HOLIDAY DIY: Black and Metallic Vintage Inspired Christmas Tree Skirt

This Christmas tree skirt in black and metallics, pulls inspiration from vintage holiday ornaments. I used Fairfield World OlyFun and fabric paint to create vintage style ornament appliques. For the basic skirt, I used black duck canvas, but thin denim would be suitable too. For quilting cotton, back it with Smooth Fusible Fleece Interfacing, for added durability and weight. Of course, you can change the colors to suit your decor. OlyFun comes in 19 colors and 4 metallics, which all cut like paper, take paint and sewing well.


SUPPLIES:
Fairfield World provided me with their products for this project. They paid me to create this project. All opinions, instructions, and photos are my own. I use ShareASale and Amazon Affiliate links. Any purchases made using those links will result in my being paid a small commission.
TOOLS:

INSTRUCTIONS:
1) Measure from the trunk or pole of your tree to the widest point of the tree bottom. I extended my measurement 6" for a wider tree skirt. Add 4 inches for hem and hole cutting. I based my measurements off the width of my fabric. My fabric is 60" wide. Cut a square of fabric equal to your measurement total.

2) Fold the fabric in half twice, forming a 1/4th size square. I used the tape measure here, as it's longer than the ruler. Measure 2" out from the center folded corner, and mark a semi-circle with chalk. If you have a tree trunk, you will need a larger circle. Measure from that corner along one side, taking note of that length measurement. Use that measurement to create an even semi-circle with chalk. Straight pin the layers together along those marks. Using scissors, cut out the inner circle and the outer circle. Cut down one fold layer, to open the circle. Remove the straight pins.

3) Load the sewing machine with black thread. Fold in the straight opening edges 1/2" twice. I did this as I sewed to save time, but straight pinning the hem in place is fine too. Straight stitch the hem. Trust that this will look perfectly fine in the end. The lessening of circle measurement won't be problematic. A tree stand is more conical than circular, so the flat skirt will bend into a cone once laid on the stand. Fold in the skirt's outer edge 1/2" twice. Straight stitch the hem in place.

4) Pin the bias tape or grosgrain ribbon over the small inner circle edge, leaving two long tails for tying later. Fold the tails to make ties. Straight stitch down one tie, across the circle and down the other tie. Make sure to catch both sides of the ribbon or bias tape. I had to go back over my stitching, because I missed an edge section.

5) From each OlyFun color, measure, mark and cut out three 12" high x 10" wide rectangles. I used the quilting ruler here for easy precision. Do all pen or pencil markings on the back of the Olyfun. Chalk doesn't stay well on metallic OlyFun. Olyfun is 30" wide, so it was easy to divide into 10" wide sections. Stack the rectangles by color. Mark the center points of one OlyFun rectangle per stack. Draw ornament silhouettes based on real vintage ornaments. Feel free to make up your own shapes, but the simplest ones are the easiest to sew.

6) Stack the drawings on top of their matching stack. Carefully straight pin through the layers, around the inner edge of the drawing. Metallic OlyFun shows pin marks, so it's best to keep them minimal and where stitching will be. Using fabric scissors, carefully cut out the drawn shape. Remove the straight pins.

7) Pour a little black and white fabric paint onto a paper plate. Using real vintage ornaments as inspiration, paint designs on the metallic ornament shapes. This fabric paint adheres well, so there's no correcting mistakes. Make "mistakes" into "meant to happens". Use similar shapes and details on the ornaments to keep them consistent. Rinse and dry the brushes in between colors and after use.

8) Lay the ornament shapes out on the tree skirt, staggering the colors. Keep them all about 3" from the edge. Carefully pin the shapes onto the skirt, again keeping to the ornament edge.

9) You can sew the shapes onto the skirt using a standard foot, but I found that tedious. I used the free motion quilting/embroidery foot on most of the shapes. That was tricky, as you have control over the stitch length and speed as you sew, and that can easily look uneven. Either way, carefully stitch around each shape, backstitching at the beginning and end of each stitch pass. When you are finished sewing, cut any thread tails.

10) Place the tree skirt around the tree trunk or pole. Tie at the top. Smooth out the tree skirt and overlap the opening edges. This is a great time to hide the light cord if possible. I need to reposition my light cord, so it runs down the pole and under the skirt.

Back in October, I won this Tuxedo Black Christmas Tree from Treetopia. I wanted to create a holiday decor scheme in black, white, and metallics. I used silver bead necklaces and gold glitter tulle provided by Oriental Trading, and skull ribbon purchased at Michaels post-Halloween, to decorate this tree. I used my Rainbow Bead Garland tutorial to create a strand of silver garland for this tree. I'll add more Christmas ornaments as I find time to fully decorate this tree. I'm also brainstorming tree topper ideas. I used some hanging fans to add more drama to my window and match the tree. If you're in need of holiday decor, check out Oriental Trading's Christmas Store. They have lots of colorful and classic looks put together, and items for those of us who create our own holiday style. Whatever you're making, have fun with it. Happy Makery!

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