How to: Make Sparkly, Glittery Animal Christmas Ornaments

by Chris Gardner

How to: Make Sparkly, Glittery Animal Christmas Ornaments

The inspiration for this easy holiday project came to me in a dream. I know, I know...that sounds like an elaborate and somewhat ridiculous setup for a blog post, but it's true, in this case. Sparing you the details, I'll just share the effect- in which I woke up a few days ago, and immediately felt compelled to Google "sparkly OR glitter platypus ornament". No results. Surprised?

At some point that day, I decided I couldn't bear to live...

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Curbly Original
The Final Countdown: Make a Hanging Ornament Advent Calendar

by Holly Wade
DIY Advent calendar
Photo by Holly Wade

Are you ready to start the countdown?! Come December 1st, it's time to break out the advent calendars and find a little surprise every day as you count town toward Christmas. Advent calendars were a staple of my childhood, so I still try to make a DIY advent calendar every year to make the countdown more fun! This time, I used plastic fill-able ornaments to make a hanging ornament advent calendar that's easy to open and reveal a candy or small trinket inside (my parents often used to use give my pennies). With a variety of sizes and colors, you can use materials that fit your style and hang it anywhere in your home for a Christmas decoration that's functional and FUN!    

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Curbly Original
3 Ways to Give Plain Ornaments a Stylish, Scandi Makeover

by Rachel Jacks
Scandi Christmas ornament makeover
Photo: Rachel Jacks

If you've ever been inspired by try a whole new color scheme or style in your Christmas decor, you may have been deterred by the fact that you'd have to replace all of the ornaments you already have. But with a little paint, you can give your ornaments a makeover, saving cash and keeping your old decor out of the landfill. Here's how I gave some glass bulbs a new look, three different ways. 

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Curbly Original
How to Decorate Your Tree in the Scandinavian Style with DIY Minimal Ornaments

by Marlene Sauer

 

DIY Scandinavian Ornaments
Images by Marlene Sauer

Finding minimal holiday decorations isn't always the easiest. Let's face it, this is not a season known for restraint! 

As my own decorating tastes are turning ever more minimal, I decided to take a cue from my favorite design style and make a few DIY Scandinavian-inspired ornaments. I just love how simple and natural this look is, while still being festive.

Keep reading to see how to make all three decorations so you can style your own minimal holiday tree!        

DIY Scandinavian-inspired ornaments

First up we'll make a super simple DIY wood bead ornament. It's so easy you don't even really need instructions, but for the sake of thoroughness, read on!

Materials

 

  • Wood beads in three different sizes
  • Metallic embroidery thread, or other string for hanging
  • Scissors
  • Optional: a needle with a large eye

Step

Cut a length of thread about 10 inches long, fold it in half, and tie a double knot about 1/3 of the way down. This forms the hanging loop.

Step

Thread three beads onto the string, largest to smallest. If you are using metallic embroidery floss, which unravels easily, it can be helpful to use a needle to guide the beads onto the thread.

Step

Tie a double knot under the last bead, then trim the ends. Voila! 

DIY Wood Bead Ornament

 


Now let's add a little color to our minimal Christmas tree with these DIY mini cranberry wreath ornaments. Aren't they just the cutest?

materials

 

  • Fresh cranberries
  • Floral wire
  • Strong scissors or wire cutters 
  • Waxed cotton cord, or other string for hanging

Step 1

Cut a length of wire about 10 inches long, and form it into a circle.

Step 2

Thread cranberries onto the wire until the ornament is the size you want.

Step 3

Close the "wreath" by twisting together the ends of the wire, like a twisty-tie. 

Step 4

Snip off the wire ends.

Step 5

Then attach a length of cord to hang the ornament. Done!

DIY Mini Cranberry Wreath


Finally, every tree needs a star or two. This DIY wood star tree topper looks fancy, but is really simple to make, promise. And I've included a printable template!

materials

 

  • 8-pointed star template
  • Balsa wood (I'm linking to it so you can see what I used, but balsa wood is much cheaper when purchased in a craft store, so you don't have to buy such large quantities!)
  • Craft knife
  • Pencil
  • Paint and brushes
  • Thick jewelry wire, 14 gauge or lower

Not pictured: a sturdy ruler, cutting mat, wire cutters, and a hot glue gun.

