Our Eclectic Christmas Tree - every ornament has a story!

It's a bittersweet day because it's the final leg of the 12 Days of Holiday Ideas Tour and we're ending it by sharing our Christmas Trees. Ours is far from a designer tree; no theme, no color scheme, no matchy-matchy ornaments. I call ours a mishmash eclectic Christmas Tree where every ornament has a story.

Our Eclectic Christmas Tree where every ornament has a story!

Welcome to the 5th annual 12 Days of Holiday Ideas event, hosted by Shirley of Intelligent Domestications and Erlene of My Pinterventures. Between Nov. 11th and December 6th there will be hundreds of new ideas shared by over 55 Co-host bloggers!

Go here to see our kick-off collection of Holiday ideas as well as all of this year's talented participating DIY and Foodie Blogs.

Our Mishmash Eclectic Christmas Tree

I can't believe how quickly these twelve whirlwind days went by. It really was a lot of fun - stressful but fun none-the-less. I hope you enjoyed the tour and came away with loads of inspiring ideas for the holidays.

Last year on the Christmas Tree leg of the tour, I made two red burlap ribbon tabletop trees illuminated with fairy lights. This year I decided not to be embarrassed by the fact that we don't have a magazine-worthy tree and share photos with you all. Plus I thought it would be fun to share a bit about the history of the ornaments because they do each have a story.

Eclectic Christmas Tree Brass Candleholders

There are very few ornaments on our tree that come in doubles or multiples except for these brass Christmas Tree Candleholders that I've had for over twenty years. The candles are real but we've never lit them, they just add Victorian charm to the tree.

The decorations are a collection of gifted ornaments from annual exchanges going back over thirty years, inherited ornaments from my childhood, handmade ornaments, and ones collected at quaint shops during our travels.

The first thing I do when decorating the tree is to wrap a loopy plaid ribbon around followed by silver beaded garland. That's about as designer as we get!

Eclectic Christmas Tree Plaid Ribbon

Not that I planned it but over the years a collection of vintage looking Santa ornaments evolved on our tree. I've lost count of how many Santa's we have but it seems someone sent a memo that said Marie is collecting Santas.

Eclectic Christmas Tree Vintage Santa Ornament Vignette

I also have a collection of Wee Folkstone Boyds Fairy shelf sitters. I love these whimsical fairies and I'm always on the hunt for more to add to the collection but they are retired and cost a small fortune.

Eclectic Christmas Tree Boyds Wee Folkstone Fairy

Thanks to this blog, we have a growing collection of handmade ornaments like these Modern Farmhouse Embroidery Hoops, that may look familiar from Day 7 of the Holiday Ideas Tour.

Eclectic Christmas Tree Handmade Farmhouse Ornament

The special ornaments on our Christmas tree

Wooden Sleigh Ornaments

Over twenty years ago when our children were young our family started an annual tradition of going on a sleigh ride in December. We'd take turns each year hosting a potluck gathering afterward. Whoever hosted would gift each family a sleigh ornament marked with the date for a keepsake. You can imagine we have a lot of assorted sleighs, not all wooden, and these are just a few.

Eclectic Christmas Tree Wooden Sleigh Ornaments

The ornament on the bottom right in the photo above was a surprise ornament given to me a few days after our sleigh ride of 2017. Someone snapped a photo of me (Grandma) just as I slipped on ice and slid under the sleigh. Nothing was hurt but my pride and we still laugh about it two years later.

Childhood Shiny Bright Ornaments

My Mom gifted me with several ornaments that we had hanging on our Christmas tree growing up and I cherish these so. Christmas was a big deal in our house and you can imagine the whirlwind of activity and excitement with seven children running around. These ornaments always conjure memories of Christmas' long ago.

Eclectic Christmas Tree Shiny Bright Ornaments

Boyds Collectible Folkstone Ornaments

These Boyds Folkstone Santas and Wee Folkstone Fairy Shelf Sitters are my second favorite ornament collection. I fondly refer to them as Dirty Santa's & Fairies because Santa's beard looks dirty and the whimsical fairies look a little mischievous. They are all retired ornaments and I cherish each one of them. I have several more hanging on the tree.

Eclectic Christmas Tree Boyds Folkstone Ornaments

Hand-Painted Glass Ornaments

I don't have many in this collection (not all are shown) because they cost an arm and a leg. They were gifted to us over the years and they are hand-painted...from the inside!

Some are original Ne'Qwa Art Glass ornaments. The angel ornament is from a local artisan who makes them from broken teacups and saucers. I've had this one for over twenty years.

