Here's a way to bridge that Holiday gap!
(that all the retail stores seem so insistent upon doing)
This was quite fun to make and was a blast wearing!
The reaction from the Trick o' Treaters was the... Tinsel on the Tree.
Accompanied by a Snowman Pumpkin, and candy canes, of course.
Step 1: Framework of Tree
You want varying sizes of hoops. The smallest should sit nicely on the crown of your head, the second to sit enough on your shoulders without falling off, the third to easily clear your arms/shoulders/hips, and the last a bit larger than that. The embroidery hoops are just perfect as they pinch the ribbons where you place them and stay put.
(I used three embroidery hoops, and a wreath-making hoop for the largest one at the bottom.)
You'll also need 2 wire hangers, and lots of wide ribbon for suspending each hoop from the one above it. You can knot them for secure suspension, or even sew them, and definitely sandwiching each one between the hoops keeps it in place within the circle.
The top 2 hoops need to be customized for the crown of your head relative to where the second hoop will be sitting on your shoulders. You also want to keep each hoop level, so a variety of levels is very helpful for this, or you can just eye it and adjust any ribbons accordingly.
You also want to suspend the entire structure from a strong hook or pole that can handle about 20-30 pounds. I used a heavy duty zip tie in addition, so that I could spin the tree a bit in each direction for ease of working with. Oh, and a small step stool unless you are quite tall.
Step 2: Fleshing Out the Tree
In the previous step was a photo which included one package of 100' of lightweight garland. (the basic kind, no lights) I ended up buying a second package, so you'll need 200' total to make a tree that is nice and full.
My method for attaching the garland was to cut one piece long enough to attach at the top of the wire hangers, go down both sides, about a foot below the last hoop. This gave me enough to tie to the hangers at the top, wrap over each hoop once, and then to secure to the bottom hoop a couple/few times. I did this using several strands until the top section was full enough.
The second hoop, which sits upon my head, I straddled each garland strand across the hoop, wrapping around once, then descending to the hoop below, wrapping around once, and so on. Even though this wasted about 8" of garland going across the crown's hoop, I thought this might provide a nice padding for the top of my head, which I hopefully will be glad I did since I will be wearing this for a few hours!
As each section looked sufficiently full, I then would start at the hoop below. My advice would be to err on the side of extra length for each garland strand, as if a piece is too short it won't be long enough to secure to the bottom. A little too long is okay as you can just wrap it around the bottom hoop a few times for fullness.
Step 3: Lights! Et Cetera....
I found some wonderful, colored globe lights that require 3AA batteries per strand. I bought 3 packages and found that was enough, though you could add one more for even more vibrancy. Stringing lights is part Art, part Planning so think about what you have and where it's going. I started at the top of the tree.
The cords and battery housing dangle down a couple of feet from the bottom of the tree, so I placed a rolling table I made underneath the tree to keep them on, to reduce stress on the wires. You'll also want to think about a coat to wear with this that has easy-access pockets which you can drop the battery compartments into.
I had a strand of gold garland in my Christmas decorations stash that I added on top of the lights. You'll need at least 14', but 16-20' would be ideal. You want to keep it simple and not add too much.
~ Most proper Christmas trees have Angels for their toppers. ~
I'm going to pretend to be an angel for just one evening, and so will just be putting a Halo on the top.
Be sure to anchor this in well. You don't want the halo to be too heavy, and you want to anchor it into the tree securely.
And the ornaments? Since I'm blending Holidays in a way that all the retail shops are perennially guilty of...
The Father, the Son, and ...
Step 4: The Holy Ghost
Lots of 'em!!
The third photo shows what I used to create these sacred symbols. You could be even more respectful and use actual cloth and cotton balls.
Since I would like to animate this tree further by Dancing a bit, I added some Jingle Bells to motivate even more swagger.
Step 5: Presents!
No Christmas tree is replete without presents underneath.
My thinking was to create two presents that would look as one if I kept my feet together.
(I can still dance that way, think jewelry box dancers) : )
I used two identical boxes, cut the flaps off for the bottoms, and visited my shoe collection for what would work.
Slippers! Easy to slip into, and these ones are great as the sole is very thick, good for nailing into.
I attached the box to the shoes by banging one nail through it into the front, and two into the back. I used nails with a large head, roofing nails. They went into the shoe sole with little problem, no need to pre-drill.
I then wrapped both boxes and secured some ribbon over that.
I cut two holes large enough to let my feet enter in. Worked great!
Step 6: Trick 'o Treat!
Some photos of the night!
Lots of laughs!!
(Standing on a small spot of snow - felt that I tacked into the grass)
I made a snowman pumpkin as an appropriate prop.
Happy Halloween!(and a Merry Christmas to all!!)