While I still have some shopping to do before Christmas, I have found that homemade gifts are always well-received so Chris and I have tried to incorporate that into our holiday gifting plans each year as well. This family tree project took me 20 minutes and is as sentimental for anyone as it is pretty on the wall:
To start, I used a plain piece of white cardstock, black india drawing ink and a small brush to draw my tree. You could use a sharpie, black acrylic paint even a regular ol' pen to draw yours. I just happened to be more comfortable with a brush in my hand and I like the consistency of this ink.
I'll tell you the hardest part about drawing a tree is getting the size right. I didn't want my tree to take up the whole mat in the frame, but rather be on the small side. If you need to tape off a little box with painter's tape to confine your drawing to, that could be helpful. Other than that, trees are fun. I like to flick my wrist to create different thicknesses and natural lines. Go crazy. You can't mess up a tree.
After I was done inking the tree, I switched over to a regular black gel pen and started writing the names of family members.
I tried to keep siblings and spouses on the larger boughs and their children on the twigs. I didn't really plan out the name placement beforehand--I just went with it.
The parents' names are on the trunk of the tree and the family name is below. It's simple, quick, can be made in a variety of sizes and will be treasured for years to come. I popped this one into a frame I picked up at Target (they have the best frames right now!) and while up close, it is especially sweet:
From far away, it could pass as just a cool line drawing of a tree. Double win.
Ps. A DIY gift for your neighbors.