Ease and speed are the primary reasons why putting lights on a Christmas tree vertically is better than the usual horizontal method. With the vertical method, you do not have to go around the tree repeatedly. You only go up and down, which is relatively faster, less tedious, and less error prone. Besides, using the vertical method, you can hang fewer lights on your tree. Generally, you can use anywhere between 50 and 200 light bulbs per foot of a Christmas tree, depending on how bright you want it. But if you use 100 lights on a tree horizontally, you can recreate the same thing vertically using 70-80 light bulbs. You can also add lights readily without ruining the decoration.
How to Hang Tree Lights Vertically
Plug It In
Plugging the string lights from the start is one easy way to ensure that plug ends up close to the outlet when you’re done hanging lights on the tree.
Of course, to avoid electric shock, ensure the outlet is switched off. This way, the string lights will receive little or no power.
Instead of plugging the lighting, you can tie/anchor the plug to an object (such as an unplugged extension cord) very close to the socket. This totally precludes the risk of an electric shock.
Another option is to work with extension cords. With an extension cord, you wouldn’t have to worry too much about the plug not getting to the outlet.
String the Christmas Lights to the Tree From Bottom to Top (and From Top to Bottom)
With the plug anchored close to the socket, curl the Christmas lights upward until you reach the top of the tree. Then fold the wire and bring the strand back to the bottom of the tree, leaving about 1.5-3 inches between the first strand and the next.
The phase where you hang Christmas tree lights from top to bottom is typically easier and faster. Since the lighting falls freely, you wouldn’t have to do much.
When you hang the lights downward, they may flow out of pattern. So, when the entire tree is covered in the hang lights, you may try adjusting the curl of each strand.
While decking the tree, you do not have to stick to just curls or loops. You could try zigzags and any other pattern you want. Of course, complex patterns will certainly take more time.
Keep Stringing Lights to the Tree
Once you’ve wounded the lights vertically from the bottom to the top of the tree and vice versa, keep going until the whole tree is covered or you’re done using a whole strand.
Adjust the Wires
You may do these while you hang tree lights or after you’re done hanging them:
- Move some lights close to the tips of the branches. This way, they will be more prominent.
- Slip a few lights deeper into the tree, so the hang lights do not look superficial. While pushing the lights in, keep in mind the lights are already hidden by baubles and other ornaments.
- Push the non-lit parts of the strands into the tree. This will give them better uniformity.
My Tips for Hanging Lights Vertically
- Buy high-quality Christmas lights like these, for example.
- Test the light strand before you start decorating the tree. Ensure every bulb works fine.
- Ensure you create a pattern with the light strands, or else the tree may look bland.
- Calculate how many lights you need and have more than enough lighting – at least 50 – 100 for every foot. Note that 50 is only okay when you’re looking for minimal brightness.
- Hang lights on the tree when it’s bare. Doing this makes for easy decoration since there would be ornaments on the tree.
- All vertical lights running along the sides of the tree must be spaced by about 2 inches or more.
Other Ways to Hang Lights On a Tree
Besides the vertical and horizontal methods, there are other ways to hang lights on a tree. You can also hang lights by wrapping branches or wounding the lights around the tree in triangular sections.
Wrapping tree branches with lights is the most time-consuming of every option we mentioned. But this is no surprise considering how it involves covering each branch with lights.
The triangular-section option is also time-consuming. But it takes relatively less time than wrapping branches. Plus, it is easier to estimate lighting needs with this method.