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Muddy Faces

Make a Yule log

An activity using tools to saw and split a piece of wood and then it's ready to decorate for Yule

Art & Creating


Yule is also the name of the old Winter Solstice festival and traditionally it would have been a carefully selected tree to burn through the 12 days of Christmas.

You could keep the log on site through December as a discussion starter for conversations around winter and the nights drawing in, or make one each to take home as a centrepiece for Christmas dinner!

What you'll need

  • log
  • (mallet and billhook if you are splitting a log)
  • palm drill or hand drill
  • universal/wood drill bits
  • natural materials
  • secateurs

This activity has been provided by

Environmental Considerations

Consider the environmental impact of preparing, carrying out & completing this activity. Could this impact be reduced? Specific considerations for this activity could include:

  • gathering natural materials - forage carefully
  • leave no trace

Health & Safety Considerations

Follow your usual operating procedures and carry out appropriate risk benefit assessments.
Some considerations particular to this activity include:

  • holly berries are toxic and should not be ingested
  • tool use
  • candles & flammable items
Art & Creating

Step #1 Find a log and cut to size

Cut a log to size (good for sawing practice) and split it if you want a flat base.

We already had a spilt log to cut to size but it is an activity in itself to split a log and a more advanced skill. Such a fun and satisfying activity to split a log with a billhook and a mallet!

Art & Creating

Step #2 Drill some holes

Use a palm drill or a hand drill to drill a selection of holes in the top of your log. The holes need to be deep enough to support the natural materials you've gathered.

Look at our palm drill and hand drill guides for more information about using these tools.

Art & Creating

Step #3 Decorate with natural materials

Gather some natural materials to decorate your log. Festive holly and ivy are a good combination and you can also tie the ivy around the log.

Stick a birthday candle in one of the holes and celebrate by singing some songs or telling some stories around your Yule log.

Disclaimer: Muddy Faces cannot take any responsibility for accidents or damage that occurs as a result of following this activity.You are responsible for making sure the activity is conducted safely.

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