ribbon. Curve and tuck the ribbon around the branches on the way down for a more whimsical look.

Adding Extra Interest

For an especially design-oriented tree, add another round of ribbon or two. Just be sure to choose textured ribbons in coordinating colors: The varied texture will add interest and dimension without distracting or competing hues.

Finally, if you want a creative Christmas tree topper, consider using any remaining ribbon to fashion an enormous bow. Oh, Christmas tree, indeed!

Need inspiration? Peep below some of our favorite Christmas tree ideas with ribbon.

Christmas Tree Ribbon Inspiration

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Glistening Gold

Glistening Gold Christmas Tree Ribbon
Bring a holiday glow to your home with a tree wrapped in wow-worthy gold. Plus, we love a simple bow with ends trailing down the tree as a topper. Laurey W.Glenn

Bring a holiday glow to your home with a tree wrapped in wow-worthy gold. The gilded ornaments perfectly complement this ribbon embellishment. Plus, we love a simple bow with ends trailing down the tree as a topper.

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Interlace Two Tones

Christmas Tree with Two Ribbon Types
Helen Norman

Play with pattern and color by layering two types of ribbon in your tree. You can weave the ribbons around one another or use each ribbon as an individual stripe around the tree. There are many options to add variety, including textures, sparkling, patterns, and colors.

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Pretty Pink Vintage Charm

Pink Christmas Tree Ribbon
Hector Manuel Sanchez

A ladylike palette of pink pairs perfectly with the pastel hues of retro ornaments. The giant bow on top of the tree draws your eyes upward, creating an extra vertical dimension to this tiny tree. The cascading ribbons add an extra whimsical element to this arrangement.

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Wintery White

Winter White Christmas Tree Wrapped with Silver Ribbon

Keep it cool with all things white and silver. You can start with a traditional green tree or go for a monochromatic look with a flocked, artificial tree. Wrap the tree in white or silver ribbon and ornaments.

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Playing with Plaid

Plaid Christmas Tree Ribbon
Helen Norman

A pop of red plaid can bring a festive flair to any tree. By adding a plaid ribbon to decorate your tree, you can stream the corresponding ornaments since repeating one or two varieties adds dimension without overpowering the aesthetic. You can also opt for a more subtle plaid, allowing your decorations to shine.

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Tiny Tied Touches

Christmas Tree Tied Ribbon
Helen Norman

Small ribbon bows bring a light, classic touch to a traditional tree. String bows along a garland to make it easier to wrap around your tree or embrace a delicate version of this look by strategically placing your decor. Use one color of bows for a consistent look, or add many pops of colors by varying the hues.

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Cascading Ribbon with Color

Cascading Christmas Tree Ribbon
Laurey W. Glenn

Bring a little color to a snowy-white tree with an oversized, pastel bow that drapes ribbon down the tree. Standing brightly against the white tree, this tree's coral and teal color palette blend seamlessly into its surroundings. The giant bow takes center stage as sparely arranged ornaments are strategically placed.

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Merrily Matchy-Matchy

Merrily Matchy-Matchy
Laurey W. Glenn

Coordinate wrapped packages under the tree with your holiday ribbon for a unified look. The lime green embellishment not only creates a harmonious palette adorned on the tree but also with the surrounding decor. The extra tall ribbon creates a focal point for this display.

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Bring in Blue

Blue Christmas Tree Ribbon
Laurey Glenn

No winter blues here. A bright pairing of teal ribbon and red beads woven into the branches brings a youthful look to any tree.

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Wonderfully Wide

Wide Christmas Tree Ribbon
Hector M Sanchez

We love a simple, wide ribbon for a classic look that still brings a touch of drama. The ribbon is a great addition even when another decor is the main feature, such as the gold fan palm leaves poking out from the branches. Combining two ribbons near the top of the tree adds interest to the focal point.

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Tiny Tied Bow

Blue Tabletop Christmas Tree
Hector Manuel Sanchez; styling: Taylor Colson Horton

Tabletop trees are one of our favorite additions to any room during the holidays. Top your tiny tree with a small velvet bow that creates a garland as it cascades down the side. This delicate solution to a tree topper adds a vintage charm to any tree, especially one placed in a blue and white porcelain planter.

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Top It Off

Silver White and Gold Tree
Jean Allsopp

Full of subtle shades of silver, white, and gold that lend a sophisticated look to any interior, this ribbon-inspired topper adds an elegant finishing touch to any tree. Use a different color ribbon for an extra decorating dimension. Coordinating this ribbon with existing decors, such as a painting, creates a nice cohesion.

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Cascading Velvet Ribbons

Christmas Tree with Red and Blue Ribbons
Alison Gootee; Styling: Elizabeth Demos

Add a pop of color and texture to your Christmas decor with vertical velvet ribbons. Here, the vibrant look pairs with a family ornament collection that grows each year. Alternate ribbons for more personalization.

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A Touch of Burlap

Norway Spruce
Laurey W. Glenn

Strands of burlap ribbon peek out behind pinecones and lights in this Southern-inspired design. The rustic design allows for minimal ornamentations, which makes the burlap shine. Use the lights as a guide post for where to place the ribbon.

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Trio of Ribbon

A Ribbon Wrapped Tree
Emily J. Followill

More is more in this case! Use not one but three different ribbons. Try a wide, wire-edged ribbon to snake down the tree for an ultimate effect.

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