This handmade pallet wood tree collar was designed for my smaller Christmas Tree. I made a Christmas Tree Stand Box that folds flat for storage, but it's too wide and too tall for my new tree.
While shopping for garland at Hobby Lobby, I saw this barnwood tree collar. First, it's way too expensive, even on sale. Second, it's too large. So, what's a gal to do? Make one herself.
I grabbed two pallets from the neighbor's garbage pile. I used my Duckbill Deck Wrecker to dismantle them. You may have noticed that there are narrow boards on one side and wider boards on the other side. For this pallet wood tree collar project, I used the narrow boards.
How Do I Know What Size Tree Collar I Need to Make?
To answer this question, I measured the existing metal Christmas tree stand, from one leg to the other. Then I measured the height from the floor to the lowest branch.
The panel size for my Christmas tree collar should be approximately 17" wide and 14" tall. So, my cut list consisted of the following:
- 12 narrow pallet boards 17" long
- 6 narrow pallet boards 14" long
My narrow pallet boards were approximately 3.5" wide, so the four narrow boards netted me about 14" in height,. This is just basic information for you, because the boards you choose to use may be different because you may need a different size tree collar to fit your Christmas tree. If you need a slightly different size, think about leaving a gap between your boards, similar to how a "crate" looks.
I tried to use these boards that were already cut short, but they weren't the proper size. So, I had to cut the pallet boards from the dismantled pallet.
Use What You Have
I didn't take pictures of the process, but I did use my compound miter saw, being EXTRA careful to avoid nails. While dismantling the pallets, some nails came out, others stayed in the narrow boards. The green check marks represent which boards I used.
Assemble Pallet Wood Tree Collar Panels
This is a dry fit.
I chose to use brad nails and a nail gun to assemble my pallet wood tree collar panels. You can see the nails leaning up against the boards.
The panel has been flipped over. This is where you would want the pretty boards facing down, as they will be the ones that show. Do you see that board on the right? It's just for placement. Leaving the space will allow room to secure the panels together.
Remove the board, and begin securing all boards with the nail gun, or wood screws if you prefer.
Tip: I didn't use wood glue, but I recommend that you do if you're using short brad nails like I did. In addition, if you shoot the brads at a slight angle, you will have a more secure assembly.
This is why you want to leave the space of the board width. This might be a good time to mention that if you are expecting perfection, you shouldn't use pallet boards to make your tree collar.
Continue to assemble the rest of your panels. By leaving the space at the end, you get a good clean look of a complete box (on the corners).
Sand Away Splinters
Sand the panels with a heavy grit sandpaper. I used 150. This is before sanding.
After sanding, I'm really liking the rustic, imperfect look of the pallet wood tree collar panels.
Pallet Wood Christmas Tree Collar
I quickly took two of the panels of the tree collar in the house to make sure they fit under the Christmas tree.
Now that my panels are complete, I'm ready to attach them using command rug velcro. Why am I using rug velcro? Because it's what I had on hand. I'm also using a few adhesive felt strips to protect my floor from scratches.
First, I cut the velcro strips to size, giving me two pieces for each corner.
I hope you can see how I applied the velcro strips. On the right hand side, you can see the black hook piece, and a tan loop piece. Instead of putting both black pieces on the same panel, I opted to switch them up to try to get a better hold. The tan pieces are difficult to see, but I placed them directly across from the black pieces.
Now, it's time to add the protective felt strips. I cut each long strip in half, giving me 6 pieces, two for each panel.
You can see the pads raise the tree collar off the floor a little.
Options to Make Your Own Wooden Tree Collar
What wood can you use?
Amount of lumber for each of these options will depend on what size tree collar you need to make.
- Pallet Wood (what I used)
- New Lumber 1x3 boards
- Picket Fence boards (new or reclaimed)
- Dogeared Fence boards (new or reclaimed)
- Hardwood Flooring (new or reclaimed)
- Brad Nails and nail gun (what I used)
- Wood Glue
- Wood Screws
Paint & Stain
- Raw wood (what I did)
- Stain Cloths (fast and easy)
- Wood Stain
- Tongue Oil
- Clear Sealer
- Chalk Paint
- Latex Paint
- Whitewash (make your own)
How to attach tree collar panels
- Hook & Loop (velcro, what I used)
- Hinges (removable pins will allow the box to fold flat)
- Super Magnets
- Double Sided Tape
The weather was very cold, so honestly I took the easy route in more than one way. I didn't make the tree collar as fancy as the first one I made a few years ago. Plus, I only made three sections because that's all the "matching" pallet boards I had. On a final note, I chose not to paint or stain it. After test driving it under the tree, I really like the raw wood look.