Tabletop Christmas Tree With Louvered Door Slats

How To Make A Farmhouse Tabletop Christmas Tree With Louvered Door Slats

Earlier this year I accidentally dropped a louvered bifold door on the concrete floor and all the wooden slats went flying. Instead of the laborious task of setting them back into their respective slots, I threw them in a box and called it potential project material.


Fast forward several months later and that potential project material is now this Louvered Door Slat Tabletop Christmas Tree because nothing goes to waste around here. Its small size and rustic farmhouse charm make it a lovely addition for holiday vignettes. If you or someone you know has an old bifold door kicking around, grab it for the slats!


A rustic farmhouse tabletop Christmas tree made with recycled louvered door slats and a festive crate style stencil, a budget holiday decoration idea.

Today is the Christmas Tree leg of the Festive Christmas Ideas Tour. Truth is our Christmas tree isn't up yet because we wait until after Remembrance Day on November 11th. Our tree doesn't change much from year-to-year because it's a Nostalgic Eclectic Christmas Tree where every ornament has a story.


A rustic farmhouse tabletop Christmas tree made with recycled louvered door slats and a festive crate style stencil, a budget holiday decoration idea.

Welcome back to year 6 of our Festive Christmas Ideas Event where we team up with a bunch of talented blogging friends to bring you a plethora of creative ways to celebrate your holiday season.


We will be baking some cookie recipes for you, sharing some party games, making some handmade gifts, doing some ornament crafting, and sharing our Christmas movies family fun. There will be breakfast recipes and as always our decorated Christmas Trees which is always a fun tour of homes.


New this year is Gift Guides. We are right there with you shopping from home due to Covid 19 and we understand how hard that can be so we have been busy little Elves doing tons of research to create fabulous Gift Guides to help you with your holiday shopping. You'll find a link to my 12 Unique Coffee Lovers Gift Guide below.


You will find new ideas every Monday and Wednesday between Oct. 19th through Nov. 18th. Scroll all the way down to find all the ideas linked at the end.


Holiday Ideas Shared So far

Coffee Lovers Gift Guide - unique gift ideas for the coffee lover in your life.

Memory Garment Hand Warmers - a warm hug on a winter's day from the one you miss!

DIY Holiday Ice Breaker Game - good, clean, wholesome fun for everyone, young and old.

Organza DIY Embroidery Hoop Ornaments - made with recycled damask placements!

Holiday Movie Night - An Evening With Ebenezer Scrooge - how to make holiday movie night extra special.

Repurposed Cabinet Door Christmas Signs - made with kitchen cabinet door panels.

Easy Mini Cranberry Eggnog Loaves - perfect for gift giving.

Eggnog Crepes With Cranberry Grand Marnier Compote - a festive make-ahead Christmas morning breakfast idea.



Christmas Tree - 2020 Festive Christmas Ideas Tour with over 25 bloggers every Monday and Wednesday from October 19 - November 19th.

Before we get into the nitty-gritty of how to make the wooden tabletop tree, all the projects here at Interior Frugalista have step-by-step tutorials so why not get your budget DIY on and subscribe. You can also follow us on Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube.


Farmhouse Tabletop Christmas Tree

If you don't have bifold door slats readily available you could make this tree with paint stir sticks, mini blind slats, wood shims, or even wooden yardsticks.

This DIY tree may seem like it has a lot of steps but trust me it is not difficult to make. PLUS you don't need power tools! But it certainly helps speed up the process if you do.


A rustic farmhouse tabletop Christmas tree made with recycled louvered door slats and a festive crate style stencil, a budget holiday decoration idea.

As I mentioned earlier, it started with this box of louvered bifold door slats. I only used ten slats and have so many leftovers for more project potential. Maybe I'll make some more trees for a tree farm display!


A rustic farmhouse tabletop Christmas tree made with recycled louvered door slats and a festive crate style stencil, a budget holiday decoration idea.

Ideas For Displaying The Tabletop Trees

Here are some ideas for displaying the rustic tabletop tree. Set it outside on a porch wrapped with mini lights so it's illuminated at night. Display it indoors on a window ledge with mini fairy lights on a timer. Add it to a woodland fireplace mantel scape or on a dining room sideboard.


At just over two feet tall, the small tree could also sit on a fireplace hearth with a wooden sleigh and other farmhouse holiday decor. Or even better, make a few of these wooden trees in varying heights to group together.


A rustic farmhouse tabletop Christmas tree made with recycled louvered door slats and a festive crate style stencil, a budget holiday decoration idea.

The top of the tree is adorned with a small wooden star from the dollar store. Painted holiday red, aged with dark wax, and attached with wood glue to the top slat.


A rustic farmhouse tabletop Christmas tree made with recycled louvered door slats and a festive crate style stencil, a budget holiday decoration idea.

I had some fun stenciling each tree branch in a festive holiday red and green. Stenciling with black paint would have been lovely too but I wanted my tree to have a little retro Christmas fun. 


A rustic farmhouse tabletop Christmas tree made with recycled louvered door slats and a festive crate style stencil, a budget holiday decoration idea.

A rustic farmhouse tabletop Christmas tree made with recycled louvered door slats and a festive crate style stencil, a budget holiday decoration idea.

Here's how I made it

This post contains affiliate links so you can see what products I used or recommend for this project. As an Amazon Associate, I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases at no extra cost to you.

I had originally planned on painting the wood slats but after sanding them lightly to prep for paint I quite liked the factory warm white finish. Gotta love it when you can save a step!


Making The Wood Slat Tree Branches

The first step is deciding how tall you want your tabletop tree. You can butt the wood slats against one another OR do what I did and add a space between them. This will determine how many slats you'll need.


A rustic farmhouse tabletop Christmas tree made with recycled louvered door slats and a festive crate style stencil, a budget holiday decoration idea.

Step 1 - Determine Wood Slat Requirement

Determine the number of slats you'll need for your tabletop tree. It's up to you how wide the gap between each slat is. I used the width of a slat between mine so there was no measuring involved. I needed ten slats for my 27-inch tree. You could narrow the gap by using a smaller piece of wood as a gauge.


Step 2 - Draw Tree Shape

Butt your slats against one another and secure them to your work surface with masking tape. Find the center on both the top and bottom slats and add a pencil mark. On the bottom slat measure an equal distance on either side of the center mark. Line a straight edge up to the bottom and top marks and draw a pencil line like pictured above.


Step 3 - Cut Tree Shape

You can cut the slats in one of two ways. Very quickly with a compound miter saw or the good old fashion way with a miter box and hand saw. Next, sand them lightly with 150 or 220 grit sandpaper to smooth the slats and give them a distressed finish. 


Step 4 - Stencil Branches

Now the fun part, stenciling the tree. I used this adorable Christmas Crates stencil from Funky Junk Old Sign Stencils to add rustic charm to the tabletop tree. As I mentioned earlier, I stenciled the tree with Holiday Red and Green craft paint.

A rustic farmhouse tabletop Christmas tree made with recycled louvered door slats and a festive crate style stencil, a budget holiday decoration idea.

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Step 5 - Age Stenciled Branches

To add a time-worn charm to the stencils I distressed them lightly with sandpaper. To add more rustic charm the slats were aged with dark wax but brown glaze would also work. Apply it with a lint-free rag and wipe off the excess. Apply the wax a little heavier along the edges of each branch.


Wood Slat Tree Assembly

A rustic farmhouse tabletop Christmas tree made with recycled louvered door slats and a festive crate style stencil, a budget holiday decoration idea.

Step 1 - DIY Tree Trunk

You'll want to use something flat for the tree trunk to glue or nail the wood slats onto. I used a narrow piece of trim that I had on hand. In hindsight, I would suggest you use something wider. My narrow trim was prone to splitting when attaching the slats with small finishing nails. I had to glue the slats on instead. 


Before you attach the slats you'll want to stain the trim - mine is a dark walnut gel stain that I had on hand.


Step 2 - Attach The Wood Slat Branches

Once the stain is dry lay the wood trim onto your work surface. Start with the bottom slat, leaving about 4-6 inches below to mount onto the base. Set a spacer (see step 1) above it and glue or nail the next slat in place. Repeat these steps with the remaining slats and then carefully remove the spacers. If you glued the slats on let the wood glue cure before moving onto the next step.


Step 3 - A Sturdy Base

The possibilities for what you use as a tree base are endless, as long as it provides a sturdy base for the height of the tree so it doesn't topple over. You could use a large unfinished wood plaque, a tree log cut in half lengthwise, or a block of wood. 


I had this routered and stained piece of wood in my stash, salvaged from the repurposed oak frame coffee table that made a perfect tree base.


What Not To Do

Don't Do What I Did! You may be wondering from Step 4 in the pictorial above and the close-up photo below, why on earth did I use both a tree branch AND a tree slice on the base of my tree? 


Well, because my first attempt was to use the tree slice as the base. No surprise it couldn't support the weight of the tree and nearly toppled onto the floor. Worried I might destroy the tree if I tried to separate the wood slice from the wood branch, I left them both on.


