Gather your supplies
- Dried tree branches with varying thicknesses (we used birch)
- Rope, quantity to suit
- Drop sheet, if required
- Paint tray and paint brush
- Chalk Paint by Annie Sloan in Florence, Provence, Versailles, Greek Blue, Old Violet, Duck Egg Blue, Emile, Olive and Old White (or colours of your choice)
- Annie Sloan Soft Wax in Clear
- Lint-free cloth
Step 1 Lay out branches on the floor, so branches reduce in thickness from the top of tree to the bottom.
Step 2 Use pencil to mark desired length of each branch, forming a tapered tree shape.
Step 3 Use saw to trim branches, as marked, and to remove any offshoot branches that aren’t required.
Step 4 On the floor, space the branches into the desired tree arrangement. Lay out the rope, roughly measure and use scissors to cut it to size. Allow ample length for the double figure of eight knot at the top, and the knots and tassels on each side of the tree.
Step 5 In paint tray, create a wash by adding a little water to Florence (green paint). Throw down a drop sheet, if necessary then hang rope from something where you won’t cause too much mess (like your outdoor clothesline). Paint rope, using brush. Let dry.
Step 6 Paint each branch in a different base colour. We used Provence, Versailles, Greek Blue, Old Violet, Duck Egg Blue, Emile and Olive (or colours of your choice). Let dry.
Step 7 Paint over each branch with Old White. Let dry.
Step 8 Using lint-free cloth, apply a coat of wax. Then, using fine-grit sandpaper, lightly distress the paint here and there. This reveals patches of base colour and highlights the gorgeous texture of the branches. Add more wax, as necessary.
Step 9 To create a hanging loop, tie a double figure of eight knot in the middle of the rope. Hang rope from a nail, hook or screw in your wall. You should now have two strands of rope hanging down your wall.
If you need help with the knot styles, enter them into Google to reveal loads of online tutorials you can follow.
Step 10 Working from top of tree, secure first branch in place using a clove hitch at each end of branch. Adjust knots and branch until it’s level. Leave a space in rope, as determined in Step 4, then secure second branch. Repeat this method to secure remaining branches.
Step 11 After the final branch is secure, drop the rope about 6–8cm on each side and tie stopper knots. Loosen the end strands of the rope to create pretty tassels.
Step 12 Decorate your tree with twinkling lights (pick up a battery-powered set to avoid dangling cords), garland or greenery from your garden. Hammer small nails into each branch if you wish to hang decos!
Project courtesy of Annie Sloan