Alternative Christmas Tree Projects Made From Pallets
Finding a tree can be tricky when you have limited space. That's why pallet Christmas trees are so popular: They take up minimal space, they're budget-friendly, and they're fun to make! You can play with size, scale, and color to achieve your desired look. Once you've found the idea that works for you, it's time to get crafting.
It's worth noting that the pallet tree can be reused year after year, so it's definitely worth investing some time in the process. If you love the look of raw and rustic designs, then consider upcycling other pieces of wood as well, like unfinished boards, scrap wood, panels from an old fence, or even old doors.
How Do You Cut a Christmas Tree Shape Out of a Pallet?
Pallets are easy to find, and it's so simple to create a tree shape from them. Sketch out a big triangle on the pallet, then use a saw to cut it out; a circular saw works well. Then decorate it, and you're set! You can also consider adding a stand with a thick dowel and/or some pieces of scrap wood.
By reusing pallets this way, you are also helping to protect the environment by upcycling the wood rather than wasting it. Plus, you get to exercise your creativity! You can decorate your pallet tree with paint, sparkling stars, or even just a string of lights. Try out one of the ideas shown below!
Simple Wooden Christmas Tree
Here's a simple tree made just like in the instructions above, with a sturdy stand built from extra wood planks. Wooden Christmas trees like this are a wonderful accent for your backyard, with or without the cute star topper. This photo shows the tree before any decorating has taken place, so it's a blank canvas for your imagination! Of course, it also looks very nice just as it is.
Red and Green Pallet Tree
With layers alternating between the traditional colors of green and red, this festive little tree is ideal for cramped spaces. The addition of lights makes the room feel bright, cozy, and relaxed. Why not stencil on some words as well, like a Christmas greeting or "We wish you a Merry Christmas"? Since this tree is so thin and small, it fits perfectly in the hallway or entryway of your house.
Pallet With Tree Outline
To recreate this idea, attach string lights to a pallet to form the shape of a tree. Decorate the "tree" with red, green, and silver baubles. The red star and green “M” really make it a standout—adding an initial is the perfect way to give your décor a personal touch! The lights make this special piece glow and twinkle, just like a typical Christmas tree.
Lit Birch Wood Discs
Carefully arrange birch wood discs in a Christmas tree shape on a pallet to create a delightful outdoor decoration, then make it spectacular by adding lights! This piece fuses a cozy, rustic look with the modern charm of an alternative tree. You can add the lights at clever intervals to highlight the shape.
Red, White, and Green Trees
Painting a set of pallet trees red, white, and green looks fantastic. This set adds a contemporary feel to your home while enlivening the space. You can also enhance the trees' festive quality by adding snowflake and star decorations. This project can also be made with individual lengths of board glued together to an old fence post.
Red Tree With Lights and Christmas Message
Painted with the words "We wish you a Merry Christmas," this bright red pallet tree is adorned with fairy lights. It would look great in any space in your home, or you can add it to your outdoor décor for a splash of color. Since it's small, it's easy to store away again once the season is over.
Small Green Message Tree
This small tree painted with a Christmas message could also be used as a festive sign for your porch to greet visitors. Write an inspiring message from a Christmas song on the tree, such as "May your days be merry and bright!" Finish by adding a twinkling star on top.
Multi-Sized Wooden Trees
Create a whimsical forest for your backyard by making pallet trees in different sizes! Place them in an overlapping fashion for a dramatic, impressive look. These fun trees can also be given as gifts to neighbors.
Tree Display With Shelves
One wonderful feature of pallet trees is that they aren't specific to just one season. You can redecorate them throughout the year to suit every holiday! It's especially easy to do this if you incorporate little shelves into your tree design to display festive items appropriate for the season. This Christmas-themed tree is decorated with pine cones, animals, stars, and warming candles. It really livens up the space it inhabits!
