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12 Cool Traditional Christmas Tree Alternatives

There are plenty of ways to celebrate the holidays without the sap, falling needles, and all that mess.

Cute african american girl decorating Christmas tree with dad.bbernard/Shutterstock

Out-of-the-box Christmas tree alternatives

There’s something special about decorating a Christmas tree, but it doesn’t need to look the same every year. In fact, there are plenty of creative and fun options instead of real or plastic green trees. Click on for some inspiring alternatives to your average green Christmas tree. If you do go for the real thing, make sure you use one of these creative ways to recycle your tree.

Creative Christmas tree in living room interiorAfrica Studio/Shutterstock

Rustic wood tree

This rustic tree is made from reclaimed wood for a one-of-a-kind design that can be used in the corner of the living room or on a tabletop, depending on how big you make it. And find some wood and grab a saw, hammer, and nails to create these primitive Christmas tree alternatives. If you go for all-red decorations it could look similar to one of the most infamous White House Christmas trees.

symbol Christmas tree from a colorful books on grey background. Empty copy space for your greetingsKusska/Shutterstock

Book trees

Is there a book lover in your home? This book tree works well in a small space decorated with a strand of mini Christmas lights. Here are 15 Christmas traditions you should steal from around the world.

DIY Christmas tree felt decorationmholka/Shutterstock

Craft project tree

Kids can help create alternative Christmas trees with simple craft supplies such as felt, ribbon, and glue. And when finished, hang some of your favorite little ornaments from the “branches.” No matter how you decorate your tree, this is what your Christmas tree wishes you knew.

Christmas tree made of wooden branches with copy spaceViktor Gladkov/Shutterstock

Reclaimed wood tree

Pinterest has lots of ideas for using reclaimed wood to build alternative Christmas trees. And once completed, add some paint or stain and wrap a strand of lights around the finished project. Don’t make these holiday decorating mistakes that could put your family in danger.

Decorated branch treeNazarii Kharko/Shutterstock

Decorated branch tree

Christmas decorating doesn’t get much easier than this. Go outside and find a branch (or you could purchase a plastic one from a craft store), place it in a vase or pot, or hang it from the ceiling or a chandelier and decorate it with your favorite ornaments. This would work great as a centerpiece or atop a living room table. Your holiday decor doesn’t have to be expensive. That’s one of the holiday decorating mistakes you need to avoid.

Washi tape christmas tree decoration with tiny colorful gifts. Christmas gifts. DIY.Mallmo/Shutterstock

Christmas tree art

If you have a fireplace and no room for a traditional tree, try decorating the mantel with some DIY tree art. Use Washi tape to form a simple zigzag and decorate with ribbon or strips of fabric taped to the wall. This type of tree could even go above your mantel along with these ideas for a gorgeous Christmas mantel.

A photo of a handmade Christmas tree made up of painted wine corks. Winemaker's Christmas concept. On a dark background with holly branches and a place for textPlateresca/Shutterstock

Wine cork tree

For the wine drinker, try using all those corks to create DIY alternative Christmas trees. And there are several ideas on Pinterest to provide inspiration. This is the history of 10 favorite Christmas traditions.

Ladder Treegpointstudio/Shutterstock

Ladder tree

An eye-catching ladder tree spotted on Pinterest may not save any space, but it is certainly a new take on a traditional Christmas tree. Try decorating with sparkly ornaments, some strands of lights and a star or angel on top. Make some of these easy Christmas ornaments for your tree, too.

Ply Wood TreeAlex Sipetyy/Shutterstock

Plywood tree

This tree is made from sheets of birch plywood with stars cut out for modern Christmas tree alternatives. Search for “plywood Christmas tree patterns” online for dozens of additional options—even ones celebrating the New Year, too. And a scroll saw works best for cutting the large pieces of plywood for a tree this size. If you haven’t started decorating for Christmas yet, this might convince you to start.

Felt Christmas Treelocrifa/Shutterstock

Felt tree

This felt tree is a great project to get kids started in DIY. And not only do these types of Christmas tree alternatives work great in small spaces, but they also work in a child’s bedroom. Making your own tree is one of the holiday traditions that everyone should start.

Chalkboard TreeMaglara/Shutterstock

Chalkboard tree

If you have a chalkboard painted wall, why not draw a tree on it during the holiday season? You can also use a small chalkboard to draw a Christmas tree and hang it in the living room. This is a modern take on a Christmas tree. It’s a stark difference from what Christmas used to look like 100 years ago.

Pebble Tree Luke SW/Shutterstock

Pebble tree

This tree uses items found at the beach for a unique take on Christmas tree alternatives. So get your hot glue gun out and try using pebbles, starfish, driftwood, pine cones, and other beach finds to recreate this look. Next, check out the best Christmas town in every state.

Originally Published on The Family Handyman