Step 1

Print the template onto cardstock, and cut out the three shapes (the square and the two points). You don't have to cut out the whole star, I just included it so you would know what the final piece should look like.

Trace the shapes onto balsa wood, and cut out using a craft knife and ruler. In addition to the square, you will need 4 large points, 4 small points, and 1 square.

Step 2

Paint the 4 small points with two coats of white paint. A shimmery metallic paint would also look nice!

Step 3

Glue the points of the star to the square, alternating the large and small points. 

If your cuts aren't completely accurate, you may have to trim the last piece a little to get it to fit. Don't worry, that happened to me, too!

Step 4

Cut a length of wire about 10 inches long, and form it into a spiral. I wrapped the wire around my index finger since that was about the size of the top of my tiny tree. Make sure to leave a long tail on the narrower end of the spiral.

Step 5

Glue the "tail" to the back of the star. You can adjust the width of the wire spiral to fit your tree. That's it!

DIY Wood Star Tree Topper

And just like that, you have a gorgeous, Scandinavian style tree for the holidays! 

DIY Scandinavian-inspired Ornaments

DIY Scandinavian-inspired Ornaments

DIY Scandinavian-Inspired Ornaments
Pin now, make later!

How do you like to decorate for the holidays? Are you a minimalist, or a maximalist?

Check out this post for more Scandinavian holiday decorating ideas!

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150+ Do-It-Yourself Ornaments You Can Make Before Christmas

by M.E. Gray

A mega roundup of DIY ornaments for your Christmas tree, whatever the theme may be!

Can you believe it? Christmas is coming up quick! The holiday season always seems to whizz right by, doesn't it? If you're feeling like you've missed out on the festivities, don't fret - there's still enough time to make some last-minute baubles and bits. We've rounded up a few (well, not a few - over 150!) of our favorite DIY Christmas ornaments that you can definitely get finished this weekend, and enjoy for Christmases yet to come.       

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Curbly Original
Make These: Pun-tastic Christmas Ornaments

by M.E. Gray

Punny, funny Christmas ornaments you can make

There's something about the holidays that invites silliness, right? Am I alone in this thinking? I enjoy a good pun any time of year, but I especially love and appreciate the Christmas-y ones. There's no shortage of groan-inducing jokes out there either (a quick internet search will show you that). A couple silly decorations will fit right in on your Christmas tree, plus they'll provide a nice chuckle. Keep reading to see how to make these punny Christmas ornaments, with printable designs!           

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Curbly Original
DIY Color Blocked Balsa Wood Ornaments

by Faith Provencher
DIY Color Blocked Balsa Wood Ornaments
Photo: Faith Towers Provencher

I love the holidays for many reasons, but my favorite is that they give you a good excuse to get super crafty. So when I walked by the balsa wood section at my local craft store, the wheels started turning. I came up with a fun project that uses paint and metallic tape to create totally unique color blocked triangular ornaments. Keep reading to find out how to make them yourself!   

 

DIY Color Blocked Balsa Wood Ornaments
Photo: Faith Towers Provencher

One of the greatest things about this project is that it uses wood but no saw. And while I have plenty of saws, I'm aware that not everybody does. So we'll use a plain old pair of scissors for this one. 

DIY Color Blocked Balsa Wood Ornaments
Photo: Faith Towers Provencher

Here's what you'll need for your ornaments:
 

  • Thin balsa wood, 1/16" thick works well
  • Acrylic craft paint
  • Scissors
  • Bakers twine
  • Pencil
  • Paintbrush
  • Washi tape or blue painter's tape
  • Metalized polyester film tape (not pictured)
  • Hot glue gun
DIY Color Blocked Balsa Wood Ornaments
Photo: Faith Towers Provencher

Begin by measuring out equilateral triangles on your balsa wood. Each edge of mine was 3.5 inches long. 

