Tabletop Trees

These downsized versions of the big Christmas tree -- utterly adorable and surprisingly doable -- bring cheer to every tablescape.

Short and sweet, this sassy little tree has some real staying power. It's actually a purchased preserved cypress that you'll enjoy bringing out year after year. A lightweight ceramic cherub container also makes it beautifully portable.

Dressed up with tiny crystal beads and white strands of grosgrain ribbon, the tree is a no-fuss solution for a slim mantel, a dining table or sideboard, or even a coffee table during an intimate gift exchange.

For a similar look, use any kind of imitation tree. But if you're a purist, substitute with a live miniature evergreen to plant outdoors later on.

To create eye-popping contrast against this deep green tree, wrap in double strands of white grosgrain ribbon. To add sparkle, string crystal beads on fine-gauge fishing line to make a jeweled garland. Fill in the base with bright red cranberries or any other holiday elements that inspire you.

Curl up by the fire with a 24-inch-tall wire tree that will give you a variety trimming options season after season. A wire tree, such as this one, is ideal for displaying a nostalgic collection of glass ornaments or the kids' handmade school projects. Even left standing alone, it is shapely as an eye-catcher.

Once brought out of storage, it's easy to adorn and, with no watering or cleanup, maintenance free. Made entirely of metal, this curlicue is a smart solution if you're looking for something that can be placed on the hearth or next to your tabletop arrangement of holiday candles.

Less is definitely more when it comes to this curvaceous wire tree. And a sprinkling of ornaments is all that's needed to let the tree's playful shape take all the attention. Here, different sizes of colored glass balls tied with sheer ribbon add the perfect touch of holiday dazzle to a cozy corner of the hearth.

For a holiday table with a country twist, start by shaping trees out of ordinary chicken wire. It's a good idea to wear gloves for protection and to use needle-nose pliers to help bend the wire.

Next, place trees in containers filled with red apples. For an irresistible scent and a soft touch decorate the trees by studding with a mixture of fresh-cut multicolored and solid-red roses.

Substitute with preserved blooms for longer use. Against an all-white dining table, the red really pops. If you have another palette in mind, experiment with different colored roses and container fillers.

Before adding roses, cut stems to about 3 inches. Wrap the stems in wet green moss, or place in florist's water vials. To preserve the roses after dismantling your arrangement, mass them in a shallow container filled with water

Freshen up an ordinary evergreen with white carnations. To pot this young living juniper, shake off excess soil at the roots, place the root ball in a plastic bag, and water thoroughly. Wedge the tree in a container with moss or batting to hold it securely.

To camouflage the filler, arrange pinecones at the base of the tree. Then, cut carnation stems to about 3 inches, insert in florist's water vials, and place on the tree. For temporary arrangements, carnations can last for several hours without any water. After the holidays, replant the tree outdoors if your climate permits.

Always a classic, pearls lend understated elegance to this dining table arrangement while staying true to the all-white palette. With a single strand, form scallops around the rim of the container and hot-glue as needed to the inside lip. Add another strand for a crisscross design. Secure with hot glue.

An aromatic alternative to pine, a rosemary tree brings the heady scent of the herb garden indoors for the holidays. Tiny white lights are the only embellishment needed for this natural beauty.

Modestly wrapped in linen fabric and cinched with a bow, the tree sits graciously on a buffet or side table. You can trim away some branches if you're looking to create a traditional cone shape. Or leave as is for a more natural, rangy look.

On its own as a centerpiece or placed beside a treasured collection of Christmas objects, this tree is irresistible to whiffs from anyone who walks by. After the holiday season, repot in fresh soil and enjoy the sweet smell year-round.

To prepare this rosemary tree for the tabletop, shake excess soil from the roots, place the root ball in a plastic bag, and water thoroughly. Wrap bag with linen or burlap, and cinch with ribbon. If placed near an electrical outlet, use traditional tree lights. For a cordless display, use battery-operated lights.

Some of the best holiday trees aren't trees at all! This delightful display is actually an artifical form covered with greenery and such.

To make this topiary tree, use florist pins to attach sheet moss to a conical plastic-foam cone. Create a spiral design with seeded eucalyptus stems and dried berries secured by florist pins or hot glue. Top with a sheer bow and place in a decorative container.


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