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‘Does size really matter?’ asked host Andrea McLean on this Tuesday’s Loose Women. ‘Do you like a big one like Coleen? Or is a small-but-perfectly-formed one like Gino’s classier option?’
Andrea is – of course – talking about Christmas trees. It was the hot topic of debate on a very festive edition of Loose Women, which included Coleen Nolan, Janet Street Porter, Saira Khan and special guest Gino DiCampo.
‘Today’s the day that we start to feel Christmassy, and that means getting your decorations up,’ says Andrea. ‘Apparently more and more of us are going big with trees – we’re talking 9 feet or more.’
‘9 feet?!’ Andrea continues, bemused. ‘It’s all very well, 9ft trees, but how high is a normal ceiling in a house? Can you fit a 9ft tree in your house?’
‘Well, you can squash it in,’ replies Coleen. ‘It’s got to reach the ceiling. Whatever height the ceiling is, whether it’s 5ft, 6ft, whatever, the fairy or the star’s got to touch the ceiling.’
‘And I do love a fat tree,’ Coleen adds, inviting giggles from the audience. ‘I’m not into the long thin ones.’
‘Have you got a real tree?,’ asks Janet in her trademark deadpan.
‘No,’ says Coleen, as a picture of her hallway pops up on screen. ‘This is my hallway, as you go in, so that’s a little kind of winter wonderland.’ The space features two trees, both dressed in snowy white decorations, which you can see if you click through Coleen’s Instagram tree gallery, above.
Coleen goes on to explain that she has two more trees in the family room, and a projector that casts the words Merry Christmas on the walls. Finally, in the ‘front lounge, where Santa comes’ there’s another big fat tree, which, true to form, has a star that touches the ceiling.
Her decorations receive plenty of admiring oohs and ahas from the rest of the panel. But Coleen can’t take credit for all the decorating. ‘I have to say that Kiera [Coleen’s daughter] did all of it. She sends me out of the room. It’s really nice – we love it, but it takes all day. We are so into Christmas.’
There’s just one problem with Coleen’s festive finery. ‘Cats like trees don’t they?’ she says. ‘And boxer dogs like eating what the cats have dropped off the trees. I’ve lost half the decorations already!’
Fellow panellist Saira also likes a big tree. However, husband Steve worries about ‘performance anxiety’. ‘If he gets it up too early it’s going to droop on Christmas Day. So we’re getting it up on Thursday!’ Ooh er!
Have you got your tree yet? Real Christmas trees – how to choose, decorate and look after them
Janet hasn’t got a tree yet as she’s moving and her decs are in storage. But she is adamant she won’t be having decorations outside as it’s ‘common’! ‘The only thing that’s allowed your house are lights that are all one colour – warm glowing yellow, not blue ones!’
Yet Janet is a fan of tinsel, surprisingly. ‘I like one-colour tinsel that matches my lights,’ she reveals.
Whose tree traditions are closest to your own?