3d paper trees

Have you been there, done that with the whole holiday tree thing? Are you short on space but in sore need of a little cheer? Or do you just have a stash of ornaments and lights with nowhere to hang ‘em? This year, get crafty and create your own “tree”. Artistic, elegant, adorable or kitschy, there are zillions of alternative tree ideas out there. Here are a few of our favorites.

1, 3D Paper Tree (pictured)

Paper crafter Nina Yang designed these mini-trees that you can create yourself with a little paper and glue. Download the free pattern, pick out your favorite wrapping paper and have fun making your own table toppers. Bonus: Fill them with candies and use them as gifts!

2. Decorate With Branches

For an elegant centerpiece or even as a replacement for a traditional tree, gather a few bare winter branches. Mount a single branch on your wall and hang a few of your best ornaments from it (see an example), or arrange the branches vertically in a sturdy vase (example). Classy, trendy, gorgeous and quite eco-friendly!

3. Bookish Tree

In the age of the ebook, paper books are finding new use … as stylish holiday “trees”! There are a surprising number of ways you can repurpose a book as a holiday tree. Click the link to see four of the best ideas.

4. Festive Feather Tree

Feather trees are kitschy as all get-out: fun, colorful and retro chic. Build your own feather tree with dowels, a hot glue gun and that feather boa you never seem to actually wear. Trust me: It’ll bring you much more joy this way. For added style points, make sure your ornaments and tree are color-coordinated!

5. Candy Jar Tree Vignette

Shannon Madigan found a few tree-shaped candy jars at the thrift store, spray-painted the insides white, and created a miniature winter vignette. This idea requires no ornaments or lights (though you could light them from the inside), and should cost you less than $20. Of course you can’t put a price on holiday cheer, but gosh, that’s a bargain.

6. Ladder Tree

Now here’s an original that’s surprisingly charming: Use a ladder as a “tree,” displaying your cards and decorations on the steps as if they were shelves. One clever crafter painted her ladder white and added hooks for hanging ornaments. Obvious bonus here: You can use your tree year round (though maybe you shouldn’t leave it in the living room all year).

Don’t stop there! Trim your tree for (almost) free with these awesome decoration ideas.

Photo by Nina Yang on Flickr.

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