If you happen upon a fabulous stash of vintage glass ball ornaments but you already have a heavy laden tree, buy them anyway. Your Christmas tree isn't the only place to display the shiny baubles. You can use them as holiday decorations throughout your home. Here are some ideas to inspire you:
Decorate the Fireplace Mantel or Staircase Bannister
Drape your fireplace mantel or staircase bannister with garlands of fresh or artificial greenery. Wind ribbons, strings of tiny lights, or both through the greenery as you attach it. Then, finish the look with dozens of shiny glass balls; both colored and metallic versions look good. You can wire them into the garlands using florists' wire, hang them with ornament hangers, or suspend them from ribbon that matches or complements the ribbon in your garland.
Fill Bowls, Platters, or Compotes
Fill a bowl, platter or stemmed compote with glass ball ornaments to adorn a tabletop or entry hall chest. Or, fill several pieces of varying heights and use them together as a dining room centerpiece. Stick with a single ornament color or use a monochromatic mix for a stark, contemporary holiday look. Use a mix of multiple colors for a fun mix that suits nearly any decor. Crystal vessels look fine if that's what you have, but the glass balls look best in containers made of gleaming, polished silver or silverplate.
Make a Wreath
Use your vintage glass ball ornaments to make a striking wreath for your door, such as those featured on the Dishfunctional Designs blog. You can wire the balls onto a wreath base made of greenery, or use glass ball ornaments in a mix of sizes to cover the entire wreath. You can even sprinkle a few bits of sparkly, vintage rhinestone jewelry into the mix.
Suspend Them from Ribbons
To use your glass ball ornaments as stand-alone decorations, tie ribbons onto the looped hangers at the ornament tops. Then, tie the other ends of the ribbons onto the arms of your chandelier to decorate it for the holidays. Or, suspend a cluster of them from the ceiling in front of a window so the sunlight catches the ornament glass during daylight. For the most festive look, opt for shiny satin ribbon or shimmering semi-sheer ribbon.
Trim an Alternative Tree
To create an alternative Christmas tree, place a pine bough or branch cluster in a deep vase, and add glass pebbles or other filler to hold it in place. If you opt for a branch, consider painting it with glossy black, white, or metallic paint. Then, hang your vintage glass ball ornaments from the bough or branches using ribbons or ornament hangers. You can use your alternative Christmas tree to dress up any room for the holidays, or even use it in place of a full-sized, traditional tree.
For more holiday decorating ideas: