This is a project I’ve been wanting to do for a while. I just love tree motifs of all kinds and Tu b’Shevat is a great excuse to get all crafty with trees. The only thing you’ll need for this project is paper, scissors, and some tape (if you want to connect your garlands).
The garland is made in the same way as paper doll chains. You are simply going to fold some paper so that there are folded edges on both sides of the piece and cut out a tree motif so that most of the branches (but not necessarily all) touch the folded edges. That is the most important thing, so I will repeat it: most of the branches should touch the edges. If only one or two touch the edges, the garland won’t be stable enough to hang together.
Now you could draw a tree if you like something to follow, but I just winged it, as is my tendency. Fully expect the first one or two you make to be throw-aways. In fact, don’t use your nice paper until you understand the dynamic between the branches and the folds.
Depending on how long you want your garland, you can combine several lengths with tape. If you want all lengths to the be same, after cutting one you like, fold it back up and use it as a template for the subsequent ones by tracing the outline onto your next piece of paper.
Other than making a garland, there are a lot of things you can make with these cut outs. You can place them around a glass hurricane for a neat shadow effect when the candle inside is lit. You can paste them onto a bigger piece of paper and make a picture. You can stand them up and snake them around table decor for a centerpiece. You can make a table runner. It would also be neat to combine them with paper doll chains. It’s not really just trees we are celebrating like a golden calf, but our relationship to them, so I like the idea of adding people too.
If you have a little kid (let’s say 2-4), you won’t believe their reaction when you open up your garland (assuming you already had a few practice gos). It’s magic! And you’re like an amazing magician…it’s better than if you pulled a rabbit out of your…hat.