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    The Tree of Happiness for newlyweds or for the eighteenth birthday – how to personalise it?

    Can the wire twigs of a tree of happiness only be decorated with coins or gems? Not at all! Once you’ve read this post, you will know how to make a tree of happiness for newlyweds or for the eighteenth birthday more personal.

    In some of my older posts, I wrote about the creative gifts we made each other with my friends for the eighteenth birthday. One friend received a magazine dedicated entirely to her. Another got a personalised diary. I took part in a treasure hunt. And only my third high school friend didn’t receive anything creative although already back then I had the idea of a personalised tree of happiness. Just like the photo comic for another high school friend, the tree had to wait no less than 14 years until another opportunity arrived: my friend got married. A personalised tree of happiness is as good a gift for an eighteenth birthday as for a wedding.

    How to make a personalised tree of happiness for newlyweds or the eighteenth birthday?

    First of all, you need a tree, which you can do yourself. You will easily find how-to videos on the Internet. As you might have already noticed, I am much more into personalisation than the typical DIY; therefore, I decided to buy a ready-made tree of happiness. Initially, I wanted a tree of happiness with coins, on which I intended to paste something. Such trees of happiness are, however, no longer in great supply, so eventually, I bought a tree with aventurines.

    Once you have your tree of happiness, you may start personalising it.

    1. Think of a dozen things that make the recipient(s) happy

    These may be abstract notions: love, friendship; hobbies: books, music, sport; or something that you associate with the recipient(s): black cat, programming, favourite band or book.

    2. Decide how to portray each of these things and create or find appropriate pictures on the Internet

    The more symbolic your picture is, the more legible it will be, which is especially important in the case of small trees of happiness.

    3. Set an appropriate size of the pictures

    In my case, each of them had to be less than 1 cm in diameter, so that it would pass for the tree’s “leaf”.

    4. Print and cut out the pictures

    Initially, I intended to paste the pictures upon leaves. Yet it turned out that my printer doesn’t accept thick sheets of paper, and ordinary ones could soak glue or look less than pleasing when sellotaped. Therefore, I gave up on this idea. Instead of that, I kept a tiny strip of paper next to each picture, with which I fixed them to the branches.

    5. Colour white surfaces

    While the fronts of the pictures are nice and colourful, the backs won’t look good if they remain white. Therefore, I coloured the backs green, so that they matched the aventurines, and the fastening stripes yellow, so that they merged with the golden wires of my tree of happiness for newlyweds.

    6. Stick a sellotape or apply glue to the fastening stripes

    7. Wrap the fastening stripes around branches so that the pictures face the front

    This step reminds me of decorating the Christmas tree. In my family many baubles are fastened with wires wrapped around branches. Just like with the Christmas tree, try to place pictures in prominent spots.

    How to present a personalised tree of happiness for the newlyweds or the eighteenth birthday?

    Both a wedding and the eighteenth birthday are the beginning of a new life stage. Therefore, the same inscription will be suitable:

    “Dear XY/ Dear Newlyweds! This is your tree of happiness. It is now small, but I believe that you will keep adding to it, and if you keep tending to it, your happiness will grow remarkably. Which is what I wish you from the bottom of my heart.”

    What are your ideas for the personalisation of a tree of happiness for the newlyweds or the eighteenth birthday?

    My advice:

    – If you make a tree of happiness for the eighteenth birthday, consider adding photos of family and friends. If you know the newlyweds well, you may try it too, provided that you include the friends of the couple or the number of photos from both sides will be equal.

    If your personalised tree of happiness is small, photos may be hard to see. I eventually gave up on them.

    It is easiest to check the size of pictures on paper, by putting them against the tree. Therefore, be ready to make several test prints.

    Cut fastening stripes on various sides: left, right, above and below the picture. If they are all on the same side, you will have limited fastening options.

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