Simple DIY: Painted Tree Ornaments

Yes, I know. The holidays are over. But I just got around to starting/finishing a quick little DIY project that I've been meaning to get on for about three years.

Every year since Brian and I have moved in together, we have bought a live tree. Every place we have gone, they cut off a small sliver of the bottom of the tree to expose fresh trunk so the tree can get more water and last longer. And every year, I've saved that little sliver off the bottom. Mainly because they smell so good tucked into a closet or drawer, but partly because I'm sentimental.

The idea to do something more with them hit in 2011 once I realized I still had the piece from 2010 as well. But it wasn't until yesterday that I finally got around to finishing my idea. I wanted to keep it really simple, but I wanted to find a way to keep and use the little round pieces. So, after letting them dry out quite a bit, I asked Brian to drill holes at the top of each one. I ended up with this:

At this point, it is pretty much a blank canvas- I could have gone a million different ways with them. But I wanted to keep it simple, so I simply used a sample tub of paint leftover from the wedding to put the year we bought each tree on the corresponding stump.

Pretty simple, right? I almost went all out and painted the front side cream with the teal lettering on top, but Brian was completely against it, preferring the natural wood. I think he was right (this time, at least)!

I think it will be a fun little tradition each year to add a new ornament to the following year's tree- someday we'll end up with a slew of them! But for now, the future tree of 2013 will be sporting just a few extra sentimental pieces. All I need to do is dig through my ribbon collection for a few coordinating pieces to use as hangars, and these guys are good to go.

Yay for cheap, quick DIY! Seriously, even though the whole process took me over three years if you count collecting the stump pieces, the actual process of painting took about 15 minutes. And since the stumps were free and we had some paint left over from the wedding, it didn't cost me a penny. You might spend a buck or two if you don't have any craft paint lying around the house... maybe up to five bucks if you also need a paintbrush and ribbon. Still, not too bad considering you end up with at least three ornaments. Plus, that paint and brush will last quite a while, so I should be set for the next few decades :)

How about you guys? Any post-holiday crafting going on? You know I'm a sucker for some DIY!

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