CLEVELAND - When it comes to iconic places to spend the holidays Rockefeller Center in New York City probably tops your list. Among other festive locations are Chicago and our nation’s capital. It there that the National Christmas Tree has been helping spread cheer for nearly a century.
And this week, America’s Christmas tree will be lit for the world to see.
“It’s such a real honor to be involved in the lighting of the national Christmas tree,” said Mary Beth Gotti, GE Lighting Institute Manager.
The lights and ornaments adorning the 28-foot symbol of peace come from GE’s Lighting Institute in Cleveland, Ohio, as they have for the last 50-years.
“The design process for the National Christmas Tree starts very early,” said Gotti.
This year, 450 strings of green, red and white LED lights, along with 160 star ornaments help deck the halls in D.C.
And who better to give us decorating tips, than those who design this popular piece of holiday cheer?
“I’m a maniac when it comes to stringing holiday light sets,” said Gotti.
Our first tip to lighting your Christmas tree is to loosen up.
“Have fun with lights,” said Gotti.
You can that by playing with the color palette, which thanks to LED lights, is larger than ever.
“LED’s are a game changer for holiday lighting displays," said Gotti. "Now the colors are more vibrant.”
The new vibrant lights will help create dramatic effects outside your home. And unlike incandescent light sets – you can go overboard and not break the bank.
“We can just string up, string up lights to our hearts content because they are so energy efficient,” said Gotti.
After tackling the lighting outside of your home, it’s time to focus on the inside. One tip from the experts at GE is to use different size ornaments and light bulbs on your tree to give it some depth.
“Little LED lights and some that are larger, so you can create a much larger 3-dimensional look,” said Gotti.
If you find yourself inspired by this year’s National Christmas Tree – you can have the same look.
“The LED ornaments can be found in your local store at some point and the homeowner can actually design their tree just like the national tree," said Debbie George, Lighting Designer.
A tree steeped in tradition – that continues to share its message of hope and peace.
PHOTOS ON THE LIST: YOUR HOLIDAY PHOTOS