Find miniature picture frames and shrink family photos on a copier. Or buy flat rounds of wood and decoupage photos onto the front and back. Tie with ribbons and hang around the tree. Buy some round balls that are clear and can be opened. Roll up a picture, put the top back on, and the photo will show through. Fill in with plain round balls so you don't distract from the main focus. Unroll some 35mm film for a garland.
Take time to collect ornaments that highlight special events in your child's life, such as babyhood, school, sports, camp, hobbies, activities, and special friends. Add pieces to the collection each year, such as mini trophies, blue ribbons, and a mortar board. Write the date neatly with an indellible marker on each ornament. What a unique and special memento year after year!
See photos of a Birthday decorating theme.
So many things are shiny and metallic these days. Find sparkling metallic ribbons, gold and silver ornaments, crystal icicles, jewel-toned gift bags, embroidered scarves, and beade accessories.
See photos of a shiny gold and silver decorating theme.
Gather up old disks and decorate them with photos or words of greeting, find mini computer decorations and recycled computer chips. Add wire onaments to fill in without too much flash.
Make a garland chain of colorful paper clip. Gather colorful shredded paper into bundles with a binder clip and tie ribbons to make pen "icicles." Shrink pages of a caledar and make "memos" of holiday greetings on paper, reinforced on cardboard.
This is a favorite, but can be updated each year. Collect miniature musical instruments like horns, guitars or violions, tie with red ribbons and hang. Find shapes of musical notes and treble clefs. Photocopy sheets of music, cut into 2" strips, attach together and use for a garland. Add red or gold ornaments to fill.
See photos of a Musical decorating theme.
Use matte finished ornaments rather than shiny. Find velour covered balls and decorations. Make a luxurious garland of wide velvet ribbon and tuck in beutiful silk flowers and bows of velvet or gold mesh ribbons.
For a delicate, non-traditional decor, use pastel ornaments, sheer ribbon bows and sprigs of pastel flowers. Make a garland of artificial floral and leaf vines and spray the tree with floral scent.
Nautical and Beach
Find small striped umbrellas, beach chairs, sand toys, tiny tin buckets, small boats and canoes, ships, oars, fish, lighthouses, shells, and netting. This would work well at a beach getaway. See photos of a Nautical decorating theme.
Cars and Trucks
It's easy to find toy cars, maps, road signs, and play stop lights at a toy store, but this theme works for the adult car enthusiast, too. Make a black glarland with yellow or white lane divider stripes.
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