Monday, December 10, 2012

25 Ideas for the Holidays - 7, 8 & 9 - A Forest of Trees!

Today I have a mini forest of
Christmas Trees for you to make! 

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Have no fear though ~ I actually have a few more planned in the coming days so your forest won't be mini for long!!

#7 - Dimensional Burlap Tree

Yes I know, everyone is making burlap trees right now....  It must be the "in" thing since it's got such a nice organic and natural look/feel to it.  Well, most of the trees I've seen just look a bit flat to me so I put my own "Twist and Tug" on it for a more dimensional version.   Here is my tree....

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As you can see my tree actually has layers that stick out about 1/2-1" from the tree!
Here is what I did to give the tree the added dimension....
First, fold up your burlap so that when you cut through the layers you will be making long strips.
When you go to cut the strips, cut the burlap in a wave pattern.  Large waves are o.k. for the bottom but smaller closer together waves is better for the upper portion of the tree.  It will depend on how large the form is that you will be working with to determine how many strips you will need.  I am using a 12" Styrofoam cone. 
Now, pin the burlap to the bottom of the cone and begin winding the strip up the cone.  You might have to tuck the upper portions in here and there but by the time you get the next layer wrapped around it should all hold it in nice and neat.
Continue wrapping the wavy strips of burlap until you've reached the top.  Trim off any excess and pin the end to the top of the cone.
I know, other than having a few waves it doesn't look any difference than others you've seen.  Remember I mentioned my own "Twist & Tug", well the twist was cutting the burlap in waves, the "TUG" comes in now!  Carefully tug each wave pulling it outward. By gently pulling on the fibers ~ like magic each wave stands out from the tree! 
#8 - Inked Cork Tree
This is an inky fun tree...
The finished tree stands approx. 6.5" tall.

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I started off by inking a few of the corks green and red.  I used both Distress & Archival Inks.

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Next hot glue the layers together.  You will need one 5 cork layer, two 4 cork layers, and one 2 & 3 cork layers and a single cork for the top.  After your cork layers have cooled glue the layers together as follows:
Building up from the bottom layer:
4 corks,
5 corks
4 corks
3 corks
2 corks
1 final cork for the top.

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Now glue together three corks as shown....
This will become the trunk of the tree.

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For a final touch I added a little bow.
#9 - Holly Tree

I got the idea for this tree when we were on vacation a couple weeks ago.  We stopped at an antique/flea market somewhere in IL that had a variety of themed rooms.  In the Christmas room I found two really big sprays of holly...a solid green spray and a variegated green & white spray.  I knew I wanted to make a tree from them because they were hanging upside down and it they actually looked like trees!  So $1.00 for both sprays I was set to go!!

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Here's what I did.....
I started off by pulling off several of the leaves from the wired branches and cut them up so I had a pile of individual leaves.
I then inked up an old party hat (these are GREAT for making trees & cones!) and hit it with the heat tool to dry the inks quickly.  As soon as it was dry I ran a line of hot glue around the bottom and began sticking on leaves.  Over lap the leaves so the hat is completely covered.  I added one of the variegated leaves here and there for  a bit of color. 
Once you have one row on your hat, move up about and inch and add another row.
Continue adding leaves until the entire hat/tree is covered with leaves.
NOTE: For the lower 2-3 layers I left the plastic veins on the back of each leaf.  This added a bit of dimension and stability to the leaves.  After that I peeled off the veins so the leaves were more pliable and would conform to the curve of the hat better.

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Now time to add the berries....
I simply cut up the clusters so I had 3-4 berries per bunch. 
Then glue them to the center of a leaf and fold the top over to cover up the end of the cluster.
I then glued & tucked these clusters in among the leaves on the tree.

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I finished off the tree by tucking a cluster in the very top of the tree, added a few more leaves and a bow and that was that! 
The best part about this tree???? 
Because I recycled my flea market find holly leaves, an old party hat that I picked up at a garage sale for $0.25 (for 8), a bit of ink and glue, this tree cost about $0.10 to make!!! 
I LOVE it when I can recycle other peoples junk and turn it into a great project.
Makes the pack rat in me proud!
15 Days until Christmas!!!


  1. This is so awesome! Love all of your trees! :)

  2. Thanks for the step by step instructions. They were very clear and easy to follow. All I need to do now is find some holly!

  3. Best use I have seen for those party hats. Love the cork tree as well


Thanks for your thoughts and comments!