Winter Tissue Paper Trees

Winter Tissue Paper Trees

The other day on Facebook I shared a link to a posting for handmade Christmas cards on Back to the Drawing Board. The designer made a landscape using tissue paper trees, had them reduced and photo coped, then used them to make some awesome Christmas cards. Do check out her project. I thought the inside of her trees was especially clever!

We loved the bright and cheerful trees so much that we used the idea to make pictures of our own to display throughout the winter. We began by taping our water color paper to the table. This stops the paper from moving around and creates a border around your picture when the tape is removed. We used this same technique when we made our Winter Birch Trees last year.

After the paper was taped down, we used water colors to paint the sky blue, fading it into white.

Next, we chose our tissue paper colors and cut them into squares.

We then smeared glue stick on a sheet of cardstock paper, and added the tissue paper squares in random patterns.

When the pages were dried, we turned them over and drew very geometrical triangles on the back, and cut out our trees. This was a joint project. We only made 2 pictures, one for Michelle’s and one for my house. Usually the wee ones make their own projects, but it was fun working cooperatively on this project 🙂 Together we decided on the placement of the trees and glued them down.

Funny, as it turns out, their favorite part of this whole project was using the hole punch to “make snow”. Even though their hands got tired, they were delighted they could make these perfect little circles. Pixie, btw, preferred to make crescent moon shapes by punching overlapping holes 🙂 (BTW… As soon as we were done, Fairy went to a 5 hour final dress rehearsal for the production The Nutcracker that she will be dancing in, as a cute mouse, this weekend. She needed her hair braided and pinned close to her head so all of her hair would fit under her costumes hood! Doesn’t she look like she fell out of the pages of Heidi 🙂

Finally, we added dots of glue to our trees, and glued down the snow. All done! (Note: the artist at Back to the Drawing Board added detail using a thin tipped marker. We opted not to add this detail.

Then, wah lah! Our Winter Tissue Paper Trees were done! They will add a cheerful addition to our homes throughout the winter months. They remind me of Eric Carle illustrations. Fun!

PS… Thank you, Pam, for the inspiration your project gave us!



  1. Wow – these are gorgeous! We may just have to add this to our roster of holiday crafts. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Oh those are beautiful! I’m definitely going to have to do this with my little guys. They’ll love it!

  3. Oh we are so going to make these this weekend, they are gorgeous!
    ~ joey ~
    ps…and so are the braids!
    pps…and you officially have me hooked on german star folding! It really is a lot easier than I thought it would be!

  4. I love what you did with the tissue paper trees! Yay! Makes me happy to see what great results you got! One teacher told me she was going to have her students make the trees with shades of green. Someone else suggested putting the tissue squares on contact paper to avoid the gluing mess. It would be fun to play with that idea – to see if you could make something for the window. :]

    Merry Christmas and all the best!

  5. What a great, and yet simple, idea! I showed these to my 9 yo and she wanted to give it a go. All of my girls got involved and we made them cooperatively. Thanks for sharing.

  6. I love this idea and definitely want to do it for one of January’s art classes! I was wondering, can you think of any winter story
    books that have this kind of art?

    1. Off the top of my head I can think of a few books with a winter theme that use collage and/or mixed media. Snowballs – Lois Ehlert, The Snowy Day – Ezra Jack Keats, and Dream Snow – Eric Carle (although this is a Christmas book) Although she does pulp painting, Denise Fleming's work has the feel of collage. Check out the book The First Day of Winter. Hope that helps.

  7. I’m going to try this with my year 5 class!

    1. Kimara

      I think they will really enjoy it! It is amazing how beautiful they turn out at all ages. Feel free to share pics on our Facebook page of their finished paintings 🙂 ~Kimara~

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