Tuesday, January 6, 2015

My Mardi Gras Tree

I don't know if it's just me, but it seems that every time New Years rolls around there is a part of me that's majorly bummed it's no longer the holidays...even though there are many exciting prospects of what another year will bring, it is a sad day when the decorations must come down and life must resume as it was before the holly jolly singing and the Christmas trees and the good cheer all around.
Which is why I was SO excited to learn that in Mobile, they don't believe in that sad tradition. Instead, you get to leave your tree up for another couple months and just re-decorate it.....FOR MARDI GRAS!
There is actually a lot of debate about whether Mobile or New Orleans hosted the first Mardi Gras. Regardless, I think we know who has the title now, but it is a fun part of this town's culture that I've even been able to pass to some of my Indiana family who have done Mardi Gras trees of their own!
The key is to finding as much green, gold/yellow, and purple as you can. If you have any of these colors in your normal Christmas decor, then you're in luck! Just take the other colors down and replace them with the festive colors of the season. For my tree, I already had gold from my other colors, so I found some purple ornaments at Hobby Lobby (this is a GREAT time to get them by the way since they're 70% off!), and some craft masks from the local Walmart. I also found some sparkly, curly springs that I put into the tree branches to give it more body...this is mostly because I have a real tree and by now it is pretty wilted looking!
For some extra purple accents, you can use wired edge ribbon to tie bows and stick them directly onto the tree....you could certainly add some extra wire to wrap around the bows and branches, but I have found there is little need since they are easy to nestle between the branches.
There is already a lot of green from the tree itself, but I like to add some additional pops with poinsettia style flowers...I got these at Walmart as well.
For the tree skirt, I actually just found some sequined fabric at Hancock's Fabrics that I had cut to a couple yards and wrapped around the base...I think it ended up costing about $8. You can certainly find more fancy ones online, but since this is my secondary tree I didn't think that was completely necessary!
And as usual my little furry helpers were waiting for their photo op!
 Not gonna lie, I am a bit partial to the idea of extending this tradition to keep my tree up year round and just decorating it for every holiday (I suppose I would have to invest in an artificial one in that case). For now though, I'll stick to my Fat Tuesday colors and "Laissez les bons temps rouler!"