Turn an inexpensive galvanized metal bucket, woven basket, or cardboard box into functional—and pretty—holiday tree collars.

By Claire Harmeyer

Christmas decorations shouldn't blow your holiday budget. Fortunately, these clever DIY tree collar hacks will dress up your Christmas tree for less. Take the classic route with a galvanized tree collar made from an inexpensive metal bucket, or get more creative with a wicker tree collar made from a woven basket. Or turn a cardboard box laying around your house into a holiday tree collar with adhesive wallpaper or shelf liner. All three simple DIY tree collars will give your Christmas tree a festive finishing touch.

Make Your Own Christmas Tree Collar

Supplies Needed

Galvanized Tree Collar

  • Galvanized metal bucket 
  • Tape measure
  • Safety glasses
  • Construction gloves
  • Jigsaw
  • Metal file
  • Tack cloth

Woven Basket Tree Collar

  • Woven basket
  • Tape measure
  • Box cutter

Faux Wood Crate Tree Collar

  • Cardboard box
  • Tape measure
  • Box cutter
  • Cutting mat
  • Ruler or tape measure
  • Pencil
  • Wood-look shelf liner or adhesive wallpaper
  • Crafts knife

Step-by-Step Directions

Follow these simple how-to instructions to make your own DIY tree collar. All three holiday tree collar projects can be completed in less than a half hour.

Galvanized Tree Collar

Step 1: Measure Tree Stand

Measure the base of your tree stand. Make sure you use a metal bucket with a base that's bigger than the widest part of your tree stand. This will ensure that the bucket will fit over the tree stand when flipped over.

Step 2: Drill Hole

Put on construction gloves and safety glasses. Flip over the bucket so that the bottom is facing up. Drill a starter hole with a bit that can go through metal.

Step 3: Cut Perimeter

Continue to wear safety glasses and construction gloves to protect your eyes and hands for this step. Use a jigsaw to cut around the perimeter of the bottom of the bucket. Remove the bottom.

Step 4: Smooth Edges

The edge of the perimeter will be rough, so you’ll need to smooth it out. Be sure to keep your goggles and construction gloves on. Smooth the edges with a metal file and wipe clean with a tack cloth.

Wicker Tree Collar

Step 1: Measure Tree Stand

Measure the diameter of your tree stand to make sure you get a basket with a base that's a few inches wider. Measure the height of your tree stand as well to confirm that the basket is deep enough.

Step 2: Cut and Remove Bottom

Flip your basket over so the bottom is facing upward. Using a box cutter, cut around the perimeter of the basket. Once all sides have been cut, remove the bottom. If there are a few metal braces, you can leave them in place.

Faux Wood Crate Tree Collar

Step 1: Measure Tree Stand

Measure the diameter of your tree stand to make sure you get a cardboard box that's big enough to fit around it. Also, measure the height of your tree stand to make sure the box is deep enough.

Step 2: Cut Box

Using a box cutter, cut the top off your cardboard box, if it has one. Next, cut and remove the bottom. You should now have a box that's open on both the top and bottom.

Step 3: Measure and Cut Liner

Use a tape measure or ruler to measure wood-look shelf liner or adhesive wallpaper so that it will cover all four sides of your box. Mark your measurements with a pencil on the backside of the liner. Use a crafts knife to make straight cuts following your marks.

Step 4: Attach Liner to Box

Remove the backing on your shelf liner or adhesive wallpaper. Wrap your box, being careful not to create air bubbles. Cut out handles if needed.

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