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Hand-Lettered Family Tree

The design of this tree is a simple arrangement of names in white ink on brown paper. It is an easy and rewarding project to work on with your children.




  1. Step 1

    Begin by forming the tree's trunk with all the names of the present generation of siblings.

  2. Step 2

    Create two branches, which move off to the left and right, to represent each parent; the length of each person's name will determine the length of each of the branches. Annotate their marriage date with a little twig that shoots off from the base of where these branches join.

  3. Step 3

    Grandparents, great-grandparents, and so on form the subsequent splits in the branches. Each V marks a spot where two people were joined in marriage. At the base of each split, mark the marriage date with a little twig.

Martha Stewart Living, Volume 68 April 1999



Reviews (3)

  • momo6 19 Mar, 2012

    This is quite an unattractive version of family tree art made with names. Check out to see some really nice ancestry trees. They also do descendant trees! You can get 2, 3, 4, or 5 generations included. I've tried to recreate the look, but I can't. Their artists do superb work.

  • rprimeau95 14 Sep, 2010

    which their was a close up of this to see the names better I am a bit unclear how to do the branching off

  • no1maga 27 Mar, 2008

    I think this is a great way for the family tree to be seen, names but names are so important - esp. to the little grandkids that are so fasinated by grandpa and grandma