Manipulated Fabric Christmas Tree

It’s that time of year again when crafters’ minds are concentrating on Christmas and all the goodies they can make for family and friends, as well as for themselves, or even for sale.

The tutorial I created for the Folded Fabric Christmas Tree proved so popular that I have decided to repost it. it will save anyone having to trawl through my old post to find it! [That’s my good deed for the day!]

I still haven’t figured out how to include a link to a .pdf file so, if you want a printed copy, I’m afraid you will have to copy and paste it all. Apologies but I am not able to deal with requests for a .pdf file for the foreseeable future.

Have fun making the tree and I hope you will send me pictures if you do make one.

Manipulated Fabric Christmas Tree

Materials required:

  • Two different designs of Christmas fabric (I have used a red design and a green design and will refer to these throughout.)
  • Cotton thread in complementary colour(s)
  • Scraps of brown felt and red felt
  • Beads for embellishment (if desired)
  • Rotary cutter
  • Quilter’s ruler
  • 60° triangle template
  • Pins
  • Hand sewing needle
  • Beading needle
  • Fabric glue
Tools and materials needed to make a
Manipulated Fabric Christmas Tree
Additional items required to make the tree

Trim the ends of each piece of Christmas design fabric to ensure they are straight.

Creating a straight edge on fabric

Cut a strip of fabric measuring 33” x 6” from the green fabric and from the red fabric.

Measuring and cutting fabric strip
Using your 60° triangle template or, alternatively, the 60° line on your quilting ruler, cut ten triangles measuring 6” on all three sides from each strip.
Measuring triangles
Cutting triangles from fabric
Cutting fabric using rulers and
rotary cutter
You will now have 10 red 60° triangles and 10 green 60° triangles, all with sides measuring 6”. This photograph shows ten pairs as I cut double thickness.
Red and green fabric triangles ready
for folding
Place one red triangle and one green triangle right sides together. Pin them together as shown by the red triangle in the picture below.
Place one triangle of each colour together
with right sides facing

Stitch the triangles together, leaving a gap along one side of approx 2.5”, for turning.

Stitching triangles together
Leave a gap in the stitching for
Snip off each of the points being careful not to cut your stitching.
Snipping the points off the
Turn the triangle so that the right sides are on the outside.
Turning the triangles inside out
Ensure points of triangle are neatly

Press the triangle, making sure that the opening is neat and level.

Press the triangles

Neatly hand stitch the gap closed.

Hand stitch the gap closed
Repeat these steps for all the triangles. You will have 10 double-sided triangles.

Take one of the triangles and fold it in half so that you have a right-angled triangle with points 1 and 2 together.

Finger press the fold.
Fold in half into a right-angled triangle again so that points 2 and 3 are together.
Finger press the fold to find the centre of the triangle.

Finger press the fold
Fold one of the points so that it touches the centre of the triangle, where you have made your creases. Stitch in place.
Fold one point over to the centre of the

Likewise, fold and stitch the second and third points in place at the centre. This will create a hexagon shape.

Fold second point into centre
Repeat with third point

Turn the resulting hexagon over. Find the centre of one of the edges of the original triangle (rather than a new folded edge) and fold it in to the centre of the hexagon. Stitch in place.

Folding the first edge to the centre

Repeat the previous step with the other two original edges.

Fold second triangle edge to the centre
Repeat for third edge

You will now have a piece as shown in these two photographs below.

Make each of your triangles into this shape, making sure that you fold the fabric in the same way each time so that all finished triangles have the same fabric on the front.

**The two shapes below have been folded in the two different ways to show the contrasting end result.**
Triangles folded from front and from back

Now begin to construct your tree as follows:

Take two of your triangle shapes and place them side by side with one red fold on each lined up as shown in the picture below.
Place two triangles abutting at one corner edge

Place the triangles with right sides facing and stitch the red fold line firmly together.

Tutorial for Stitch triangles together firmly
Repeat this step to stitch all the triangles together to create the tree shape below.
Two rows of triangles stitched together
The reverse of the tree shape when all
triangles have been stitched together
Take your scraps of felt and pinking shears.

Cut a bucket shape from the dark brown felt, a tree trunk from the light brown felt and two decorative strips from the red felt, using the pinking shears.

Cut trunk and bucket shapes from felt
Stick the red decorations and the trunk onto the bucket.

Stick stripes onto bucket
Place trunk onto the back of the
centre of the bucket 
Secure trunk with PVA glue

To create the hanging loop, cut a strip of dark brown felt measuring 4” x 0.75”. 

Cut felt to make hanging loop
Fold it in half along its length then form a loop, as shown above.
Front view
Rear view
Stitch in place at the top of the tree.
Stitching hanging loop in place
When the glue has dried on the bucket, sew two lines of running stitch on each red stripe. (Sorry, the stitching does not show up very well.)
Stripes on bucket
Attach the trunk and bucket to the tree by stitching on the reverse.

Stitch trunk into position
The tree is now complete but you may wish to embellish it further.

The completed Christmas tree

I decorated my tree by threading four beads together and hanging them in each gap, as shown.

Stitching bead embellishments
to tree
Hanging bead detail
Hanging bead embellishments
on tree

Manipulated fabric Christmas tree complete
with bead decorations
** This tree was made using fabrics generously supplied by:


12 thoughts on “Manipulated Fabric Christmas Tree

  1. The pattern on C&C this morning sold out before I could order then I read the forum mail and saw your message. I was so pleased to see your excellent tutorial and will be looking out my christmas fabrics and having a go. Thank you so much.


  2. It did take me a long time to make, Maureen, but I have now seen an excellent time-saving tip: using one length of thread, catch each tip of the triangle with a stitch and draw them into the centre, then stitch in place. Do the same with the centres of the three edges. That would save a lot of time… especially if you are like me and takes ages when hand sewing!


  3. Dina, it's a lovely tutorial! I really like this Christmas tree. These triangles are also pretty on its own, I think they can be used as Christmas decorations for many things like gift wrapping, napkin rings, garland… Thank you for the tutorial!


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