It’s exciting to go pick out a Christmas tree each year and it can be a lot of fun watching others choose a tree and load it into their cars. Of course, buying, setting up and decorating a tree is part of the Christmas tradition. That works for those who have the space and the money for such a tree. For those with really small living areas, and for people who are a little financially embarrassed when it comes time to get a tree, watching others take home big, beautiful Christmas trees can be a little depressing. Not this year, though. No matter what others are doing you’ll still have a beautiful tree – and it’ll cost next to nothing! It might not be huge, full and real, but your tree will be spectacular!
A piece of cardboard is all you need to get started on the tree. Make a large tree from a giant piece of cardboard or a much smaller version from a small piece. You don’t have to have a lot of space on the floor to make the tree; you’ll be hanging this tree on the wall! Don’t panic! The tree, when removed, will leave no trace on your wall. And, you can use the tree, year after year, until you have space or money for a nicer one. For now, choose a place where the tree will fit on the wall, and where you will have enough floor space for presents.
You don’t have to be an expert drawer to create the base for the Christmas tree. If you can draw a triangle, you’re all set. Do just that; draw a triangle on the cardboard. Draw it the size you want the tree to be. Remember to draw a rectangle at the bottom of the triangle to create a trunk for the tree. Your tree can be tall and slender or short and squat; that’s up to you. After the triangle and trunk are cut out you can start making it look much more like a real Christmas tree.
If you’ve ever visited a dollar-theme store you probably already know they sell all sorts of Christmas craft items. Purchase the dollar-a-roll garland and you’ll have a beautiful tree in no time. Depending upon the size you’ve cut your cardboard tree shape you might need two or three of the garland strands. The stores usually sell the garland in the wired type or the non-wired type. Garland can be green for a traditional tree or another color if you want a white, gold, red or other color of tree. Keep in mind that the regular green garland generally comes in a longer strand than the other colors. Non-wired garland usually comes in a longer strand than the wired types.
To begin covering the cardboard in the garland start with a dollop of hot glue at the point of the triangle. Place the end of the garland in the glue. Make sure you position the end of the garland so that it well covers the tip of the triangle. Now you’ll begin folding the garland to form a second row, a third row, and so on. The rows will be aligned, horizontally, and will be butted closely together so that the cardboard doesn’t show underneath. Continue making row after row until the tree is covered. If you’re using wired garland you can make sharp bends in the wire to make distinct ends to each row.
The trunk can be covered with the garland, fabric, felt, or even faux-wood shelf liner. You can also paint it or color it with a marker. Create a pot for the tree, if you want, by using felt or other materials. Cut the pot from another piece of cardboard, then decorate it with cloth or other materials. Or, do without a pot altogether and just align the bottom of the trunk with the floor or baseboard.
To make a tree that hangs in a corner, cut out the triangle from cardboard, then cover it with the garland. Now fold the tree in half so that you have two half-trees. Hang this arrangement in the corner and it will protrude from the wall and become a three-dimensional design. Use double-sided tape or even glue strips to hang the flat or corner wall tree. The tape or glue dots can be easily removed when the holiday is over. The tree can be decorated with lights, ornaments, bows and more. The items should be lightweight since the finished tree is also lightweight. Ornaments made for miniature trees work really well.
You don’t have to stop at creating a Christmas tree. You can do something similar to make a wreath for your wall, door or other area. Simply cut a circular piece of cardboard, with a smaller circle in the center, then use hot glue to attach the garland. These also can be decorated with mini lights and ornaments. Take them down after the holidays, box them up, then use them all again next year. You don’t have to live in a huge house, or have a huge budget, to have a nice Christmas tree and a beautiful Christmas. You can cut corners and still have a tree and presents under it!