Christmas, Craft Projects, Holiday

Wooden Tree Decoration

One of my favorite gifts that I made this year I of course failed to take a nice picture of. Just my luck.

I made my godfather a decoration of trees and a graphic design print with lyrics from his favorite song, In the Bleak Midwinter.

BleakMidwinter

The print is simple and has the first verse of the song. I wanted to create a decoration to sit beside it, so I used pallet wood to create a tree scene.

Tree cutouts

First, I cut out pallet pieces using a jigsaw. I didn’t care for the lines to be perfect, so you’ll see that the trees aren’t all straight or the same size. Imperfection is the name of the game.

Once my trees were cut out, I sanded them down and laid them out in a way I thought looked pleasing.

Stained trees

I pulled a piece of scrap wood from my stash and cut it down to size. I wanted just enough behind the trees to help the whole decoration stand on its own.

Lined up trees

Next, I stained the trees. I used a darker brown stain and a light green stain, choosing to leave the tree in the middle untouched.

Once the stain dried, I screwed the piece of scrap wood into the trees so they would be permanently affixed together.

Last, I used a small piece of scrap wood to create a star — I wasn’t able to cut a star out of wood, but instead stained an itty bitty piece of wood yellow and used a wood burning tool to add a star. I added this to the center tree only.

Ta da!

Final trees

Like I said — not a good picture. It really doesn’t do this decoration justice. My godfather loved his framed graphic art and the accompanying tree decoration. I almost didn’t want to give the trees away!

Advertisements
Christmas, Craft Projects, DIY GIFT GUIDE, Gift Idea, Holiday, Wine Crafts

DIY GIFT GUIDE: Eucalyptus Christmas Tree

Eucalyptus Tree Gift Guide

Today I’m sharing a Christmas decoration that would make a great gift. This project was a pain in the butt, but SO worth it. So only make it for someone you really really like :p

Supplies:

  • 1 tree form
  • Eucalyptus (you can grab this from Michaels or any craft store that sells floral stuff)
  • Staples
  • Hot Glue
  • Corks
  • Tacks
  • Ribbon
  • Teal feathers

Steps:

  1. Rip the leaves off of your eucalyptus plant.
  2. Turn your tree base upside down and start to attach the eucalyptus. I did a mixture of staples stuck into the styrofoam, hot glue and some bent wire. Really anything I had at my workbench that would make the leaves stick. Go around and around and around and around until you reach the top.Eucalyptus Tree BaseEucalyptus Tree LeavesEucalyptus Tree Leaves2
  3. Once the leaves are covering the tree, glue corks to the bottom. I chose to place mine at the outer edge of the base of the tree so no white showed. You could place yours in the middle if you wanted it to be more like a real tree.
  4. Fill in any holes/white spots using teal feathers and small dabs of hot glue.
  5. Embellish with silver tacks to look like ornaments. You can use these to strategically pin down any loose leaves, too.
  6. Wrap your ribbon around the top of the tree and secure with glue.
  7. Stick your choice of topper into the top of the tree. I used a flower I had snagged on clearance a while ago. I stuck it into the top of the three using a nail.
  8. Admire your adorable-yet-not-too-Christmasy tree!Eucalyptus TreeEucalyptus Tree2
Garden, Home Improvement

Remember the Lorax?

The Lorax would be very upset with me right now. Does anyone know what I am talking about? “I am the Lorax, I speak for the trees?” If not, you can see my Dr. Seuss reference here.

I have a guilty conscience. See, I am a closet tree hugger and I try to do my part for the environment. I pick up litter on walks with my dog, I don’t typically turn on my office lights at work, and I am mindful of not wasting too much water when I shower. They are all little things, but I try.

I hate when people cut down trees. It actually makes me angry. In spite of that, this past week we had two trees cut down in front of our house. I feel pretty guilty about it, to be honest, but the house looks OK without them.

Before:

House.jpg

Of course, they look pretty in this picture… must be the instagram effect.

After:

{A Smith of All Trades} House without trees

The trees were dying. Slowly, but surely. The bases of each tree were so chewed up by insects you could stick a pole through them down to the roots. The leaves fell off way too early… I’m talking about spring too early. And they bloomed — beautiful pink flowers — but only for two days. They needed to go.

Our yard looks so much bigger without the trees up front! I think we will eventually replant at least one tree in front of the house, but to ease my guilt, I donated money to have 25 trees planted through the The Nature Conservancy’s Plant a Billion Trees campaign in the Atlantic Forest . Like I said, I am a total tree hugger.

So, what do you think? Improvement? Bad choice? Has anyone had any experience with fruit trees? I think I want to plant an apple tree up front — how cool would that be? I definitely like the look of no trees way better in person. The yard looks sort of naked in the photo!