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DIY Lighted Outdoor Christmas Tree

A STEP-BY-STEP TUTORIAL ON HOW TO CREATE A DIY LIGHTED OUTDOOR CHRISTMAS TREE FOR YOUR HOME THIS HOLIDAY SEASON.

Something that should not be forgotten while thinking of Christmas decorating is outside. This is the first thing everyone sees while coming to visit. So outdoor Christmas decorations are a must! Here is a simple way to decorate by creating a homemade outdoor Christmas tree with lights.

homemade wooden Christmas tree

For this holiday season I have something very special for you, Deck the Home Blog Hop!

The Deck the Home Blog Hop is a 5-week series of amazing Christmas DIY and home project from 26 DIY bloggers.

Each week there is a new theme and this week’s theme is Outdoor decorations. I will be sharing my project below but after the tutorial, there is a link-up of all the Deck the Home outdoor decoration projects for the week, so be sure to check those out!

Just in case you missed one of my other Deck the Home blog hop projects!

wooden Christmas sign
simple holiday hoop wreath tutorial
 

Now back to the current project.

DIY LIGHTED OUTDOOR CHRISTMAS TREE

Disclosure: This post contains some affiliate links for your convenience, click here to read my full disclosure policy
 

SUPPLIES:

  • 3-1/2″ cedar fence pickets
  • 1″ exterior wood screws
  • 1-1/4″ exterior wood screws
  • wood stakes
  • green spray paint (I used hunter green)
  • Christmas lights
  • 1″ wire nails

TOOLS:

  • miter saw
  • drill with 1/8″ drill bit
  • clamp
  • spray grip tool (optional)

Find the list of tools we use.

SIDE NOTE: The amount of supplies will depend on the number of trees you make and the sizes. The bigger I created used about three cedar pickets.

STEP 1: cut the cedar pickets

You will need to decide how tall and fat you want your tree. This will help you determine the angle to cut your boards. I decided to cut two trees at 30 degrees ad the last one at 25 degrees. The smaller the degree the skinner the tree will be.

supplies for wooden Christmas tree

Once you have decided on the angle (degree) its time to start cutting. Take one board and cut the end at this angle. Then flip the board and cut the end again so that you would have a point of the top triangle. This is your top branch of the tree.

cut cedar board for Christmas tree

Next place the fatter part of the triangle (bottom) on the uncut board (where you just cut your last piece). Will look something like this.

cut wood for wooden Christmas tree

See how the angles of the boards are going different directions. Also, notice how the pieces are NOT aligned at the edge, there is about a 1/4″ space. This space is the space you want in between the two boards once the tree is assembled. So if you want a larger gap, give this a bigger gap.

When you have the space you want, mark the other end of the top board but only on the fatter side. you only mark the fatter side because the angle of your next cut will go a different way. You will see what I mean when you go to cut the board.

Now move the top board and place the marked board on the miter saw. You will want the angle of this cut to go blade will cut along the line you marked.

Once the board is aligned, make your cut.

Then use this board to create the next board (branch) just like you did this board. Continue this cycle until you have the number of boards needed to create the size of tree you want.

 

TIP: Place the cut boards on a flat surface to see the size it is.

Next is cutting the center of the tree. Using a cedar board again, cut the tip of the board to a point (this is two angle cuts).

Then decide on the length, this would be the size of the branches with the spacing plus at least 3″. When you have decided, cut the board at the size with a straight cut.

wood cut for Christmas tree

STEP 2: painting the branches

After you have cut all the wood, place the branches (angled cut boards) on an old sheet, cardboard, or newspaper so you can spray paint them.

TIP: Place the branches like they would be on the tree to keep the boards together and in order.

Once the boards are laid out, spray paint with a green spray paint in slow even coats.

Spray paint Christmas tree

I only applied one coat of paint because I was going for that look, so apply as many coats as you would like.

Let the paint dry according to the instructions on the container.

STEP 3: building the Christmas tree

After the paint has dried, its time to assemble the Christmas tree. Take the board that is the center of the tree and the top branch (the triangle piece). Clamp the two boards together so that the green part of the top branch is facing out, centered, and the centerboard is hidden.

Take the drill with the 1/8″ drill bit attached and create a hole into the centerboard to branch Make sure you do not drill through the branch.

drill hole for Christmas tree

TIP: Its always a great idea to pre-drill because if you do not you can split a board.

Then use the 1″ exterior screw to attach the two boards together. SIDE NOTE: If you only use one screw the branch will move, two screws will hold it in place.

Once the first branch is attached, move to the next branch but this time space the top branch the distance of the gap you determined in step 1. Make sure the green part of the branch is facing out and the branch is centered then clamp the board to the centerboard.

Attach the two boards together, just like the previous, drill a hole and use 1″ exterior screw. Complete this process until all the branches are added to the tree.

homemade outdoor Christmas tree

Next, attach the wood stake to the back of the tree using the same method (drill hole) but this time use the 1-1/4″ screws.

stake for wooden Christmas tree

SIDE NOTE: You will need to decide on the amount of stake that will go into the dirt.

STEP 4: adding the lights (optional)

I decided the easiest way to add Christmas light would be to place a 1″ nail onto the back end of a branch. This nail will not be completely nailed into the board. After the nail is adding the Christmas lights will wrap around the nail, looks something like this.

wrap light around wooden Christmas tree

I did this to make sure the lights would stay in place but they could be removed if wanted.

outdoor Christmas tree decoration

And that is how to DIY a lighted outdoor Christmas tree in four easy steps. I hope the tutorial will help you create your own homemade outdoor Christmas decoration just in time for the holiday season!

DIY outdoor Christmas tree

MORE HOLIDAY DECOR FOR YOUR HOME

 
Don’t forget to check out the other blogger’s outdoor decor projects!
See more Deck the Home Projects

wood Christmas trees with lights

16 Comments

  1. These are so cute and so creative! I love the idea of adding a stake to them in order to use them in a planter. :)

    1. Thank you, Amy!!

  2. Beautiful Outdoor Decor! Love your use of lights in every project.

    1. Thanks, Anam! Yes, I think I have a love for lights, lol.

  3. Great idea! These look awesome!

    1. Thank you, Amy!

  4. These trees look great and I love how you have them displayed with lights.

    1. Thank you, Sarah!

    1. Thank you, Carmen!

    1. Thanks, Betsy! I debated on making a bunch for the front yard, maybe I will make a forest!

  5. Love this! I love that you included the predrill tip, it makes all the difference. I learned the hard way haha!

    1. Yes, predrilling is a very important step in any wood project!

  6. This is a so pretty!! I love the simplicity and the rustic touch of this project! Great step by step tutorial, you always explain things so well!!

    1. Thank you, Brooke!

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