Learn how to make a DIY twine tree using Dollar Tree materials. This is an easy, budget-friendly way to decorate for Christmas or the winter season.
How to Make Twine Trees (Easy Dollar Tree Winter Decor)
In this tutorial I’ll show you how to make DIY twine trees for the holiday season. While I used Dollar Tree materials for this simple project, you can use supplies from any craft store as well.
The rustic trees are made from jute twine covered in craft glue. Once dry, the twine hardens and it will maintains the cone tree shape.
Prior to making this tutorial, I experimented with different types of Dollar Tree glues, including plain white glue, and varied the amount of water I added to each. I found that Aleene’s Tacky Glue (slightly thinned with a bit of water) and Mod Podge Matte (without any added water) worked the best for me.
Instructions for Making Twine Trees
Here’s What I Used
- Natural Jute Twine
- Aleene’s Tacky Glue (or Mod Podge Matte)
- Plastic Travel Bottle with Tops (2.7 oz)
- Poster Board
- Disposable Plate or Tray
- Painters Tape
- Plastic Wrap
- Large Nail (about 3″)
- Yarn Needle (optional)
Punch holes in plastic container
Hammer a large nail through the lower portion of a small plastic travel container, near its base.
Why the holes? Because you will thread twine in one hole, through the glue-filled container, then out the other hole. This results in glue-coated twine with less mess.
Twist the nail around in each of the holes to make them slightly larger. This makes it easier to thread the twine through the holes.
Snip of end of twine
Because the end of the twine tends to unravel, cut off a small bit to form a clean end. If the twine starts to unravel before you can thread it through the holes, just make another small cut.
Thread twine through holes in container
Carefully thread the twine through the two holes. This took me a few tries before I was able to grab the twine on the other side of the bottle.
If you’re unable to push the twine through both holes, try using a yarn needle (a needle with a large eye) to thread the piece of twine.
Temporarily cover holes with painters tape
To prevent glue from leaking out the holes, temporarily cover the holes with tape.
Add glue to container
Add Aleene’s Tacky Glue (or Mod Podge Matte) to the plastic bottle.
Add water and shake
Add a little bit of water to Aleene’s Tacky Glue, just enough to slightly thin the glue. Shake well to mix the water and Aleene’s Tacky Glue.
If you’re using Mod Podge, there’s no need to add water.
Form cones with poster board
Cut a piece of poster board and roll it into a cone of your desired size. Add tape to prevent it from unrolling. If the top of the cone has a gap, just form a tip with the tape.
As an alternative, you can use a floral styrofoam cone. However, for this project I wanted to use supplies that I could find at the Dollar Tree. Plus the styrofoam cone would be an extra cost.
If the base of the cone is not flat, trim it so that the cone stands level.
Cover with plastic wrap
Cover the poster board cone with a layer of plastic wrap. If needed, tape down the plastic wrap. The plastic wrap will prevent the wet glue from sticking to the cone when it dries.
Pull twine through container to coat with glue
Pull the twine through the container to cover the twine with glue. This part can get messy, so I wore gloves. The disposable tray or plate helps protect your workspace from the glue.
You could just dip the twine directly in a plate or small bowl of glue. I tried pouring the glue directly in the tray in the image below. However, I found using the string-through-the-container method to be less messy.
Tape twine to bottom of cone
Tape the end of the glue-covered twine to the bottom of the cone. This will help keep the string taut when wrapping it around the cone.
Wrap cone with glue-covered twine
Keep pulling twine through the glue mixture and wrapping it around all the way to the tip of the cone.
Wrap twine up and down the cone too so that string crosses over itself many times. This crisscrossing of the string in a random pattern helps make the final structure stronger.
After wrapping the cone with the glue-covered twine, cut the twine. Cut the string after it comes out of the container.
Don’t cut the string before the entry hole because you won’t be able to rethread the twine through holes without cleaning out the container first.
If you plan to make more twine projects, leave the string in the bottle and cover the holes with painters tape.
Let string trees dry overnight
Set the cone aside to let the glue dry overnight. The glue-covered string will harden and provide structure to the twine tree.
Remove poster board cone
After the glue has dried, remove the interior poster board cone. It may stick a bit because of the glue. Just carefully pry the poster board away from the interior of the cone.
Remove plastic wrap
Next, remove any remaining plastic wrap. Carefully pull on the plastic wrap. If it’s stuck to the twine, don’t pull too hard (you could bend or damage your tree).
Instead, poke the plastic with the end of a paint brush or similar object to unstick the plastic. After a bit of time you’ll be able to pull the plastic wrap out the bottom of the cone.
Project Video (DIY Twine Tree)
This short video summarizes the project in a minute.
Resources for this project:See all materials
Mary Lou on Jan 26, 2022
This tutorial was well presented & very easy to follow. OM gosh, the idea of running the jute through a small container of glue- ABSOLUTELY BRILLIANT!!!😊 I have some green jute that I will be trying this with. 🤞 Really GREAT post from start to finish-WELL DONE!!👍️