Gnarly Trees

Gnarly Trees
  • Measuring tape
  • Craft paper
  • 2 shades of brown paint, one darker and one lighter than the craft paper
  • Brushes
  • Brown twine
  • Duct tape or masking tape
  • Double-stick clear tape

1. Measure porch pillars. Cut 2 lengths of craft paper 1' longer than height of pillar, plus three 16" lengths, for each pillar.

2. Lay pieces of paper flat on the ground. Starting with the darkest shade of brown, paint wavy vertical stripes along the length of the paper, imitating the look of bark. Use a variety of strokes, some heavier, some lighter. An old, stiff, dried-out brush works well for this.

3. Repeat process using the lighter brown paint. Be careful not to cover craft paper completely with paint―you want to let the brown paper show through in places.

4. Set aside the 16" lengths of paper. Working on the pillar-length pieces, crumple from top to bottom, then unfold. Take side edge and fold, accordion-style, in 2" or 3" pleats. Continue until completely folded, then twist tightly.

5. Carefully unfold. Wrap each pillar with 2 pieces of paper. Use twine and tape to secure.

6. To make roots, twist 16" pieces, one at a time, to form a funnel shape. One end should be very tight, and the other very loose. Tie with twine, starting at the tight end and leaving about 5" on the other end loose (not tied).

7. Attach three roots to the base of each tree, using double-stick tape.