DIY Feather Tree Tutorial

Take an old Christmas tree, add a little paint, and make it into something magical! DIY Feather Tree with a shabby chic and oh so French flair.

Make Something Pretty With an Old Artificial Tree

It’s time for another Thrifty Style Team post. That time of the month when the team and I share repurposed, recycled, or just plain thrifty ideas to inspire you.  

This month, I recycled an old, small, artificial tree that had literally been smooshed up in a plastic bin for years. I love the bottom of the tree that keeps the tree standing up and almost got rid of it last year but I am so glad I hung on to it. 

Yield: 1 Tree

DIY Feather Tree Tutorial

DIY Feather Tree Tutorial

Active Time 30 minutes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes


  • Small, artificial tree - old is better but if you can't find an old one, there are some inexpensive ones on Amazon
  • White paint - I didn't have any chalk paint on hand but if I did, that's what I would have used
  • Sponge Brush
  • Container to hold the tree - I used an old garden urn that was black, I painted it blue, then I painted it white 
  • White planter rocks - I bought mine at the Dollar Tree but you can get them on Amazon as well
  • Reflective rocks - I bought the ones I used at Michaels with a coupon of course 😉 but you could also use faux snow


  • Sponge Brush


    1. Paint the tree  This is going to be extremely messy. 
    2. I had paint speckles everywhere until I caught on and covered everything around me with old sheets and towels but literally, my hands were covered in paint and I had paint dots on my head, in my hair, and my hands were ridiculously covered in paint. If you can do this outside, that is definitely the way to go but it’s cold here, I was in my pajamas, and the garage or outside just wasn’t feasible so I instead made a mess. 
    3. I do recommend using a foam brush, loading it with the paint, and then rather than brushing it across the tree limbs and needles, use a dabbing technique. This still makes a mess, but much less of one. I found it was best to lay each branch on my hand as I did them (individually) and then I could really dab and cover a lot of the needles that way. Once the tree is painted, allow it to dry and then move on to the next step.
    4. I also painted the urn/container I used but if you have a vintage coffee can or something else that will work without painting it, just use that.
    5. Also, I needed to secure the tree in the container and I just used some hot glue to do this. 
    6. Once the tree is in the container, add some white craft rocks around the tree.
    7. Top with faux snow or a reflective rock-like topping. I found what looks like broken mirror pieces at Michaels.
    8. I wanted to create a look of mercury glass and that’s why I chose these but faux snow would work just as well.
    9. Now, add some small ornaments to your tree and admire it. 

I love these ornaments I found at Target and they were only $3.00 a box. 

Be sure to check out all of the other gorgeous Thrifty Style Team post ideas below and join us next month for more inspiration!

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*My inspiration was this tree from Happy Happy Nester. Hers is absolutely gorgeous and I am going to keep tweaking my tree until it looks more similar. I may end up cutting off some of the extra branches on mine until it’s less full. If I do, I’ll update the pics.