This post says a lot about me.  I'll let you qualify that.

So here's my $24.50 tree.  I forgot to take a picture of it before I started hacking away delicately pruning the branches at the top.

I knew the fresh cuts were going to stick out like a sore thumb and I planned ahead.  I bought a bag of lichen at Mahoney's and I was going to hot glue the lichen over the fresh cuts to hide them.  But rather than burn my fingers on the hot glue, I looked through mt collection of Benjamin Moore paint sample pots and found the perfect color.  Just in case you ever wondered what color a Christmas tree trunk is, it's Benjamin Moore Willow CC-542.

The whole pruning process was very slow.  I'd prune a branch, stand back, assess the tree's new chi and respond with the next cut.  Very zen.  Yin and Yang.  Earth, Wind & Fire. 

I tried to remove any portion of a branch that grew up or down so that I ended up with flat layers of branches. I thought I was done at this point but after a little more eggnog contemplation, I went back in.

And this was the result.

Hey, who's chuckling?

I added about 600 lights which took forever. No branches to conceal the cords. 

Thank god for floral wire.

As I started to add the ornaments, I was seeing distinct horizontal layers
emerge like you would see in a Victorian feather tree.

I continued to add ornaments trying to get each layer perfectly horizontal, trimming
additional branches that deviated from that pattern.

And here is the result.

I'm not sure what it says about me that I wanted
an imperfect tree and then I needed to assert order and control by placing the ornaments
as perfectly as possible in their respective layers.

Does anyone find it difficult to take great pictures of a Christmas tree?

The layered effect is a little bit lost at the bottom.  If it weren't for the lights, I would just trim more out to define the layers a little bit.

Almost all of the ornaments are vintage like me or gifts from family and friends.  But this method of placement actually took a lot more ornaments so I had to supplement with some plastic ones from Target.  The shapes were similar to many of the vintage ornaments so they blend really well.

So there it is.  It's different and I love it.

And don't forget... I still have another tree!

I'm linking up to Thifty Decor Chick's Christmas Tree Party.