Saturday 15 December 2012

MAKE STUFF: DIY Christmas Tree Ornaments of Dough

This Christmas season, I showed my two mini-human friends Blueberry (2.5 yrs old) and Max (8 yrs old) how to make their own Christmas tree decorations. This is a very simple craft, but can make for some wonderful 'fails'--the kind you hold onto forever because they're just so bad. (I have, just for fun, posted some of my other ornament fails at the bottoms of this post for your gratuitous enjoyment.)

Note that I take no credit for this recipe: it's as old as time.

4 cups flour
1 cup salt
1-ish cup water
Cookie cutters
Craft supplies including acrylic paint (tempera will be too wet)

Mix the dry ingredients together, then slowly add the water. You're aiming for a bread dough consistency, because if it's too wet, it will be too sticky to work with.

Roll out handfuls onto wax paper or tinfoil until the dough is about 1/8" thick. Don't go too thin, because your pieces will crack. On the flipside, if they're too thick, they tend to puff up quite insanely.

Use the cookie cutters to cut out shapes. Stab holes into the tops so they'll bake up with a hole to hang a hook or ribbon. You'll get a ton of ornaments out of this quantity of dough.

Bake the ornaments at 325*F for 60 minutes. The baking takes so long that we left the decorating for the next day.
Blueberry's masterpiece involves wooden
farm animals she found in my craft box.
And red and army green paint. And more.

Decorating can be whatever you want. I will let Blueberry's masterpiece speak for itself here: you can call this a Pinterest Fail waiting to be posted, but it's wonderful in a terrible way. I won't even show you the others, because the important message here is that you can have fun and create keepsakes even if they all come out completely insane.


Okay, as promised, here are some of my other past ornament fails that, because they're so terrible they made me laugh, have maintained a place on my tree...

Made from Sculpey with a mini female gingerbread-man cookie cutter, these might have been okay if I hadn't done the eyes with puffy paint. Now they look like hula girls that were jettisoned into space and are now imploding.

Desirous of an entirely tropical-themed tree, I figured I could just paint a bunch of shells silver and gold, and put gems on them. Well, I could and did do that, but should have? You be the judge.

I had green feathers and a cardboard box. I cut out the trunks, made palm leaves of the feathers, and stuck gems on as decorations. My former roommate's cat ate most of these ornaments. The last couple are hung every year as an example of what can be done when you have limited crafting supplies and no taste.

MUSIC OF THE MOMENT: Christians & the Pagans, by Dar Williams

1 comment:

Might I suggest you copy/paste your comment before you hit 'submit', just in case the internet gremlins eat your first attempt? :)

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