Christmas Tree Cutout is Family Tree Display

Article Posted By: Liberty Hardware

DIY Christmas Tree Cutout Project

This tabletop Christmas tree cutout makes a cute and creative holiday decoration. The rustic, paint splattered look of the piece is truly distinctive. As a holiday gift for a family member, it carries special meaning when you make it a “family tree” display with the names or small photos of everyone in the family. Or, use the Christmas tree cutout as a way to display small ornaments or other decorations.

It’s a pretty simple DIY project– mostly just cutting wood, painting and drilling some holes. Even the kids can join in on the fun with the paint splattering.

Just follow this step-by-step tutorial.


DIY Holiday Gifts: Christmas Tree Cutout

Materials for DIY Christmas Tree Cutout Project

Supplies


DIY Christmas Tree Cutout Project

Step 1: Make a Christmas Tree Template

Used a piece of packing paper to create a tree-shaped template, then trace the shape onto the wood.


DIY Christmas Tree Cutout Project

Step 2: Measure and Cut Base

Cut List

  1. 1 x 2 x 6 cut to 4 in.
  2. 1 x 3 x 6 cut to 7 in.

If you do not have a miter saw or table saw, your local Home Depot store can make the cuts for you.

Tips on cutting the tree shape with a jig saw: Since the tree has many hard angles, start with the straight line base. When you get to corners of the branches, come in from the side of the plywood to make the hard angle. Using a jig saw is all in the wrist. Like you would cut a tree out of paper, keep your wrist relaxed and move the saw and wood slowly to follow your pattern.

Once all the cuts are complete, lightly sand the cuts to eliminate the rough edges.


DIY Christmas Tree Cutout Project

Step 3: Stain the Wood

Dip your staining pad in to the Minwax special walnut stain. Wipe the stain onto the boards in the direction of the woodgrain. Let the stain sit for about 10 minutes, then wipe it off using the clean end of your staining pad.

It’s a good idea to wear vinyl gloves when staining wood to protect your skin.


DIY Christmas Tree Cutout Project

Step 4: Layout

It’s always best to map out your hardware and décor placement before drilling holes.

For this project, we recommend you do your layout and mapping before you install the base, due to the shape of the project.


DIY Christmas Tree Cutout Project

Step 5: Mark the Hardware Placement

When you are laying out your design, also mark placement holes for your hardware to help with drilling accuracy.


DIY Christmas Tree Cutout Project

Step 6: Pre-drill Holes for the Hardware

Now that you have the placement holes marked, use a 5/32 drill bit to pre-drill for application ease.


DIY Christmas Tree Cutout Project

Step 7: Attach the Tree Base Top

Apply wood glue the bottom of the tree trunk and center the 4-in. top base board with the finished side facing up.

Using your nail gun and 1-in. brad nails, attach the base to the tree by pinning in from the bottom of the base into the center of the tree trunk.

Tip: Rest the tree on a board the same height as your base board to easily center and apply the top board of the base to the tree.

DIY Christmas Tree Cutout Project

Step 8: Attach Tree Base Bottom

Apply wood glue to the bottom of the top base board, and center the 7-in. bottom base board with the finished side facing up.

DIY Christmas Tree Cutout Project

Set your tree upright and center. Using your nail gun and 1-in. brad nails, attach the bottom board of the base to the top board of the base by pinning in from the top down.


DIY Christmas Tree Cutout Project

Step 9: Wax the Tree

Take a clean rag and apply the wax quickly and sporadically, hitting any areas that you know you want to reveal.

Tip: Quick and random strokes creates truer rustic feel to your final piece. Using uneven strokes along the front, sides, tops and edges can help better achieve the desired rustic look.


Here’s where you can get the kids involved in the process.

DIY Christmas Tree Cutout Project

Step 10: Paint

Apply a generous first coat of paint. We used Behr Evergreen Bough to cover the entire shape of the tree with a rich and wintery feel.

Apply the paint liberally across the tree, including the areas where you applied the wax. Be sure to brush out any excess globs of paint by sweeping your brush in the direction of the wood grain.

Allow the paint to fully dry before moving onto the next step.


DIY Christmas Tree Cutout Project

Step 11: Sand

Use your sanding block to lightly sand all surfaces. As you sand the paint off the waxed areas, the paint will remove easily but not fully peel off. Add moderate pressure to brush these areas with the sanding block and fully remove the peeled excess.


Step 12: Splatter Red Paint

We took turns splattering, starting with a very light coat of Fire Cracker Red to look like Holly Berries.

To get the splatter affect, apply a very light amount of paint to the tip of the brush. Hold a small block of wood in one hand and tap the paint brush at the beginning of the metal frame against the wood block in the direction of the area you want to splatter.

Note: If your artist has splattered in large gobs instead of light sprinkles, you can carefully blot with a paper towel.

Allow the paint to fully dry before moving onto the next step.


Step 13: Splatter White Paint

Repeat the same process in Step 12 with Behr Frost Paint.

Our intention was to make the frost white paint look like snow covering the Christmas tree, so we splattered more white over the green, the stain reveal and the red berries for a freshly-snowed look.

Allow the paint to fully dry before moving onto the next step.


Step 14: Add Hardware

Use a Phillips-head screw driver and the provided mounting screws to attach the bubble glass knobs to the Christmas tree cutout. Start from the back of the tree and push installation screws through to connect into the threaded cabinet hardware.

Tree_Detail

Tree_Beauty_1

Step 15: Add Frames or Small Ornaments

To make this a family tree display, use small picture frame ornaments with your family’s names written on them. You could also display small family photos in the frames. As your family grows, add more cabinet knobs to we can keep adding to the Christmas tree cutout!


We have more DIY projects here on The Home Depot Blog. Follow our Easy DIY Projects board on Pinterest, too, for more DIY tutorials and ideas.

Browse The Home Depot’s Christmas decorations for everything you need to decorate for the holidays.

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