How to Decorate with Christmas Ribbon

Jul 25th 2023

Imagine a stunningly-lit Christmas tree, bedecked with lights, ornaments, beads, and even some tinsel. What’s missing from this image? Christmas ribbon, of course!

Christmas ribbon, available here in an endless supply of colors, patterns, and motifs, represents a wealth of opportunities to add a whole new level of depth to your trees (and other arrangements), while adding color and theme-coordinated appeal.

Here’s a comprehensive guide on how to decorate with it! (Need just the highlights? Jump over to our quick read on 3 Christmas tree ribbon ideas to decorate like a pro. Today, we’re reviewing the why, how, and where to incorporate Christmas ribbons fully. If it’s your first time using ribbon in your Christmas tree, this is a great place to start.

We promise, it won’t be your last!

Christmas ribbon

Why Christmas Ribbon for Your Arrangement?

Let’s talk about a few of the reasons that Christmas ribbon makes a great (and affordable) decorative accent for all your Christmas displays - not just your tree!

First, ribbon is a really fun way to create a cohesive look with the rest of your Christmas tree decor, or with your general theme. We carry a wide range of versatile ribbons in an equally wide range of colors, styles, and decorations to support most any theme or color scheme.

In addition, Christmas ribbons, like Christmas tree sprays, are a very effective way to fill the voids and open areas of your tree. A single ten-yard roll of ribbon can cover a surprisingly large area of a Christmas tree.

Alternatively, you can actually start the theme of your design with a Christmas ribbon, and then form your accents around the patterns, colors, and general characteristics of the ribbon you started with.

Knowing this, you can get started with choosing the right Christmas ribbon for your tree or display!

How to Choose Ribbon for Your Christmas Tree

Christmas ribbon

If you are wondering how to get an inspired start for your Christmas tree, consider starting with a ribbon that appeals to you, and you can base the rest of the design around the ribbon. Think of Christmas ribbon as the showstopper that inspires the rest of the accents.

Look for a ribbon with a style that really speaks to you and then use the recipe for pattern matching (which we will cover in more detail below).

If you’re having a hard time finding the right ribbon, try to narrow down your options to a single theme, color, or style, and then see what you can find. Our wide collection of ribbons can be narrowed down by actual theme or collection, giving you parameters to search within. Once you’ve found the right ribbon, find the coordinating ribbon and the accent ribbon (if needed).

About Pattern Matching with Christmas Ribbon

Pattern matching is the process of setting the tone of a display with a single pattern or motif, and then building upon it with complementary or contrasting colors, patterns, or other decorative elements.

Pattern matching is a great way to create a stunning display with Christmas ribbon. We like to suggest starting with two layers of ribbon, before completing with a third, matching accent. For the top layer of ribbon, go with a pattern or a print. This will be the most obvious decorative layer and is the “star” of the arrangement.

Christmas ribbon

For the bottom layer, choose a solid color compatible with the patterned/printed ribbon, or a textured one. This will support the top layer, but is not the main focus.

For the accent, choose a fun or bold pattern, such as plaid, dots, or stripes. This ribbon will be used to fill any remaining holes in the display and add pops of color.

For more information on pattern matching, please see the following video:

Christmas ribbon

How Much Ribbon Will You Need for Your Christmas Tree?

How much ribbon your tree will need is definitely a matter of personal preference, and here at Decorator’s Warehouse, we always suggest doing what makes YOU happy! But, if you’re looking for specific pointers, here are some general guidelines our designers use when incorporating our techniques:

  • For a 7.5’ tree: Two to three 10-yard rolls per style for the body of the tree, plus one roll as an accent.
  • For a 9’ tree: Three to four 10-yard rolls per style for the body of the tree, plus another one to two rolls as accents.
  • For a 12’ tree: Five to six 10-yard rolls per style for the body of the tree, plus two more rolls for accent ribbon.

If you’re working with a slim tree or your tree is in a corner or installed in a way that only part/half of the tree is visible, follow the smaller estimate. If you have a full, 360° view of the tree, follow the larger estimate.

How to Decorate with Ribbon on Your Christmas Tree

Once you’ve determined what Christmas ribbon to use, and how much of it, now you can get to the fun part - the actual decorating!

Your first step is to cut the ribbon. This is one of our top tricks. Don’t just try to incorporate the ribbon all in one long strand. Cutting it gives you so much more flexibility over where it goes on the tree.

How to Add Ribbon to Your Christmas Tree

Another trick is to use a wired ribbon for decorating. Most of the ribbon we sell here at Decorator’s Warehouse has wired edges. This allows it to hold its shape more easily, so you can form it for decorating.

You can also use small pieces of Christmas ribbon as accents. With a pair of scissors, you can cut ribbon to length, add dovetails, and tuck them into the boughs of your tree.

You can also make bows from the ribbon and use these throughout the tree or topper. For tips and tricks on how to make bows with ribbons, see our video on how to make a multi-ribbon bow, as well as our bow-making tips on Instagram.

Christmas ribbon

For more advice on how to add ribbon to your Christmas tree, check out the previous video!

Where Can You Use Christmas Ribbon?

After reading through all this, you might be wondering how and where you can use Christmas ribbon to create stunning displays and designs. These are some top ideas:

  • In your Christmas tree designChristmas ribbon

Naturally, Christmas ribbon can be used to decorate your tree as we have already covered; but remember, you can color- and theme-coordinate the rest of your display to your tree, too, just like you can see in the image above!

  • On your packagesChristmas ribbon

You can use colorful and creative Christmas ribbon to create elaborate, flowing package wrappings that are trimmed to perfection.

  • To add fun pops of color throughout your houseChristmas ribbon

If you can tie a ribbon around it, you can decorate it with a ribbon! Light fixtures like lamps and chandeliers, banisters, railings, bookcases, shelves, garlands - all of these and more can be accented with beautiful Christmas ribbon!

  • Add them to chair backsChristmas ribbon

You can also tie ribbons and bows around your chair backs to add some color to your dining room. Coordinate them with your tablecloth, table runners, centerpieces, rugs, carpets, or your other Christmas decorations to make a seamless, inspiring setting!

Find Your Source of Inspiration at Decorator’s Warehouse

We love how you can make a Christmas display really come to life with something as simple and affordable (and versatile!) as a bit of Christmas ribbon, and we’re excited for you to get started using it in your designs!

You can bring your trees, packages, displays, furniture and light fixtures to life with select Christmas ribbon in the ways we’ve covered here, among others.

Don’t be afraid to get creative and follow your heart; you might come up with a totally new source of inspiration. In the meantime, follow us on our Pinterest, Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram accounts to take inspiration from our elaborate and visually stunning designs!