I've learned that when you make your own Christmas tree by hand, you have to take the rest of the family's wishes and ideas into account. Which is only fair - after all, it's going to be their Christmas tree too. Our tree this year started as a simple tree silhouette, made with rusty wire I found at my friend's shop. Simple in shape, but not in the making: straightening, flattening and shaping that rusty old wire took quite a bit of effort. But I discovered that I love the plasticity of metal wire, and the worn, seasoned look of rust.
After I'd made the outline of the tree, everyone pitched in with different suggestions for decorating it: a trunk, Candles, Ornaments, a star on top ... and it's still evolving!
I crocheted the ornaments, then stiffened them by soaking in sugar starch. The lovely snowflake patterns come from the amazing little Japanese crochet book I bought at Retrosaria in Lisbon. That book has given me so many great project ideas!
It's a very simple handmade tree, but it fits with our ideas and feelings about Christmas - that the holidays are less about exterior appearances, and more about what's inside.