I don’t know if it’s because of the Scottish blood in me but I do like a bit of tweed and tartan. I’ve used my fabric scraps to make some tweed and tartan trees. This will add a bit of a Celtic theme to my mantle this festive season.
Tweed and tartan are traditional Scottish woven woolen fabrics. You can often pick up bags of offcuts and scraps of the fabric at fabric stores or online. Or even better you can upcycle fabrics from old tartan and plaid shirts for this tabletop Christmas tree craft.
Making upcycled mini Christmas trees are on my Christmas crafting list every year. A couple of years ago I made repurposed denim trees and last year I made Scandinavian Felt Trees. Now I have acknowledged my family’s Scottish heritage with these tweed and tartan trees.
I’ve exploited the woven nature of tartan cloth in the past to make some colourful fabric feathers. For these trees, I’ve choosen scraps in more muted and natural tones.
I’ve always had a thing about tartan and plaid. This time of year I tend to live in plaid shirts. Worn with jeans of course! The combination of plaid and denim looks so good together. So I decided to add some denim to these mini trees.
The seams and belt loops of old jeans were upcycled to decorate the base of the tartan trees. The combination of denim and tweed works so well. I ended up making a mini tartan and tweed forest as creating them was such fun.
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What You Need To Make Tweed & Tartan Trees
- Scraps of tweed, tartan or plaid fabric. You can sometimes pick these up on Amazon or eBay, or simply upcycle some old plaid shirts.
- Large cookie cutter in the shape of a Christmas tree. If you don’t have one you can download a template of mine here.
- Denim belt loops and seams scraps from old jeans.
- Wooden cotton real spools.
- Small twigs to act as tree trunks.
- Fiberfil, I use old pillows for this.
- Needle and thread.
- Hot glue gun.
How To Make The Tabletop Fabric Trees
1.. First, either using the Christmas tree cookie cutter or my template draw around it on your fabric scrap.
You will need two identical Christmas tree shapes. I fold over the fabric before drawing around the template. That way when I cut out the shapes, I will get two identical trees.
2. Next, pin the two Christmas tree shapes together. You will notice that with most tweed, tartan and plaid fabrics that the fabric looks the same on each side.
Sew the shapes together about 3mm from the edge. I used a sewing machine and a small stitch for this. However, you can sew your trees by hand. The edge of the fabric may fray but I think this only adds to the look.
Remember to leave a small gap at the bottom, for the fiberfill and trunk.
3. Next, stuff the trees. Just use a small amount of stuffing, enough to give the trees a 3D shape but not too much. Use a chopstick to push the fiberfill into the points of the tree.
4. Then, add a small twig (about 6cm long) into the hole. Sew the hole shut and tightly around the twig trunk. A small dab of glue between the fabric and the twig may also help keep it in place.
Making the Fabric Christmas Tree Base
5. Next, to make the denim base of the tartan trees, use a wooden thread reel. Wrap denim seams or belt loops around the center of the wooden spool. Use a small dab of hot glue to keep the denim in place.
6. Finally, stick the twig trunk into the hole in the top of the thread spool. Hopefully, it should be a nice snug fit. If not use some hot glue to keep the trunk in place.
I made a few of these tweed and tartan trees, each one in a different upcycled fabric. I will be making some more with an old plaid shirt of mine to add to the collection.
This isn’t the only Scottish themed decoration I’ve made for my home. I’ve also made a rainbow of painted thistle decorations.
Christmas cookie cutters are handy as templates for lots of crafts and upcycles, I used this Christmas tree one and some others to make a cute upcycled sweater felt hanging for Christmas.
- Tweed, tartan fabric scraps or an old plaid shirt.
- Denim seams or belt loops from old jeans
- Twigs about 6-7cm long
- Old wooden thread reel spools
- Large Christmas tree cookie cutter
- Hot glue gun
- Needle and thread
- Sewing machine (optional)
- Using the Christmas tree cookie cutter as a template, draw around it on the fabric scrap.
- Cut out 2 identical Christmas tree shape for each tartan tree.
- Pin the Christmas tree fabric shapes together and sew very close to the edge. Leave a whole for the fiberfill
- Loosely fill the tree with fiber, poking the stuffing into the corners of the tree.
- Stick a twig in the hole in the base of the fabric tree. Sew the hole shut and the stick trunk in place.
- Next, cover the thread spool in denim seams. Use hot-glue to keep them in place.
- Finally, stick the trunk of the tartan tree into the hole in the middle of the cotton reel spool.