My honest, not sponsored review on Balsam Hill, Christmas trees, wreaths, and garlands: are they worth the money?
Three years ago when Covid hit, with a limitation of going out, I decided I would start doing some research and forgo the buying of fresh Christmas trees and invest in some good artificial Christmas trees. I did a lot of research and finally decided I would take a chance on Balsam Hill Trees.
Sadly, a lot of the higher end, more expensive companies do not have customer reviews on their websites, which makes it difficult to really determine if products are worth it. Personally, I love to read reviews because I feel like that’s one of the best ways to know if something is really good quality. Then we don’t know if we can trust reviews, but if they have reviews, just read a LOT or ALL of them to sift through the paid or fraud reviews. Just because something is expensive, does not mean that the quality is there, and that I will tell you more about as we go on.
Balsam Hill does have reviews on their site, but not many. If you are just meeting me then you’ll need to know I’m the guinea pig most of the time. I am often the first person to try something, or buy something…after doing lots and lots of research. My career as a Forensic Accountant included so much research, that you’d think my title would’ve been “Researcher”. Since I’ve been trained as an expert researcher, it is only natural that my researching skills would have to translate into my everyday life.
One of the things I love about education is not that it simply teaches you things, or you learn something new…but education teaches you HOW to think! You’ll see I’m a super nerd when it comes to education, because I believe wholly that knowledge is power. Even when it comes to making smart money decisions, having a trained intelligent mind will help you to make better choices, and therefore help you lead a better life.
Now that I’ve said my necessary “CPA MOM” speech about how important educating yourself is…let’s continue on educating ourself about artificial trees.
As a pure hearted country girl, making the decision to switch from REAL TREES to Artificial was a very hard nut to crack for me. I LOVE REAL TREES! Eight years ago I discovered “Flocked Real Trees”…and I fell in super LOVE!
The flocked real trees are amazing and oh so magical. But…here was the issue, or issues I should say.
- The flocking, while beautiful, is a MESS!
- The flocking, is SUPER PRICEY!
- Making each tree (I’d buy 2 flocked each year, 7 Ft and 9 Ft) Price tag of around $700 with delivery! YIKES!
- The flocked trees lose their smell! One of my favorite things about real trees was the SMELL!
- I still had to string lights on them! UGH!
- I had to take the lights off! DOUBLE UGH!
- It is no fun taking lights off of a dead, dried up tree, and one that is flocked, you not only have pine needles galore, but you have snow everywhere too.
- 2 Trees needlessly killed…that is sad on its own!
After weighing my list of reasons why I should start looking for an artificial Christmas Tree...I began my hunt for a really good quality tree! If I'm doing this, its going to be a GOOD INVESTMENT, or nothing at all!
One thing you'll see about me, I don’t mind spending money on quality, but I HATE wasting money on something I could get or make cheaper and better! WASTE is not something I do!
This is a 7′ foot tall Balsam Hill flocked tree, it has multiple light settings, all white, multi-color, and color and white. This was a must for us as my 10 year old wanted color lights and I wanted clear!
NOTE: if you are like me and don't like to read or follow instructions...you will end up with a "not so full" looking tree. You HAVE TO FLUFF IT! DON'T SKIP THIS STEP!
When I ordered my 7’Ft tree and my 9’Ft tree, I was so excited, I put the 7’Ft tree together in about 10 minutes flat, from unpacking to CLICK, CLICK, BOOM! 1, 2, 3 and it was done. I did not, put the nice gloves on that they give you, or read the instructions which say, “with gloves on, push back the branches one by one to fluff it to give it the fullness you see in online pictures and catalogs. Guys, they fluff them!
The trees come in a box, stuffed. They need a little extra love to get them all the way there. The way the branches just “fall” into place is something I really like about how the tree goes together. It makes assembly and disassembly a breeze. Another big plus to me!
As I said, the first tree, my family room 7 footer, did not get fluffed on year 1 (I regretted it later, but it still looked amazing). In Year 2 I fluffed more, but still didn’t learn my lesson. This year, I followed the directions! OMG right! I am such a guy when it comes to not reading directions at times, but it seemed easy enough at the time. But I can firmly attest to fluffing these bad boys, i.e. follow the directions on the card and use the gloves!
The best part about these artificial faux Christmas Trees from Balsam Hill is the ability to move the branches around. In fact, to get the best look, and fill “holes” is to do just that! You have to move the branches into the position you want. This comes in super handy for larger ornaments that need more space, I can just move the branch to make it hang at the perfect position…something not available on real trees! LOL
Most of what I’ve shown you so far is just my family room. In these pictures, the Christmas Tree, The wreath on the window pane next to the tree, the golden pip berry picks, and the wood tree skirt crate are all from Balsam Hill. I do love the tree box “tree skirt”. It matched my decor perfectly and it is really easy to put together.
The trees are really nice and I have to say the branches have a nice realistic quality to them, especially the snow flocked trees. I bought 2 matching wreaths, but they were not flocked. I also bought 2 matching garlands that were flocked to match the trees. Like I said, had I known, I would buy them without the lights on them. The lights are just the worst! There are 2 strands that take 4 batteries each (8 AA batteries total, for 1 garland)! and they don’t last even a few weeks! They have a remote and timer, but you can get better lights for less that you can add yourself.
My major take on Balsam Hill trees, they are amazing; and I love them, totally worth it!
My takeaway on the garland and wreaths, they are nice, the LIGHTS ARE AWFUL!
I LOVE the little frosted Alpine Balsam fir tabletop trees! I have several of these and bought more in the other sizes!
I have a 7'ft one in my bedroom, and another in the foyer by the entryway this year.
My daughter has one in her bedroom as well! My Aunt calls these 'Charlie Brown Trees', even though they are far from! I really love the whimsical look of these Balsam Hill Alpine Fir trees (clearly since I now own 5 of these!)
Don’t buy garlands or wreaths with the lights on them if you buy them. They are nice, just don’t get the lights, they take too many batteries, don’t last, and they are a pain to remove! We need to be more environmentally conscious so we cannot use so many batteries…that is something I do not like! Plus it is a pain to keep replacing the batteries every week!
Had I known this, I would’ve bought them without lights. I bought several that are flocked and trying to remove the lights is just destroying the flocking! I am super sad about this, so that’s why I wanted to warn everyone about that one aspect. You can get a $5 set of string lights that work better and last longer. Honestly to me, that is the biggest problem and I plan on talking to them and seeing if I can help them get better lights on their garlands and wreaths! I’m on a mission to make all of our lives better and more beautiful!