I’m so excited to be the first to kick off The Everyday Spruce – a new project with Sarah-Lou, which will see us pass the blog baton between us each week to share ideas and tips aimed to help you simplify, clarify and beautify your home.
It’s more than likely you’ve taken down your Christmas tree now, but if you’re anything like me then it’s probably still sat in the garden waiting to be taken to your local recycling point or the tip. Well then, you’re in luck. Before you get rid of it, have a look at my five easy ways to upcycle your tree into home accessories, practical items or gifts for friends and family. And if you have already binned the tree, you’ll see that a lot of these ideas could be done with any kind of tree branches, or alternatively you can pin this post for next year!
1. DIY pine-scented fire sachets
I love the smell of the Christmas tree, and always feel a bit sad when it’s gone for another year. But if you have a fire or woodburner (or you’re a camper who loves a campfire), then these fire sachets are for you. Simply mix the ingredients (I used a handful of dried pine needles from the tree, around six leaves of dried eucalyptus broken up, a very small pinch of dried lavender and a dried orange slice) in a paper bag, tie with string or embroidery thread and throw onto the fire to release the scent.
Unfortunately we don’t have a fire or burner (yet), but I think these make lovely new year gifts, so I added a gift tag to mine, and as I know Sarah-Lou has a wood burner I’ve sent her one to try out.
2. Christmas tree trunk planter
I sawed off a small section of trunk from the bottom of the Christmas tree, and used a 32mm spade bit on the drill to make a hole about 1.5in deep (do this bit by bit or your drill may start smoking!). I’ve planted a mini succulent in mine, and after toying with the idea of painting part of the trunk I decided to leave it natural instead.
3. DIY pine needle fire lighters
Pop a tealight into a cupcake case (remove the metal case from the tealight first), and put into the oven on a low temp until the wax has melted and looks like water. Remove from the oven and fish out the wick. Drop in a couple of pinches of pine needles left over from your tree, and finish with a small pine sprig that will stick out of the wax to act as a wick. Leave until the wax has set and then remove from the paper case.
4. Christmas tree branch coat hook
Use secateurs to cut a section off one of the lower branches of our Christmas tree. Cut the smaller branches (twigs? branchlets?), leaving around 1-2in to act as hooks. Pull off any pine needles, and then use a drill to screw through the branch onto a door or wall. This is now on my son’s bedroom door, as his new bedroom has an outdoors theme (I’ll be sharing pics soon).
5. Christmas tree twig keyring
Use secateurs to cut off a couple of 1in lengths of Christmas tree twig and strip off any pine needles. Using a 2mm drill bit, drill through the middle of the twig. Double over a length of waxed cord or leather thong and secure to the keyring using a lark’s head knot. Tie a knot about 1in from the ring, then thread on two wooden beads (I painted one of mine copper and one aqua) and your twig bead and knot in place. Finish by trimming the loose ends.