Crafting with Kids: Felt Christmas Tree Play Board
Felt storyboards are so much fun – the pieces stick to the background, so children can move around the elements over and over again to create their own little scenes. Here’s how you can make your own version for the holidays, but the basics would be the same to make a board for any time of year. Think: beach scene, flower garden, or Jack-O-Lantern!
Depending on how old your child is, they’ll be able to help with different parts of the project, whether their abilities include cutting out shapes from felt or just decorating with the easy-squeeze tubes of glitter glue. Older children or teens might be able to help assembling the background for their younger siblings, or even owning the project to create alternative trees and ornaments in a theme all their own (perhaps neon and zebra, or Star Wars, anybody?) Check out the felt choices at your craft store for all kinds of fun, modern options!
What You’ll Need
- A piece of foam core poster board or cardboard, at least 16” x 20”
- A piece of felt for the background, at least 16” x 20” (or get a ½ yard cut off the bolt)
- A piece of green felt for the Christmas tree, at least 12” x 18” (or get a 1/3 yard cut off the bolt)
- Smaller sheets of colored felt for ornaments (we used gray for silver, tan for gold, and red)
- Scrap of brown felt for the tree trunk
- Tubes of glitter glue (we used Crayola brand washable glitter glue)
- Spray adhesive
- Xacto knife and metal ruler (optional)
- Scrap paper and tape (optional)
Make the Board
- Cut your piece of foam core or cardboard down to 16” x 20” using scissors or an Xacto knife and metal ruler.
- Use spray adhesive to adhere your background felt to the background. An easy way to do this is to cut the felt slightly larger than the background. Lay the felt flat on the ground, then spray the board with spray adhesive and adhere it onto the felt. Use scissors or an Xacto knife to trim away the excess.
- To make the tree, trim your green felt to the approximate size you want your tree to be. Fold the felt in half lengthwise, and then cut out a half tree shape along the folded edge, so that when you open it up, you’ll reveal a full tree shape that is equal on both sides. (TIP: If you don’t want to cut freehand, you can make a template using scrap paper, as shown. To make ours, I taped together a few pieces of paper, then sketched out the tree shape before cutting out our template. Place the template on top of your folded felt with the long side and folded edge aligned, and hold it in place while you cut out your tree.)
- Spray your tree with spray adhesive, then adhere it to the center of your board, leaving an inch or so at the bottom for a tree trunk. Cut out a trunk from a small scrap of brown felt and adhere it in place, trimming away any excess from the bottom.
Make the Ornaments
- Cut out a variety of circles or other ornament shapes from your colored felt. Don’t forget to make a star for the top!
- Use glitter glue to decorate the ornaments. We used gold glitter glue on our tan felt, silver glitter glue on our gray felt, and red on red.
- Let the ornaments dry in a safe place until completely dry, or at least overnight.
It’s time to play! Your little ones can decorate their new felt Christmas tree over and over again, and because the felt sticks to itself, you can prop up their creation for display when not in use.
A few more ideas to make the project your own
- Use a length of sparkly yarn for “tinsel” to drape across the tree.
- Add more dimension to your ornaments by sticking sequins or buttons in the glitter glue while it’s still wet.
- Cut out a few squares from felt and decorate like gifts to place under the tree!
- Make all different kinds of shapes for ornaments – candy canes, birds, bulbs… You can also search your craft store for pre-cut felt shapes, like snowflakes.
- Make it a “Frozen” tree by using only felt that is light blue, purple, white and silver!
- Skip the tree altogether and make your background in the shape of a snowman, gingerbread man, or gingerbread house. Then, instead of ornaments, make your felt decorations fit the theme!
You Might Also Like…
- Crafting with Kids: Sequined Snowglobe Ornaments
- Make a Tissue Paper Candle Globe
- Let It Snow: Make a Wee Winter Wonderland
Shannon Miller is a coffee-loving wife and mother of two who lives and works in the heart of Huntsville, Alabama. As the director of marketing for an e-commerce startup by day and owner of lifestyle brand Hettie Joan by night, she has managed the Rocket City Mom events calendar since 2014.