Eclectic Christmas Tree Hand Painted Glass Ornaments

Memorial Ornaments

Of course, these are very sentimental ornaments hung on the tree each year in memory of loved ones. I made the Memorial Embroidery Hoop Ornament with the jacket my Mom wore in the photo hanging from it, on what would be her last Christmas.

My daughter made the clear glass ornament filled with pink feathers.

Eclectic Christmas Tree Memorial Ornaments

Mercury Glass Ornaments

I have a thing for mercury glass and most of these were gifted to us except for the large acorn, that was a splurge on my part.

There's an interesting story with the glass feather ornament, hardly noticeable in the photo below, right at the very bottom with the green ribbon.

Eclectic Christmas Tree Mercury Glass Ornaments

Last August we went for a weekend getaway with my sister and brother-in-law to Jasper National Park. On the way down from an afternoon spent at Miette Hot Springs, we stopped at the Fiddle River Ashlar Ridge lookout point. While walking along the path Mr. Frugalista noticed something sparkly hanging from the guard rail fence.

Upon closer inspection, we discovered this handblown glass feather. Lucky for us the artist was still there who hung it just moments earlier. She was on a mission to hide these good luck charms around the Province of Alberta for unsuspecting travelers. Similar to the popular geocaching, instead of using GPS to find the hidden treasures, clues are posted on Instagram with the hashtag #goyotepie.

Old Fashioned Ornaments

It is common knowledge to everyone who knows me that I love old fashioned Christmas themed ornaments. Here are just a few of the ones in our collection. I told you I have a lot of Santas!

My grandson loves Santa fishing in a canoe ornament. It even has a hook!

Eclectic Christmas Tree With Old Fashioned Christmas Ornaments

This post was a lot more long-winded than I had intended. I do cherish each and every one of these assorted ornament collections. Guests love going right up to the tree and browsing all the different ornaments. You could easily stand there for over an hour before catching each one because there are so many.

We don't put the gifts under the tree until Christmas Eve. Instead, I have a small decorative wooden sleigh to fill the void and a couple small holiday pillows.

Sitting on the antique radio cabinet is the DIY Rustic Christmas Sign I made a few years ago and the Rustic Wooden Snowflake Box repurposed from my daughter's wedding centerpieces that make a perfect tabletop tree base.

Eclectic Christmas Tree With Treasured Ornaments

How do you decorate your tree? Are you a ribbon or no ribbon kind of gal? Do you have a color scheme or a holiday decor theme? I'd love to hear about it in the comment section below or press the Contact Me button at the top of the blog to drop me an email. I love hearing from you!

I share my projects at these inspiring link parties.

12 Days Holiday Ideas Blog Hop

Day 1 - Gift Guides
Day 2 - Survival Guides
Day 3 - Holiday Kid Activities
Day 4 - Party Games
Day 5 - Holiday Advent Calendar
Day 6 - DIY Wreath
Day 7 - DIY Ornament
Day 8 - Holiday Printables
Day 9 - Christmas Potluck Recipes
Day 10 - Holiday Desserts & Treats
Day 11 - Christmas Breakfast Recipes
Day 12 - Christmas Tree Tour (you are here)

Below you'll find several more Christmas Trees from our talented co-hosts on this, our final leg of the 12 Days Of Holiday Ideas Tour.

Wishing you a beautiful Christmas!

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!
Click here to enter



  1. Marie, I love your tree and reading about all of the memories the ornaments have for you and your family. I did a post similar to this last year showing our memories tree and while it's not a big draw for views for the blog, I think it's my favorite blog post I've written. Thanks for giving us a look inside your special Christmas memories!

    1. I'll have to head over to your blog to check that post out, I don't remember seeing it! This definitely was a fun post to write and I enjoyed taking a good look at each ornament again while taking photos. Wishing you a beautiful Christmas, Bev!

  2. What a stunning tree, Marie! We love that every ornaments has a backstory and are so meaningful for your family.

    1. Thank you very much, Cyna! I try to keep the tree up as long as possible, usually until January 3rd, because I love it so much.

  3. I love your tree with all your special ornaments. My tree is the same... aren't very many matching ornaments... mostly handmade or vintage :)

    1. Woot woot, eclectic tree decorators unite! LOL I do love a beautifully decorated tree but I can't bring myself not to decorate with my cherished ornaments each year.

  4. I loved reading the stories about your ornaments! Trees with a history are just the best! Someone has a great sense of humor with the Grandma got run over ornament! That made me laugh! I hope you have a wonderful Christmas!