A rustic farmhouse tabletop Christmas tree made with recycled louvered door slats and a festive crate style stencil, a budget holiday decoration idea.

Step 4 - Wood Slice Tree Trunk

Whether you use a small tree branch or a larger tree slice for the trunk, you'll want to ensure it is cut straight so the tree sits level on the wooden base. In order to attach the tree onto the tree branch or slice, you'll need to make a cavity (trench) for the base of the tree to rest into. I hope this makes sense, sorry, I completely forgot to take photos during this process.


To do this drill several holes beside one another in a straight line on the center of the branch or slice. You'll probably need a chisel to remove any remaining bits of wood until the cavity is the same width as the wood trim on the bottom of the tree.


Lay the tree down on your work surface and fill the cavity with wood glue. Set the tree base inside and wait for the glue to cure before moving onto the next step.


Last but not least we're ready to mount the tree onto the wood base. If the tree branch or slice isn't perfectly flat then use toothpicks as shims to straighten the tree on the base (see Step 4 in the pictorial above). Clamp the trunk onto the base until the glue cures.


Whew, we are done! I hope you enjoyed this salvaged wood Christmas Tree idea. If you have any questions, please leave them in the comment section below or the Contact Me tab at the top. I love hearing from you!


A Rustic DIY Tabletop Christmas Tree with Farmhouse Style by Interior Frugalista made with recycled louvered bifold door wooden slats and a festive crate style stencil. A budget holiday decorating idea for indoors or outdoors.#diychristmastree #woodenchristmascrafts #festivechristmasideas

If you enjoyed this Christmas tree craft, I'd be so thankful if you shared it with a friend and pinned it to your DIY Christmas Tree Ideas or Tabletop Christmas Decorations board on Pinterest.



A Rustic DIY Tabletop Christmas Tree with Farmhouse Style by Interior Frugalista made with recycled louvered bifold door wooden slats and a festive crate style stencil. A budget holiday decorating idea for indoors or outdoors.#diychristmastree #festivetabletoptree #festivechristmasideas

The Festive Christmas Ideas Event runs every Monday and Wednesday until November 19th so be sure to come back.


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Comments

  1. This is very cute Marie and I wouldn't have noticed the base issue had you not said anything!

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    1. Dang, maybe I should've kept my mouth shut. LOL Glad you like my DIY Christmas tree idea, Tania!

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  2. This is such a cute idea, Marie! Very creative! Pinned!

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  3. I would buy this Marie! It's fantastic!

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    1. That means a lot that you feel this way about my DIY tree, Kim! I've added twinkling fairy lights to it so we have some Christmas happening. The big tree goes up this weekend.

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  4. Adorable. I would love this in my home!

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  5. I am about to go hunting for pallets to make some faux door trees for our front porch, so this is very inspiring for me. I have been to Michaels twice looking for stencils but did not find anything, certainly nothing as nice as funky junk stencils. Awesome project Marie.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Leanna, glad you like it! Donna certainly designs adorable and unique stencils. Have fun making your pallet door trees!

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  6. Most people would have thrown the pieces out. I love that you used the slats to make a one of kind Christmas tree.

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    1. Thanks Erlene, much to Mr. Frugalista's dismay, nothing goes to waste around here.

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  7. Oh, I love this tree! And I love how you just took that dropped bifold door in stride. :D I'm always saving random pieces of wood *just in case*. Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Love that you save random pieces of wood too, Amy! You just never know when they are going to be just what you need for a project.

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  8. I just know I have a perfectly good louvered door sitting in the garage somewhere that's may just accidently fall off a shelf Marie :D Such a great way to repurpose those slates and with all our purr babies, I can't take the risk of putting the real thing up so we love our tabletop trees.

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    1. You crack me up, Michelle. You can blame the fallen louvered door on the kitties!

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  9. Marie that is such a cute Christmas tree. I never would have thought to use the slats.

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    Replies
    1. Hi there my friend, I'm glad you like my slatty Christmas tree. LOL

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  10. I love this tree Marie and the stencils are beautiful. What a great idea for Christmas decor.

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  11. This is such a cute project! I'm a big fan of repurposing materials from other projects!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you very much, Candice! I love hearing from others who enjoy repurposing things to give them a new life.

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  12. ********************************************************
    Thank you for sharing at #OverTheMoon. Pinned and shared. Have a lovely week. I hope to see you at next week’s party too! Please stay safe and healthy. Come party with us at Over The Moon! Catapult your content Over The Moon! @marilyn_lesniak @EclecticRedBarn
    ********************************************************

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  13. This is adorable Marie! Thanks so much for sharing it with us at Farmhouse Friday!

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