Egg Crate Christmas Tree DIY

We’re spending Christmas at home this year (we’re usually in the Bay Area with my husband’s family for the Holidays), so I’m trying to get into the spirit of things by doing a little decorating around the house. Not a lot, just making do with stuff we’ve collected over the years and materials I already have here. I’m in the middle of my busy holiday card production season, so I don’t have a lot of time to fuss with decorations (or blog about it for that matter), but I’m trying to make things somewhat festive around here. My kids are really excited about getting the house ready for Christmas and all the fun (inexpensive or free) activities we can do together as a family at home.

Considering that it’s only the first week of December, we’re on a roll! Here’s what we’ve done in just a few days:

1. My boys helped decorate the tree last week…

2. We put up some white lights, paper and tinsel garlands around the house…

3. On Saturday night, the boys participated in a lighted bike parade…

4. Our mischievous elf (Zack) showed up to join the fun…

5. The stockings were hung up on the mantel…

6. We started watching Christmas movies and having homemade hot cocoa and cookies…

On the agenda for this week:

1. The boys want to make mason jar snow globes and cake stand winter-scapes (like these we saw at Anthropologie)…

2. We plan to ride our lighted bikes around the neighborhood to check out Christmas lights (we’ll also go for a drive around other neighborhoods, maybe pick up some burgers from the In-N-Out drive-thru for a “light-viewing” snack)

3. I have my annual holiday baking/treat exchange with my three awesome sisters (Mary, ┬áJulie and Allison) this weekend…

4. I wanted to make some paper cone Christmas trees as a simple and cheap decoration for the mantel, using some of the pretty gold handmade papers I have in my collection.

As I was cleaning up the kitchen last night after dinner, I noticed these egg crates in the recycle bin and it occurred to me that maybe I could make the trees out of these instead…so I gave it a go.

First I rolled them into a cone shape and punched holes to connect the sides using twist ties.

I folded the bottom in to form the flat base of the tree.

Then I spray painted them gold and added some glitter on the “branches”…finishing them up with a little bling using self-adhesive rhinestones leftover from a wedding.

I sat them each on a square vase wrapped with the gold paper I was originally going to use for the cone trees…and that was it!

While I was at it, I hot glued some gold-glittered pine cones onto glass candle stick holders from Dollar Tree. I’ve had these things in the back of a kitchen drawer forever, and since they were only 50 cents a piece, I figured it wasn’t a big deal to turn them into mini pine cone topiaries (it’s not like they were being used to hold candlesticks anyway).

Other ways to decorate the egg crate tree: 1. Hot glue gun buttons, beads, acorns and small pine cones, leaves, cotton balls or pom-poms; 2. Use a battery-powered string of mini lights, small tinsel or ribbon garlands, and pin on mini ornaments; 3. A dusting of epsom salts, micah flakes or artificial snow onto spray adhesive or Mod Podge would make the trees sparkle with the look of freshly fallen snow; 4. Poke holes and use as a lollipop tree or cake-pop holder. This would be a fun craft for kids too. Super simple, super easy…and practically free!