Save a tree: Try a creative substitute for a real Christmas tree
"O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree, thy leaves are so unchanging..." are words we'll soon hear echoing through our neighborhoods. No Christmas celebration is complete without a festively decorated tree. A real tree, however, doesn't necessarily need to fall victim to our design mood swings. With a little creativity, you can conjure up a gorgeous substitute using other handy materials.
- Sticks in different lengths
- Pliers or a saw
- Parcel twine
- LED Christmas lights
- Christmas ornaments (optional)
After you diligently collect your sticks or small branches outside, bring them in, clean off any dirt, and lay them out in order of size. You can also cut them to size with your saw or snap off unneeded bits with pliers. Better not to break them with your hands, though, since you never know where they'll crack and you might end up with all the wrong sizes.
Now wrap the parcel twine firmly around the ends of the sticks starting with the biggest and working up to the smallest. Leave 4 or 5 inches between each stick and knot each one well to be sure the string doesn't slip around.
When you get to the top, leave enough twine to be able to hang the whole "tree" before working your way back down the other side, knotting each again and leaving the same amount of room between sticks.
Hang it on a nail against the wall where you can enjoy looking at it. Now try jazzing up the tree with Christmas lights and, if you like, ornaments.
Watch the video to see a good demonstration (consider turning the sound off though ;-) ):
For those who want to keep things simple, this minimalist version is exactly the thing. Or you can spruce it up with Christmas ball ornaments, garlands, painted cones, or seasonal figurines.
If the sticks are thick enough, you can drill little holes at the ends and thread the twine through. Then you can just knot it below each stick to keep the sticks from sliding down. Either way, you can get your main supplies for this nifty seasonal decoration for free out in the woods or a nearby park!