What Does How You Decorate Your Christmas Tree Say About You? We Ask Decor Experts

Decorating your Christmas tree is a chance to unleash your creative side. But what does your tree say about you and your home? We asked the experts

A Christmas tree in a modern living room
(Image credit: Studio McGee)

The age-old ritual of putting up a Christmas tree officially ushers in the most magical time of the year. But decorating your tree is not just a festive tradition that has existed for centuries. These days, it’s evolved into an opportunity to tap into your creative side and inject some Christmas flair into your home. 

Whether you opt for a traditional evergreen with regal red ornaments and glittering gold finishes, or a whacky and wonderful tree covered in ribbons, fake snow and complete with a disco ball topper, each and every flourish is a unique expression of your personality that is more meaningful than you might think. 

'Christmas tree decorations serve as a canvas for expressing people's personality,' says Kashi Shikunova, senior designer at YAM Interiors. I’ve spoken to interior design and trend experts to uncover what Christmas decorating trends say about your personality. 

1. Neutral and minimalist

Neutral and minimalist Christmas tree

(Image credit: Alicia Quiles)

There’s something effortlessly elegant about a pared-back Christmas tree. It’s calming, cohesive and grounding, which is exactly why Alicia Quiles of The Comfort House opts for a neutral tree inspired by nature each year. 'It reveals my love for peaceful and serene surroundings during the holidays,' says Alicia. 

Artem Kropovinsky, founder of Arsight, agrees that minimalist Christmas decor is reflective of a personality that highly values sleek simplicity. According to Artem, a minimalist tree 'expresses the quietness and lack of clutter in one’s house' — which makes it ideal for those looking to add a dash of calm into an otherwise hectic festive season.

If you’re looking to bring some zen into your own home this Christmas, Kristina Phillips, founder of Kristina Phillips Interior Design, suggests sifting through your current roster of ornaments and being selective about the ones you put on your tree, to ensure that they all complement one another. 'For a more polished looking tree, edit the number of ornaments to ones that are similar, and keep the rest for display in a bowl or to be used next year,' says Kristina. 'Scandinavians tend to have very minimalistic looking trees, with natural materials crafted into decor.'

2. Luxe and colorful

Cozy modernist Christmas tree

(Image credit: West Elm)

Nothing screams Christmas quite like a tree dripping in twinkling lights and luxe decorations, and brought to life through a rich color palette. Channel your inner New Yorker with a sumptuous tree brimming with enough ornaments and color to put the Rockefeller Center to shame. 

According to Artem, opting for a vibrant, show-stopping tree in your living room is a bold choice that reflects a 'playful spirit' who 'does not tolerate monotony but appreciates variety in terms of colors and shapes'.

For Kashi Shikunova at YAM Interiors, a multicolored tree that dabbles with different shapes and patterns is indicative of a person who loves to collect objects and isn’t afraid to experiment. 'A vibrant and diverse display with colorful shapes reflects a magpie-like personality who likes collecting playful objects,' says Kashi.

3. Antique and eclectic

Traditional Christmas tree in classic living room

(Image credit: Studio McGee)

For many of us, Christmas decorating ideas are synonymous with family and childhood nostalgia. Decorating your tree can be a symbolic and heartfelt act — a way to celebrate happy memories and put them on display for all to see. 

If your tree holds a rich and personal history where every ornament tells a story, you’re most likely a sentimental, family-oriented person.  You quite literally have a different memory hanging proudly on every branch.

'Nostalgia can truly make ornaments special, even if they may not align with your current taste,' says Kimberly Harrison, founder of Kimberly Harrison Interiors. 

'My own Christmas tree displays a collection of ornaments that I started in my 20s […] I am proud to say that my tree today reflects 30 years of collecting! And, yes, my children will inherit all these ornaments!'

4. Whacky and whimsical

Unique and colorful Christmas tree

(Image credit: Kaitlin Green. Design: Emily Henderson)

Long gone are the days when all Christmas trees looked one and the same. One of the best things about decorating your tree is the creative license that comes with it. For some of us, decorating the tree is an opportunity to show your wild side, commit to a unique theme, or play with whimsical and whacky flourishes. 

Interestingly, the people opting for the most unconventional and experimental trees might just surprise you. 'More often than not, our Christmas trees are a great way to reflect a side of our personality that we don’t show every day,' says Dayna Isom Johnson, trend expert at Etsy. 'A sleek and sophisticated colleague might surprise you with their OTT Christmas tree covered in disco balls and glitter.'

According to Dayna, more and more people are incorporating the thriving ‘disco’ trend into their Christmas decor, with a 13 percent increase in searches for disco ball items on Etsy. 'The disco ball wreath is something I am really excited to see adorn doors across the country and jazz up the festive season,' says Dayna.

And if you think the inventiveness ends there, think again. Your Christmas tree can be anything you want it to be, and the sky is the limit. From a white Christmas tree, or even pink. Kimberly opted for a cocktail-themed tree in her retail shop, Apricity. 'We have a well-stocked bar and host client meetings and Happy Hour events with vendors often, so it just made sense to carry this welcoming and vibrant atmosphere to our tree,' she says. 'The key takeaway is to have fun decorating your tree and let it reflect your style and interests.'

Three Colorful Ornaments For a Maximalist Tree

Katie Baxter
Trainee Writer

Katie is a freelance writer and MA student at City, University of London studying Magazine Journalism. Katie discovered her passion for lifestyle journalism after finishing her BA at The University of Oxford, when she started pitching to major lifestyle publications and covering various topics from popular culture to wellness. She is a regular contributor at Well+Good, where she writes experiment-based beauty and fitness pieces.