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The Globe and Mail

How big is too big when it comes to Christmas trees?

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The question

My husband favours a big tree for our not-enormous living room. I admire his holiday spirit, but I don't want it to look like a family of foxes could be living in there. How big is too big?

The answer

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During the holiday season, the sky is the limit – which means you can go as tall as your ceiling will allow. As for a thin tree versus a full one, it all depends on what appeals to your eye and how the tree fits in your space. If you're that concerned about the fox-den effect, opt for a clearly faux option. A white Miami tree, for example, with bright pink and blue balls tends to lighten up a space and doesn't crowd. Or an ultra-modern tree of lights – no branches, only diagonal strings of lights that make a conical, tree-like shape – acts as a disco beacon, throwing light on the space while enlarging your surroundings. No matter what kind of tree you choose, be adventurous and accommodating during the holiday season: Fill the room with ornaments, aromatic flowers, boughs of boxwood. And if you find a fox in your den, it might not be a bad thing.

Follow architect and interior designer Dee Dee Taylor Eustace on Twitter: @ddtaylorddd. Have a design dilemma? E-mail

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