this alternative christmas tree by woodrepublic is the seventh one in the project i’m running on the blog until christmas day. i’m very excited to show you the 7+1 alternative christmas trees! we are trying to show you that we can celebrate with little to no costs, only with some patience and a bit of imagination. are you in?

woodrepublic is grigore mitrea. i will not say more. he introduces himself and his tree below:

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“i am a woodworker. i’m split everyday between awe and amazement about trees. how they grow and what they do for the planet. and how we benefit them. and the need to cut and work wood. granted there is some cognitive dissonance floating around my shop. the result is that i save every bit of scrap wood i find. and i generally hoard wood. and i procrastinate as much as can before every project, before i actually make the first cuts into the wood.

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my tree is called nature always does it better. i took a part of the trunk of an old christmas tree. i found in the garbage last year and saved it. i bore many holes into it. each hole received a vine cutting from a trimming i did recently. the decorations are dried hops from this summer.

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there is a disheartening feeling i get more and more every year when i pass by places selling christmas trees. i’m thinking the tradition of christmas trees has its roots somewhere in northern europe. it came from the  adulation of oak in germanic and nordic traditions. then came  the replacement of oak with fir by the christians who saw the trinity in the triangular shape. there are even stories about saint boniface cutting a great big oak. donar’s oak was sacred for the pagan tribes. and boniface cut it in order to prove that god was greater than their god, donar.

nevertheless, i guess that in the middle ages, in the dead of dark winter, it was good to look at a fir tree. it reminded people that nature was still alive and that summer would come once again.

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so adoring and adorning this survivor became in our time just a product for and of consumerist society. we plant the trees, let them grow for 10-15 years and then we cut them and use them for less than a month. we should definitely  stop this and start making christmas trees from recycled materials if we still want to keep this tradition. and maybe get back some of the older meaning in the yule celebrations.

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i was listening to this piece of music while i was writing this text. and i’d like to encourage you to take into consideration the points david suzuki makes in this video while enjoying your few days off.”

i love grig’s idea of finding a use for last year’s discarded trees. i even dream that if he’d stick the trunk in the ground, the tree would somehow come back to live. the vine will grow new leaves and tendrils. how would you like that?

photo credits: woodrepublic, grigore mitrea