Button Christmas Tree Craft

December 4, 2018


How To Make A Christmas Button Tree Craft

It's a well known fact that Christmas is my favorite time to craft. Well, second favorite, really. Summer is my favorite time to...well, to do everything. Period. Island life revolves around the beach, you know.

But even in summer, toes in the sand and iced tea in my hand, I'm crafting for Christmas

You see, in recent years, I've decided to simplify my decor. I've ditched most of my accessories in favor of clean surfaces and open space.

I still have a fair amount of treasures peppered about, but unless it's a sentimental piece or something so darling it steals my heart, nope. It's all been sent away.

Of course, Christmas is the one exception. It's that time of year when excess reigns supreme and I loosen the rules just a bit...I add a few new handcrafted items. Not necessarily because I love stuff, but because I enjoy the process of making stuff.

That's how I ended up with my cute little button Christmas tree. I just wanted to make one.

Years ago, I saw one framed in a Christmas shop and I've been promising myself I would do this ever since. It's been on my list almost as long as my macaroni angel ornaments ~ twenty years for two crafts? Yikes. 

Too long.

I tried to add a button tree to my placemat apron a few weeks ago, but it didn't work out. The tree was too sweet to abandon though, so I took a picture of it and started thinking about where I could put it.

Christmas Button Tree Craft

Then, during a crazy cleaning fit that struck during Christmas decorating, I came across this old picture frame. I found it at Marshall's years ago in the clearance aisle. I think it was supposed to have a clip on it to attach a photo, but it had fallen off. 

Hence the price.

Clearance Frame

I bought it, knowing that it was structurally sound and that one day I would be able to do something with it. As soon as I spied it in the back of my craft closet, I knew. 

Picture Frame Stand

It would be the perfect backdrop for my forest of one. Of course, it needed a little sprucing...pardon the pun. 

Now if you don't have frame like mine, you can use an old piece of wood and add a frame back to it or you can use a picture frame. Remove the glass and cover the cardboard in a muted fabric like burlap or a piece of rustic looking scrapbook paper. 

Oh...and for a cute gift tag or place card, you could modify this craft and just use much smaller buttons. Lots of charming options with this craft...but back to mine. 

The area where the clip had been was missing paint and chipped. The frame was supposed to be distressed, but this was not attractive. Plus, I knew that my buttons were not going to show up well against the black finish, so I grabbed cream craft paint and a brush and got to work. 

Christmas Painting  Craft

I didn't prime, I didn't sand, in fact, I didn't even get a container to put the paint in. I simply squirted some onto the piece and started painting. It took two coats to get the look I wanted and yes, I did let the first coat dry before I applied the second.

Painting A Frame

You can see that even with two coats, the black still came through, which is what I wanted. However there was enough coverage to let the green buttons pop. Perfect. 

Time to get to that tree!

How To Distress A Picture Frame

Deciding on a tree shape was the best part. I played around with the buttons for awhile. With Rudolph singing his way though the North Pole in the background, I moved different buttons around, swapping out shapes, sizes and colors until I found a design I was pleased with. 

How To Make A Button Tree

Then I got out the only power tool I'm comfortable with...my glue gun...and started gluing down each button, one at a time.

Once I had the tree form in place, I added a few tiny red buttons on top of the green "branches" as ornaments. You didn't think I was going to be able to craft without any red at all did you? 

I've tried before. Just can't be done. It's a compulsion, I know. 

Christmas Button Crafts

With my buttons glued in place, I thought it might be nice to add a little bit of snow to accent my button tree. But how? 

Well, as luck would have it, I had a snowflake stamp in my collection. It was the subtle accent I craved.

I mapped it out on a piece of scrap first, to make sure I knew where I wanted to place my precipitation. I didn't want to take any chances messing up my pretty tree. 

Christmas Tree Button Craft

To add them, I used a paint brush to apply a tiny bit of paint to the stamp and then lightly pressed on my frame. I just wanted the hint of snow...an accent. And I think I achieved that. 

I did look for a button that would make a good tree trunk and I almost found one in my mom's old collection...it even smelled like her perfume, which made it a strong sentimental contender. But hard as I tried to make it work, it didn't look right, so I added a little bit of twine and called it a day.

Button Christmas Tree Craft

Totally adorable. 

Super simple, super inexpensive, super quick. 

And super fun to make. 

Even if it isn't summer. 

Are you a Christmas crafter? 

44 comments:

  1. I've seen those broken frames and just couldn't think of something to do with them, Kim. Your idea is perfect...and I love the twine trunk!

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    1. Thanks Ann! I have to admit it sat in my craft closet for years before this came to me. Apparently some crafty ideas need a long time to marinate. 😉

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  2. Hi Kim,
    I love anything with buttons and this is super cute. You go with your crafty self!!!!
    Happy Holiday prep!!!
    Hugs,
    Kris

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    1. Thanks so much, Kris! I had fun with this...Happy Holiday prep to you, too!!

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  3. That's just adorable, you frugal talented girl you!
    Brenda

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    1. Thanks Brenda! I may need a forest of these little guys, they're so cute.

