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DIY Modern Christmas Tree Topper

DIY Modern Christmas Tree Topper

Modern abstracts are all the rage and are easier to make yourself than you might think. Even if you have never picked up a paintbrush you can create beautiful, one-of-a-kind ornaments and holiday décor, like this tree topperThe other day I was dropping off my new Christmas ornaments at Cannonborough Collective here in Charleston.  Liz, of Charleston Weekender, and co-owner of the boutique was helping me decorate the tree. She held up one of the ornaments to the top and we knew it needed to "become" a topper. So, if you know me, I can't just hang an ornament and call it a topper, right?  I set out to make one and I want to show you how I did it. 


If you are new here, I know my way around a diy or two (check out the older posts) and I wanted to make a diy that was DOABLE, and that you guys will actually make. My goal was to make it simple and even though that sometimes takes me a few tries, I got this right the first time. (insert happy dance here.) . Crafted from a paper mache (or is it papier mache) ornament and mini cone, this modern spin on a tree topper reminds me of old vintage Christmas, with a fun colorful twist. It is fast and simple, just the perfect thing for a Saturday project. 


To make this tree topper you will need:

paper mache ornament, paper mache small cone, scissors, hot glue gun, paper, Mod Podge, paint

STEP ONE:  Cut the tip off of the ornament, about 1/2" up on the side with the hanging thread.

STEP TWO:  Squeeze a good amount of hot glue to cover the point of the cone. Insert the glue covered point into the hole of the ornament. Press the ornament onto the cone until the cut edge touches the cone solidly. Hold straight until glue is hardened. Once cool, add another wide bead of hot glue around the seam of your joint and smooth quickly to make it look more seamless. 

STEP THREE:  Remember your paper mache projects from elementary school? Take a small strip of newspaper or thin copy paper and dip it in the mod podge. Wipe the saturated strip clear of excess goop and wrap around the seam in a spiral, from the ornament to the cone. The goal here is to create a seamless look so that it appears to be a single piece of paper mache and to add a bit of strength to the seam. Keep adding strips until it is smooth.  Let dry completely, about an hour or more. 

STEP FOUR: Paint the dried piece with a thin even coat of paint. Repeat 3 times, letting dry in between. Once your final coat has dried take a medium sized brush and paint small spots on the tree topper, leaving space in between. If you are new to painting, practice your pattern first on a sheet of paper, just so you get the feel for it and a general idea about the design you want. Work your design all the way around the topper. Let dry. Seal with two coats of mod podge. 


Fun addition: I know you don't see the inside of the cone, but I painted mine blue to match my dots and sealed it with modpodge so it won't rub off on a white tree. Plus it looks cuter with a pop of hidden color. 


Paper mache is easy to work with and makes a great addition to any décor. Have your child paint one for grandma's tree or make a bunch to give out as hostess gifts. When diys are simple and easy, they are a wonderful way to personalize your tree. 

Quick question- is it paper mache or papier mache? Does it even really matter? I have searched for both to find supplies on the internet, so I don't think it does, but what do you think? Am I totally wrong? It does sound fancier in a French accent.  

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