A few months ago, while looking at my Ballard catalog, I saw the cutie-pie little tree that you see below on the right. On that particular page, two of the mini-trees were flanking a mantle and I knew that at some point I would want to make a knock-off version for Christmas. Unfortunately, that catalog page is still in the office of our house in PA, but you get the idea.
The Ballard one costs $50, plus shipping (in their defense, they use real boxwood leaves, but still. That’s crazy.) Mine was only $11 (cost breakdown at the end!)
Mini urn (they usually have tons of these at thrift stores)
Styrofoam tree/cone form (mine is from Dollar Tree)
Boxwood leaves (I bought mine at Michael’s, and ended up needing two, not one)
Hot glue gun
Short version: You’re sticking bits of the boxwood into the foam. But you knew that, right? :)
Here’s some tips if you want more info.
1. Paint your base – this will help later to hide your gaps. I just took black paint and mixed it with brown to make it a little more green.
2. Start clipping off your boxwood from the stems and inserting them into the styrofoam. I’ll be honest, this takes a while. I cut mine into two lengths. On the left (we’ll call that #1) is how it looks clipped off the brown “stem,” and the middle and the right show the pieces after I cut them so I could actually insert them. The thicker piece is obviously much easier to insert into the foam; the thinner pieces (middle below) were easier to insert with a pre-poked toothpick hole. (A pre-poked toothpick hole? Did I really just type that?! lol)
3. I personally made a ring around the whole bottom (using all #1s) to see how far they would stick out, and then I went all the way up one side. Keep poking and adding and poking and adding. Remember that you’re making a tree, not a bush, so you want there to be a gradation.
4. As you get near the top and your pieces get shorter and shorter, you’ll probably want to start hot-gluing them onto the tree. I would poke a hole with the toothpick, get 2 or 3 of the shorter branches together, hot-glue the end, and then stick it into the pre-made hole. At the very top of the tree, I just hotglued them all (no holes).
5. My brother gave me the idea to use toothpicks to secure the bottom of the tree into the base of the urn. I forgot to take pictures of this part but I’m sure you can use your imagination. :)
And here she is! How cute is this?!
I intentionally left a lot of the leaves a little scraggly because I wanted the tree to have a more natural feel to it than the Ballard one. I’m so happy I found this urn – it already had the perfect amount of chippy-ness that I was looking for. (Um, did I really just type “perfect amount of chippy-ness?” Who am I today?! haha)
And just to keep it real after my last post, here’s where my girl is residing until we actually move: on my sister’s dresser, in front of her collection of Coach boxes (for the record, I own not a single Coach item *cough* Santa *cough*) and near my jewelry, nail polish, and perfumes.
SO cute and Christmasy, right?
Styrofoam base: $1
Boxwood total: $7.00 after sales and coupons
(I already had the paint, glue, and toothpicks.)
Before I go, I would like to point out that this little tree resulted in my first honest-to-goodness hot glue gun burn. I have a blister and everything. I am a total baby but man that sucker hurts. Does this mean I’m a real crafter now? :)
Have a great weekend girls! :)
Frugalicious Friday @ Finding Fabulous
Frugal Friday @ The Shabby Nest
Remodelaholics Anonymous @ Remodelaholics
Show and Share Day @ Just a Girl
Just Something I Whipped Up @ The Girl Creative
Make it Yours Day @ My Backyard Eden
Show Us What You’re Workin’ With @ Me and My Bucket
Knock-Off Party @ Homebody