Germany around the 16th century is credited with starting the Christmas tree tradition as we now know it today. It is said that devout Christians brought the trees to their homes and decorated with handmade creations. When wood was scarce people would build Christmas pyramids of wood and decorated them with evergreens and candles.
The early Chrtistmas trees were a sad affair. Trees looked scrawny and had very little ornamentation. Most items were handmade. Decorations were crafted out of paper, baked cookies, fruit and berries, and the occasional hand-carved ornament.
I purchased this wooden Santa ornament several years ago and love the vintage feel of it.
Lighting on the 1st Christmas trees was supplied by candles that were clipped to the branches.
I found this vintage clip on candle lights on Etsy Imagine clipping something like this just with actual candles on a Christmas tree. I would be so scared that at any given moment one could fall over and set everything on fire.
I find it interesting to see how things evolve over time.