How to Make a Dowel Tree

We trimmed this beautifully simple DIY Christmas tree with a collection of vintage ornaments. This minimalist approach lets your ornaments shine. This handmade Christmas decoration is the perfect way to celebrate the season. No water needed!

holiday dowel tree with ornaments

This year, choose a nontraditional Christmas tree. This one is made from wood and offers a unique way to display your treasured ornaments. A dowel tree is great for small-space Christmas decorating, too! While a DIY Christmas tree may seem daunting, it's actually quite easy. All it takes are dowels and a drill. 

Get more ideas for Christmas decorating in small spaces. 

What You'll Need

  • 24-inch-diameter wooden round 
  • 8-foot-long, 1-1/2-inch-diameter wooden pole 
  • Drill and drill bits 
  • 1-1/2-inch wood screw 
  • Saw 
  • 1-inch-diameter dowel, cut into six 18-inch lengths and six 14-inch lengths 
  • 3/4-inch-diameter dowel, cut into six 12-inch lengths and six 10-inch lengths 
  • 1/2-inch-diameter dowel, cut into four 8-inch lengths, four 6-inch lengths, and four 4-inch lengths 
  • Ornaments

Step 1: Make Base

wooden dowel christmas tree

Using a 1-1/2-inch spade bit, drill three-quarters of the way into the center of the wooden round. Insert the 8-foot pole into the hole and secure with a 1-1/2-inch wood screw through the bottom of the round. 

Step 2: Add Branches

Mark peg placement on the pole. Our tree has 36 pegs spaced approximately 6 inches apart around the length of the pole, with the largest diameter pegs on the bottom and the smallest diameter pegs on the top. The top peg is 6 inches from the top. Drill peg holes in the pole at a 45-degree angle, using spade bits that are the same diameter as the peg. Insert pegs in the holes. Hang ornaments from pegs.

Try adding a handmade ornament to the tree! 


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