It's that time of year, the fantastically spooky season. But what if you're less interested in spooky and more into whimsy? I picked the Halloween theme The Legend of Sleepy Hollow and ever since I've had this vision in my head of a non-typical Halloween Twig Tree.
I've had this vision of crafting a tree out of these amazing pieces of driftwood I have been holding onto. One of the main elements in the movie The Legend of Sleepy Hollow is a giant old dead tree in the woods.
And since I'm always trying to bring natural elements into my decorating and home decor, this just seemed like a great opportunity. Something that feels enchanting, mystical, and maybe even a bit fantastic?
A Whimsical Halloween Tree Idea
1. playfully quaint or fanciful, especially in an appealing and amusing way.Dictionary.com
Whimsy isn't typically found on the shelves of a big box store. In fact, even with DIY Halloween decorations, it can be hard to achieve. It's easy to end up with a cliche, especially when you're trying to bring a vision to life and think outside the box.
I'm not looking to create a Halloween Christmas tree by any means, but to create a large tree out of tree branches and driftwood. Or at least, that was how the idea started.
Watch a Video Tutorial - How to Make a Halloween Twig Tree
- A Large Tree or Small Tree, Tree Trunk
- 2x4 or Tree logs, for a stand for the base of the tree
- Wood Glue *optional
- Impact Driver + Drill Bits
- Hot Glue Gun + Glue Sticks *optional
- Craft Knife *optional
- Spanish Moss *optional
- Sawzall or Large Tree Clippers
- Black Paint or Black Spray Paint *optional
Step One - Tree Trunk
I was originally going to "Frankenstein's monster" a tree together using these beautiful pieces of driftwood I've been hoarding for years. However, I had the amazing fortune of finding a whole tree to use for this and it was a way simpler process!
The first thing to do is to find your tree pieces or the whole tree. For this step, I went to the woods property owned by my parents. I'm sure you could find something like this pretty much anywhere there is brush that needs to be cleared.
This is a perfect time of year to be gathering trees for this purpose though. I was able to find a dead tree, but most of the others I used I had to pull the leaves off of.
What to do if You Can't Find a Tree to Use
If I wasn't so fortunate to have the property with woods to freely gather a tree from the first thing I would do is take to Facebook. Your local community pages will likely be a great resource for you to find someone who wouldn't mind you taking some of their overgrowths!
Here are a few ideas to find a tree to use for this project:
- Facebook Marketplace Post a "Needed" Ad
- Facebook Groups Local groups can be a huge lifesaver
- Local Nursery They may have dead trees you could get for free
- Local Tree Company
Step Two - Creating a Tree Stand
I made two different types of stands for my Halloween Twig Trees. One was made out of old 2x4s I had lying around from a previous project, my DIY Starlink Temporary Mount. And the other stands were made from these willow tree branches we had drying in a pile.
How to Use Branches as a Tree Stand
Either one of these options work great for making your trees stable. But my favorite is definitely the latter option as it blends in and doesn't need any additional camouflage.
2x4 Tree Stands
For this part, you'll need a saw, drill, drill bits, and 4" screws.
How large of a stand you'll need will depend entirely on the size and weight of tree you're going to be using. It may be a trial and error process. I chose to go with the "x" stand pattern.
- Cut your main board.
- Cut your two side boards so when attached they're the same length across (including the main boards width) to equal the main board.
- Install your side boards.
- Make a pilot hole in the bottom of your tree and the bottom of your board. This will help avoid splitting.
Tree Branch Tree Stand
I loved this option as it was obviously more natural looking. It almost resembled tree roots, therefore they didn't necessarily need "covered" later with Spanish moss.
- Drill Pilot holes in the center of two thick well supporting branches.
- Stack them on top of each other, ensuring they stand well together.
- Drill a pilot hole into the bottom of your tree.
- Attach your tree drilling a 4" + screw up from the bottom of the two branches into your tree base.
- Take two more branches and attach them on either side of the tree base with screws.
I also added a few more screws from those additional branches into the base for stability. I'm not sure you can really go wrong with this look. I didn't give it too much thought and I think it turned out great.
Step Three - Decorate Your Trees *Optional
This is just the cherry on top of the whole project. I love these trees as is, mostly because I think they're beautiful and they could definitely be used for multiple seasons. Decorations are just a great way to add more of a seasonal touch specific to each holiday.
Personalize Your Halloween Tree
If you're looking for a few extra or spooky elements to add to your tree I have a few great ideas for you! Most of these items can be found at your local Dollar Store or Hobby Lobby.
- Faux Raven, Bats, or Owl
- Plastic Spiders
- Faux Spiders Webs
- Black Tree spray paint the entire tree black
- Christmas lights
- DIY Halloween Wreath
- Spooky Face or Googly Eyes
- Spanish Moss
- Witch's Hat
Faux Spiderwebs with Hot Glue
I had an epiphany when I was covering up one of the Halloween Twig Tree bases. If you don't mind spending the time, hot glue is actually the perfect thing to create faux spiderwebs on your trees.
In fact, the idea sprung into my mind that I bet if I used some wax paper or parchment paper I could create actual spiderwebs from hot glue and transfer them to the trees.
Step Four - Tree Placement
These Halloween twig trees are perfect for indoor and outdoor Halloween decorations. In fact, most of them are for my front porch decoration.
I'm not going full-on haunted house, but I think it's a really fun way to add that whimsy and spooky woods feeling by your front door. And they'd be a perfect option, and pretty spectacular if I do say so myself, as decoration for a Halloween Party.
Thank you so much for stopping by! I hope I have given you some inspiration, ideas for creativity, and maybe a push to start creating your own wonderland one piece or project at a time.
Don't forget to come back for more great projects like these DIY Projects and many more!
Hi, I'm Julie! Mother to five beautiful kids, Homeschool Educator, Writer, Handicraft & DIY Enthusiast, Photographer, Thrifter, and Furniture Restorer. Follow along for fun DIY projects creating a handmade home on a budget! Read more about me here→