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Sunday, October 31, 2010

How to make an unique family tree

Families fit rarely into ready sablons, so when I tried to fill our family tree for Mila's baby book I noticed it would be better to make our own tree. Then you can make it as wide as you like, or just choose those closest relatives. 


You need: 
- blanket or other fabric to be a tree trunk and grass
- 3-4 colored paper napkins for leaves.
- Paper plates, as many as close relatives. Tip: if you like ornaments a lot, use white paper lace! 
+ what ever you like to decorate your tree. Is your family tree full of paper hearts, real fruits, candles, or personal items to symbol your family members. 

The building tree is easier if you make a first draft to paper. Use just names and list them in a form of tree. Start from to top of tree and put there the baby, then parents, grandparents etc. Add siblings.  Just like you would draw a mind map.

When you are building an actual tree, notice that you can use the bigger plates for close relatives and smaller ones for the siblings. If you have a huge family, aunts and cousins don't need a plate, you can use smaller symbols, or cut smaller round circles from light colored paper/ paper napkins. Make tree leaves from napkins. Just twofold them and cut from the fold half of leaf, so you get multiple leaves from one cut when you separate the layers of napkin. 





Photo example with teddy bears
After taking your photo, you may adjust color & lighting and add names or photographs in the picture by photoshop. If you use elliptical marquee-tool, you can get round headshot cut out from pictures. In my version those bigger plates are good for about 85x85pixels photos and smaller ones 60x60pixels. Pictures don't have to be perfectly round. You can also print photo out and add relatives by hand writing.


Example with photoshop names. 


And voilà, personal and unique Family Tree is ready!
PS you can also add ancestors in the "roots" if you like.  Just make a rocks or little signs there to make a space for the info.
In our family tree there would be  many Viking kings from Norway, King Gustav I of Sweden, Jaakko Ilkka, Finnish leader of the Peasant Rebellion and from my side there's just a big bunch of simple farmers from North Karelia. Well, maybe few of my greatgreatgreat uncles and distant cousins have been artist and painters, but that's it. And probably there has been some finnish pagans before northern crusade. So I began to feel that this great offspring of noble savages has stolen this simple Karelian maid, and history still repeats itself...haha.






41 comments:

  1. i love family histories)
    thanks for sharing!

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  2. lol This is just so gorgeous, and your last bit of journaling had me giggling..
    I dont think the maiden minds does she?

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  3. superb, as everything you touch!!

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  4. Thanks for sharing this lovely idea. I became really interested in my family history when I had my first child, I wanted to know the stories so I could pass them onto her - let her know where she's from and where she fits! I've uncovered amazing stories!

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  5. What a great idea! And so cute and beautiful! Thank You for sharing with us.

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  6. your imagination is in high gear...I love this...might try it...not sure I have the necessary blankets...so might have to use my imagination too...LOL

    Please tell me you're going to do a book with all your wonderful creativity in it...

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  7. What a beautiful idea! My mother has done a lot of family history, I might create something like this as a gift for her birthday. I love your imagination and creativity!

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  8. Fantastic! I am gonna share your post with my genie friends!

    Sure miss your photos, but, soooo soooo glad to see your creativity in new ways!

    Thanks!

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  9. link:

    http://www.reflectionsfromthefence.com/2010/10/milas-family-tree.html

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  10. Most excellent - I am going to pass this on to my GeneaBloggers friends as well!

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  11. Ah they're plates! At first glance, I thought they were breast pads...you can tell what I spend my day doing...!

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  12. Your creativity is still amazing and such a wonderful idea for families to enjoy. Thanks so much for helping us out.
    Odie

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  13. What a cute tree! I love this idea. :)

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  14. So unique! Great idea - hope Mila's doing great, she should be very proud of her Mommy. :)

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  15. Simplemente genial!!!!!
    Eres maravillosa...sabes mi niña se llama Amalia y nació el 11 de abril del 2010 y disfrutamos mucho con tu arte ;)
    Gracias
    See you later

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  16. Just the inspiration I need!! Thank you Adele, it's very clever.

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  17. I love this! I'm going to have to try it and add to my kids baby books. It's good to see your creativity even though it doesn't include Mila in the photo, but I totally understand. I haven't started a blog because of the fear of photos being stolen. I hope you keep posting your ideas for us moms that are not as creative. So fun to see what you come up with.

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  18. I love this! It is a great idea and would definitely get a lot of comments in my family! You are an amazing artist!

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  19. My mother-in-law and I created a family scrapbook for her mother when she turned 100. (She is 101 3/4 now.)

    We made our own family tree with scrapbook paper, but in a similar way. Her great-grandparent and grandparents were the roots. Her parents were the bottom of the trunk and her sisters were saplings growing out of the bottom (only 1 had children, so they were small). Gramma and her husband were a carved heart in the middle and my MIL and her siblings were branches. My husband's generation branched off the larger branches and our generation's children are apples off those branches. Several close friends are birds and butterflies on the tree.

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  20. wow! so creative and beautiful!!! thanks for sharing!

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  22. I love your photo's! Want to try to recreate one or two with my little H one day, but they will never be as good. Great idea with the family tree as well.

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  23. I want to do this, and use the good china for the plates! Going to have to wait until naptime to set it up, though!

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  24. Love checking in on your blog - thank you for sharing your creativity!

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  25. very creative and helpfull
    thank you

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  26. What a wonderful family tree! As a Latter-day Saints (we're nicknamed "Mormon") and having done genealogical research for many years professionally, "Family Trees" are near and dear to my heart. Little Mila is so lucky to have you for a mom!

    - David

    Aloe Vera Juice Benefits
    Holistic Nutrition and Health

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  27. what a great idea. My cub Scouts are doing a history achievement and this is so much more interesting than a typical squares n lines diagram!

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  28. What a lovely idea! You are so very creative!

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  29. such a cute idea... but then again, I think all your ideas are super cute on this blog!

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  30. Soooo cute! Your creativity is so inspiring! I want to be you when I grow up. :)

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  31. Englanninkielessä aina isolla: Finnish

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  32. Hello Adele! I love your ideas, I congratulate you on your creativity and heart tell you you're a great artist. Clarissa.

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  33. Last time my uncle made a family tree including the relatives. It's really cool. I am a blogger on onkyo tx-nr809

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