Me and my Christmas tree

Adam Wide, professional decorator
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Indy Lifestyle Online
Christmas trees have been my passion since I was seven and had a tree of my own. I've got six trees this year, even though I've only got a two-bedroom flat.

I have one in the sitting room, one in the dining room, one in the hall and three on the balcony for the benefit of people coming over Hammersmith Bridge. It takes me three days to decorate my trees because I'm so fussy. In the sitting room I have what I call my traditional Bing Crosby tree. Basically white and silver, it is very elegant and topped with a gorgeous angel. I am an inveterate Christmas hoarder and have 12 tea chests full of decorations collected from all over the world. I bought the glass icicles in Switzerland, Denmark, New York and London, the fabric angels and Santas in Poland, andthe little candles in holders in Austria. I light the candles on Christmas Eve and stand by with a bucket of water just in case. I have white lights on the tree and a string of chiming bells which plays 22 carols. I call the tree in the dining room my street oik's tree because unlike the one in the sitting room it has no taste and no pretensions. I get kids in to help me decorate it and they whack anything anywhere. There are coloured lights and an eclectic mix of bauble s. I link the two trees with a toy train - I had to bang a hole in the wall for it. Children love the train and lie on the track like in "The Perils of Pauline". The train has a smoking funnel and Mickey and Minnie Mouse are the train driver and guard. L ast year Minnie was mouse-napped by one of the children. I noticed she was missing just as a family were leaving; there had to be a bit of a mouse-search and she was found in someone's pocket.

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