How to Decorate an Upside Down Christmas Tree

If you’re looking for a creative way to add a fun twist on a classic holiday tradition this year, why not take a cue from European homes over centuries past and decorate with these upside-down Christmas tree ideas?

Today I’m sharing all the tips and tricks you need to know for creating the perfect upside-down Christmas tree – hang tight!

A sparkly round Christmas ornament.
The magic of Christmas ornaments!

I took a family poll.

What is your favorite Christmas decor tradition?

Hands down…the Christmas tree won!

Oh, how we love a Christmas tree!

Fluffing a Christmas tree

Today, I am so happy to be part of a Christmas tree blog hop! Thank you to Wendy at WM Design House for getting us all together!

If you have arrived here from At Home with Kristy, welcome to Sonata Home Design! Thank you, Kristy, for a gorgeous French country Christmas tree!

For my part, I am sharing our family’s upside-down Christmas tree.

This traditional tree with a twist is my personal Christmas guilty pleasure.

It is the tree that gets filled with all the colorful glitz, sparkle, shimmer, and jingle-jangle that I can load onto it.

The color scheme? EVERY color!

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What is the Meaning of an Upside Down Tree?

Ornamental innovation is alive and well this holiday season!

Drawing inspiration from the Middle Ages, the benedictine monk, Saint Boniface revolutionized home decor with an unexpected twist. Hanging fir trees upside-down in households was seen as a representation of the Holy Trinity and soon became popular all across Europe – especially among working and lower-class citizens who didn’t have much room to spare.

This concept has now extended beyond Europe and grown in popularity worldwide for those looking for something unique but still festive.

An upside down Christmas tree in a dining room.
The upside-down tree sits in our dining room.

Today this unique style has made its way into our homes for a truly eye-catching design statement!

The Benefits of an Inverted Christmas Tree

This type of tree is the ultimate safety measure for small children and pets alike!

Decorations peek down from above instead of hovering around below, keeping all those fancy trinkets off wobbly toddler hands and away from curious paws.

Finial glass ornaments hanging from the Christmas tree.
Our dog, Bentley, can’t reach these ornaments!

Owners of smaller homes and those who rent know the benefit of this tree’s small footprint. It hardly takes any floor space at all!

It adds a stunning visual but leaves lots of open space for any holiday gathering!

Upside Down Christmas Tree Ideas

Artificial trees come in all shapes and sizes.

Our upside-down tree is engineered as just that…an upside-down tree.

Complete with a stand, collapsible branches, and strings of lights, it sets up just like a regular tree.

Except it is upside down!

Setting Up the Upside Down Tree

Set the tree on a solid table whose height elevates the tree to the ceiling.

Our tree sits on an old end table that sits beside our dining room table. This end table, at one time, was in our donation pile. Turns out it is the perfect height for the inverted tree!

A coffee table draped with red fabric holds the inverted Christmas tree.
This old table gets pulled out every December to hold the tree.

Since the focus is on the tree, I keep the base very simple by just draping the base with some red fabric. Some adhesive strips added to the top of the table keep the tree stand from slipping and are hidden from view by the fabric.

Ideally, there should be a couple of inches between the tree and the ceiling to allow for additional Christmas decorations.

An undecorated upside down Christmas tree sitting on a table.
The tree is elevated so the top of the tree is close to the ceiling.

I also like to display this tree in the corner of the room so it is not exposed to heavy traffic. Safety first! (This type of tree can be stunningly displayed in the corner of a living room!)

I’ll be honest. It takes both my husband and me to lift and set the tree on the designated table.

A decorate upside down Christmas tree.
I took this photo looking up from the floor. Quite a view!

But with a loud “1,2,3” count-off and a big lift…it is a quick set-up!

***If you want to turn a real tree into an upside-down tree, you will need to drill through the base of the tree trunk and thread heavy-duty wire, rope, or chain that will support the weight of the tree. After securely screwing a strong hook into the ceiling, hang the tree tip down from the ceiling. Know your home and know your ceilings to make sure the weight can be supported.

Upside Down Tree Decorations

Twinkle your way to festive perfection by wrapping your tree in sparkling Christmas tree lights and adding ornaments that range from traditional red and green to classic golds and whites to any bold hues of color.

An inverted tree is an unusual shape so this is the perfect time to decorate using a unique or quirky theme or color combination!

  • Use a solid ladder so you can easily reach higher branches.
  • If the tree is not pre-lit, use LED lights for the tree to avoid hot lights that could be a fire hazard.
  • Shatterproof ornaments are probably best if you are nervous about breakage. In all honesty, I use a lot of glass ornaments on our tree and just make sure they are attached very securely.
  • Start to decorate with your larger ornaments. Tuck them between each evergreen branch and secure them tightly with a heavy-duty hook or wire.
  • As you add medium or small size ornaments, step back periodically to ensure that all your decorations are evenly distributed.
  • Longer ornaments that dangle will look especially lovely hanging from the upper branches of the tree.
  • Include white ornaments, clear drop ornaments and sparkling crystal balls to amp up the light reflection.
  • Lightweight decorations such as tinsel and floral picks will give the tree added dimension and sparkle.
A variety of glass ornaments hanging from an upside down Christmas tree.
I never get tired of looking at the ornaments hanging from the tree branches!

Top of the Bottom Ideas for Your Upside Down Christmas Tree

Even though the tree is elevated to the ceiling height, it is a good idea to add a different element to fill in the space gap.

Whatever you add, it is a good idea to keep it on the light side as heavy items can weigh down the top branches.

Decorative picks are a unique way to fill this area!

