Create your own Christmas tree
by Rhiannon James
Apparently, we can’t get enough of Christmas trees these days and one in the house is just not enough. But if you’d like to add something new to your Nordmanns, why not try making your own Christmas tree creation, using real spruce or fir. Make it in whatever size and shape works, perhaps to fit an awkward space or smaller room, and finish with a splash of this season’s oh-so-hot Nordic style.
Things you’ll need
1. Floral foam. We used a single, large block but you can also use a number of smaller blocks and hold them together by wrapping them in thin, flexible chicken wire.
2. A large, sharp knife
3. Decoration for your tree – we used fresh spruce foliage which has a lovely scent, ribbon, wooden robin decorations and a star
4. Some wire Christmas tree ornament hooks
5. Long dressmaking pins
6. An old broom handle or other wooden pole
7. A long length of ribbon or paint to decorate the pole
8. Thin, flat wood or plyboard
9. A screw, a saw and a screwdriver
10. A large empty flowerpot or other container
11. Some rubble and decorative gravel
12. Cones, nuts or dried fruits to decorate the surface of the pot
13. Double-sided carpet and floor laying tape
14. A pair of secateurs
15. A pair of scissors
1. Start by cutting your floral foam to the size and shape you want, using a large, sharp knife.
2. Then, working upwards, start to fix your decorative materials to the floral foam, making sure you cover any gaps as you go. We started with rings of fresh spruce foliage which we pinned to the floral foam with half-straightened tree ornament hooks. Then, we added a circle of wide, decorative ribbon and some wooden robin decorations, fixing everything in place with long dressmaking pins. After attaching a few more rings of spruce, we used a selection of shorter twigs to form a point at the top of the tree and added a star as a final flourish.
4. Cut an old broom handle to size, using a saw, to form the ‘trunk’ of your tree. You can either paint it or wind a length of ribbon around it to give it a more decorative finish. Then you need to attach it to the wooden platform you made in step 3. To do this, screw through the centre of the platform, into the centre of the pole. If you drill small holes into the wood first, this will help to stop the timber splitting when you screw into it.
5. Fix the base of the pole in the pot you’ve chosen using bricks or any other heavy material. If you’re making a large tree, you’ll probably need to decide where you want to display it at this stage, as once you’ve added the brick or stone, the pot will be heavy and difficult to move. Check the pole is straight and centred and then secure it in place by filling up the pot with gravel.
6. Cover the top of the platform with strips of double-sided carpet and floor laying tape. Then, once you’ve removed the paper covering from the tape, carefully place the decorated floral foam cone on top. To finish, cover the surface of the gravel in the pot with moss, nuts, cones, bundles of cinnamon sticks, dried fruits or anything else that takes your fancy.