Stand out from the crowd with an Insta-worthy Christmas tree

Instaworthy Christmas tree
Helen Stone,-Interiors Writer

Prepare your tree for its close-up with bright ideas from our Technicolour Supernature theme

If you want your tree to shine on Instagram, try a different angle. Give it a story and something to shout about or go for a bold colour scheme with sensational lights and decorations. Delve into our Technicolour Supernature theme – it’s like a dressing up box of joy, imagination and character.

It all starts with the tree itself. You can easily go green for this look but a coloured tree gives extra oomph. Our white Glacier tree is a brilliant blank canvas to build upon while one of our pre-lit trees will have extra sparkle from the off. As you begin the process of layering up, take shots as you go to monitor how things are shaping up, and to give some progress shots to post too.

The beauty of a white tree is that it is brilliant at reflecting light and colour, squeezing every last bit of shine out of each bulb on your tree lights. Neon is a favourite this year. Balance two or three pieces across the tree to create main focal points to zoom into, filling the space between with coloured LED line lights.

Instaworthy tree lighting

Light it bright

‘Balance is key when you’re planning to share your tree on Instagram,’ says Wil Law (@johnlewis_wil), Partner & Home Design Stylist. ‘You want the tree to sing with pockets of statement features, but you also need the eye to be stimulated by the whole expanse.’ He advises making sure line lights are evenly spread so that they illuminate the whole of the tree. He also suggests trying for a consistent spread of bauble colours. 'Balance also applies to your statement pieces, albeit more sparingly’ he adds. ‘For instance, if you have a neon decoration towards the top right of the tree, place one towards the bottom left too.’

A tree comes to life when lit, but photographing directly at lights can be tricky. ‘Before you start make sure the lens is spotless,’ says Wil, ‘If not, the lights will appear like blurry smears across the photo.’ Turn off the flash and make sure there is an additional light source behind you when snapping. This will allow you to capture all the detail as well as lighting the area around the tree.

‘Finally, remember the perspective of a lens will be different to the human eye, so you may have to move a few baubles around just for the shoot,’ says Wil. ‘Don’t forget to put them back when you’re done to enjoy the best view of the tree in real life.’

Instaworthy tree decoration

Fill it with character

Instagram loves a novelty bauble so employ a good smattering to establish your theme. 'Make your decs budget go further by filling out most of the tree with classic lights and simple baubles from packs to set the colour scheme then invest in some statement baubles, sprays and oversized neon pieces that command attention when nestled here and there,' advises Wil.

When shooting details, focus in on one area so your favourite decorations really stand out. Experiment with your camera settings. Portrait mode on your phone or setting your camera to a wide aperture can help hone in on the detail, knocking the background slightly out of focus. Check that you're not reflected in any shiny decs (unless that's the look you're going for). Shooting slightly from one side will usually keep you out of the frame.

Instaworthy Christmas tree shoot

Stage your shoot, stand back and admire...

Where space allows, set your tree in a fantasy landscape and double the fun. Shoot your scene as an off-centre composition – it feels more natural than having the tree plonked in the centre and you'll be able to show more of the surroundings.

If you have cute kids/dogs/cats, get them involved. Neat freaks won't necessarily want them meddling in the decorating per se but they can make great props/trusty assistants and are perfect for video content which of course Instagram just loves.

Looking for Insta-worthy tree inspiration for our other themes? We're loving the magic Paula Sutton has created with the Festive Field theme at @hillhousevintage. Sea creatures have come to land on Zeena Shah's (@heartzeena) Blush Coast tree – is that a mermaid we spy at the top?

Meanwhile, it's cosy in Cardiff with a roaring fire and the Snow Mountain theme at Reena Simon's hygge home (@hygge_for_home). And bless Sophia Cook (@sophiarcook) for a speedy decorating Copper River video that put a smile on our faces and filled our hearts with joy. Sophia also has a poignant reminder that many of us will be missing someone this Christmas. Be kind, think of others and tell those you love just how much they mean to you, wherever they may be.


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