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How to: Upcycled book Christmas Tree

Posted December 6, 2018

Caroline Wardle attends The Salvation Army Upper Hutt and loves to find second-hand treasures. We got the down-low on her beautiful book-themed Christmas tree, so you can DIY at home!

Christmas can be an expensive time of year, but that doesn't mean decorating has to break the bank. If you enjoy making things with your hands, and upcycling old treasures like Caroline - then take a look through the pictures above at her awesome tree, currently residing at The Salvation Army Booth College of Mission's Library.

If you feel inspired to try it out at home, your Centre or Corps, then grab a bunch of secondhand books in a colour palette of your choice, and follow Caroline's instructions below.

Book-in-the-tree decorations:

  • Second-hand books
  • Embellishments: hessian ribbon, jewels, letters etc. from your local craft store or $2 shop

Get a group together or do it yourself! The key is to pick a palette of complimentary colours, or pick one colour and try various shades of it! You could also try a theme for the embellishments (ie 'natural' might have hessian, branches and dried leaves). If you prefer a minimalist look, leave the covers as they are and try some page sculpture by folding in triangles to make it 3D like this!

If none of that appeals, just pick whatever random things you like!

Paper Heart Decoration:

  • Second-hand books
  • Old sheet music (optional)
  • Coloured paper that matches your palette
  • Sewing machine
  • Scissors

To make the paper heart you see hanging on the tree in the pictures above, place your music sheets and your coloured paper on top of each other to make four layers. Cut a heart shape through the four layers. Run the the four layers of hearts vertically through the sewing machine, and fold up the edges of the pages to make it 3D. Repeat, for how many you are after! 

Paper Heart Chain:

Using the same materials above, cut out smaller hearts, and sew a straight line through the horizontal middle of each heart, using only the thread of the sewing machine to connect. You can also use ribbon and sew the hearts on top. Drape around the Christmas tree or entry way!

Shredded Paper Christmas Balls:

Simply take the leftovers of the book pages, scraps from the heart-cutting and anything else you have lying around and either cut into straight lines or put through a shredder! Fill the ball and finish off your tree as you like.

Caroline then lined the bottom of the tree with other second-hand books, and finished it all off with a paper star.

Christmas tree covered in books

Head on over to our Women's Ministries Facebook Page to let us know if you tried this out, or share other great upcycling ideas for Christmas!