A decorative family tree is a wonderful way to present your own personal family history. First, you need to collect and sort some data about your ancestors. You can then proceed to enter your ancestors in the appropriate places in the family tree. You can use very simple templates that you file away. Or you can create a true work of art that you can hang up decoratively in your home. It’s entirely up to you.
Table of Contents
- 1 Research your family history
- 2 Create the family tree
- 3 Create a unique work of art
Research your family history
Write down all of the names of your ancestors that you want to include in your family tree.
Your family tree starts with you and then keeps fanning out. First, write down all the names of your immediate family. Then go to the next generation – your parents – and write down their dates. Make sure you don’t forget anyone. A family tree is a valuable piece of your personal family history. So take your time and work with concentration. Write your name, as well as the names of your siblings and parents. Write down the names of your grandparents and your aunts, uncles, and cousins. Write down the names of your great-grandparents, great-aunts, and great-uncles. Many people stop here, but your family tree can span as many (or as few) generations as you like.
Fill in the blanks by doing research.
The further back you go in your family history, the harder it becomes to come up with names. Only thorough research can help. This is a great way to get to know your ancestors better and learn about their circumstances. Ask older family members for more information. Find the names of your grandparents’ siblings, as well as the names of their spouses and children. Ask as many questions as possible. With any luck, you might be privy to some interesting (or even surprising) family secrets. Do research on the Internet on relevant genealogy sites (genealogy = genealogical research). There are many pages where you simply enter your name and the names of your parents. The pages will then search for your ancestors. However, some sites will only reveal their results to you after you have paid a certain amount for this information. But there are also free sites that can help you find your ancestors. Go to an archive and research old church books from the places where your ancestors came from.
Think about what additional information you want to include in your family tree.
It is advisable to include the birth and death dates of your ancestors in addition to their names. You can also note the date of baptism or the wedding day. As a result, each family tree gains in value and is ultimately an important, meaningful document of your family history. You can also add places of birth or places of residence.
Consider adding photos to your family tree.
If available, you could add a small passport photo to each name. This is particularly useful for family trees that are not so extensive since even small photos take up a lot of space overall. If you don’t have photos of all of your ancestors, you could list only your immediate family members with photos. Collect photos of as many family members as possible. Scan them and edit them with a photo editing program. They should all be at least the same size.
Create the family tree
Start with your generation.
You (together with your siblings) form the basis. Above that are your parents’ names. Basically, you can draw a family tree in two different ways: You can start at the bottom on a large sheet of paper and then work your way up (like a tree). Your family tree then expands more and more in width. Or you can start on the far left of a sheet and work your way to the right. This family tree can then, as usual, be read from left to right. No matter which option you choose, you enter the information: Write your name down. Write your parents’ names above it. Draw a line from your name to your mother’s name. Draw another line to your father’s name. Join your mother’s and father’s names with a horizontal line. If you have siblings, write their names and match them with your parents’ names. If your siblings are married: Write down the names of the spouses and connect them with the names of your siblings. If your siblings have children: Write down the children’s names and match them to their parents.
Now it’s the turn of the next generation.
Always connect the names of the married couples with a horizontal line and also draw lines from the parents to the children. Write the names of her parents (your maternal grandparents) above your mother. Write the names of your father’s parents above his name. Connect your grandparents to the names of your mother’s or father’s siblings. Add the names of your aunts and uncles’ spouses. Add the names of the children (your cousins) to the names of your aunts and uncles.
Proceed to the next generation.
Some people stop there, especially if they have very large families and there isn’t enough space on paper for another generation. However, if you want to continue your family tree, then you now enter the names of your great-grandparents. Be sure to connect married couples and children with appropriate lines. Enter the parents of your maternal grandparents. (These are your great-grandparents). Enter the parents of your paternal grandparents. (These are also your great-grandparents). Add the names of all siblings – your great aunts and uncles. Enter the names of the spouses and children of your great-aunts and uncles.
Think about how far back you want to go.
Perhaps by now you have taken a liking to genealogical research and would like to trace your family history back as far as you can find relevant records. The possibilities of recording a family tree on paper may be limited, but since we live in the digital age, this is no longer a problem.
Create a unique work of art
Beautify your family tree however you like.
Now that you’ve gathered all the names and dates, it’s time to prepare the family tree in a way that you can proudly present to your family. Draw the family tree in pencil on a large piece of paper. Now use different colors and/or pens to trace all the lines or write the names in fair copy. You can also add ornate embellishments. There are no limits to your imagination. Here are a few suggestions: Turn all connecting lines into twigs and branches. Write each name on a different leaf of your tree. The children’s names could be written on apples or berries. Create a unique family galaxy: You write the names of your ancestors on planets and stars. Your name could be the “sun”. Create a Family Neighborhood: Write each name in a small house. The connecting lines are the streets.
Use software to create a digital family tree.
With the right software, you can create an attractive family tree without having to illustrate it yourself. Most programs offer you a wealth of different options. Start an internet search with the keyword “free family tree” or “free family tree template” and choose a suitable template to enter and print out.
You can also have your family tree drawn by an artist.
paint. There are artists who specialize in family trees and can cater to almost any customer request (names in calligraphy, gorgeous backgrounds, etc.) Search the internet for suitable artists (“have family tree drawn”). Before hiring an artist, it’s a good idea to see previous work to make sure their style suits you and your family.