Make Faux Birch Logs Using Foam Pool Noodles

Birch logs are so beautiful and bring a bit of the great outdoors into your home. I enjoy the coziness that logs bring. However, birch logs can be hard to find and when you do find them they aren't cheap.
I designed a "Santa's Cabin-in-the-Woods" theme Christmas tree. I wanted the look of birch and figured out how to create it using foam pool noodles from the dollar store. Also, a good alternative is plumbing insulation from the hardware store.
If you want to see more pictures of my tree and for Chrismas Tree decorating tips and hacks visit this post
It's fun for me to think of unique ways to use dollar store items such as pool noodles to repurpose into something completely different!
This is what the birch logs should look like once the paper is all glued on and dried. Wrap the craft paper around the pool noodle to measure how much paper you will need. Cut at the proper width, making sure that the whole noodle is covered. Rip the paper into strips horizontally. Crumple the strips into wads so that the paper will be wrinkled. Then, paint the pool noodle with the tacky glue. Arrange the paper on the noodle, covering the whole thing.
Please check my blog post for the complete tutorial and instructions. Link to the blog post is at the bottom of this post.
The logs placed in a basket of greenery, twigs, pine cones and lights make for a beautiful arrangement in front of the fireplace.
For the complete tutorial see our blog post.
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Toni - Design Dazzle

Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!


Have a question about this project?

8 questions
  • Jill McCumby
    on Nov 9, 2015

    What paints did you use for a two tone effect? I'm from No. Michigan and love my Birch logs I brought home from a road trip to MI.

  • Sus1262152
    on Nov 9, 2015

    Did you paint the birch look pool noodles? Great job!!!

  • Ingrid Naylor
    on Nov 26, 2015

    What are foam pool noodles?

    • Cynde Peace
      on Nov 27, 2015

      @Ingrid Naylor they are the foam tubes that you use in a swimming pool to float around on...

    • MsCaliLady
      on Jun 3, 2016

      Ingrid, you can buy four foot ones for a $1 at the Dollar Tree.

    • Patti Eckardt
      on Oct 18, 2016

      You can buy them online

  • Lilly Trembath-Mckeown
    on Dec 25, 2015

    I'm wondering about the paint also. They don't just dry that color do they?

    • Toni - Design Dazzle
      on Dec 30, 2015

      @Lilly Trembath-Mckeown Hello! Check my blog post for the complete tutorial. Link at the bottom of this post.

  • Ruby Howard
    on Dec 27, 2015

    I understand you wrap the pool noodle in paper for the birch logs but do you put any type of coating over the paper? What colors of paint are you using?

    • Rosa Lee Gibbons
      on Dec 27, 2015

      @Ruby Howard You have to click on her website link at the bottom of this post. Yes, she painted it. There are a lot of steps left out of this post.

    • Toni - Design Dazzle
      on Dec 30, 2015

      @Ruby Howard yes, check my blog post for the complete tutorial. Link at the bottom of this post.

    • Carole Larnder
      on Dec 5, 2016

      Why not use brown paper,????

  • Chris Froehlin Ansell
    on Oct 18, 2016

    I live in Michigan. Can't find pool noodles after June. Where can I get them?

    • Bsk10908066
      on Oct 18, 2016

      I clicked on Walmart. com a few minutes ago and they have some in stock. You can order and ship them to the closest Walmart to you. a 4pkg of noodles was $18.

    • Michelle Green
      on Oct 18, 2016

      Use that foam they sell to insulate your a/c unit.

    • Mirna M Landeros
      on Oct 19, 2016

      any dollar tree store ...but idk if they have one in your town

    • Vivian Cobb
      on Nov 2, 2016

      Amazon and eBay have pool noodles

    • Karen Wilson Carver
      on Nov 7, 2016

      Plumbing insulation from hardware store.

    • The8280939
      on Nov 8, 2016

      Chris if u live in michigan it might be easier to get real birch. U can buy fake birch at any craft store. By the time u buy all the materials it is cheaper to buy the product at a craft store.

    • Jw
      on Nov 22, 2016

      you can go to the Dollar Tree website and order them but I think they are a seasonal item

    • Kaki
      on Dec 9, 2016

      Also, some pool supply stores remain open year round with limited hours for those who have hot tubs & indoor pools.

    • Susan
      on Jan 30, 2017

      or buy a bunch at Dollar Tree (etc.) in MAY next year and save them!! lol

    • Mcd31013420
      on Dec 20, 2017

      Try a goodwill store or thrift shop. If you don't see them ask if they have them in the back.
    • Donna b
      on Oct 22, 2018

      Below Diane McGee Raezer mentioned using a paper towel tube or you could use a Christmas wrapping tube. Why not? I would fill the tube with something to make it firm. Everyone recycles paper. Then follow directions. They might be just the right size. And helpful for those who can not find the noodles until summer. Great idea from Diane.

    • Linda Bregar
      on Oct 23, 2018


    • Wallie Simmons
      on Oct 31, 2018

      Do you have dollar tree. They always have them here.

