Memory Tree Do It Yourself Project from Repurposed Fabrics

April 22, 2010

Happy Earth Day! Today is the perfect day to tell you about (quite possibly) one of my favorite crafts of all time.  The overall cost of this project is very low because most of the items are re-purposed from fabric you already have in your home (or can easily get from a thrift store).  I can’t wait to share it with you!

I found it in the book Handmade Home Simple Ways to Repurpose Old Materials into New Family Treasures which I got from my library.  I have already renewed my book once and I am not yet ready to give it up, there are just too many great crafts inside!

Here is how to make your own:

1)  Start with a linen background that is approx. 17″x17″ square.  You could use a number of fabrics or even an old bed sheet–be creative!

2)  Next, use brown fabric (felt, cotton or corduroy work well) for a tree trunk (there is a template for the tree trunk in the back of the book).

3)  Use fabric glue to cover the back of your tree trunk.

4)  Adhere your trunk to your 17″x17″ background fabric of choice.  I used a muslin fabric but as I said before, you could use part of an old bed sheet too.

5)  Using fabrics that are meaningful to you, cut out leaf shapes (again, the 2 templates for the leaf shapes are in the book).  Here is where you can get creative.  You could do a tree for your child using clothing that they have outgrown, one for a grandparent using old ties or scarves.   I decided to make a family tree using fabric from each of us.  As soon as I explained what the project was to Hunter and Ashlyn, Hunter quickly asked me, “Will we have some leaves for Sawyer?”.  I love that he voiced what was already on my heart.  Our leaves for Sawyer are represented with a maternity shirt that I remember wearing during his pregnancy (see below) and the tie from the adorable HodgePodgerie snap tee that we had saved of his. It was bittersweet to cut up his outfit but I love having it represented in a way that we can enjoy it every day in our home.

6)  Arrange your leaves in the position you like best around the trunk and adhere them to your background using the fabric glue.  Some thin fabrics may need to have the glue applied very carefully as it may bleed through the fabric (you may wish to test a scrap piece first if you are unsure).

7)  Optional: use embroidery thread to embellish your leaves by running a thread down the middle or outline around the outer edges of the leaves.

8)  Find a frame that matches the decor of your home and enjoy!  Another option would be to hem the edges finishing them off and then add loops to the top and hang it from a dowel rod.

I was so excited about this project that I was asked to share it with our Mothers Of Toddlers group at church.  Below are some photos from all the creative trees that the ladies made.  They are all so different and beautiful in their own way.  One was even made from mismatched socks!

After making my tree I decided to do this project with my mom as an early Mother’s Day craft.  We gathered up some old ties from my grandfather (her dad) and scarves from my grandmother (her mom) and together crafted her tree.  I forgot to take a photo of the final result but she liked it so much that she took it with her to Minnesota where she is currently on vacation to show her friend.  This makes me think it was a hit:).  I think this project would be perfect to give a mom or gra
ndmother for Mother’s Day, enjoy!

Do you have any fun crafts to share? I would love to hear what you are doing for Earth Day today or if you have a fun Mother’s Day project to share!

Looking for some fun Earth Day deals? Head on over to the Mom 4 Life facebook fan page.  We are going to be announcing special discounts on our Go Green! products throughout the day!

Mom 4 Life. Now that Ashley owns Mom 4 Life, I am focusing my energies in homeschooling and asking God to use me in other areas.

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