How to make a DIY Christmas tree with Sugru
Why do Christmas trees have to be traditional? They don't! Have fun this year and take a DIY approach.
You'll have the enjoyment of planning and doing an awesome creative project, making the place look uniquely yours and as an added bonus you won't have to deal with the sadness of a lonely tree on the street in January.
Sugru is great for this project, because it bonds securely to the wall, you can shape it into strong hooks, it bonds very well to a whole host of other materials (including walnuts in this case) and... you can stick pins through it! All will become clear...
Also, a little Sugru goes a surprisingly long way - this entire tree uses a total of 8 white minipacks of Sugru.
We used leaves and walnuts to decorate our tree - feel free to copy this one, or you may have your own ideas for what you could use to make your decorations. This project has several steps - perfect to do in bursts over a weekend.
Step 1 - Make a Sugru hook in the corner of a room
Open a single-use pack of Sugru and divide it into 3 equal pieces. Take one of those pieces and shape a hook in the corner between two walls at the height you want for the top of your tree. This hook will be holding your lights in a tree shape. Make sure to press it into the wall securely several times to get a good bond, then create the hook shape by drawing the Sugru out between your fingers and curling it upwards. Leave to cure overnight.
Step 2 - Make two curled Sugru hooks
Mark out the bottom two corner points of your tree. Using the remaining two parts of your pack of Sugru, form two hooks and shape them to the left and right, curling inwards so that they will hug the fairy lights and keep them in place. Leave to cure overnight.
Step 3 - Make wedge hooks
These little wedge hooks keep the lights tidy on the base of the tree - hugging the wall.
Open another single-use pack of Sugru and divide it into as many pieces as you need. We made 5 wedge hooks in total to keep our lights tidy. Simply stick each small piece of Sugru to the skirting board and draw the shape upwards between your fingers, then gently press it towards the wall leaving roughly the diameter of the fairy lights behind - enough for it to wedge them in place.
Now leave all your hooks to cure overnight - the Sugru will turn into a strong and durable rubber.
Step 4 - Make small nodes on the wall
These are where you will pin all your decorations. For this tree, we divided each single-use pack of Sugru into 15 small balls. Roll each small ball between your hands for a few seconds to make it a little extra sticky. Then press the ball on the wall firmly into a small node shape. It should have enough depth to be able to hold a pin. Leave to cure overnight.
Step 5 - Make your decorations
The really fun bit! We decided that walnuts would look really cute sprayed white and pinned in front of red leaves. You could hang all sorts of things though - Sugru bonds very well to metals, ceramics, hard plastics and glass in particular. In our case we opened another single-use pack, and added small nodes to the top of each walnut. The idea is that once the Sugru cures and turns into rubber, we could then simply pin them to the wall. Each single-use pack made around 15 - 20 decorations. Leave to cure overnight.
Step 6 - Put it all together
We went gathering fallen leaves in the neighbourhood which was fun - don't the spikey ones look particularly cute? Then we sprayed them red to make them extra Christmassy. For the walnuts, once the Sugru was cured we sprayed them white. If you use edible spray paint, maybe you can let the family snack on the decorations over the holidays :)
To put it all together, all you need are pins - they will glide nicely through the Sugru and the leaf, and firmly into the Sugru node on the wall, keeping everything hung very nicely and securely. We estimate that a pin with Sugru nodes like this can probably hold individual decorations weighing up to around 20g.
Then have fun filling up your tree and watching it come to life!