Goodbye Boring Christmas Tree – The Top Five Alternative Christmas Trees

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History has it that Martin Luther was the first to decorate a tree Christmas Eve and lit candles on the trees in honor Christ’s birth. Since then things have gotten a little safer; electrical lights and now LED lights have replaced open fires (brilliant), and there are an array of decorations to boot. However, for the most part, the tree itself has remained the same. Sure there is a large population of people out there that use an artificial tree, but they still look like the prototypical tree: really, really green and with that clean pyramid shape all the way up. Finally there has been a creative spark and with a little designing and work you to could have a wicked-awesome tree that puts all your neighbors to shame. Oh, and if you don’t want to put the effort out to make it yourself, you can buy these alternative Christmas Trees.

Repurpose those cardboard boxes here

Number 1:

Not sure what to do with the left over cardboard boxes after the kids are done opening their BB rifles and cabbage patch dolls (or whatever kids are playing with these days)? How about trying to make your next Christmas tree out of it.  Not only are you being green and brown, but you don’t actually have to take the trash out that afternoon. It can be a sweet family project, not unlike doing the dishes. The nice thing is they are light weight, don’t drop leaves, and they can be painted. Don’t want to buy one? That’s OK. A three foot tree only costs $20 USD, not too shabby even considering the fact that it’s pretty much cut up garbage/recycling!

Number 2:

Imagine the fun with the jigsaw

Have a scroll saw or jig saw that not getting the usage it really should? Maybe you should consider the plywood Christmas tree. The detail is up to you, but as you can see, it can be quite intricate if you want it to be. The great thing here is the pine/wood smell without the leaves, watering, or pets trying to mark their territory. Just be prepared to do a lot of cutting or if you plan on buying one, a lot of waiting and spending. The only one in stock now is the small one and that will run you a cool $149 AUD or about $152 USD plus shipping and handling which they won’t even calculate for you unless you call them.

Number 3:

Ok, so maybe you can't make this at home

Here’s a nice artsy-fartsy Christmas tree thingy that would be difficult to make yourself unless you have some laser cutting or metallurgy skills. Originally this thing was just a fun take on the traditional Christmas tree, but as you might notice, it does have a monkey hanging from one of the lower branches and is now called the African Tree. It’s made of thin gauge steel and laser etched, which may be difficult for you to do with that retrofitted easy bake oven that you have in the garage. But at $55 USD and in red or white it’s still a pretty cool addition to the festivities.

Number 4:

Possibli Tree - Get It?

The Possibili Tree is a wooden tree that has rows of ‘branches’ that can be fanned out in different directions. Just imagine all the possibilities. Oh wait, I see,  get it possibility – Possibili Tree, that’s pretty clever. This one could be pretty simply made as long as you can get the ‘branches’ drilled out properly. Otherwise, maybe you should consider picking one up, again a little pricy at $160 USD for the 3 ft model; it comes in walnut, cherry or birch. However, this a limited time offer (they only make a select amount every year), so act now before this deal is gone, gone, gone.

Number 5:

The easy peasy Lowe's Tree

The final coolest alternative Christmas tree on the list is one that can be made quick and easy at home. In fact, you can find plans and a material list right on Lowe’s website. This very simple ‘nuts –n – bolts’ tree is made with nuts and bolts and a few pine slats. Like the Possibili Tree, it is adjustable, paintable, designable, and screw-up-able. With actual tea light candles we would be stepping back into the bad-old days in terms of safety, but they suggest LED tea lights. You’ve got those, right?

What do you think? Real tree? Fake tree? Alternative “Trees”? Do you use something different entirely? Let us know in the comments below!

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About Leroy

LeRoy was born into a long line of contractors/carpenters/missing links which maybe why he fell naturally into tools and fishing with his paws, errr, bare hands. He has since punctured, stabbed or electrocuted every appendage that can be discussed in mixed company. Given his natural fur vest, he has never been cold. In his parallel life he is a mild mannered environmental scientist where he builds, destroys and builds again. Which let’s face it is much cooler than Superman’s parallel life.

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5 thoughts on “Goodbye Boring Christmas Tree – The Top Five Alternative Christmas Trees”

  1. You green thumb folk out there will appreciate this one! Last year my friend spray painted a tomato plant wire cage, turned it upside down so it was resting on the largest ring, bent the top wires to a point, wound one string of lights along the wires, and hung small ornaments off it. It was the best, non-needle dropping, apartment-size tree I had ever seen. I am very tempted to create my own this year!

  2. My girlfriend and I have taken to decorating a potted citrus tree. Doesn’t have the shape but the citrus smell is nice (especially if the tree has blossoms. Having a reminder of warmer climates during cold New England winters isn’t a bad thing at all.

  3. If I try real hard, I can still smell (hallucinate) the Christmas tree of early childhood in Germany with real candles. The tree was tall but scrawny by today’s standards – which is good – you don’t want to have too many branches above the lit candles.
    Also this made all of us have to be around the tree together for the hour or so the candles were lit, ever ready with the fire-fighting equipment and holiday spirit!

    • Assen, I grew up in an old-school German family too. . . I remember the candle-holders that clipped to the tree. I also remember the “tinsel” which were literally glittery strips of lead. Holiday safety has definitely improved since then!

  4. We have an ancient artificial tree that was my grandparents. Sure there are better looking ones out there, but this one was free. It also is only used for a month out of the year as a decoration. pitching it would be a waste.


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