Since I live in an apartment building we are not allowed to have live trees, it is like they are a fire hazard or something. In stay of buying one of those awful plastic things that vaguely resemble a pine tree I have decided that it is far more fun to get a bit more creative with the whole holiday decoration process. Last year I made a Donkey Kong themed tree and this year I went chalk board.
3/4" thickness. 2 Sheets of 4'x8'. I know it is kind of crappy but plywood is crazy expensive for this.
YOu can also make this with no-sand grout and matte latex paint. I think it is 1tsp for 1qt of paint.
You just need a few for the base. I used 12 2" wood screws.