The Christmas Place, Pigeon Forge, Tennessee

The Christmas Place, Pigeon Forge, Tennessee
I love Christmas and all the decorations that go with the season. So, bright and early one Saturday morning we jumped into Andrew's new car, with a bag of grapes to munch on the way and were off. The incredible Christmas Place, at the foothills of the Smoky Mountains, is the premier destination for Christmas gifts and collectibles, designer-themed Christmas Trees, novelty and traditional Christmas lights, hundreds of personalized ornaments, and all the favorite holiday brands like Department 56, Lemax, Christopher Radko. For me coming from India, it was like a vast fairyland of Christmas decorations, the likes of which I had never seen before.

The Christmas Place is literally an enormous Christmas decoration destination, with every conceivable Christmas ornament one could desire, in every shape, colour and size. In typical American style -- the size of the place has one gaping, with each room's display in different colours and styles. We were surprised by the quality and incredible displays of all the Christmas goodies, all under one roof. The store is celebrating 30 years and have grown into the largest Christmas shopping village, located in the foothills of the Smoky Mountains.

Talking to one of the shop assistants, she explained that the store was open 365 days of the year and they have shoppers throughout the year. It was founded in 1986 and has grown into multi stores - literally a mini Christmas village, with the best Christmas decorations, gifts and collections for the season.

We asked the designers in the store about giving us tips on lighting our Christmas Tree like the professionals did. We wondered how the their skilled designers at The Christmas Place had their trees lit so uniformly and neatly. They shared how they do it.

What you will need is about 100 lights per vertical foot of tree (7′ tree = 700 lights). They use LED lights for low energy consumption and long life. Enough extension chords for the number of light strands you plan to use – and they say, always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when chaining light strands. One needs a good power strip to handle the extension chords and make it easy to turn everything on and off with one switch. Chenille stems or twist ties are needed, to secure your extension cords to the tree’s trunk.

Here is how to do it : Start by running extension cords up the trunk of the tree and positioning the female ends where they will be needed – this depends on the height of your tree and the number of light strands you’ll be using. Use chenille stems or twist ties to secure the extension cords to the tree’s trunk.

Starting at the bottom, plug in your first strand of lights, and begin wrapping it around a branch from the trunk out to the tip – and back to the trunk again. Continue to your second branch, and just keep working your way up the tree. If you are lighting an artificial tree, be sure to fluff the branches of your tree as you go.

When you get to the top, any extra length of lights can be tucked down the trunk of the tree for an extra glow. The finished product is a beautifully-lit Christmas tree, well fluffed, with lights evenly spaced all around and from top to bottom. Now add some novelty lights to compliment your theme, and keep going to get that perfectly lit tree.

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