Easy Christmas Craft: A Terra-Cotta Tree

All you need to create this Christmas tree is a few terra-cotta pots and a little paint. It's an easy way to add some elegant holiday spirit to your outdoor decor.

Terra Cotta Garden Tree

This unique Christmas tree is made from stacked terra cotta pots, and is a wonderful garden decoration for the holidays. It is simple and fun to make, and once the season is over you can use the pots for spring planting!


To create your terra-cotta Christmas tree you will need terra cotta pots in assorted sizes. They should stack comfortably when turned upside down, and get progressively smaller. You can use as many pots as you like, depending on how large you want your tree to be. You will also need white paint, along with whatever colors you want your dots to be, and a handful of cotton swabs.

Paint the Base Coat

Give your pots a quick rinse to remove any excess dust. Once dry, paint the outsides of all of your pots white. You can use spray paint, or brush the paint on. Either way you will need to apply a few coats to get a solid white. Let the paint dry completely before the next step.

Choose Your Colors

While the white paint is drying, choose the colors you want to use for the dots. We used silver, gold and beige along with a strong red for accent. Greens and reds will give your tree a more traditional feel, while brighter colors like pink or blue can be more trendy. Set aside a cotton swab to use to create the dots in each color.

Create a Guideline

When your pots are dry, turn them upside down and stack them with the largest on the bottom and smallest on top. While your pots are still stacked, begin adding dots by dipping the end of the cotton swab in the paint and then pressing onto the pot. Begin by starting at the top and continue down, creating one line of dots that wraps in a spiral around the tree.

Add More Dots

Once your first guide line is done, you can unstack the pots and work on them one at a time. Continue adding more dots of the same color, spreading them out from the guideline. Don't try to make it perfect, a little randomness is a good thing as long as you follow the general shape of the spiral.

Add More Color

Add more dots in different colors until you are satisfied with your pots. You may want to stack them again toward the end, to make sure that your dots line up across the different pots. Keep your dots dense around the center of the guideline, but space them out a little more towards the edges to create the illusion that they fade away.

Stack and Display

Stack your pots together and display them! For a smaller indoor version of the terra-cotta tree, use a series of small pots and leave the top one right side up. Fill it with a little succulent or other small plant to top off your tree.

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