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Make a festive, stylized Christmas tree for use indoors or on a front porch.
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Clamp a terra cotta saucer on a piece of scrap wood for support. At the center, drill a 1/2-inch hole using a masonry bit. Repeat for the other saucer.
If you use a hammer drill with the masonry bit, switch off the hammer action to avoid shattering the terra cotta saucer. Press gently while drilling.
If you choose to paint the pots and saucers, spray on a coat of gray primer and let dry. Then apply at least two coats of spray paint (Red Queen shown) and let dry.
Place a nut on one end of the threaded rod and spin it to about 2 inches from the end. Add a washer on the 2-inch side and place that end through the hole in the top of the saucer. On the bottom, add a second washer and nut. Gently tighten the nut until the rod is firmly attached to the saucer.
On each gutter guard, fold the solid edge strips over until they’re 90 degrees to the perforated section to form a crease. You’ll need three strips for the large tree and one for the small tree.
Cut off the solid strips along the crease without damaging the perforated section. Repeat for each gutter guard.
For the large tree, join two full strips and another cut about 26 inches long for a finished length of about 94 inches. Overlay the ends of two strips and pass cable ties through the holes in both to form loops. Pull the loops tight and clip off the ends. Repeat to add the third section.
Starting with the small tree, insert the tip of the 24-inch rod through the center hole about four holes from the end. Count along 14 holes and insert the rod there, creating the first bottom loop. (Keep the loops tight at this point to feed the strips along the rod.) Count along 12 holes and insert the rod, then at 9 holes, 7 holes, 3 holes, and again at 3 holes, wrapping the end in a semicircle at the top. All of the loops should still be fairly tight at this point.
For the large tree, arrange the combined strips so the short section will go on last. Insert the 36-inch rod tip three holes up from the bottom of the strip. Count 25 holes up from there and insert the rod tip to make the first loop. Then count off the following distances and pass the rod through the hole at each: 18, 15, 14, 11, 11, 9, 9, 6, 6, and 6. Wrap the top in a semicircle to hide the end and insert the rod tip.
Gently slide the loops down the rod until they’re evenly spaced. The threads will help hold the loops in position. Repeat for the other rod. If necessary, wrap cable ties tightly around the rod next to the gutter guard to hold the loops in position.
Arrange ornaments around the saucer. If necessary, use hot glue to hold them in place. Then rest the saucer in the top of the pot. If wind will be a problem, use silicone sealant to hold the saucer in place.