I was working on this and I got so excited. I know it's not a real tree, but I was thinking that was exactly what I had wanted to be doing. I have always wanted to decorate my own tree with my own style. And right now that's all on a few buck$ of wood, and I am completely content with it.
I decided to kick the clothes pins that I painted to the curb, along with the magazine clippings of ornaments. I had a coworker give me some of her old ones. There just so happened to be little gold ornaments in the box she gave me...perfect! I also went and picked up a $5 bag of rafia. I knew I would want to hang my pinecones and other things with it. I like rafia in this case because it is a little closer to 'natural' looking then anything else. I was also thinking hemp could be a good replacer of the rafia. The rafia came into play a little more when I realized I got too short of nails for the arms of my tree. They barely go through to the post, and I was not in the mood to go to Home Depot for a third time on this project. I tied the rafia around the posts in a way that keeps them in place. VOILA.
My second trip to Home Depot was because I took back one colored lights box and exchanged it with white. I wasn't feeling the multi colors on my mostly nature friendly tree. I think the white ones were a good choice.
1. Spray paint: dark brown and let it dry (in the snow.) I sanded them to make them feel rustic. This worked in my favor because I could sand down my "messed up" parts.
2. Posts and "tree limbs": mounted the arms with the nails and rafia.
3. Pinecones: put them in a cardboard box and painted them all with the dark brown, making sure they still looked like they had color and so that they all match, then did one quick sweep with gold.
4. Top peice: the star was from my co-worker and it was red, so I just spray painted it gold to match everything else. I basically took three pinecones and wrapped them around the top with the rafia, adding the pine needles and then the star.
5. Lights: stringing them on the actual arms didn't work so I placed them just on the center post, which works out with a nice glow showing the other ornaments. And I think it keeps it fresh and clean.
6. Ornaments: I just tied rafia around the top part of the pinecones, stuck the pine needles in the knot, and made another knot at the top to have them hang from. I also picked up the letters from Hobby Lobby for $2 each and spray painted them gold and tied them up with rafia. Letters and numbers are in these days, so I figured it couldn't hurt and added another element.
That's it! Done!
She's little and simple and hardly takes up any space in my little room, and she's perfect.