    • Kathryn
      on Sep 12, 2019

      Clearance online at Walmart

  • Rita Piper- Phillips
    on Oct 31, 2016

    why do people put half the project on and the tell us to follow on their blog

    • Toni - Design Dazzle
      on Oct 31, 2016

      That's a great question. : ) It takes hours to do these projects and also time to put it here on Hometalk. It takes me a lot less time for those who are interested in spending 2 seconds to click over to blogs then for me to upload more images and typing more text. You can see if you are interested in the project and then click over if you would like ; ) It also helps bring readers to our blogs that might be interested in more projects and following us. Thanks! Toni

    • Krystal Backus
      on Nov 3, 2016

      Well said.

    • Melissia Moore
      on Nov 11, 2016


    • Amy Zabala
      on Dec 3, 2016

      Very well said Tony, I love this project. Im going to give it a try and add it too my primative christmas this year. Being on crutches and dislocating my left knee, I have lots of time on my hands...

    • Amy W.
      on Dec 12, 2016

      I agree with Rita, I think bloggers do a great job at blogging, but I fell in love with hometalk because it started out with regular people doing awesome home projects and showing complete instructions, so if it truly is as labor intensive as you claim, then keep it for a blog post, and don't put it on hometalk and blatantly keep refering to clicking on your blog, I kniw that the more people who click on your blog the more profitable it is for the blogger, and that's fine, but we who love hometalk,feel like it is turning into one big blogger link advertising, and it is just my opinion, but I am not the only one who feels this way. I am well aware also that this post will be deleted, but that just proves my point.

    • Sandra Allen
      on Oct 1, 2017

      It wasn't deleted, as it was from last year. But you might want to watch how you present your debate.
      Your first very long sentence has only comas, no periods.

      And, the others are right. We who have blogs work hard to connect others to them. As for someone doing something labor intensive then not posting it makes little sense. Why would you make something and then not try and sell it or share it?

    • Sandra
      on Dec 2, 2017

      Wow I can't believe they are fussing about learning to make beautiful regardless where you need to click. Great job on the logs
    • Deb
      on Oct 31, 2018

      I agree with you. It sadly seems like home take is moving away from regular people doing diy projects and more towards commercial blogs. I simply don't click to follow a posters blog since they are using home talk as an advertising medium.

    • Caseyem11
      on Oct 31, 2018

      I agree. The same thing is happening on Pinterest.

    • Dolly
      on Oct 31, 2018

      I agree!! I was looking at another project and it skipped an important part and told me to refer to another post. I was like really!! 😡

    • Alradborn
      on Oct 31, 2018

      If it warns me of cookies, I click back. I also do not have internet, except on my it just uses that much more data.

    • Linda Sikut
      on Oct 31, 2018

      This thread is now 2 years old and I'd like to comment. I am not a blogger, but I want to say that bloggers are people too. Many of them are moms of young children and blog to earn money while staying home with their kids. I say more power to them! It's hard to be working when you have kids so if they have talent or a specific knowledge, why shouldn't they use technology to help them earn a living?

      As I understand it, full instructions must now be given on Hometalk but there is also a link to their blog. So that issue is now solved. However, if you like the project they did, why not look to see what else they have on their website? Sure there is some advertising, but there's also advertising on Hometalk. That's what keeps this, and other websites free. No one is going to put up a website that is free and constantly pay out of their own pocket all the costs of having a website with no return. They either have to sell items or use advertising to get any return for their work. Sites like Hometalk also have employees to pay, offices to rent, equipment that is needed in their offices, taxes to pay and more.

      Bloggers and Hometalk work together to increase each other's businesses. So try to understand that in this electronic world, just like in the physical world, businesses who give away free information have to somehow be paid for their work. What works best for you? See some ads, buy some products or pay a membership fee?

    • Barb
      on Nov 3, 2018

      I agree. Also, someone is sharing their knowledge and ideas without it costing me a cent. If they make a profit, Why not?!

  • Diane McGee Raezer
    on Oct 31, 2017

    Could you use empty paper towel cardboard tubes ?
    • Donna b
      on Oct 22, 2018

      Why not? I would stuff the tubes with scrap paper or whatever before using to make them firm. They might be just the right size. And helpful to those who can not find the pool noodles until summer. Great idea. Thanks

    • Diane McGee Raezer
      on Oct 22, 2018

      I Did , and they turned out great . I love them ..

    • Mimischenkel0
      on Nov 7, 2018

      Awesome, thank you for the share

Join the conversation

3 of 150 comments
  • AndradeTea
    on Nov 1, 2018

    Very clever. They look realistic and go with the arrangement so well!

  • Doreen
    on Nov 5, 2018

    I'm in awwe!!! Extremely realistic looking!!! Better yet it cost nothing!! Ilove love love birch!!! I actually like when someone this creative has a blog, this way I can see other things they have made! and repurposing something, even better. I did a pool noodle wreath for Halloween using socks from The Dollar tree!!! Thanks for sharing!!!!

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