So for various reasons, we did not have an indoor tree this year when it was time to decorate for the holidays.
First world problems, right?
So, I used the mentality I have learned from the Minimalists, and asked myself if an indoor tree would add real value to my life.
I decided: yes, yes it does.
Having a lit tree inside during December brings me so much joy that last year, I left one up until April (don’t judge me).
They are so cozy and bring me the feeling of being a child that believed in the magic of Santa.
So I decided to do something about our lack of a holiday tree.
I did some online shopping and found the trees I really like cost about $200.
Spending $200 on a tree would not add real value to my life (monetary value to my stuff, maybe) so I started thinking outside the box.
There’s no rule that says a traditional tree is required. For the most part, I’m not really a traditional kind of person anyway…
But, how much personal value could a homemade tree add to my life?!
“I’m crafty! Why can’t I make my own tree?” I said to myself. Literally, I did.
Pinterest is filled with DIY tree ideas. People make the coolest stuff.
So I took my favorite aspects of several folks’ homemade trees and decided to give it a shot using only the supplies we already had.
DIY Pallet Tree
-18 pallet boards
-Pencil & measuring tape
-Skill saw (or hand saw if you’re daring)
-One 6 ft. 2×4 backer board/post
-36 (2 per board) 1.5 in. wood screws to attach boards to backer post
-Four 12 in. 2×4 boards to use for the base
-Ten 3 in. wood screws for the base
I’m not going to lie; I had a lot of help with this project.
My mom designs and makes wooden crafts and my dad has an awesome set of tools;
plus, they both would help me with anything.
I began by laying out all of my pallet boards, alternating them by width and color to make it ‘evenly imperfect’.
Using a measuring tape and pencil, I measured the bottom board to the desired length, and drew a vertical line from the top to the bottom of the board.
To create the tapered look, the top of each board will be more narrow than the bottom.
On each side of the top, I measured in 2 inches and made a mark.
Then I connected the bottom mark (or the bottom corner) to the top mark on each side (creating the angled cut marks). / \
The next board bottom will be 2 inches shorter than the previous bottom.
Measure 2 inches in on each side of the top.
Use your tape measure to connect the top and bottom marks on each side. / \
It helped me to write the board number on the back of each one as I went.
As you can see, I used some boards for more than one piece. The closer you get to the top, each board can be used twice.
Here are the measurements for mine (starting with the bottom board of the tree):
Board 18: bottom 41 inches, top 37 inches
Board 17: bottom 39 inches, top 35 inches
Board 16: bottom 37 inches, top 33 inches
Board 15: bottom 35 inches, top 31 inches
Board 14: bottom 33 inches, top 29 inches
Board 13: bottom 31 inches, top 27 inches
Board 12: bottom 29 inches, top 25 inches
Board 11: bottom 27 inches, top 23 inches
Board 10: bottom 25 inches, top 21 inches
Board 9: bottom 23 inches, top 19 inches
Board 8: bottom 21 inches, top 17 inches
Board 7: bottom 19 inches, top 15 inches
Board 6: bottom 17 inches, top 13 inches
Board 5: bottom 15 inches, top 11 inches
Board 4: bottom 13 inches, top 9 inches
Board 3: bottom 11 inches, top 7 inches
Board 2: bottom 9 inches, top 5 inches
Board 1: bottom 7 inches, top creates a point (draw a dot at 3.5 inches and connect the bottom corners to the dot)
Make sure your cut marks are very clear (I went over them with a sharpie) and cut your boards.
You can also go ahead and cut slight angles into your four 12 in. 2×4 boards to use for the base.
We sanded the edges of each board cut so they would not be sharp.
Line up your tree boards in order on the backer post and attach each board to the post with two 1.5 in. wood screws.
Stand your tree up and place four 12 in. angled base boards around the backer post. Attach the base boards to the backer post with ten 3 in. wood screws (use as many as you need to make it secure).
Pat yourself on the back.
Using white chalk paint, I put a thin layer over the entire tree. I like the look it gives when I use less paint and spread it out so you can slightly see through to the board.
I have used a quart of this paint for at least 7 projects and still have some left.
Obviously, you can paint your tree in any way that brings you joy!
Decorate & Enjoy!!!
I am so excited and pleased with how our non-traditional tree turned out.
And the best part is that it cost $0 since we already had all of the supplies laying around.
The tree skirt is actually an old red curtain.
What do you think?!
Would you consider having a non-traditional tree? Or no tree at all?
Do your decorations add true value to your life?
If you make a tree of your own, please let me know how it turns out.
I would love to see it.