Wood Christmas Tree Base

Submitted by Ana White on Mon, 12/08/2014 - 12:34
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DIY wood Christmas tree base cover from Ana-White.com

Well, here we are, well into December, well past Thanksgiving .... and no tree up yet.

I've been dreading putting a tree up.  

And here's the reason:

The one in the little HAPPY suit.

His arms are much longer than they look.

So what to do?

The only thing I could think of short of building a gate around the tree was to elevate the tree with some sort of wood base crate thingy.

I love this one from That's My Letter (full tutorial here)

And this one from The Turquoise Home (nice tutorial here)

But I needed something a little taller, a little more enclosed ... and it's Sunday (which means all the stores are closed within 100 miles of me, so I gotta use scraps and work with what I have on hand).

So I came up with this!

Not bad for a couple hours work and TWELVE BUCKS in lumber.

Yes, that's right.  

I love cedar fence pickets.  And 1x3 furring strips.  

So here's how I made it -

After cutting all my boards (I used a compound miter saw), I applied glue to the 1x3s,

I loaded up my Ryobi Airstrike stapler with 1" staples (if you don't have one of these bad boys, seriously, beg Santa for one)

Then attached the two outer boards to the 1x3 from the back.

Being square is always a good thing. NOTE: If you measure diagonally from outside corner to outside corner, the two diagonals should match.  If they don't you are out of square and need to adjust by pushing the longer diagonal end points together.  Do this before you put tons of staples in or let the glue dry.

Then I just centered the last remaining board in the middle and nailed it down.  This is the smaller side panel complete.

To build the two larger panels that need to cover the corners of the smaller panels, I took a quick measurement of the 1x3 plus the paneling, and cut my next 1x3 sets that much longer (times two for each end).

Then I marked this distance in on the 1x3s - for those of you with eagle eyes, I did not have enough cedar fence pickets so I made my own out of 1/4" thick plywood ripped down in size for this project, but this plan calls for the fence pickets because they have more character and are easier to work with because you don't have to rip them to size.

Then I just stapled the remaining two end panels together, leaving the 1x3 to overhang the ends as measured.

I then predrilled two holes on each end of the 1x3s where they overhang,

And used 2" wood screws to attach together the four panels at the corners through the predrilled holes.  I opted not to use glue here so I can take the stand appart after the holidays are over.

To cover the top, I just added a few 1x3 cleats inside, and rested more panels on top.  That way I can get in there and water the tree easily (and it will also remove and store flat with the rest of the tree cover stand)

For the tree trunk hole, I drilled holes in the two remaining panel pieces with a hole saw bit,

And then just used my compound miter saw to cut the hole out to the side.

With the two pieces cut like this, 

The tree trunk just sits in the middle,

And the two pieces just slide together to cover the opening.

For added detail, I stapled rope around in an X shape.

All done and ready for a tree!!!

The plans follow, if you build, please share!  I'd love to see your Christmas tree stand cover too!

XO Ana + Family

Dimensions shown above


Shopping List

4 - 5-1/2" x 72" cedar fence pickets 2 - 1x3 @ 8 feet long

Common Materials
2 inch screws
Cut List

12 - cedar fence pickets @ 17" long 6 - 1x3 @ 17" long 4 - 1x3 @ approx 19-1/2" long CUT TO FIT!!! 4 - cedar fence pickets @ 16" long

Tape Measure
Speed Square
Safety Glasses
Hearing Protection
Miter Saw
Brad Nailer
Staple Gun
General Instructions

Please read through the entire plan and all comments before beginning this project. It is also advisable to review the Getting Started Section. Take all necessary precautions to build safely and smartly. Work on a clean level surface, free of imperfections or debris. Always use straight boards. Check for square after each step. Always predrill holes before attaching with screws. Use glue with finish nails for a stronger hold. Wipe excess glue off bare wood for stained projects, as dried glue will not take stain. Be safe, have fun, and ask for help if you need it. Good luck!


Step 1

Build the two smaller panels.

Step 2

Build the two larger panels, with 1x3 ends overhanging enough to cover the ends of the panels built in step 1.

Step 3

Add a cleat inside the larger panels for the top to sit on.

Step 4

Attach the panels together at corners with 2" screws predrilled at corners.

Step 5

Finishing Instructions
Preparation Instructions
Fill all holes with wood filler and let dry. Apply additional coats of wood filler as needed. When wood filler is completely dry, sand the project in the direction of the wood grain with 120 grit sandpaper. Vacuum sanded project to remove sanding residue. Remove all sanding residue on work surfaces as well. Wipe project clean with damp cloth.

It is always recommended to apply a test coat on a hidden area or scrap piece to ensure color evenness and adhesion. Use primer or wood conditioner as needed.


Pam the Goatherd

Tue, 12/09/2014 - 16:00

This is very helpful! My husband complains every year that our tree stand is too big for the tree that we get (which I find ironic because he always has the last say on what tree we cut for Christmas). A box like this would come in handy for holding a smaller trunked tree. Can't wait to try it.

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