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  4. You are just the cutest thing ever, Kim!! Your home must be a treasure trove of homemade crafts - I love it!!

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    1. Thank you, Debbie…and I do have a lot of homemade things around, but I tend to get sick of them quickly and either give them away after a season or repurpose some of them…shhh. It’s a revolving door of stuff and a frequent change of mind over here! A woman’s prerogative or something like that right? Happy Holidays!

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  5. Pretty cute. I giggled at your power tool comment. I think I own a glue gun but for the life of me I can't remember when the last time was that I used it. Not handy at all with hot glue. :(

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    1. Hahaha! Well you my friend are very talented in a multitude of areas I am not...painting, carpentry, cooking, farming, sewing...shall I go on? That glue gun doesn't look so impressive now, does it~ especially when I confess that I burn my fingers almost every time!! 😉🤣

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  6. Goodness.. this is the best! I love buttons! I LOVE this idea.
    Thank you Kim!!
    Happy December!

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    1. Oh Carla, you and your comment just made my day!! Big smiles from me to you!! xo

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  7. I'm not a Christmas crafter anymore but I absolutely adore your green button tree, Kim! I'm all about green and red anyway. And I really like the colors it's mounted on too. My daughter-in-law who is an artist made me a small button tree years ago and even through 3 times of downsizing my Christmas decor, that little tree is still something I put out each year.

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    1. Thanks so much, Dewena! It's easy to see why you've kept it, there's something very charming about those buttons. I find myself staring at it often...cute little evergreen! I hope you're enjoying the season!

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  8. This is just too cute! I love it! I normally do not buy things that are broken because I could never think of anything to do with them. I need to start stepping outside my box!! Love and hugs!

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    1. Thanks so much, Benita! I have to say this one sat for a few years, which is really crazy. I'm glad I hung onto it though. Turned out to be just what I needed! Love and hugs to you, too!!

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  9. Your little tree is so cute! Glad you had the foresight to buy that old frame. :)

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    1. Thanks so much, Mari! It was an impulse purchase that paid off!

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  10. Perfect! I have a hard time "seeing" what I might be able to make from something else. (Frame!)

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    1. This one too me a long time to envision it in a different way, Tammie...but in the end I think it was worth the wait! And thanks!

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  11. Before I forget, I've been meaning to tell you that my mom and I are proudly displaying our macaroni angel ornaments on our trees. I will always think of you when I put mine on my tree every year. Thank you! Okay now this is the cutest button tree! The entire time growing up, my mom had a button collection next to her sewing machine. It was in a metal circular bin with pictures of buttons all over it. I used to love going through it. I need to find it at her house and bring it home with me since she doesn't sew anymore. And something like this would be the perfect project! Your snowflake accents turned out perfectly too!

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    1. Oh Lisa, I'm so happy you like them! We had friends over this weekend and they saw my macaroni angels and all wanted one. I was so flattered! And that's so funny, I used to go through my mom's button jar when I was a kid, too...I don't know what the attraction is, but it seems universal. I hope you find it. I bet the memories will come pouring back in!!

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  12. Kim it's adorable. I love finding things to repurpose on clearance!

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  13. What a precious tree. Its great that you had so many green buttons,

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    1. Thanks Maria...they were another clearance impulse purchase!!

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  14. That’s a great idea Kim for making the button tree using the frame. I too enjoy crafting for the holidays. :)

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    1. Thank you, Julie! I was happy to find a use for the frame. It was a good deal.

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  15. Sweet little button tree . . .
    I really like looking through old buttons . .
    Fragrance memories would be a “mountain top.”

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    1. It was a sweet {smelling} surprise, Lynne…and even though it didn’t make it on the tree, it’s all I think about when I look at it. Almost as good… 😊

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  16. Kim this is super fun. I too get crazy during this season and excessive because why not? Love the addition of the buttons and especially the bright colored ones.

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    1. Thanks Mary! I really like this one. May need a few more. Ha!

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  17. it is just darling...I LOVE the twine tree trunk...gives texture to the smooth buttons.

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    1. Thank you, BJ. It turned out better than expected. Happy Holidays!

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  18. Kim, this is so cute. Good job. I have been so busy and distracted, I hope I didn't miss any of your decorating???..Merry Christmas..xxoJudy

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    1. Hi Judy!! Thank you, I do love that tree...and nope you didn't miss anything. I've been busy and distracted myself and I haven't posted any decorating yet. It's all done, but I've been enjoying it and all the season has to offer instead of making time to photograph it. It's coming though...perhaps this week! Thank you so much for asking and I hope you're enjoying the holiday season so far! xo

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  19. Dear Kim

    So, so cute. You never cease to amaze me. Thank you for sharing.

    Weekend Blessings

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    1. Thank you, Teri. What kind words, I truly appreciate them. Hugs to you!

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  20. So cute, and I have a ton of old, odd buttons I could use.

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    1. I can't stop looking at this one, Kristi! I might have to make a little button forest. 😉

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