How to Make a TinkerToy Kid's Christmas Tree

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I love to have a little side Christmas tree for my kids to decorate with their own ornaments...the ones that don't really match with what I had in mind for our big tree. :) Sometimes they'll keep it in their room or we'll have it on a side table in the living room. This little Tinker Toy tree is easy and fun to make, never drops needles, and turns back into a toy after the holiday!

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I first made one as a prop many years ago when I was an editor at Martha Stewart Kids for a craft story about buttons. This idea was, for the absolute easiest ornament, string up buttons in all sizes to decorate a tiny tree!

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SUPPLIES
-  TINKERTOY 30 Model Super Building Set – 200 Pieces, (We used our classic wooden TinkerToy set which you can find it on eBay!) 
- 4 spools
- 13 yellow rods
- 13 blue rods
- 5 red rods
- 5 green rods
- 1 coupling

INSTRUCTIONS (These are loose instructions and can be adapted to whatever sizes and colors you have in your set. You can see that I made my tree differently than I did in the older photo from Martha Stewart Kids.)

  1. Start by making the base. Alternate blue and yellow rods in the spool. Place a green rod in the middle. 
  2. On the next level, alternate red and green rods around the spool. Top with the red rod.
  3. The next tier, use only blue rods. On the last tier, use only yellow rods. Top the yellow rod in the middle of the spool with the coupling piece.

I hope you and your kids will try making this fun tree. Happy building!

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