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How to Make Miniature Trees for Dioramas or Model Railroads

This is a tutorial on how to make miniature trees using commonly found materials like felt. You just need a few basic things.

There is a video tutorial on this project at the bottom of the page.


The completed trees

Making trees is pretty easy. You just need a few materials. And in this tutorial I will give you a few helpful suggestions and hints.


  • A power drill
  • some thin wire, florist wire works great for this
  • Some type of fluffy fabric material. Chenille is great for this or you can use felt or terrain materials.
  • A wire brush if you are using felt
  • Scissors
  • Note, Different colors of fabric would be great for this, differing shades of green work great

The tools and materials


A miniature tree


Here is a look at one of the trees we made. This one uses two different shades of green which gives it a terrific look.


Wire brush the felt

If you are using felt or some other kind of soft fabric a wire brush will remove it and make it very nice for tree making. Just firmly brush it with the wire brush.


line up the pieces

Step 1 is to cut several pieces of the texture like this. The pieces get progressively narrower toward the top of the tree.


Twist into the wire

Put the pieces on top of the wire then fold the wire right over them like this. That bottom end with the loop is the trunk of the trees.


Put in the drill

Now put it in the drill. You can bunch those different pieces up a little bit to make the tree fuller.


Drill it

Now hold the end with something and drill it!


Trim to shape

Then trim to a nice shape with scissors.


Dip in snow

If you want a winter scene you can then spray the trees with a spray on adhesvie or even hair spray and dip them in artificial snow. Woodland scenics makes a very nice artificial snow:


Soft Flake Snow Shaker, 57.7 in3



insert into landscape

That's It! Once your tree dries it is ready. Punch a hole in the surface of the terrain and glue the tree right into it.



Snow in a diorama scene

How to make snow in a diorama

How to make snow in a diorama Here is a great tutorial submitted by a web visitor. It shows you how to make realistic (and durable) snow from scratch.


Wire bonsai tree

Make a Bonsai Tree out of Wire

I show you how to make a realistic looking bonsai tree out of simple materials like wire, aluminum foil, and pencil shavings. How to make a wire bonsai tree.


The changing tree diorama

The Changing Tree Diorama

I created this tree with some special effects that are different including smoke around the base and stars that light up in the background. I also made this diorama so that the tree could follow the seasons over the course of the year. The Changing Tree Diorama


Game of thrones diorama

We made a whole lot of winter trees for the Game of Thrones Diorama. You can check out that project here: Make a Game of Thrones Diorama of the wall and Castle Black



You can watch the video on this project:



Will's Book on Diorama Making

Will's Book

How to Make Fantasy and Medieval Dioramas

This books shows you how to make fantasy and medieval dioramas using many commonly available tools and materials. There are over 100 pictures and illustrations showing you how to make great dioramas in fantasy and medieval styles. Chapters include basics, water effects, terrain tips and special effects like electricity and small motors. Tutorials include how to use foam, plaster of paris and paper mache to make great looking dioramas.