Thursday, September 30, 2010

Homemade Centerpieces: Felt Christmas Tree Centerpiece

Time for another tutorial on making a wonderful Christmas Decoration. I found this tutorial on All Crafts, where you can find many other wonderful tutorials for holiday crafting.

This one looked especially fun and the end result was beautiful, so I wanted to post it here. Enjoy and Happy Crafting!  Please send me pictures of your tree, if you make one, and while you are at it send a picture to the All Crafts site, too.

Homemade Centerpieces: Felt Christmas Tree Centerpiece
christmas tree centerpiece
Materials for Homemade Centerpieces -
Felt Christmas Tree Centerpiece
homemade centerpieces
What You Will Need:
* Styrofoam cone (12" x 4-7/8")
* Felt: green (2 shades if desired), red, white, yellow
* Green buttons (about 115)
* 2 yellow buttons
* Small buttons in assorted colors (about 40)
* Yellow seed beads
* Embroidery thread: red and yellow
* Sewing needle
* Thin bead needle
* Wire - 4" (Straightened paperclip)
* One cotton ball
* Hot glue gun
* Scissors
Instructions for Homemade Centerpieces -
Felt Christmas Tree Centerpiece
Step 1:
Begin by printing out the Felt Christmas Tree template. The basic idea of making each bough is quite simple. Trace the pattern onto your felt and cut it out. Hot glue a button onto the end of the piece. Then hot glue just one of the pointed ends and bring the other pointed end over on top of it, creating a cone-like shape. See photos A and B. This is how every piece will be made. The next step will give you the details as to how many and of what size.
homemade centerpieces homemade centerpieces
Step 2:
If the cone you are using is the same size as listed in the materials, than you can follow this step exactly. If you are using a different size cone however, you can get the general idea but change the quantities as needed.

Note: Size 4 on the template sheet is there if you decide to make a tree on a very large cone, but if you are using a 12" cone (like we did) or smaller, you won't need size 4.

The cone will take a total of 16 rows of boughs to cover it completely. For our tree, we alternated between a green and dark green felt for every row. This is optional. The number of pieces you will need to cut out and of what size is listed below, starting at the base of the cone and working up.
* Rows 1 and 2: Cut out 10 for each row (20 total) of size 3 bough
* Row 3: Cut out 9 of size 3
* Row 4: Cut out 8 of size 3
* Rows 5, 6 and 7: Cut out 8 for each row (24 total) of size 2
* Row 8: Cut out 7 of size 2
* Rows 9 and 10: Cut out 6 for each row (12 total) of size 2
* Rows 11 and 12: Cut out 6 for each row (12 total) of size 1
* Rows 13, 14 and 15: Cut out 5 for each row (15 total) of size 1

* Row 16: Cut out 4 of size 1

Step 3:
Now that you know the pieces you will need, you can begin constructing your Christmas tree! For every piece, glue a button on the end and glue the points together as described in Step 1.
Pick one side of the cone to be the front of the tree. You will always start each row from this side. While ideally, every bough would fit nicely between the two below it, that is very hard to do and sometimes the boughs will overlap. By choosing a front, all the overlapping and smooshed boughs will be in the back. If this doesn’t make much sense right now, it will as you begin working.
Begin to hot glue the first row (bottom row) onto the cone. To glue on each piece, put hot glue on the side where the two pointed ends were hot glued together. Then quickly place the piece on the cone and hold it there for a few seconds while the glue cools. Continue to do this until you reach about row 12. See photos C, D and E for how this should be looking.
christmas tree centerpiece homemade centerpieces christmas tree centerpiece
Step 4:
Once you are around row 12, stop and cut out the pattern that is a circle with four lines on the edges. Trace this onto green felt and cut it out. Make slits in the felt where the lines are. Now hot glue the center of this circle to the top of your cone. Then glue down two opposite flaps. See photo F. Now glue down the other two remaining flaps. See photo G. This piece creates a nice felt covered top to your tree.
homemade centerpieces christmas tree centerpiece
You can now finish gluing on the boughs. homemade centerpieces
Step 5:
Now that the tree is mostly done, it is time to make a few of the embellishments! Cut out the peppermint pattern and make 10 to 15 circles out of red felt. Now cut out just the portion of the pattern that will be the white stripes. Trace this onto white felt 10 to 15 times. Each white piece is then sewn onto a red piece in red embroidery thread, using the backstitch . See photo H for an up-close look. Once all of these are finished, hot glue them on the tree as you like.
homemade centerpieces

Next, for the star, trace and cut out two of the star pattern on yellow felt. Sew a yellow button onto the center of each piece, and then sew yellow seed beads around the edge of each piece (a thin bead needle is needed for seed beads). See photo I. Then place both sides together and begin to stitch the running stitch around the edge. Before you completely sew them together, place a cotton ball in between them to give the star a little puffiness. Then tie the thread off.

Step 6:
Just a few finishing touches and your tree will be done! Take your piece of wire and poke it straight down through the top of the cone. This may be difficult since there is hot glue on the top, so use a small nail or something sturdy to get the hole started if necessary. Then just work the star onto the wire so the wire is inside the star.
To complete the tree, just hot glue your tiny colored buttons all over the tree to look like Christmas lights!
Your felt Christmas tree centerpiece is now finished!
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