I used a combination of shiny red metallic picks and whimsical red and white striped “twisty picks” for the top of the tree.

Now the tree looks like it is magically suspended from the ceiling!

Other ideas you might try for the “Top of the Bottom”:

  • Gift packages (the light, faux, empty kind)
  • Tinsel Garland
  • White faux snow blanket
  • Patterned fabric
  • Large, loopy bows
Red and white picks tucked into the space between the tree and the ceiing.
Curly Candy Cane picks fill in the space between the tree and the ceiling.

Topsy-Turvy Tree Success

Now, stand back and admire your handiwork!

A fully decorated upside down Christmas tree.
Christmas sparkle that can be seen from the street!

You now have a unique and festive upside-down Christmas tree that is sure to impress your friends and family!

If you’re looking for a different way to spruce up your holiday decor, why not give this unique tradition a try?

With all the benefits it offers, there’s no downside to giving an upside-down tree a shot.

There are more beautiful Christmas trees to see! Hop on over to see Kim’s fantastic post on How to Decorate a Traditional Christmas Tree over at Cottage in the Mitten. Kim always has such inspiring ideas!

Now go out there and have yourself a merry little Christmas and a Happy New Year!


Don’t Forget to Pin It!

Don’t Forget to Pin It!

Be sure to pin these upside down Christmas tree ideas to your boards on Pinterest (just click the Pin button in the top left corner). You can also follow along with me on Pinterest!

How to Decorate an Upside Down Christmas Tree

Follow All The Bloggers on This Christmas Tree Tour!

More Christmas Inspiration!

Now that you have some upside down Christmas tree ideas, it’s time to deck the rest of the hall!

Colorful Christmas Home Tour

The kitchen decorated for Christmas

Tinsel Christmas “Gift” Present

A tinsel package Christmas decor.

How to Make a Christmas Chocolate Truffle Tree

Chocolate Truffle Tree

A Colorful Christmas Bed Makeover with Black Dog Salvage

5 Easy Christmas Centerpiece Ideas for Your Holiday Table

Christmas centerpiece idea


  1. Missy, I love the unique look of hanging it upside down. It’s perfect in the corner or when space is an issue. How fun! We are having problems with the puppy pulling the ribbon off the tree. Your tree is very beautiful!

    1. Hi Tammy! Yes, this tree is one that our big dog can’t get to, thank goodness! I’m so glad we got a chance to work together on this blog hop! Merry Christmas!

  2. Oh, Missy!! Your upside down Christmas tree is spectacular!! It’s the perfect addition to your dining room with those gorgeous papered walls!! Thank you for sharing the history of the upside down tree! The colors are gorgeous!! You’re so created and talented, my friend!

    1. Hi Kim! Thank you so much! I find that this room gets used a whole lot more when there is a funky tree in the corner! Merry Christmas, my friend!

    2. I absolutely love and adore your beautiful upside down Christmas tree, Missy! It’s so fun and colorful and perfect for the corner! And thanks so much for sharing the history of the upside down Christmas tree!

  3. Ok…I am LOVING this tree! It’s beautiful, fun and full of whimsy! The wallpaper in your room is stunning, too. Love your blog, Missy! So nice hopping with you today. Merry Christmas, friend!🎄❤️

  4. Missy your tree is amazing. I have to be perfectly honest, I have never been a fan of upside down trees until I saw yours. I love how the top near the ceiling is finished. I am definitely going to be looking for one next year. I also love how colorful it is. I really think you are changing me in a lot of ways. Thanks for being such an inspiration!

    1. Crystal, you leave the best comments! I’m so glad you liked the tree! You have such a wonderful collection of beautiful trees, it would be fun to see an upside down tree in your house!

  5. I love this whimsical tree so much, Missy! There are so many pluses to having an upside-down tree that I never thought about. And I love how the ornaments hang on the branches. So, so pretty!

    1. Thank you, Wendy! It does save floor space and Bentley can’t get to the ornaments! LOL. Thanks for organizing this hop!

  6. Missy, you’ve outdone yourself. The tree, the dining room and that chandelier, all are gorgeous! I love that you shared the history and have me considering this unique idea possibly in the future! love it! Susan

  7. This tree sings “Missy, Missy, I belong to Missy”. No boring tree for you and especially inyour gorgeous dining room! So many advantages to a tree like this. and the history is fascinating!!! Such fun to hoo with youo today!

  8. When my son had started crawling we did this with our Xmas tree to keep him safe from electrical lights & cords along with the tree itself & it’s baubles. We kept the tip of the tree about 3′ above the floor which was out of his reach. We had it in front of our big picture window & used to laugh as cars slowed down and stopped while people looked at our strange tree. I would hold up our son & stand by the tree to show them our reason.

    1. YES, ZOE! You solved an immediate problem and ended up with the talk of the neighborhood! Do you still use it each year? Thank you so much for sharing this…I love it!

  9. I don’t think that I will ever try to turn my tree upside down but I have seen them and was curious about how they are decorated. The trees you highlighted are all gorgeous! Maybe an upside down tree isn’t such a bad idea!

    1. It is a little quirky but if you ask my family…it is their favorite tree! Thanks for much for reading and commenting!

    1. Hi Jennifer! Welcome to Sonata Home Design! I’m so glad you like the tree. It is our family’s favorite!

  10. Hi Missy- I love how your posts have such a distinctive style. I can always tell your images because of the colors used. Love your upside down Christmas tree and how you decorated it. Thank you for sharing your post with the Home Imagined Link party.

    1. Thank you so much, Anna! I am slow in responding to this but wish you a (belated) Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

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