Well friends, it’s about that time to start thinking about dragging out the old Christmas decorations… I am super excited about decorating this year because that means I can make even more Christmas tree cones.
Some of you may remember my poster board tree cones that I made last Christmas:
The tree cones have been by far one of my favorite projects to post and it also turned out to be one of my most viewed projects. I was so thrilled that so many of you had fun making them last year.
I had so much fun with the cones that we even had a “Christmas in August” craft party this summer where my friend Jane and I taught some friends how to make the holiday cones:
You can read my post about our “Christmas in August” craft party here.
Ah yes, I also figured out a way to make them for Easter when I turned my cones into topiaries when I covered them in moss sheets:
Poster Board Topiaries (March, 2011)
I am really into flocked velvet fabrics this year because they really make a huge impact on the cones. I found this gorgeous fabric at High Fashion Fabrics in Houston:
Last year I made this set of cones for my kitchen island:
I loved the cones last year but wanted to create something new for the kitchen and so I made one blinged out tree and I embellished it by creating a long garland out of pearl sprigs and hot gluing it to the cone:
Ok, so below is the tree cone tutorial from last year.
****11/23/12- *** This post has been updated and I am now offering a PDF download of the tree cone patterns (5 sizes all in one) and a new tutorial with an easier process for making the cones. You can read the details here.
I can’t wait to see pictures of your finished cones so please send them to me if you decide to make them. I will be sharing pictures of readers finished tree cones on The Exchange Facebook Page throughout the holiday season so be sure and check out the Facebook Page and be sure and send me your pictures friends. I just can’t wait to see what you all come up with.
Ok, so here are the instructions (3 steps):
I recently created a template/pattern with five sizes of tree cones and a tutorial with a new and easier technique for attaching the fabric to the cone and then rolling. I was even able to create a guide line for rolling that makes sure that your cones are perfect every time. I am now offering the templates/tutorial via instant PDF download in my new online shop. You can read more about what all you can do with the templates here.
Step 1- Making the Cone Templates:
1) Take a piece of standard poster board and cut out a two inch strip down the longest side of the poster board like this:
2) Take a tack and push through one end of your strip. On the other end poke a hole with a knife or ice pick and push through your pencil like this (it needs to be a tight enough fit for the pencil to stand up:
3) Push the tack and strip through corner of new poster board (not the poster board that you used to cut your strip) and keep the tack corner over the edge of a counter like this:
4) While holding your tack with your left hand, with your right hand, gently start your pencil at #1 as seen in the picture below and use your strip as your line guide but make sure you do not pull so hard that the tack and corner are raised up. Draw your line until you run out of board and reach #2 as seen below (click on diagram picture for close up):
5) Cut out your template and it should look like this when your done:
6) Cut several short strips of packing tape and have them ready to grab as you begin rolling your cone.
7) The best way to begin rolling your cone is to start at the tip (#3 on above diagram)) and sort of fold/arch it over gently halfway at your tip (see my red dashes of where to arch and tuck) until you get a good point and HOLD! Now, go to the base of the cone and tuck until #2 is on top of #1 or until you have only the rounded curve (black dashes on diagram) around your base and hold! Go back to your tip and tape it down at the point to secure. In order for your cone to stand level, you can only have the curved edge where you drew your line (black dashes on diagram) on the bottom like this:
8) Once you have a good point at the tip of your cone and point #4 is completely tucked in the roll, secure the cone with packing tape vertically from the tip down to the bottom over the board edge. It took me a couple tries before I got my cone rolling down pat and now I can do it in my sleep!
9) To make a middle size cone, repeat the above steps but cut 4 inches off of your measuring strip. To make a small size cone, cut off 4 more inches off of your middle size measuring strip. I made 3 templates and now all I have to do is pull out my template to trace and no longer have to use a measuring strip.
Step 2- Covering the Cone in Fabric
1) Once you have your cone ready, lay out your fabric on a large surface. Again, keep in mind, upholstery/drapery fabric are ideal, heavy cotton is ok and velvet and stretchy fabrics are very challenging.
2) If you are using a solid fabric with no pattern or pattern that you do not care how it is laid out, lay your cone down on your fabric with the line/edge of the cone meeting the edge of the fabric. Be sure and allow an extra 1/2 inch at the tip like this:
3) With a black sharpie, trace along the base of the cone onto the fabric and then gently turn your cone and trace again (if you’ve ever done a fabric cover for a lamp shade, it’s the same technique) You will do this until your line/edge of your cone has made a full circle.
4) As you turn your cone to trace, watch and hold your tip so as your turn your cone, the tip of your cone also turns on the fabric as it would naturally roll as well. Like this.
5) Trace your cone until the edge/ line of the cone has made a full roll and draw a line on the fabric from the bottom to the tip to show where you should cut the fabric give an extra inch or so).
6) Cut out your fabric (cut inside black sharpie marks) and it should look like this :
7) Go outside and spray your cone completely and heavily with a good spray adhesive. I use Treehouse and it is awesome! Be sure and spray well, especially the tip.
8) Place your sprayed cone onto the fabric at the same position where you started when you began to trace onto the fabric.
9) Begin at the tip of your cone and roll the edge of the fabric up like this:
10) Now begin gently rolling the cone around the fabric, slightly pulling down and watching that you do not get creases. If you are using an upholstery fabric, you will not have to pull much and it should just perfectly roll and stick onto your cone.
11) You should have about two inches or less of fabric left over that you will need to go outside and spray to get it to stick to the rest of the fabric covered cone. I sprayed the loose fabric well, especially the tip like this:
12) Finish rolling the excess fabric gently onto the cone pressing down to get a flush line like this:
13) Trim any excess fabric around the base of your cone to get a perfect line around your base.
14) If you are using a pattern fabric that you do want to position on the tree a certain way, place your cone on your fabric in the middle of fabric with 1/2 inch extra at the tip and draw your line at the base and then roll half way to the right and draw your line at the base (draw line from base to tip as well). and then go back to the middle and then roll half way to the left and draw your line at the base and draw a line from base to tip and cut your fabric.
Step 3- Trimming your Fabric Covered Cone
1) You can trim your tree with anything! Fabric trim, Christmas cording or anything!
2) Use a glue gun to begin gluing your trim at the tip of your cone on the backside where the line of the fabric is (this will be the backside of your cone).
3) You can either trim diagonally down along your cone for a sloping garland look or vertical, glueing every so often.
4) I think it looks more finished to add cording or trim around the base of the cone.
5) No more steps, get creative and have fun!
That’s it for now!! Enjoy making your fabric covered cones and I would love to see pictures of your finished creations! So fun!