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How to Make a Christmas Tree Shelf for Really Cheap!

Make a DIY Christmas Tree Shelf from free plans from Ana White!  The wooden Christmas tree shelf is a fun and quick project for any DIYer.

Hi Friends! For many people, entering into the later months of the year means one thing for home decor: Christmas decorations! Decorating for the holidays in itself can be both a blessing and a curse.

On one hand, it lightens up the home, but, on the other hand, it’s really, really, really hard.  And the most problematic space of them all?  The bathroom.

Yes, the bathroom…ugh…

christmas tree shelf pinterest

The bathroom is the one place you are all alone in at someone else’s house or even at your own house, for that matter (if you’re lucky and don’t have littles, right mamas??!!).

Personally, I would like the space as inviting and lively as possible.

So why don’t I decorate it?  Pretty simple… I don’t have decorations for it, and I’m cheap.  This year I am on a mission to change that!  Where do I turn to when I need inspiration??  Pinterest of course!

I found this adorable Christmas tree shelf and knew it was the perfect project to build to put above my toilet.  I shouldn’t have been surprised that when I clicked on it, it led me to Ana White’s site! 

tree shelf

You might remember my DIY Farmhouse table and outdoor coffee table that I made from her plans.  She is one of my favorite DIY bloggers and you should definitely check out all her amazing stuff!

This was Pottery Barn Inspired and I fell in love with it the minute I saw it!  Since I was going to put it above my toilet, I knew I didn’t need the hooks on the bottom so I took those boards off.

The best part of this Christmas tree shelf was that was completely free to build!!  If you are a wood hoarder like me, you’ll probably find all you need in your wood piles. These are a bunch of scraps I had leftover from my farmhouse window trim.

basket of wood scraps

If you love making your own Christmas decorations, make sure to browse through my list of DIY Christmas decor.

It calls for 12 feet of 1×4 boards.  I actually ran short one board so I had to improvise.  The bottom board needed to be 18 3/4″ which I didn’t have in a 1×4. 

But I found a 1×6 scrap that would work!  I actually like it with the wider shelf on the bottom.

Christmas Tree Shelf Plans

Hop on over and grab the free Tree wall shelf from Ana White.  I always love printing them out so I can take them everywhere and it doesn’t matter if they get sawdust all over them!

Materials Needed for Wood Christmas Tree Shelf

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links from Shareasale, Cricut, Awin, and I receive a small commission at no cost to you when you make a purchase using my links (purple text). As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

  • wood – I used scraps of 1×4 boards and one 1×6 for base
  • miter saw – this is one I have from Amazon
  • wood glue
  • nail gun
  • orbital sander or sandpaper
  • stain – I used dark walnut
  • chalk paint – I used FolkArt in Fern
  • Corner Braces (optional)

Tips for Cutting the Christmas Tree Shelf Plans

To cut “off square”, place your board so the width is up.  In other words, the 3.5 inch part was standing up on the 1-inch side.

cutting wood off square with miter saw

Then change the angle on the miter saw to 25 or 30, depending on which cut you are doing.

changing angles on miter saw

Make sure to use protective goggles!  Line up the board so that the blade will cut to the corner.

cutting wood with miter saw

Cut down the width of the board while holding on to the end away from the blade!! 

Make sure to keep the blade running all the down and all the way back up.  If you stop the motor before the blade is all the way out of the wood, it can splinter or even fly off the machine.

You will be cutting lengths long point to long point (angled cuts are going toward each other like a trapezoid) or long point to short point (angled cuts are parallel).

christmas tree shelf plans tips

I ended up cutting my sideboards a little too short (7 instead of 7.5 inches), but as long as they are all the same length, they will be fine!  The shelves will just be a little shallower.

The 1×6 I used for Christmas tree bottom shelf instead of a 1×4, was tough to cut on a miter saw.  I wouldn’t recommend it unless you are used to working with one or have a big miter saw. 

Mine was not big enough to cut the 1×6 on square so I had to cut it from both sides which is not easy to line up.

Putting Together the Wooden Christmas Tree Shelf

Once I had everything cut, I started putting the Christmas tree shelves together on my counter.  I added a little bit of glue to the outside board, held it in place, then used my nail gun to nail them together on a bit of an angle.

gluing christmas tree wood pieces together

** Since I used a 1×6 for the bottom shelf, it sticks out 2 inches farther.  I lined up the side 1×4 with the back side edge.

wood glue on wood
using nail gun to assemble wood tree shelving

Once the two side pieces were on, I nailed down the next shelf.  I tried to do it on an angle, but a few of the nails popped through so I hammered them back in.  If you are using screws as Ana recommends, you probably won’t have this problem! 

I’m just impatient and wanted it to go quicker, plus I knew I wouldn’t have anything heavy on my Christmas tree shelf!

base of christmas tree shelf
assembling the wooden christmas tree shelf

For the very top, I put it on the floor so I could get a better angle to nail them together.

securing the top of the wooden christmas tree shelf

Here is the wooden Christmas tree with shelves all put together!  Fill in the holes with wood filler and let everything dry (I left it overnight).

unfinished christmas tree shelf

Painting the Wood Shelving Unit

Sand the whole thing once it’s dry.  I used my orbital sander for most of it and then hand sanded the inner edges.

I wanted my tree green and I knew I would distress it some, so I added dark walnut stain just to the edges.  I just applied it with a foam brush and wiped it off with a rag.

applying stain to bare wood
walnut stain on wood shelving unit

Once that was dry, I painted the whole tree with green chalk paint.  Make sure you do the bottom of the shelves too!  You will be able to see those!

painting a wood christmas tree shelf
painting green chalk paint on wood shelf
painting a Christmas tree shelf with chalk paint

Once that was dry, I sanded the edges and corners to give it a distressed look.  There’s no right or wrong to this part!  Sand however much you want!

Hanging DIY Shelves on the Wall

Then it’s time to hang it up and add cute decorations to it!  I added some corner braces on the top and third shelf and screwed them into the studs.

hanging shelves on wall with L bracket
wooden christmas tree hung on wall

I added pretty simple decor, in fact, most of these items I made or were from the Dollar Tree

The little hat on top and all the bells in the wooden box were Dollar Store items.  (A similar hat I used to make my glitter snowman!)

wooden christmas tree shelf with decorations

I painted the mason jars and added the burlap around them.  Check out my tutorial here on how to paint on burlap. 

free christmas svg Merry Christmas

The Merry Christmas sign is an old frame that I applied the vinyl to the glass.  Read my full tutorial and get this free Christmas cut file.

I have to say that I AM IN LOVE WITH THIS CHRISTMAS TREE SHELF!  It adds so much character to the bathroom and gives people something to look at.  I actually like walking into my bathroom now!

wooden christmas tree shelf in bathroom

The DIY poinsettias make a huge impact and look beautiful below the tree shelf.

DIY Christmas tree shelf

Mission complete!! 

If you’d like to save this tutorial for later, hover over the image below and PIN it!

Make DIY Christmas decor on a budget! I made this amazing Christmas tree wood shelf from Ana White's free plans from scrap wood! #christmas #woodworking #christmastree #anawhite

Thanks so much for stopping by! Please let me know if you have any questions.

Have a creative day!

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