Transform a log from a birch tree into a stunning DIY centerpiece with this simple birch vase tutorial!

Birch bark vases can be wonderful for any time of year, but they are especially pretty for fall and winter, when you’d naturally enjoy the white birch bark outdoors.

Learn how to make a birch vase of your own!

A birch vase on a dining table red berry branches inside.
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This past spring, I kept waiting and waiting for my favorite birch tree to bud, but it didn’t make it through the winter.

I have always loved the silvery white bark of a birch tree – it reminds me of the logs my Grandma had stacked next to her fireplace when I was growing up.

Birch bark also reminds me of the holidays. I love incorporating the logs as part of my Christmas decor, whether they are stacked in the fireplace, added to a planter with evergreens or even as part of a Christmas table setting.

Since the birch tree in our yard was going to have to be removed, I decided to use some of it for a few creative projects. One of them was this simple birch vase.

hole drilled into the center of a birch log to create a vase

DIY Birch Vase

I love the simplicity of this vase – yet it adds a striking touch. It’s the perfect neutral tone to work with any style of decor. I’m particularly partial to the pop of red from the berries, though, which really serve as a pretty wintery arrangement.

A homemade vase like this would also make such a beautiful gift. Even more so if it the wood came from somewhere significant, like a from a family member’s tree.

While I’m sad that my favorite tree is no longer, I’m happy to see it repurposed into something beautiful for my home that will continue to bring happy memories for many more years.

It fits seamlessly into this birch Christmas table setting which is casual and simple – how we often entertain!

A birch vase on a dining table red berry branches inside.

Materials

  • a birch log (or any other type of wood)
  • tri-flute drill bit
  • saw
  • sand paper

How to Make a Birch Vase

  1. Cut to Size – Saw a piece of branch down to the height needed. 10 to 14 inches is appropriate for a vase.
  2. Drill a Hole – Using the drill bit, drill a wide hole until about 2″ from the base of the branch.
  3. Sand – Sand the top to give it a smooth, beautiful finish.

Optional: Insert a glass vase or waterproof the interior if you plan to add fresh flowers.

Tips

  • Birch vases are not waterproof unless they are lined – or drill your hole large enough to slip a glass vase inside.
  • This technique will work equally well for a birch planter. Simply choose a larger birch branch and drill a larger hole to fit a plant inside.
  • Get tips and ideas for what type of flowers to use inside this vase here.
christmas table setting with neutral table cloth, branches and pinecones

Frequently Asked Questions

Will birch vases hold water?

No, not unless they are lined or waterproofed in some way.

Where can I buy birch branches to turn into vases?

Check out the birch logs for sale on Amazon and other online resources, or check your local garden centers and nurseries.

berries in a birch vase

Use this Birch Vase on a Winter Table

In lieu of a traditional table cloth, I used a piece of osnaburg. It imitates linen, without the expense. I never iron it and if there’s a hard to remove stain, I toss it without a second thought!

Rinsed pinecones from the yard make great place card holders for each place setting. I like to add pillows to each of the end arm chairs to add another layer and comfort.

This pretty birch vase and winter table was featured on Better Homes and Gardens! Click here to see more Christmas table setting ideas!

A simple winter table setting with berries & birch

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DIY Birch Vase

A simple but striking vase made from a birch log
Cook: 10 minutes
Total: 10 minutes
Servings: 1 vase
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Ingredients  

  • 1 birch log
  • sandpaper

Instructions 

  • Cut the birch log to the desired height for the vase.
  • Using the tri-flute drill bit, drill a hole in the center of the log until it’s approximately 2 inches above the base.
  • Sand the drilled edges for a smooth finish.
  • If using real flowers, place a glass container inside the vase or line it with plastic, first.

Equipment

saw
tri-flute drill bit

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25 Comments

  1. I love this! I also want to make these for centerpieces for my September wedding this year! However, someone told me that white birch will dry out and that I shouldn’t cut it down until a couple months before the wedding. Has your vase held up? Do you think I should wait to cut down the birch? Or do you think the vases will hold up for 6 months + until September if we start making them now? Thank you in advance! I’d love to hear your opinion!

  2. These are so beautiful! I’m doing this with aspen logs that were cut down on my parent’s property. What do you recommend for waterproofing the inside?

    1. That will be beautiful! There’s no perfect way, but you can drill the hole wide enough to insert a slim vase or use a sealer, like tung oil.

  3. Hi there, I am attempting to make these vases for my July wedding, but we can’t quite get the hole to be as large as yours appears to be. How did you do this with the tri-flute drill bit? Ours only has about a 1 1/2″ diameter opening, which doesn’t seem to be large enough for wedding flowers. Any advice?

    1. Congratulations on your engagement, Kristi! That’s how large our opening is as well…experienced florists can fan out flowers with a small opening, but you can certainly use a larger bit {like one for creating door knobs} to make a larger opening. I hope that helps! I’d love to see them when they’re done!

  4. This is beautiful! I’ve always loved birch trees and this seems like the perfect DIY to bring them into the home. Love the way you decorated as well 🙂