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DIY Artificial X-mas Tree

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Being a poor college student, I didn't want to shell out $99 bucks for a reasonably sized artificial christmas tree. I tried researching the internet for people who had made their own christmas trees- the most noteable being the mountain dew tree.
However, finding a lack of resources on making trees. I experimented around and then found a decently easy way to make an artificial christmas tree for under $10.
 
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Step 1: Supplies

Picture of Supplies
tinsel.JPG
You will need:
1) 1 60 ft bundle of tinsel -$4.47 (you can choose a color to your own liking)
2) 2 packs of floral wire stems (Fibre Craft's "Bright Stem Wire") - $.67 each
3) 1 spool of floral wire (Fibre Craft's "Bright Wire") - $.97
4) 1 wooden dowel, thin pvc pipe, or piece of bamboo (I prefer the bamboo because its irregular shape allows for the wire to wrap more firmly)
5) Some sort of stand/base to support the tree. I ended up using a glass vase filled with silica sand that i had lying around, but you could use many things - milk jugs, large bottles, buckets, flower pots, baskets filled with rocks, sand, gravel, plaster bases etc.

6)Tools
Wire cutters
Scissors
Ornaments/decorations

Note, all of these things can be easily found at any craft store. I bought most stuff at Wal-Mart, but I think you'd be able to get these at some place like Michael's or maybe even Target.

Step 2: Designing the tree

Picture of Designing the tree
1) Decide how large you want to make your tree. Mine is around 4 and 1/2 feet, and you could make it larger or smaller.
2) Decide the diameter of your treespan. I decided to make mine around 3' in diameter.
3) The shape of the tree is essentially a cone. The diameter of your tree is going to be the base of your cone.
I think I'm going to go out and try this right now! I'm thinking of using many colors of garland and making it a rainbow tree! Shiny!
Nice Tree, I've had bought trees that weren't as nice. If you want the tree to be a little more bushy/fluffy/whatever without having to make a whole bunch more branches, or increasing the cost of the tree substantially, all you need is another package of garland. The trunk of your tree is visible in the photos, whereas most fake trees either go out of their way to make the trunk look like pine bark or wrap it in needles. Wrapping your trunk with the tinsel would go a long way toward making a fuller tree. Additionally, most craft stores have wire frames for "snowflakes" in 4" - 8" diameters. Each frame has (duh) six spokes, which might make your top branches a whole lot easier to make. But those are only optional - your tree is lovely as is, and once you get a bunch of presents underneath, no one will ever notice that it wasn't a "store bought" artificial tree.
dadakj (author)  SlothOnSpeed6 years ago
Thanks. Yeah, I was thinking either spray-painting the trunk the same color or wrapping it in garland might help a bit more. Do you know how much the wire frame "snowflakes" cost?
Prices vary widely, but I just bought a package of 6 for $2.49 at the local Michael's craft store. Check the beading department, or I found mine in the seasonal area. This particular craft store chain usually has an ad in the newspaper for 40% off any one item. If you don't get the newspaper (I don't - I read online, and not waste trees), you can tell the clerk that you don't have the coupon with you, and can she please scan the register copy. About 99% the time, you'll get the discount. Only exception was the time that the store manager was ringing up my order.
Michael's is pretty good about sharing coupons and discounts. I think they usually have a stack of sales circulars by the main entrance, too.
cainunable5 years ago
I love it. I think my family would kill me if I tried to build one this year though.
snuzzle5 years ago
That's really awesome, and the best part is (aside from the kickassery of making it yourself), we've got a dollar store round here that sells bags of garland like that for a buck apiece (probably shorter but still). I think I may try this :D
wow, nice tree! and you made it all by yourself, and thats the coolest part.
dadakj (author)  GorillazMiko6 years ago
Thank you. Yes, the fact the tree is DIY makes it look that much better to me :)
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