I get the opportunity to teach you how to make a fake palm tree. I was asked to decorate for our Vacation Bible School, which was to be set in Athens. Therefore, part of the set design was to be palm trees. Luckily, our MOPS group had already made some palm trees for their Hawaiian themed auction, so I was able to use all the ideas and some of the materials they had to move forward with this project. Due to this, there are a couple steps where I won’t have a picture as part of the tutorial. However, contact me if you have any questions. I am always wiling to help.
If you are looking for tree ideas, and this doesn’t quite fit the style, come see how I made a 3D tree out of pool noodles.
The first thing you will need to do is visit a carpet store and ask for their carpet rolls (no carpet on the roll, of course). This will become the trunk of your palm trees. I don’t have a picture of the next phase, but you will add brown paper – comes on a roll. I think the best place to find it would be a hardware store. You will wrap it around and scrunch it to give the look of the palm tree base.
To get the carpet roll to stand, we put them on microphone stands.
You will want to collect a bunch of old umbrellas. They can be broken. I liked have a variety of sizes as I wanted a variety of sizes of palm trees. Just throw the need out there on Facebook, and I’m sure there will be people who have some they’d be willing to donate.
You will stick these umbrellas into the top of the tree. They become your branches.
I made two different looks of palm tress based on the materials I had on hand. We had a bunch of fake palm-like branches. You will want to use wire clippers to cut these apart so you have individual strands.
I used basic scotch tape to tape these onto each of the umbrella arms. I worked from the bottom up, using 3-4 individually cut branches for each palm branch. This was my favorite look and what I used for the stage since it looked more realistic.
For the paper palm leaves, I found a bunch of these straws at the church. I used that and green butcher paper.
I cut out the shape of a palm leaf to the desired size and taped it to the individual arms of the umbrella. Then, I taped on the straws to act as both the veins and the support to help prevent the leaves from falling limp.
This is the final result of the stage for VBS. I wish I had brought my camera rather than just my phone. Sorry for the lack of quality in the pictures. The background cloth we bought from the VBS distributor. We also purchased the paper pillars from them. Those we attached to a carpet roll on a microphone stand and used fake plants from around the church to disguise the base. The fake palm trees I made and other fake plants were on the outer edge to cover other parts of the stage.
The fake palm trees with the paper leaves were used in the entrance area to help set some of the tone for the Athens feel.