Tree bark art and crafts

Little girl making bark rubbing
Go bark rubbing and make tree bark art (Photo: Dan Lee/WTML)

Tree bark helps protect the inside of the tree. And as the tree gets older, its bark gets more knobbly and cracked, providing lots of hidey holes for little creatures such as insects.

Bark can be beautiful, and that makes it a great choice for making natural crafts. But don’t strip the bark directly off the tree as that could harm it. Use the bits that are lying around on the ground instead.

Bark rubbing

Finished bark rubbing picture framed by leaves
Frame your bark rubbing with autumn leaves (Photo: Dan Lee/WTML)

Be a bark artist and explore the different patterns and textures of tree trunks by having a go at bark rubbing.

It's really simple - you just need to head to the wood armed with some paper and crayons.

Try layering colours to make a rainbow print, and add rubbings from different trees.

Bark tea light holder

Use craft glue to stick some pieces of bark around the outside of a glass jar. Leave spaces in between so when the light shines through, you’ll get some interesting shapes.

Pop a tea light inside and enjoy the lovely glow on an autumn evening.

Bark boat

Bark boat
Set sail on your bark boat (Photo: iStock.com/vaitekune)

Bits of bark are often curved so look out for the perfect piece and have a go at making bark boat.

Add a twig mast and leaf sail - and don't forget your pebble passengers!

Then all you need to do is find a stream or big puddle to see how well it sails. 

Autumn tree collage

Gather some bits of bark and colourful autumn leaves. Stick the bark on a large piece of paper to make the trunk and then add the leaves to create your tree.

As an alternative, you could get some paint colour charts, choose the lovely autumn colours, and cut leaf shapes from them. Remember to take care with the scissors though!

Rustic bark frames

Decorate a plain picture frame with pieces of bark using craft glue – you’ll need your jigsaw skills to make them all join up so there aren’t any big gaps. Your frame will be just right for a picture with a nature theme.

If you'd like more inspiring seasonal activities delivered straight to your door, make sure you become a Nature Detective.

What's your favourite bark craft?

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