holiday guest post // holiday mantle craft from candice stringham.

From Candice :: Hello all! Naomi asked me if I would share my Christmas mantle scape and a quick and easy craft I made for it.
I love decorating for Christmas! My Mom always made our house magical each year growing up and some of my favorite childhood memories surround themselves in Christmas and the mood she was able to create in our home. I hope I can achieve the same thing in my home for my boys. The fireplace in our house is really the main feature. You see it right when you walk in the front door and it makes everything feel cozy in our family room so I like to focus on dressing it up.
This year I went with a starry theme, in white, silver, and live greens. I wanted to come up with a little scene to go in a large glass jar so I created my own little Christmas tree complete with glittery snow and stars shining above it. It’s a really easy project with inexpensive materials. You probably have most of them at home!

Pretty Paper Trees ::
Step 1: Gather supplies, the supplies for this project are simple. You will probably have most of them at home. All you need are book pages. They can come from any book. I used old sheet music and some dictionary pages, tacky glue (but really any kind of glue would work), hot glue, a wooden dowel (I didn’t have one so I just used a wood skewer, the kind that you use to make shish kabob’s), card board (I just cut up an old box), a pair of zig zag scissors (you can find these at any craft store) or pinking shears, and two buttons.
Step 2: Make a base with the card board and glue it to the bottom of the skewer. Cover it with book paper so you can see it.
Step 3. Cut lots and lots of book pages. Start with the largest size. Make it the widest you want the tree to be. You need 9 squares of each size you cut. Then, cut 9 squares a quarter of an inch smaller, then 9 more a quarter of an inch smaller than that, and so on and so forth until you get to the smallest size you want. If you want the tree to be taller you can cut the squares an 1/8th of an inch smaller. If you want the tree to be shorter you can cut them 1/2 and inch smaller so there are less layers. It’s a great project because you can make the trees as short or as tall as you would like.
Cut small squares of card board to go in between layers of paper. You don’t want them to be seen so keep them fairly small.
Step 4. Place three sheets of each size of paper together and slide them down the skewer. Rotate each piece so that they create different points of your tree. Then, add a piece of cardboard on top. This acts as a filler so that the tree has lots of volume without having to have tons of paper.
Step 5. I used three sheets of paper for each layer and I did three layers for each size. That is why you need 9 papers per size. You could do more layers of the same size if you wanted the tree to be taller. Just make sure you keep rotating each piece so your tree has lots of different angles.
Step 6. Continue stacking paper and cardboard until you get to the top!
Step 7. Use a little tacky glue or any kind of clear drying glue on a paint brush and brush from the top to the bottom of the tree catching the edges. You want to get the glue anywhere snow would land on a real tree. Then glitter! I always glitter things in a box and over a paper. The paper catches most of the extra glitter so I can use it again and the box keeps it from getting everywhere.
Step 8. Add something to top it off. I used vintage pearl buttons but you could use a little ornament or star to top it off.
And there you have it! Your very own paper christmas tree complete with glittery snow. You could leave it just as it is or add it to any Christmas vignette. I placed mine in a large glass jar and added stars to hang around it from fishing line. It was the perfect addition to my mantle!
  1. Beautiful! Making me wish I still had a fireplace…

  2. Easy and SO pretty! Definitely will be recreating this!

  3. Melissa

    Loving this look…festive and dramatic, but not overdone!

  4. I love this! Beautiful!

  5. Ashley

    I love this! You could even forget the tree shape and the printed paper and just use it is a cute homemade notepad when it's not Christmas season!

  6. The Egg

    really loving this! thanks for your tutorial


  7. Natalie

    i LOVE this, totally going to go make it right now!

  8. Tyanna

    So pretty! What a great idea!

  9. What a lovely idea, looks so nice!

  10. bethani

    oooo what a terrific idea! would be an awesome centerpiece for a dining room table too! must make!

    thanks for sharing!

  11. Mariana

    Love this!

  12. Candice, your mantle is stunning and your tree idea adorable. Cheers and Merry Christmas!

  13. Jenni

    Love this! Thank you and have a wonderful holiday season!

  14. So pretty. I love fresh garlands also.

  15. Faith

    This is a fun craft idea! Thanks for the tutorial!

  16. Joy

    this is so clever. so pretty. so simple!

  17. Josemien

    I'm jealous I want a mantle piece.

    Beautifull !!

  18. Great post :)
    I love you're blog, because you are Holiday maniac :D :D :D
    Just kidddiiiinnng :P

    I fallow.
    Big hug from Serbia,


  19. Wonderful idea! Came out beautifully! Hopefully I get a chance to try this!

  20. I love this. so beautiful :)

  21. roberta

    this is a great idea for a xmas tree thanks for sharing!

  22. Clara

    This is so pretty !! Thanks for sharing !

  23. Jenny

    Candice used to be my neighbor! I used to babysit her boys. Love her!

  24. Connie

    This idea is darling! Doing this…. errr, next year. :p

  25. This is awesome! I work at a newspaper and LOVE to use the old papers for crafts.

  26. Maria

    Hi i realy like your blog good idea´s, nice fotos:)

    i would love to show you my paper tree:)


  27. gabricci

    Did you know that Anthropologie was selling a exact copy of your lovely little paper Xmas tree. For over $40 bucks!!!

  28. Do you allow pinning for Pinterest?
    shuttermom77 at gmail dotcom

  29. Gisela


  30. great idea . love it

  31. lucy

    I love this so much but how would I transport or store it without damaging the pages?

  32. How large did you make your bottom square? I am going to be using a wooden skewer as well & don't want to start to large or too small & end up looking wacky at the top.