Do your toddlers have a hard time leaving your Christmas tree alone? Try giving your kids their very own (unbreakable) felt Christmas tree to decorate over and over again this Christmas season!
My little boys are drawn to the lights on our Christmas tree like moths to a flame. It’s adorable to watch them stare at the twinkling lights, and poke at them gentle. The only problem is that the gentle poking often turns into not-so-gentle grabbing of ornaments. Little Man (4) is really good about being careful around the tree, but Little Brother (2) completely ignores our “one finger” touch rule with the tree. Oh well, such is life with a toddler.
Last year, I saw this idea for a kid-size Christmas tree made out of felt. Perfect! I thought. Now they’ll leave the big tree alone! Not quite the case in reality, but they definitely loved having their own special tree.
Unfortunately, last year I really only got as far as cutting out the tree shape and a few random circles for ornaments. This year I decided I wanted to add to it, and I wanted my boys to be able to help with the decorations. That way, I got two activities out of one project: (1) making the decorations, and (2) playing with the tree!
The good news for you: I simplified the process by creating ornament templates you can use to create decorations for your own felt Christmas tree. Here’s how I made mine, and you can, too:
Felt Christmas Tree for Kids
- 1 yard green felt (for tree)
- additional felt in various colors (red, white, yellow, blue, etc.)
- felt ornament template (free printable below)
- freezer paper & iron (if you want to use this EASY method for cutting felt)
- hot glue gun
I already had my tree from last year, but you’ll obviously want one of those to put the decorations on. I have made three of these now (two for gifts), and I have always just free handed the tree. Fold the felt in half, draw half a tree along the fold with pen (or chalk, which I used the last time so I wouldn’t have leftover pen marks), and cut it out. Easy!
Tip: Make it wider than you think you want initially, because you can always cut it down. The first tree I made was a little skinnier than I would have liked, but the boys still love it, so it’s no biggie. We’re not aiming for perfection here! (I have to regularly remind myself of that.)
Next, I made a template for the shapes I wanted (free download below), then I cut the shapes out of various colors of felt using this easy felt cutting method.
Then, I got the boys involved. I had a bag of random Christmas craft supplies (pom poms, pipe cleaners, googly eyes, etc.) that I got on clearance a few weeks ago, and I figured it would be perfect for this project. I’m pretty confident you could get similar supplies for a few dollars at the Dollar Store or any craft store. I spread the shapes out on the table, dumped all the supplies in a big bowl, and let the boys go to town decorating the ornaments and gingerbread men.
Little Brother mostly just wanted to load the pom poms into his dump truck (what else is new?), but Little Man really enjoyed picking out what size of googly eyes to use for the gingerbread men and which colors of pom poms to put on which ornament. He’s got an awesome eye for design. 🙂
Once Little Man had finished designing his ornaments, I hot glued everything on just the way he wanted it. That was crucial. Don’t mess with the design of a four-year-old.
We put our tree up on the wall (I used painter’s tape, although you could also use Command strips or push pins), and got to work playing! P.S. – I love how work and play naturally go together for kids.
I’m looking forward to being able to use this fun activity for many years to come!
If you like this felt activity, try making one of my travel felt boards for kids. They would make a cheap and easy DIY gift for kids, grandkids, or friends this year!
- Travel felt board set: one-hour tutorial + free printable templates!
- Travel felt board “Under the Sea” play set
- Travel felt board “Birthday Wishes” cupcake play set
- Travel felt board “Silly Jack-o-lantern play set