A scrap timber Christmas tree

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This is the perfect kind of tree if you’re short of space, short on cash, hate fake or simply don’t like the generic Christmas tree. It’s extremely versatile and if you make recyclable decorations you could change the look each year!

We used to have a ‘looks like a tree but it’s made of plastic’ Christmas tree but we gave it to my mother so she didn’t have to buy one. My partner PJ “The Grinch” was elated – he thought we were finally giving up on Christmas decorating. Little did he know I had a project in mind!

As we’ve been renovating for years we aren’t short of scrap timber, but you could quite easily go to the salvage yard (or ask family and friends) to find what you need. We used three planks of wood to form the triangle (we used two old floorboards and an old roof timber beam), a hinge to hold the two longest planks together, and an old timber log to form the “trunk” of the tree (with some felt glued to the bottom to avoid scratching the floorboards!). All pieces were bolted in so they could be easily unbolted for easy storage. At this point I should probably mention I didn’t do any of the initial woodwork – with a baby on my hip as we discussed the plan it seemed only fitting that PJ put it together! Plus I think it made him appreciate Christmas when he actually BUILT his own tree.


scrap timber alternative christmas tree DIY

I then hammered in some nails 2 inches apart as hanging tools. We also gave the wood a quick sand down to make sure it was a bit more kid friendly!

To keep it attached to the wall I used a place on the wall where a picture usually hangs and used the screw as an anchoring device, looping and tying the tree to the wall using fishing wire (so it couldn’t be seen).

I used a natural twine to string across the tree for hanging decorations off. My decorations were quite simple this year – the clay decorations I mentioned in this post and some handmade decorations made from old books (instructions coming soon). I also made a paper mache star (instructions also coming soon!).

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We also strung lights around the edge to capture the shape, however you could also string them across in a zig zag fashion (example below) which is also a nice effect and could possibly replace decorations if you want to go for a really simple look.

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I’m really looking forward to decorating it with homemade recyclable decorations as a pre-Christmas tradition with Baby E each year, you could really do anything you like. I figured I’d start simple this year because I’m sure as the years progress the tree will become more colourful and crazy!

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2 Comments Add yours

  1. Love it! Very clever! Thanks for all the pictures showing what it looks like lit and not lit.

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