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Maybe the reason white artificial Christmas trees aren’t as popular as they were a few years ago, is because people are figuring out that they can turn yellow! I purchased our white Martha Stewart 6.5 footer about 7 years ago at K-Mart, but I only started to notice some minor yellowing about two years ago and only in a handful of spots. Once the lights were in and the ornaments strung, it wasn’t noticeable at all. However, this year I had some really ugly yellow branches that honestly looked as though our dog had peed on them!
I went online to find inspiration and a fix, but didn’t really find much. Instead I grabbed a can of white glossy spray paint which stated specifically on the can that it worked well on plastic. This is important, since plastic is not a hard solid surface like metal or wood, but can bend and move. Which means the paint is able to adhere and be flexible, minimizing the risk of paint flaking off everywhere! I used Rust-Oleum 2X coverage, white spray paint in gloss.
Dressed in my electric blue mechanics coveralls (I always wear them to paint) I assembled the tree in the garage, making sure to spread the branches further apart than I would normally. Next, I carried the white tree into the front yard where it was about 8 degrees warmer than the backyard (spray paint won’t work very well if it’s too cold -or too hot) and as a bonus, I was able to give my neighbours a little show while they sipped their morning coffee and browsed the Sunday paper! ;-)
Focusing mostly on the yellow areas, I began to spray paint. Going over some very yellow areas more than once, but trying to give a light mist to the entire tree so that it would all be the same white colour. I used up the entire (new) can. If the tree had been yellow everywhere, this would have been a tougher job and I probably would have required at least three cans.
I brought the tree back into the garage and let it dry for about 4 hours before bringing it into the house. Later that evening we decorated it and it looks really great. The paint seems to have adhered very well and there has been absolutely zero flaking. It’s a fix I would recommend and for about $6 (for a can of spray paint) it is definitely worth the tiny bit of effort it took and way cheaper than buying a new tree.