Make your own Christmas Tree

I LOVE those pine trees that you can find in all the upscale stores during the holidays! I LOVE LOVE LOVE them! I just don’t LOVE the upscale prices on them. So like everything else that I don’t want to spend my hard-earned money on but still REALLY WANT, I simply learn how to make it myself! Sometimes this has worked out for me and somethings it has really backfired! Like the time I could not find “hooked rugs” anywhere to put in my new LARGE home with all hardwood floors….I joined a rug hooking group and figured that I was just simply going to make ALL of the rugs for our new home! HAAAAAAAA HAAAAAAAA HAAAAAA HAAAAA!!!  These sweet ladies most much older and WISER than me ……sat looking at me with that look of “poor little thing has no idea what she is saying”! ) They were far to polite to actually LAUGH at me!  It took me two years to complete my first SMALL area rug! However I have been a member of this fabulous group of women for several years now, and I just love them and the art of rug hooking…but I broke down and “bought” most of my rugs for our house.  Hooked rugs are time-consuming and when you are done with all the work you really sorta kinda don’t want anyone to put their dirty shoes/feet on them! But I digress.  Today I want to show you how easy it is to make your own Christmas trees!  I will show you later how to also make your own Christmas wreaths and dried floral wreaths too…but today just Christmas trees.  Heres how you do it.

For tools you will need a drill and some small drill bits! I broke 4 on this project!  I was a little rusty with my drill I guess! You will need some good garland, floral tape, wire cutter and some hot glue. First cut a platform for your tree trunk to stand on and drill it in from the bottom with a screw long enough to go through all the thicknesses of the wood.

Start with a small tree trunk...just as long as it's pretty straight and about 3 to 4 inches around, depending on how big you want your tree.

Drill a bigger hole in the middle and three smaller holes along the edge like this.

Cut three pieces from your garland making sure to leave about an inch to two inch portion of wire from the garland.

When you insert it the branch will be sticking straight up. Bend it down to a be perpendicular to the tree.

Like this. Don't worry! I haven't put the top on yet. I know it looks kinda like a palm tree right now.

Do this with the next two pieces.

 

 

Make the tree topper

Your going to want to make the top longer. It will almost look like a tiny Christmas tree all on its own.  Using your floral tape reinforce it with a piece of heavy gauge wire that has been wrapped with the floral tape then attach it to the garland using the branches to twist onto the wire….make sure to leave an extra long end that will be inserted into the top of the tree. About three inches should do it. Make sure that the hole you drilled on top is at least that deep too.  Go around the end of the topper at the stem and wrap with floral tape to keep it sturdy.  You want to do this because it will hold that wire in place and it won’t slip up and down. Then plop that into the top of the tree.

I didn't actually go over the end of this one with the floral tape....sorry, I realize that is a bit confusing! But that "is" what you "should" do.

The reason I “didn’t” do that in the photo is because the particular garland I was working with had VERY GOOD and sturdy wire running through it already and a long enough wire already extending when I cut it off the garland that I simply didn’t need to put another reinforcement wire through it and extend it out for a longer end. (which is why you would normally do it)  wheww! That was a mouth full.  Sorry, but I felt I needed to explain that so as not to confuse you.

Make sure it fits flush with the top of the trunk.

Start to drill your holes about 3 inches down and go all around the tree trunk spaced evenly.

I only put about 3 holes around the trunk and when I start the next row (3 inches down) I stager them to offset the branches.  Also as you go down the tree trunk with your garland as you start each new row make sure to make your garland cuts a little bigger each time. Think of a pine tree….it gets bigger and bigger as you get towards the bottom. Just a bit each time should do it NOT a whole BUNCH just a wee!  Don’t worry you’ll probably screw up! I still do…..just adjust and recut if you make it too big. If you make it too small then save those pieces for another tree! Because once you master this I promise you that you will WANT to make another and another and then some for gifts and on and on. Trust me.

Keep going until you have gone all the way down your tree trunk leaving about 24 inches without branches at the bottom. Side note: see all my "unused" holes LOLOL

Sorry for the crappy picture...it's the only shot I have to show you the bottom.

Your tree will look like this when you are done.

Hang some lights on them and WA LA!

Then I made another "bigger" one out of different garland and put them next to my front door.

It really is important to find good strudy garland that has a strong wire holding it together for the larger trees…otherwise it will be to floppy.  I tried it with the cheap Walmart type stuff and it looked awful. You don’t have to spend a fortune, but you do have to get some garland that is nice…the nicer the garland the nicer the tree. If you choose to make a smaller tree…such as a 36 inch or so then you can easily use the cheaper stuff (and I DO have some of those in my house too).  And they look great.

I made these about 15 yrs ago with the really cheap stuff and they still look great.

OK! So I realize that I showed you how to do this entire thing w/out showing you the “hot glue part”  I did that on purpose. It’s because I ALWAYS screw up where I want the holes…if you look closley you can see I have MANY holes in my trees!  I move those holes up and down (no one will ever know unless you tell them) because once the branches are on it really hides them, plus the tree trunks are kind of raw and natural like that anyway and the holes are so small that they are sort of unnoticeable anyway…just looks like a bird or bug did it or something! LOL   At any rate I drill all my holes first and then attach all the garland pieces and make sure I have everything where I want it and it looks right to me and THEN I use the hot glue at the very end. Just dip the end of your wire on the garland piece in the hot glue and stick it in the hole you want.  Add some pinecones or twigs or berries…whatever flips your trigger and presto! All your friends will think your amazing!  I made my husband say the words “Wow honey”!!! “YOU made that?”!! “You are soooo amazing!” In fact I made all my family members say it to me! Then I felt quite satisfied with myself, as I nodded my head yes, and acted quite humble about it all.

You see, my family is so used to me now with all my DIY stuff that they barely notice when I do something cool anymore!  It’s like “Oh”, “Mom is building another house today”?” “no big deal.”  Every DIYer needs a pat on the back….every time. 🙂

 

 

 

 

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