Tree With “Memories of Christmases Past” - MAJOR GOODWILL SCORE!!

5 Materials
2 Days

Have you ever had a project that made you want to lose it? Well, this one has tried my patience to the ABSOLUTE MAX! 🤯 Having NOT gone to our local Goodwill store this entire year of 2020, I “escaped “ from my house a couple of weeks ago. Lol. I was like a kid in a candy store it had been so long! I immediately went to the houseware section as I am always on the lookout for vintage or unusual items. I found this gold family memories tree which, when new, was originally priced at $65.00. As you can see, it was then marked down to $19.99 “as is”.

I can tell you that I would never had paid either of those prices because I am too cheap. 🤪

Marked at $4.99, I only paid $4.49 with my discount. I especially liked the shape of the tree. The unique shape spoke to me. So into my cart it went.

There were several pieces missing on the tree. But I bought it anyway and brought it home. I decided to remove all of the remaining frames and charms. I replaced 3 of the charms onto the top area of the tree. They were FAMILY, LOVE, and MEMORIES. I didn’t want to use the frames because I didn’t want to cut down original pictures of my children to such small sizes. I wanted to use larger pictures of them. I decided to make copies of the chosen photos so I could use them for the tree. Here is where this project started going downhill! I first tried to use card stock and fabric scraps to “frame” them. Well, this proved awful and beyond messy. Was next to impossible getting them to look neat. So, on to PLAN B: I decided to frame them with wrapping paper instead. Again messy. PLAN C: I was going to cut felt frames and sew them together. Well, wouldn’t you know, I broke the thread guide on my sewing machine and can’t get my machine repaired until after Christmas!!! Determined to use this tree, I went to PLAN D: Instead of sewing them, I hot glued the felt scraps to photos and wrapped more felt over top of them to hold them onto tree. After a good bit of screaming words underneath my breath 🤬🤬🤬 and numerous blisters on 6 fingers, I got the tree and photos done. Then I had to sit and use tweezers to pick off the hot glue strings off the photos. I used photos of Christmases past. No, this is NOT Dickens’ Christmas Carol. (Although, I must admit I was beginning to wonder if it was with all the hurdles I jumped in trying to complete this project!) This memory tree is to remind our family of the Christmases when our children were little tykes and excitedly looking forward to the “jolly ole elf in the red suit “ that would be visiting our home.

This is what it looked like without the frames and charms. I also removed the ornament rings too.

This is how it looks right now. I also added red felt hearts on both sides of the heart tree topper. Once I get my sewing machine repaired, I intend to re-work the photo frames until I am thoroughly satisfied with how they look. Also, FYI, I saved all the little heart shaped frames and ornament rings and will be using them with another project at some point. But until then, this will have to work. 😆. Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all of you Hometalkers! FYI. Both of my children loved the memory tree! 12/29/2020 update: Got my sewing machine to the repairman. Making a list of things to make when I get the machine back home. 12/30/2020 update: Got phone call from sewing machine repairman. He had fixed the thread guide but informed me that the mother board of my machine had blown up! So now to decide to try and get it repaired in Atlanta. Not the news I wanted to hear. This machine has an embroidery attachment that has never been out of the box. To be continued......

Suggested materials:

  • Gold Things Remembered Tree  (Goodwill store)
  • Hot glue  (Had at home)
  • Scrap Felt fabric  (Had at home)
See all materials

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Have a question about this project?

1 question
  • Jd Nniw
    Jd Nniw
    on Dec 22, 2020

    This looks amazing and I feel y’a on your struggles but I have a question did you glue the felt frame to the tree or did you use a small hook to keep them in place ?

    • GeorgiaBulldogsFan
      on Dec 22, 2020

      Hi Jd, I used a dot of hot glue on the felt at the center of each photo on the back to keep them in place. Thankfully it held them in place and won’t damage the metal. Thank you for your kind response. Good to know that others have some “rough patches” with their projects too.

Join the conversation

2 of 6 comments
  • Amanda D
    Amanda D
    on Jan 2, 2021

    I love this idea and want to try something like it. The Christmas after my dad passed I gave my mom a “memory” tree with pics of loved ones no longer with us. I got the tree and mini frames from about 13 years ago. I could never find their tree and mini frame ornaments again, so I have to make my own!

    ** Here is a store bought tree with store bought mini ornament frames. We added some lights, card stock hearts and pics of favorite memories (not just people who were gone). Sorry it’s so dark!

    Now you are my inspiration too!

  • GeorgiaBulldogsFan
    on Jan 2, 2021

    Oh Amanda! You have absolutely made my brand “new year” much brighter with your comment! This gives me hope that 2021 will be much happier for all of us! Thank you for sharing your story and the photo of your tree. It is lovely! You have inspired me as well! Thank you for taking the time to comment on my project.

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