Deck the halls with truly gigantic, cloud-like tree skirts — that’s how the carol goes, right? You guys, this project is my holiday masterpiece. The scale of it, the texture, the shape and the all-around cozy wonder of it just delights me every time I see a picture of it (Lucy was delighted, too, and showed her appreciation with some insanely cute #modeldog pics that you can see at the end of the post). This plush, thick wool tree skirt adds a huge dose of hygge to your holiday decor, and it looks waayyyyy more expensive than it actually was, which is a huge plus during this season of spending. I’m so thrilled with how it turned out and I can’t wait for you guys to try it for yourselves!
How to Make a Thick Wool Tree Skirt with Huge Braided Tassels
- 1 1/2 yards of cotton duck canvas
- super chunky wool roving yarn (I used one of the 4.4lb balls and two of the 1.1lb balls)
The first thing to do is get our cotton duck canvas fabric backing sorted out. We want to start with a square, so measure the width of your fabric and then cut it to the same length. In order to easily cut out a circle, fold this square of fabric into quarters: fold it in half width-wise and then in half length-wise.
Next, measure the center hole and outer edge of our tree skirt. Using a measuring tape, measure and mark four inches from the folded (inner) corner. You’ll want to make something like a compass and mark four inches in an arc, so it’s easy to follow when it’s time to cut.
Repeat this same process for the outer edge, this time measuring 18″ from the inner corner. Try to make a mark about every inch, arcing across the fabric, so it’s an easy line to follow.
If you like, you can use a pen to connect the dots so you have a clear line to follow. Or you can be like me and live on the edge and simply take your super-sharp fabric shears and slowly cut around the inner corner and the hem, following the dots as you go.
After your donut shape is cut out, unfold it. Then, cut along one of your fold lines from outer hem to inner hem. This will make an opening so you can wrap the tree skirt around the base of the Christmas tree.
Now comes the fun part: tassel making! Take a roll of your wool roving and measure a length of 30″. Using that as a guide, gather five lengths of 30″ in your hand. Then, cut the end. Repeat so you’re left with two bunches of yarn, each with five lengths of 30″.
Cut another length of yarn about 24″. Gently pull it apart into two smaller strands.
Use half of this piece of yarn to tie together the centers of the 30″ lengths of wool. Double knot it nice and tight!
Then, lay the tassel down and use the second piece of yarn to tie around the tassel, about 3″ from the top.
Using your fabric scissors, cut open the loops of yarn at the bottom of the tassel. Then, smooth out the yarn and trim the bottom so it falls in a nice, even line.
Now we’ll move on to the braids. Cut three more 30″ lengths of yarn. Group them together and tie a knot at the top with only one strand of yarn knotted over the other two (if you try to knot all three pieces, the knot will be much too large).
Loosely braid the strands until you’ve reached 13″. Leave the bottom undone.
next grab one of your tassels and, using the two pieces of yarn at the top of the tassel, tie it to the bottom of your unfinished braid.
Repeat until you have about 18 braided tassels. Yes, this does take some time, but it’s perfect for keeping your hands busy while your brain is watching Killing Eve or the new season of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. You’ll also want to make 36 plain braids, without the tassels (these should be knotted at the bottom with a thin piece of yarn). We’ll use these to fill in any blank spaces on the tree skirt. Don’t worry: this goes quicker than you think since the yarn is really chunky.
Now all that’s left to do is attach the braids and tassels to the duck canvas backing we made earlier. I found that the best, fastest way to do this is with my trusty hot glue gun. First, lay out the backing on a floor or table. Then, position all your braided tassels where you want them to go — this way you can make sure they’re spaced out evenly.
Once you’re happy with the spacing, lift one braided tassel up and lay down a generous squiggle (that’s a technical term) of hot glue. Work your way around the circle until all your braided tassels are are glued down. Then, go back through and glue two plain braids in between each tassel. You might have to squeeze them in there, and that’s okay! We want this thick wool tree skirt to feel super plush and a little bit extra, so we definitely don’t want any bare patches showing through.
And that’s all there is to it! The techniques are super simple, and once you get into the groove of braiding and tassel making, it starts moving pretty quickly. Lucy definitely approves. In fact, both of the McBrawley wiener dogs promptly made a nest of this tree skirt as soon as we were done shooting it. (I don’t blame them one bit — I wish it was big enough for me to take a nap on, too).
Looking for even more holiday DIY ideas? Try these:
- Eggnog Soy Wax Candle DIY
- Snowflake Natural Beeswax Ornaments
- Metal Leaf Garland
- Fair Isle Leather Stocking
- Festive Pom Pom Garland