I started doing it about four or five years ago (maybe longer, not sure) I purchase these glass, and plastic little drops or balls, whichever way they come, and we (my mom and I) hang them on some green or white thread. Depending on what color tree you have. I have three trees, one white, one green, both artificial and then Our official Christmas tree, from the tree farm, that one is real. I use this trick on all of them.
When I go to AC Moore, Michaels or Joannes, they have the plastic ones in boxes, maybe about 50 or 60 for under 5 dollars. The dollar store has the glass ones, which are my favorite and those are for a dollar and change each. Look at the results.
Now I'm having problems with my camera tonight. UUUGH! I hate trying to figure out cameras. I want someone to read the book and then say "here press this and your good." Anyway, this is my mantle, I decided not to put up the matching wreath that has lights and balls on it and go for a simpler look. I like it! It's not the same as last years. But I think last years felt too much. But this photo is so dark that you really can't see how pretty the wreath is. Sorry. Will try to re- shoot when my real tree is up this weekend. Happy Decorating!