How to Make a Driftwood Christmas Tree

The driftwood Christmas tree described in this driftwood craft project stands approximately 40 centimetres high. We made a hanging driftwood Christmas tree – to be hung possibly from a much larger Christmas tree, from the ceiling, or against a wall (but slightly away from the wall). It could perhaps also be hung outdoors.

small driftwood Christmas tree against cardboard background

small driftwood Christmas tree against cardboard background

The bottom of the driftwood Christmas tree also has a wire loop, from which Christmas decorations could be hung.

One could also decorate the string or rope that the driftwood Christmas tree hangs from.

If you don’t want to hang your driftwood Christmas tree, and want it to stand alone instead, you could insert the base into a container filled with pebbles, or could make the bottom piece of driftwood a chunky, square or rectangular piece of driftwood, with a flat bottom.

Update August 2017 – we sell small hanging driftwood Christmas trees from the main part of our site, as well as table top driftwood Christmas trees

Step 1 – Planning the Driftwood Christmas Tree

bottom wire loop of hanging driftwood Christmas tree

bottom wire loop of hanging driftwood Christmas tree

We decided to make a small driftwood Christmas tree that could be hung from another much larger tree, or hung in a suitable space or position.

We decided to also include another hanging loop below the tree, in order to hang Christmas decorations beneath the tree in addition to hanging Christmas tree decorations on the branches of the tree.

The central spine of the tree, to which everything was to be attached was a length of 1.6 mm thick high strain steel wire. You could probably also use ordinary craft wire, or binding wire, instead.

Step 2 – Selecting the Driftwood for the Branches

Choosing your driftwood pieces

Choosing your driftwood pieces

We have a large collection of driftwood, in a wide range of sizes. We selected several pieces, ranging from 6 centimetres long to 30 centimetres long. We also selected a fairly chunky piece to use as the base. At this stage we also laid the driftwood out on a flat surface, to resemble the finished product, with the longest driftwood piece at the bottom, and the shortest driftwood piece at the top.

Step 3 – Preparing the Driftwood

drill cutters circular pliers and drill bits

drill cutters circular pliers and drill bits

A hole was drilled through each piece of driftwood, approximately in the centre, with a 2mm thick wood bit.

The base driftwood piece had a hole drilled through in the height (or longest length) of the base.

Standard wood bits are not long enough for this last operation, and I made a “special” drill bit that would be long enough, by cutting a piece of bicycle wheel spoke, and hammering the tip of the bicycle spoke into a sharp point.

I started the hole in the base driftwood piece by first drilling a hole as deep as I could with the 2mm thick shorter drill bit. I inserted the “special” bicycle wheel spoke drill bit into that hole, and finished it. BE CAREFUL when doing this, as it is never a certainty that the drill bit will exit exactly where you planned for it to exit, especially when it’s a bicycle spoke drill bit that you used in the drill.

Step 4 – Preparing the Wire “Spine”

Bend a loop into one end of the wire, using pliers. Squish the loop flat, and closed.

Step 5 – Assembling the Driftwood Christmas Tree

top wire loop on a hanging driftwood Christmas tree

top wire loop on a hanging driftwood Christmas tree

Start with the top small driftwood piece, and thread it onto the wire.

Push your smallest driftwood piece all the way up nice and tight against the loop you made in the previous step.

Now repeat this process, until all the pieces of driftwood have been threaded onto the wire, including the base.

Make sure you are able to move or swivel your driftwood Christmas tree branches into the positions you prefer. It may be necessary to re-position a few driftwood pieces.

branches of a driftwood Christmas tree pushed up on the central wire spine tightly beneath each other

branches of a driftwood Christmas tree pushed up on the central wire spine tightly beneath each other

Step 6 – Completing your Driftwood Christmas Tree

pushing the base driftwood piece up the wire

pushing the base driftwood piece up the wire

With all your driftwood Christmas tree branches correctly positioned, push them upward tightly, including the base driftwood piece. Snip the wire off leaving some over for the wire loop beneath the base. Make your wire loop. If you want a hanging loop, leave it with an eye large enough to pass something through. If you do not want to hang anything from the base, make the wire loop as small as possible, and then flatten it against the flat bottom surface of your base. The loop needs to be as close to the base as you can get it, so that the driftwood Christmas tree branches do not slide down exposing too much wire above the very top small driftwood piece.

Step 7

brag :)

driftwood Christmas tree hanging outdoors

driftwood Christmas tree hanging outdoors

© Copyright Tony Flanigan 2014