DIY Color Blocked Balsa Wood Ornaments
Photo: Faith Towers Provencher

Using a sharp pair of scissors, cut out the triangles. Be gentle, because wood this thin can easily split along the grain.

DIY Color Blocked Balsa Wood Ornaments
Photo: Faith Towers Provencher

Trim off the tops so they resemble trapezoids as shown above, and mask off sections using washi or blue painter's tape. Paint one section a darker color and let it dry.

DIY Color Blocked Balsa Wood Ornaments
Photo: Faith Towers Provencher

Remove the first piece of tape and place another one across that section to mask off another area to paint a different color. Let that area dry too and remove the tape.

DIY Color Blocked Balsa Wood Ornaments
Photo: Faith Towers Provencher

Next, add a piece of metalized film tape across the area where the two colors meet. Trim the ends of the tape, leaving a bit of excess to fold onto the back side.

DIY Color Blocked Balsa Wood Ornaments
Photo: Faith Towers Provencher

Put a small line of hot glue across the top of the ornament, as neatly as you can. Quickly attach a piece of twine and let it dry. Then tie a knot at the top so the twine creates a triangle shape that completes the triangle formed by the wood.

DIY Color Blocked Balsa Wood Ornaments
Photo: Faith Towers Provencher

And you're finished! I love the way the hanger integrates into the ornament, forming the top part of the triangle. 

DIY Color Blocked Balsa Wood Ornaments
Photo: Faith Towers Provencher

The tape gives them a fun pop of metallic color, giving them some serious style. You could try making these with other paint colors too, for a completely different look. Have fun with it!

 

DIY Color Blocked Balsa Wood Ornaments
Share this post on Pinterest! [Photo: Faith Towers Provencher]

 

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Curbly Original
Make It: Festive Gingerbread Gift Toppers that Double as Christmas Ornaments!

by Stephanie Lee

Make it: Festive gingerbread gift toppers that double as Christmas ornaments!
There’s something really fun about wrapping gifts at Christmas time don’t you think? Maybe it’s because  this is the only time of year I can sing along to carols at the top of my lungs while I wrap. Or perhaps it’s the sheer number of presents I get to play with! Either way, everything feels so magical that it makes me want to make each gift extra festive.

Make it: Festive gingerbread gift toppers that double as Christmas ornaments!

And there’s no easier way to add a little festive cheer to your presents than with some cute gift toppers. Best of all, these gingerbread men double as tree decorations once all your presents have been unwrapped. Bonus!

Make it: Festive gingerbread gift toppers that double as Christmas ornaments!

Materials 

Shrink plastic gingerbread gift toppers - materials

Step

Download the gingerbread gift topper printable and print it onto a shrink plastic sheet. Make sure you use the correct type of printer for your plastic; mine was made for an inkjet printer, but you can get sheets for laser printers too.

Shrink plastic gingerbread gift toppers - step 1

Side note: The gingerbread toppers will look light when first printed, but the colours will darken quite a bit when shrunk.

Once you’ve printed out the file, cut out each of the gift toppers with a pair of scissors.

Shrink plastic gingerbread gift toppers - step 2

Step

Use a hole punch to punch a hole in the top of each gingerbread gift topper.

Shrink plastic gingerbread gift toppers - step 3

Step

Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to shrink your gift toppers. My shrink plastic needed to be laid on top of baking paper and placed in a 300° Fahrenheit/150° Celcius oven, but the directions for yours might be different, so make sure you check before baking.

Shrink plastic gingerbread gift toppers - step 4

Step

Once your gift toppers have shrunk and cooled, thread a small loop of twine through the holes you punched in Step 3.

Shrink plastic gingerbread gift toppers - step 5

Step

Then attach each topper to your gifts with a piece of ribbon.

Shrink plastic gingerbread gift toppers - step 6

The small loop of twine on each gift topper will make it easy for your recipients to use the gingerbread men as tree decorations after they’ve opened their gifts!

