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a recycled christmas tree...

Handmade Christmas tree.

At last, a few pictures of our tree decorations! My sister Anna and I make new decorations each year. This sounds crazy at first, but each year we get better at making it simpler than you'd think.

We start by choosing a theme. Sometimes it involves a color combination (white, for example), sometimes materials (last year, candy), or it could be a thing (like "mittens"). Then we come up with a few simple ornament designs and a garland. Then we make a lot of those few designs. Simplicity repeated all over makes for a very lovely tree.

Handmade Christmas...

Our theme this year was "recycled", so we used some materials that we have collected "just in case" we need them. The birds were cut out of cardboard packaging, like cereal boxes. I cut them looking both directions, then hung two together with brown sides out. Just a tiny bit of color peeks out.

The little whirlygig type ornaments were cut from Urban Outfitters catalogs using the template and idea that Jessica showed on How About Orange. I really like them assembled as snowflakes too, but for the size we wanted, an individual point was just right.

Anna punched out two sizes of circles (I'm in love with the smaller scalloped Martha Stewart punch) from Anthropologie and Free People catalogs. She double-stick-taped them together on lengths of crochet thread. There is a lot of garland, and it took a lot of punching and taping. But the colors of the pages were so pretty, and Anna looked for ways to create contrast, which adds a lot, I think. We also like looking at the fun crops, and finding words here and there.

Catalog Tree Topper

The tree topper also used an Anthropologie catalog, and I followed this tutorial. Really easy, and I think, just perfect.

To complete the look, I just need to make some of those newspaper snowflakes, and some woven baskets out of some fantastic cardboard pieces I found...


  1. Wow, I love your decorations, but I wish I could see the whole tree! I'd love the "big picture"

  2. Thank you! The lighting in the living room has made it difficult to get a nice picture of the whole tree, but I continue to try!


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