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If you have someone as spontaneous as Scott in your life, you never know what wild and crazy idea they’re going to get excited about next. It could be Forrest Fenn’s treasure or maybe finding the next great fish recipe. This time, it was making our own wood reindeer decorations.
We recently set up our Christmas tree and had an extra pile of pine branches from trimming the bottom so it could fit in the stand. Rather than throwing the extra branches in the woods or wasting them in any way, Scott was excited about finding a project they’d be useful for.
So when Scott said to me, “Schteph, we’re going to be making reindeer!” I knew in fact, that we were going to be making reindeer.
They’re Fun For All Ages!
I’ll be the first to admit I get excited about Scott’s random ideas. When he’s into something he’s all in, so I know it’s usually going to be pretty great and a whole lot of fun. Plus, the only reason you’d know it is Christmas in our house is because of the tree in the corner and my stocking on a hook on the wall (thanks for sending that mom!) Other than that, our Christmas decorations are lacking. Our Christmas spirit, however, is in full force. So I was excited about adding some decorations to our cabin home.
The best part of this project is we got to do it with the kids. Scott has 6 nieces and nephews he thinks the world of. He’s always been crazy Uncle Scottie to them since the beginning of time. He can convince them to do almost anything, including dreaming really big and trying new things.
We had a sleepover with 4 of them and this was the big project Scott wanted to do while they were at our house. All of them, ages 7-15 were able to help in all or some ways. Even the youngest sawed his own reindeer (under Scott’s supervision of course).
Give this fun and super easy project DIY wood reindeer project a try. They make great Christmas decorations or could be given as a present! They hardly take any time to make and require just a few tools.
Make Your DIY Wood Reindeer Decoration
Make your reindeer your own. Use larger or smaller sizes than I suggest below to get the look you’re going for. What I have listed are just to give you some idea of what we did.
Tools & Supplies
- Swiss Army Knife saw (optional)
- Drill with various sized drill bits
- Wood glue (optional)
- Permanent marker (optional)
- 1-2 inch wide, 5-inch long piece of wood (body)
- 1-2 inch wide, 2-inch long piece of wood (head)
- 5 pieces from a small branch (4 legs, 1 neck)
- 3 small pine needle branches (antlers and tail)
Create Your Pieces
Use the handsaw to cut your body. Take the 1-2 inch wide piece of wood and cut it about 5 inches long.
Next, use the handsaw to cut the head. Cut a 2-inch long piece from a similar sized piece of wood. We used the same piece of wood to create both pieces.
Next, find a small branch and cut 4 legs each about 4 inches long. Some of us used the saw on the Swiss Army Knife because they were so much smaller and we had more control, while others used the handsaw for this cut.
Using the same branch or one similar in size, cut a piece 2 inches long for the neck.
Once you have your pieces, take your drill and find a drill bit that is slightly larger than the branches you’re using for your legs and neck.
On the body, drill 4 holes at an inward angle, about 1/2 – 1 inch deep for each for the legs.
On the opposite side of the body from where you drilled the legs, drill the hole for your neck 1/2 -1 inch deep.
On the head piece, drill a hole 1/2 an inch deep for the neck that will connect to the body.
Next, assemble the 4 legs, neck, body, and head together. Use the wood glue if you want something more permanent. Or skip the glue for easy storage!
Finally, change your drill bit so it is slightly larger than the branches you will use for the antlers and tail.
Drill two holes for the antlers at an angle on the top of the head.
Drill another hole for the tail, on the backside of the body.
Assemble remaining antlers and tail and voilà! your super simple DIY reindeer.
Other Fun Ideas
Some of us used the permanent marker to make a face. The 7-year-old used it to make abs.
Scott added on a little button nose using a tip from a branch and the wood glue.
My head piece had some bark that stuck with it when I made the cut. I thought it looked like a ponytail so I left mine!
I hope you enjoy this project as much as we did! It was a spur of the moment idea that turned out even better than we thought it would!