Make it: Festive gingerbread gift toppers that double as Christmas ornaments!

Make it: Festive gingerbread gift toppers that double as Christmas ornaments!

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Curbly Original
Holiday Decorating with a DIY Dipped Ornament Display

by Holly Wade

Holiday Decorating with a DIY Dipped Ornament Display

I think it's safe to say Christmas is upon us, and holiday decorating is my favorite time of year! As fun as it is to decorate my home, I tend to stray away from traditional reds and greens for Christmas, so I incorporated pink and a light green color into my decorating with this DIY dipped ornament display that fits in perfectly to my dining room gallery wall. Using lightweight plastic ornaments and twine, this almost-rustic piece of decor...

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Curbly Original
How To: Modern Mountain Clay Ornaments

by Lidy Dipert

How To: Modern Mountain Clay Ornaments

This holiday season, a group of the Curbly writers decided to team up and each of us created a simple and stylish new Christmas ornament. We're calling it the "Curbly Ornament Challenge" but there's not much competition involved...just a lot of fun, seasonal crafting. See all of the ornaments here.

This year, I am really leaning toward simple and minimal Christmas decor. I purposely went through our boxes and boxes of decorations and intentionally brought out a few select pieces we loved and had a purpose for. Our home has glimpses of Christmas in every room, without the overhaul. Likewise, when it comes to Christmas ornaments I want something that's neat and fresh. It's not always easy to find, which is why these modern mountain clay ornaments are the perfect solution! They take no time at all and are certainly fun to make.

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Curbly Original
How To: Make a Faux Fused Glass Geometric Christmas Ornament

by DIY Maven

This holiday season, a group of the Curbly writers decided to team up and each of us created a simple and stylish new Christmas ornament. We're calling it the "Curbly Ornament Challenge" but there's not much competition involved...just a lot of fun, seasonal crafting. See all of the ornaments here.

How To: Make a Faux Fused Glass Geometric Christmas Ornament

I've been iffy about the longevity of geometric everything for awhile now, but it doesn't seem like it's going anywhere. Uncle, I cry! The simple lines and representative shapes are fairly easy to recreate and the result looks clean and crisp, especially at a small size. So, I decided to embrace the trend by marrying it with the classic look of fused glass and a holiday  ornament using...wait for it...Shrinky Dink plastic. 

 

Materials

 

materials for faux fused glass geometric fox
Photo: DIY Maven
  • Art of your choice, sized to fit an 8.5" x 11" piece of copy paper. NOTE: Shrinky Dink paper is sized at 8" x 10" so adjust your image accordingly. 
  • Frosted Ruff n' Ready Shrinky Dinks Creative Pack
  • Tape
  • Ruler
  • Black Pigma Graphic 1 pigment ink marker, a Copic black marker (A Sharpie will not work with this project as is. More on that later.)
  • Robin's Egg Blue Copic Marker for an added dimensional element (Or a LIGHT color of your choosing. You want to keep it light because when the dink shrinks, the color will intensify greatly.)
  • Paper towel
  • Hole punch, standard 1/4" size
  • Scissors
  • Parchment paper (or aluminum foil)
  • Baking sheet
  • Oven mitt
  • Ranger Melt Art Ultra Thick Embossing Enamel (aka: UTEE) This is what makes the ornament look like glass. It also acts like a glue and holds the dimensional pieces in place. 
  • A round toothpick

Step

step 1 for faux fused glass geometric fox
Photo: DIY Maven

Begin by creating your design. You can draw something on a standard sheet of 8.5 x 11" paper, or print out an image you found online. Once you have your art, tape it to the shiny underside of one sheet of Shrinky Dink paper. My design is based on Hug a Porcupine's snow fox brooch, which is totally adorable. For other ideas that might work, check out these fabulous animal shapes

 

Step

step 2 for faux fused glass geometric fox
Photo: DIY Maven

Using a ruler and the black pigment ink marker, trace all the lines of your art.  

