Once your child starts preschool, you’re sure to learn from his/her teacher that toilet paper rolls are a precious collectable item. Don’t even think about throwing them out; they are the starting point for a variety of environmentally-friendly and economical arts and crafts projects.

And it turns out that toilet paper roll projects are not just for four-year-olds! If you’re a craftsy mom or dad, here’s a way you can turn this mundane object into a meaningful piece of art for your baby’s room: a Tree of Life. In Judaism, the Torah is referred to as the Tree of Life, because it is the source of our knowledge, history, and values. No doubt, this symbol of sustenance is a more-than-appropriate decoration for a Jewish baby’s room.

To create your Tree of Life you can work alone or enlist older kids to help, perhaps as a way to get them involved in the preparations for the arrival of a younger sibling or cousin.

You will need:

Toilet paper rolls
Craft glue (white glue)
Clothespins or paper clips
Scissors
A ruler, pencil, hammer, and nails (for mounting on the wall)
 

Instructions:

1.    Crush your toilet paper rolls so they are flat 


2.    Cut each roll into approximately 5 equal parts. You don’t have to be precise.



3.    Arrange the flattened, cut rolls on a surface, to create a tree pattern.. You’ll want to spend some time trying different shapes for your tree. 

tree of life
4.    Glue the parts where the rolls touch each other, and hold them together with clothespins or paperclips to dry. Let dry for 24 hours, then remove clothespins/paperclips. 


5.    Mount to the wall, with help from another adult. Hammer one nail into the wall, place the tree over that nail, and mark other places on the wall where you’ll need nails so that the tree can stay in place. You may need three nails, or even more, depending on the shape of your tree. Use a ruler to be sure the tree is level.
6.    Step back and enjoy!

Tali Buchler

Tali is a trained architect, artist, and mother of three who recently moved from Los Angeles to Israel. She blogs at www.matzoballsoup.com and www.growingupcreative.com .