This is an easy and fun-for-all-ages Christmas tree craft. Use cardboard to create 3D trees and then paint and decorate them any way you’d like!
My neighbor texted me a photo last week of a Christmas tree craft that had seen at a church event and thought that I might like to try with the kids.
It was a 3-D cardboard tree, painted green, and covered in button ornaments.
We gave the simple and festive Christmas craft a go and they turned out great!
Here are the instructions and photos…
A Christmas Tree Craft with Cardboard and Buttons
- Paper or cardstock for template
- Corrugated cardboard
- Utility knife or X-acto knife
- Hot glue gun
- Paint (tempera paint, BioColors, or acrylic paint)
- Assorted buttons
- Make a template
First, create your template by drawing a simple Christmas tree shape on your paper or cardstock. Cut it out and either fold or cut it in half along the center line.
- Trace the trees
Next, trace your template onto sturdy, corrugated cardboard. You’ll want one full tree and two half trees for each 3D Christmas tree you make.
- Cut the tree shapes
Use the utility knife with a fresh, sharp blade to cut out the cardboard tree shapes. (Adults only, of course.)
Note :: You’ll want to protect your work surface with a cutting mat or another piece of cardboard so you don’t cut your table or floor or whatever.
- Glue the trees together
Use a hot glue gun to glue the half trees to the center of each side of the full cardboard tree.
I ran a line of glue down the center of the tree, positioned the half tree along the glue line, then held it in place while I ran a second line of glue along the base of the half tree on either side. (Does that make sense?)
- Add paint!
- Decorate your tree!
Once the paint is dry, bring out your buttons…
I found these cute little jars of colorful buttons at a local vintage shop (The Screen Door) and was planning to give them as gifts but then brought them out early for this Christmas tree craft.
Maia and Daphne loved sorting and trading their buttons… As always. They do this with buttons, beads, stickers, shells, rocks, marbles, and any other little treasures.
Use a hot glue gun to glue your buttons to the cardboard Christmas tree.
You could probably also use a bottle of white school glue, but might need to work on sections at a time, keeping the buttons relatively flat while the glue dries.
Daphne went for the minimal decoration look and gave her tree to her teacher.
And then she decided that each of the tables in her kindergarten classroom needed a tree, so she asked me for help in making more and painted them in bright colors.
(Sorry for the less-than-stellar photos by the way. Many of them were taken at night or early in the morning in poor light.)
And then we made some more cardboard trees…
…that are now in front of our fireplace surrounded by animal figurines.
And Maia is currently in the process of making another one for a friend…
More Christmas Tree Crafts
- Chocolate Pretzel Christmas Trees
- A Puffy Paint Christmas Tree
- 25 Homemade Christmas Ornaments the Family can Make
- DIY Stained Glass Paper Chains
- Handmade Christmas Tree Cards with DIY Glitter Tape
- A Christmas Tree Advent Calendar
More Christmas Crafts for Kids
- Glitter Stars
- Salt Dough Ornaments
- Playdough Snowmen
- Coffee Filter Holiday Garlands
- Painted Coffee Filter Snowflakes
- Candy Cane Lollipops
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