Making Christmas trees from craft sticks is an easy kids’ craft that can be completed in one day or in several stages. It is versatile enough to make Christmas ornaments, magnetic Christmas decorations for the refrigerator or decorative place card holders for the holiday dinner.
Kids’ Crafts With Craft Sticks
The supply list for making craft-stick Christmas trees is very simple and it can be altered to include items on hand.
Basic craft supplies include:
- Five craft sticks per tree.
- Green and brown paint.
- White glue, like Elmer’s® Glue-All, or school glue.
- Star-shaped wooden pieces, foam or decorative jewels.
- Sharp scissors to be handled by adult.
There are additional supplies needed depending on which craft project is being completed. When making Christmas ornaments, a ribbon and a hot glue gun are needed. Flat, stick-on magnets are necessary to make refrigerator magnets. To make decorative place card holders, parents can mix up some cornstarch clay or use any type of air-dry modeling clay to hold Christmas trees upright on the dinner table.
For all these projects, stars are needed for the tops of the trees. Use wooden stars painted yellow, stick-on foam stickers or star-shaped decorative jewels. Ornaments for the craft stick Christmas tree can be miniature pompoms, foam stickers or sequins. Add pizzazz with glitter or miniature garland.
How to Make a Christmas Tree
The first step to making a Christmas tree from craft sticks is to cut the sticks to make the branches. Each tree will have a whole stick as the tree trunk and a whole stick as the lowest branches. Cut one stick about one third of the way across and use the smaller piece as the top branches. Depending on the length of the sticks used, it may be possible to use the longer piece as the third branch.
Cut another stick in half and use one half as the second layer of branches. The third branch should be longer than the second branch and shorter than the full-size, bottom branch as shown in the pictures below. Kids can line the branches up and check the spacing while the adult does the cutting with strong, sharp scissors.
Paint the branches with green paint. Paint the trunk with green for the tree (about ¾ of the stick) and brown for the base of the trunk, about ¼ of the stick. If using wooden stars, paint the star yellow. Allow sticks to dry. It is only necessary to paint one side of the sticks for the tree ornament and the refrigerator magnet. If making a place card holder, flip over the sticks and paint the other sides of the sticks with the same method.
Assembling the Christmas Tree Craft
When the paint is dry, use white glue or hot glue to affix the star first. Add the green tree branches to the tree from smallest to largest. Allow glue to dry. Glue on sequins as ornaments on the tree. For ornaments and refrigerator magnets, it is only necessary to glue sequins on one side of the tree. If making place card holders, decide if a slip of paper will be tucked within the branches or if each tree will include the person’s name written in a permanent marker, like a Sharpie®. Write a name on one side of each tree before decorating with sequins to ensure there will be enough room.
Making Christmas Tree Decorations
There is only one step left to finish off the ornament. When the tree is dry, take a length of ribbon about 8 inches long. Using the hot glue gun attach one end of the ribbon to the tree behind the star. Fold the ribbon in half and attach the other end in the same place. Write the child’s name and the year on the back of the tree decoration. To complete the refrigerator magnet craft, glue or stick on the magnetic strip.
Homemade Christmas Place Card Holders
Christmas tree place card holders look best on the table when they are decorated on both sides so no one at the table will see an unfinished side of the project. After sequins are affixed to both sides and completely dry it is time to set up the holders.
Homemade cornstarch clay that air dries is perfect to hold up the Christmas tree but any air drying clay will work. Projects should be made far enough in advance to allow the clay to dry completely. In a pinch, regular Play-Doh® can be used or an adult can cut a small slice in fruit like pears or Clementines and place the stick inside the fruit as a base.
Christmas tree crafts are a fun way to celebrate Christmas with children of all ages. These crafts work well for preschool age children because the project can be stopped at any stage and saved for later.