There were a couple of years that we went completely treeless at Christmas, when my kids were quite young and wouldn't miss it. But I do like having a big tree to decorate, with beautiful presents piled underneath.
For a few years we would go out of town in early December and cut a tree from a little tree farm, and then one year we discovered buying the ones already trucked into town and sold in lots was way cheaper. Still, cutting or buying a new tree each year never sat well with me. It just seems like such a waste, in more ways than one. It's part of the uber-consumption of the holiday season that we generally do well to avoid.
We considered buying a fake tree, and talked to a lot of friends who are very happy with theirs. I liked the idea of having one tree to use every December forever, without creating more waste each year. I was not happy with the off-gassing factor of artificial trees though. Also, many fake trees are pre-lit, and the biggest problem with that appears to be that the light strands will die in big sections, as light strands do, and then you end up with a half-lit tree, and ultimately a bunch more trash in the landfill.
We borrowed a white metal yard tree from a friend one year, and used that in our living room. I kind of liked the stark simplicity of the metal, but with half the lights out it was rather haphazard looking. One day, after gazing for a moment at our semi-ugly borrowed metal tree, Nik declared that he could make a better one.
|Creating the branching effect|
|You can see in the picture how he wound a thick layer of extra rubber tubing around the base of the tree so it would work in a conventional tree stand.|
|The wire is plenty strong for all our ornaments. You can see in this photo how we simply wind the light strand around the trunk of the tree rather than around the perimeter as you might for a pine tree.|
|I think the gold tree star topper looks fabulous on the copper tree.|
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Our Handmade Copper Tree
4/ 5Oleh Mellow De Tray