    1. Glad you enjoyed the stories, Roseann! That would be my sister and brother-in-law. We laughed so hard when they brought the ornament over! Wishing you a wonderful Christmas too!

  5. I love your tree. It's the kind of tree that you linger around inspecting every single tiny piece of art (ornaments) and delight in hearing the stories. It is art and history and family all rolled into one. It's beautiful and makes me feel closer to my dear friend who is so very, very far away. XOXO

    1. Aw, you're the best, Susie! Your sweet comment made my evening - thank you so much. ๐Ÿค— xo

  6. Love your tree Marie and all the memories attached to the sweet ornaments. Looks great. Have a great weekend.

    1. Thank you, Kris, I try to keep the tree up as long as I can get away with because I love it so. Wishing you a lovely weekend as well! xo

  7. Marie the trees that are full of sentimental pieces are always the best, My original ornaments have either fallen apart or I left them in Greece, so I have started from scratch building new memories from new ornaments. Merry Christmas to you my dear friend!

    1. Starting a new ornament collection filled with memories of your new life in New York makes perfect sense. Gosh, on my bucket list is to visit New York during the holidays. Wouldn't that be fun to hang out for a day in the city that never sleeps. Wishing you a beautiful New York Christmas my sweet friend! xo

    2. It would be a thrill for me to have you visit NY. We could hang out for days!

  8. I love your 'Memory' tree and reading all about the different ornaments and history behind them.
    Thanks 4 sharing and enjoy the holidays

    1. So glad you enjoyed my trip down Christmas memory lane, Colleen! Merry Christmas ๐ŸŽ„

  9. I think your tree is beautiful. I love that your tree is full of meaningful ornaments and keepsakes. It makes it so special when you can stand around your tree and it brings good memories of the past with family.

    1. Thank you, Erlene! Every year when I decorate it, it's like a trip down memory lane and I always feel such a sense of sadness when I take it down the first week of January.

  10. I also love sentimental ornaments and a tree that shares memories. I love how you called it an eclectric Christmas tree, it's so full of love. I have a few Boyds Bears and those fairies remind me of when I worked at the Hallmark store many years ago.

    1. I would have spent my entire pay cheque each month had I worked at the Hallmark store. LOL I keep looking to add to my collection because I love the Boyds Folkstone ornaments so much.

  11. I love the way you decorated your Christmas tree! It looks beautiful!

  12. While the trees in magazine decorated by professionals are very pretty, they leave me cold. I much prefer an eclectically decorated tree where each ornament has a history and meaning. Your tree is gorgeous and it warms my heart. Well done!


    1. Thank you, Michelle, for leaving such a sweet comment! Eclectic trees makes one want to stand close and look at each ornament individually, unlike perfectly decorated trees where you stand back and admire the entire tree as a whole.

  13. Now THAT's a Christmas tree Marie. Forget the those perfectly decorated, soulless one you see in magazines this is the real thing, full of memories and love. Everything Christmas stands for

    1. Thank you so much, Michelle. There's been a few years where I contemplated doing a pretty designer tree but my heart kept leaning towards these ornaments with fond memories. Every year when decorating it, I take a trip down memory lane and every year when it's taken down, I have an overwhelming sense of sadness.

  14. Thank you so much for the feature, Marilyn! See you at the party ๐Ÿ˜Š

  15. I love all your eclectic beautiful ornaments Marie! And I believe that’s what a Christmas ๐ŸŽ„ should be... wonderful memories and filled with sentiment ๐Ÿ’™๐Ÿ’™๐Ÿ’™.

    1. Thank you very much, Denise! I can't wait to decorate our tree next weekend. This ole gal needs a little sparkle in these long dark days of winter and covid.

  16. I love your mishmosh tree. It has so many memories attached to the ornaments. How sweet. I was looking at some of my ornaments that my girls made when they were small. So sweet to remember how they were excited to wrap them and give us homemade gifts like ornaments. Such good memories. Happy New Week.

    1. We are decorating our mishmosh tree as I type this, Kris. I am editing a bit this year and doing a little something-something on the top to enhance the star. It's an all-day affair! LOL Wishing you and your family a Happy Thanksgiving this week! xo

  17. Oh Marie I always have loved your pretty Christmas tree with all the ornaments that have such special meaning to you. Those are the best trees. Fun to go back through your post again and see all the pretties. Happy Sunday. xoxo Kris

    1. Thank you so much for revisiting our eclectic Christmas tree, Kris! This year I went even simpler by eliminating the ribbon. I'm on the hunt for white picks instead. Happy Sunday back to you! xoxo


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