Santa, Elf, or Grinch Tree
You can paint your pallet trees to look like Christmas characters, such as an elf, Santa, or a grumpy green Grinch. These trees are extra fun for kids to make and enjoy! In addition to using paint to define the characters' features (like Santa's beard), include accessories like hats and bright gold belt buckles.
Eclectic Tree Covered With Decorations
This recycled pallet tree packs a rustic punch with a twist of modern flavors. Decorate the tree by hanging items such as stars, lights, and ornaments from pegs; you can also affix little shelves to it. Children will have great fun rearranging the decorations.
Silver and Purple Fabric-Wrapped Tree
Rather than decorating your pallet tree with tinsel or glitzy garland, enhance the natural feeling of the wood by using a pretty piece of fabric or ribbon. The softness of the fabric looks beautiful against the wood grain. You can use this technique with any color scheme you like, whether you go for a traditional red and green or a modern combo like silver and purple!
Petite White Trees in Pots
Don't worry if you can only fit a poinsettia-sized tree in your space. Instead, play up its petite size by displaying it in a flower pot! Choose a Christmassy pot or redecorate one you already own with red paint and gold ribbon. Place some decorative moss in the pot for a natural look that contrasts with the clean white tree.
Green Pallet Tree With Zigzag Lights
If you want your wooden tree to resemble a typical evergreen tree, then paint it green. The green color creates an amazing backdrop for string lights, shiny baubles, and a big gold star on top. It makes a really effective substitute for a regular Christmas tree!
Dark-Stained Wooden Tree
Rather than trying to make your pallet tree look more realistic, you can highlight the beauty of the wood by staining it a dark color. I love how the darker wood in this photo contrasts with the brightly colored ornaments. Plus, the extra finishing turns the tree into a real family heirloom to pass down through the years.
Zigzag Garland Tree
Here's another idea that doesn't require you to cut your pallet. Staple green garland to the pallet in a zigzag pattern that looks like a Christmas tree, and glue a log to the bottom for the base of the tree. Then, decorate your garland just like you would a regular tree, with baubles, lights, and a shiny star. It looks nice if you paint the pallet with just a touch of white snow to set off the green tree.
Rustic Tree With String Lights
I love this idea for a natural wood tree! The unpainted wood and homespun decorations give it a rustic feel, and the copious string lights add just the right touch of glitz. Run the string lights in straight lines along each panel of the pallet to achieve this look. It's so warm and homey!
Snowy White Painted Tree
This is another idea for making a pallet tree without using a saw. Instead of painting on a green tree shape, go for a glittery white one. Your tree will look like it's covered in beautiful snow. The white backdrop sets off the sparkling ornaments and lights in a magical way. This crafter has created a simple burlap-covered stand that looks really effective with the tree.
Pallet Tree With Dangling Baubles
Rather than attaching ornaments to the fronts of the panels, you can hang them from the edges for a different look. Either screw little hooks into the bottom edge of each panel or drill holes through the panel near the bottom edge. Hang ornaments from the hooks/holes, making sure to use a variety of colors and sizes. This looks so pretty, especially if you leave the tree unpainted or paint it a single color (imagine this with a white or gold tree!).
Elaborate Painted Tree
If you have keen painting skills, show them off with an intricate paint job on your tree! Rather than attaching decorations to the tree, you can paint them on—from ornaments to lights to the green foliage of the tree itself. This looks gorgeous, and it's a snap to clean up at the end of the season. You don't have to remove and re-sort all the ornaments!
Intricately Cut Tree
On the flip side, if you're handy with a saw, you can cut a more detailed design into your pallet. This crafter enhanced the look of the branches with some cutouts at the top and bottom. This idea works with any decoration scheme you like; here, the crafter opted to keep it natural with some decorative pine cones, greenery, and string lights.
Pallet Xmas Tree Inspiration Gallery
Scroll through the photos below to see tons more ideas for transforming wooden pallets into wonderful trees to display in your home. Once you've found an idea you like, put together your shopping list (paint, lights, ribbons, etc.), and prepare for some Christmas crafting!