Make Christmas Right-Side Up Again

Eggnog. Twinkle lights. Fresh-baked cookies. Bad sweaters. Worse music. Relatives. Family disputes. Alcohol. Making up. Perhaps a carol then sleep, and all the while, standing nobly in the corner, is a coniferous, green, conical reminder that Christmas time is here. Happiness and cheer.

So why are people hanging their goddamn Christmas trees upside-down instead of upright like normal people do?


An upside-down tree in its natural habit: a poorly lit, Midwestern living room, via Flickr

Apparently, the reason is practical, and boring: floor space.

Retailers started the trend when they figured out they could hang trees upside-down and have more room for products underneath or offer easier access to ornaments for sale, but it’s roots actually go much deeper than a department store or Pinterest board.

The truth is upside-down trees can be traced back to the Middle Ages, as early as the 12th century in fact, and the reason is just as boring.

Eastern Europeans would hang fir trees upside-down to represent the Holy Trinity. (That’s it. That’s the whole story. Told you it was boring.)

Fast-forward hundred of years and the thing has transcended religion and even practicality to become a full-blown trend. Target sells an upside-down Christmas tree for nearly $1000. Karl Lagerfeld designed some gold one for some fancy place in London called the Claridge Hotel that probably cost many, many thousands. One has even hung in the Tate Britain. A museum…of art!


Upside-down tree at the Tate Britain, via Flickr

Some argue the upside-down tree is a pet-proof option. No casualties of a wagging tail or an overzealous kitty. Others agree it’s more space-efficient. More room for presents. Some just think it’s pretty. We…don’t know.

Actually, if you ask us, it’s pretty stupid. We don’t know what it is about these upside-down Christmas trees, but we’ll tell you what: we’ll give you our right-side up Christmas trees when you pry them from our warm, brandied fingers. (Just as soon as we’re done fussing with the tree stand.)

Christmas is about tradition, and sure, tradition can be staid. Shaking things up is rarely a bad thing. Drinks, your hips, an oddly shaped gift–all these things benefit from a good shake at Christmas time, but the tree? No way. The ornaments go flying. People get tangled up in the light cords. Needles get everywhere. Just leave that tree where it belongs. Right-side up. Above the presents.

U-S-A! via Flickr

U-S-A! via Flickr

From all of us at nogginwerks, please, do the right thing. Make Christmas right-side up again.

Happy Holidays!

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