While some may argue that it isn’t Christmas until the fragrant smell of pine wafts through the house, gone are the days where this is your only tree option, come December 1. For those who aren’t afraid of bending the Christmas rules of tradition, here are some Christmas tree alternatives to try out.
If you want to get really creative, start collecting bits and bobs throughout the year (buttons, jar tops, and doylies are great) and create your own wall mural tree – made from junk, essentially. You can get as creative as you wish, and use photographs, triangles of bunting, and even retro food and wine labels. Remember to use paint-friendly adhesive, to avoid stripping your walls come January.
This is one you can either try making yourself, or purchasing; Rawspace.com.au have just launched a new range, in fact. Light, modern, and made from recycled cardboard , the Treeform comes with six interlocking sections, flat-packed and available in two colours. We love the white, because it means you can go nuts with decorations. Otherwise, try making your own– there’s an abundance of sites offering help and even stencils. We found this one using recycled IKEA boxes: http://www.slideshare.net/dariobird/carbonza-cardboard-christmas-tree-presentation
It’s amazing what a few fairy lights can do. This tree, made from flat, horizontal slabs of wood, attached to the wall, is brought to life by a string of white fairy lights around the edges. We think white decorations work well with the natural, earthy tones of the timber, but hey, who are we to stop you if you want to get colour-happy.
While we’re on the subject, you can also get crafty with some driftwood branches, and some decent glue. Or for even less fuss, try placing thin branches in a decorative vase and decorate with lots of colourful mini baubles. It means you can have more than one tree in the house (or better yet, one in every room).
For the ultimate mess and stress-free tree, put your sketching skills into action and draw your own Christmas tree on a giant chalkboard. You can change the decorations each day, or add more and more in the lead-up to Christmas Day.
If you’re still after that natural effect, but not necessarily a traditional pine tree, there’s an abundance of other plant varieties you can take home from the nursery and decorate. Choose from Christmas bush (Ceratopetalum gummiferum), Norway or Blue Spruce, or even Lillipillies. The best part about using a non-traditional plant variety is that you can keep them around the garden or balcony long after Christmas has passed.
For the sewing-savvy, save your spools and create mini trees by piling them on top of one another and gluing together. Try wraping the spools in pretty paper or newspaper for a vintage feel. Spool trees make great tabletop decorations, or Christmas gifts for that textile-tastic friend or family member.
Who said a Christmas tree needed to be a tree, per say? If you live close to nature, try collecting different lengths of branches and making adorable wooden reindeer out of them. Save red baubles for their nose, and leave the rest minimal for a true reindeer feel. This site will teach you how: http://www.instructables.com/id/Make-Wooden-Reindeer-from-Tree-Branches/ For added fun, try making a whole reindeer family, and laying your presents in front of them.
An Upside-Down Christmas
If you are having a faux tree this year – be it plastic or another synthetic material – try turning it upside-down for a quirky touch. Yes, you heard us: upside-down. Have the handy man in the house create a sturdy stand for it, then sit back and watch the faces of your visitors as they see it for the first time. But in all honesty, upside-down trees actually look great once decorated. Go on, live a little.
Going back to our idea of the formidable fairy light, you can go as minimal as you like for the actual tree part. We love the idea of a ladder folded out to create a triangle shape – decorated with your favourite Christmas adornment – taking centre-stage in the house. Hang tinsel and lights from one step to the next; see our photo on the top right for more inspiration.
Scroll through our images of these creative tree alternatives at the top right of this post. If you’ve experimented with a creative tree this year, we’d love to hear from you! Share your photos on our Facebook or Twitter