The holidays are upon us! Do you have a party to decorate for or an empty wall that needs something special? For just a few bucks you can create a simple vintage inspired Christmas tree wall hanging. Perfect for hanging favors, tiny gifts or ornaments. The clean lines are a step up from some yarn covered craziness from years past. I love browsing vintage holiday magazines and books for inspiration. The only trouble is that you can't always find them when you need them. If the thrift store is out, what's a girl to do? I'm going to share my secret with you; Bing Smart Search App. What is amazing is that using Bing's new Smart Search App will bring in all information that is related to my search. So, not only am I searching for images of vintage Christmas tree wall hangings, I can search local shops, books on ebay and more, all at once.
Bing's got the brains to pull everything that could possibly be related to my search and organize it. It's like I have my own little assistant. Browsing for inspiration never got so fun (or easy!)
I ran a search for "Vintage Christmas Tree Wall Decor" because I was looking for something fun to hang on the wall. I know that there are tons of kitschy trees out there from years past because I always see then in old magazines. Usually some cute little blonde girl in pigtails is holding up a handmade ornament and smiling, in the background is some type of macrame awesomeness. I wanted something flat to hang, but in a more subtle design.
My Bing Smart Search search helped me see that despite how I love green, hoards of crazy bright yarn isn't my thing. I love well placed kitsch, but it seemed a bit over the top because I wanted to hang ornaments off of it and it wasn't going to be a stand alone tree. I decided to revamp the idea with a bare bones design and I love the result.
By figuring out how to make the trees by looking at all the vintage images, I could replicate the idea of a hanging tree without remaking the crazy kitsch factor. Anyone want to make one, too?
You will need:
4, 3/8"x48" wood dowels
sandpaper (80 grit and 200 grit)
Using a hacksaw is easy. Yes, I just said hacksaw, but it is really easy to work with, you will be amazed. A hacksaw is a simple tool that is super light, cheap and easy to use. I held my dowel tightly down on the edge of a chair and hung the end over. I made sure to overhang the cut line at least 2 inches from the edge of my chair. Drag the saw on the cut line slowly towards you first, about 3-4 times to create a notch. Then insert the saw into the notch and gently saw back and forth. Push down, but not too hard, as you saw. Be extra gentle on the last few strokes to go all the way through the dowel, to ensure you don't snap or crack the wood.
Measure and mark your dowels with a pencil. You will need these lengths:
2", 6", 12", 18", 24", 30" and 36"
Cut with a hacksaw, have them cut at your local hardware store or bribe a woodworking friend. Then sand the ends with 80 grit sandpaper. Once you have a smooth edge on both ends, sand the whole dowel with 200 grit. Wipe with a clean cloth to remove any excess dust.
Cut one piece of twine 6 feet long. Fold in half. Tie a knot in the top of the twine, about 2 inches down. Lay out each dowel about 6 inches apart, forming a tree. Tie the center of the twine, below the knot onto the 2 inch dowel. From there take one side and tie on the next dowel. Thread the twine over the top, under the dowel and back across the front through the center to form the knot, pull down. It is important to go over and under the dowel first, or the twine won't be in the proper place to go down to the next layer.
Repeat on the opposite side. This open knot is perfect to allow you to adjust your dowels later on so you can make them even and straight. Tie on each remaining level of dowels, gradually increasing the amount of space between the end and the knot. The twine is forming the sides of the triangle shape of the tree. Once you have tied on the last dowel, hang to make sure you are even and to fix any crooked layers. Simply wiggle the crooked level and tighten the knot. Once you are happy with your tree, add a drop of super glue to each knot. Tie a double knot on the bottom level and trim. Add a drop of super glue and let dry. Once dry, flip the tree so the knots are facing the wall. Voila. Instant Christmas tree.
Hang ornaments or even little muslin bags of treats. Of course, once I decorated this, I realized that it would make an awesome advent calendar, duh. There is always next year, but for now, it will look adorable anyway with the bright colored ornaments on it. Hang party favors from these modern "branches" for your next holiday party!