Step

step 3 for faux fused glass geometric fox
Photo: DIY Maven

With a sharp scissors, cut out the image, making sure to cut on the OUTSIDE of the black outer lines. (It's best to cut from the outside in instead of pivoting your scissors at the inside corners as this can very easily tear the plastic.) Then, with the hole punch, punch a hole at the center top of artwork

Step

step 3 for faux fused glass geometric fox
Photo: DIY Maven

To give the ornament a fused quality, choose elements from your art to make it dimensional. For this image, I used the tip of the animal's tail and his nose, the nose being a great dimensional element for any animal. Use some of the scrap shrink plastic to outline the sections you want to pop--literally--and cut them out of the plastic.

Step

step 5 for faux fused glass geometric fox
Photo: DIY Maven

Using the pigment ink markers, color in each section. Tip: If the black border around the your colorful piece gets smudged, you might want to retrace the outside perimeter of the segment.

Step

step 6.1 for faux fused glass geometric fox
Photo: DIY Maven

Pre-heat oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit. Place the plastic pieces - outline and colored sections - on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and bake until the plastic shrinks to about 50% of its size and is completely flat. (If you're unfamiliar with Shrinky Dinks, you'll probably panic a bit at this point because the plastic curls upon itself when melting. But don't worry. The art should right itself and flatten out.

step 6.2 for faux fused glass geometric fox
Photo: DIY Maven

 

If it looks like it won't--like if the small pieces are completely flat and the larger image is still all jacked up, you'll need to rescue it by reaching inside the oven and gently pulling it apart, being careful not to burn yourself. (Chopsticks or a couple of pencils help with the manipulation, but I just use my fingers and suffer the pain.)

Step

step 7.1 for faux fused glass geometric fox
Photo: DIY Maven

After you've taken the your art and all it parts out of the oven with an oven mitt, quickly put another piece of clean parchment paper on top of the pieces and press down lightly on the image to flatten them. You only have seconds to do this! For comparison, check out the size of the image after shrinking compared to the original pattern I used. Also note the intensity of the robin's egg blue.

step 7.2 for faux fused glass geometric fox
Photo: DIY Maven

Step

step 8.1 for faux fused glass geometric fox
Photo: DIY Maven

 

After the pieces cool, position the colored accent pieces on top of the larger image. 

 

Gingerly, sprinkle a light to medium coating of UTEE over everything and place it back into oven on a lined baking sheet.

step 8.2 for faux fused glass geometric fox
Photo: DIY Maven

Keep an eye on the ornament until all the UTEE is melted. (In the photo above, you'll notice that the UTEE has melted around the perimeter but not in the middle. Don't remove the ornament from the oven until ALL the UTEE is melted.) THE UTEE WILL MELT OVER THE EDGES OF THE IMAGE. THIS IS EXPECTED AND WILL BE DEALT WITH IN STEP 12.

Step

step 9 for faux fused glass geometric fox
Photo: DIY Maven

When you take the ornament out of the oven, quickly check to make sure all the dimensional pieces on top of the larger piece below are straight. If they aren't, use a toothpick to realign them. 

Step

step 10 for faux fused glass geometric fox
Photo: DIY Maven

After the UTEE has set up a bit, inspect the ornament for any inconsistencies. You'll see in the above image that the left ear didn't get embossed very well. No worries--we're going to do another coat of the embossing powder. Sprinkle the UTEE over the entire image one more time, and place back in the oven. Keep an eye on the ornament until this second layer of the UTEE has melted completely.

Step

step 11 for faux fused glass geometric fox
Photo: DIY Maven

 

After the UTEE is melted and you've taken the ornament out of the oven, slide the parchment paper with the ornament still on it off the baking sheet. The UTEE will only take seconds to set. While it's still warm, use the round toothpick to ream the hole out from the center. (Yes, the hole size shrinks too.)

Step

step 12.1 for faux fused glass geometric fox
Photo: DIY Maven

 

After the UTEE has cooled, you'll need to trim the excess UTEE that has melted over the edges. You CAN use a scissors to cut the UTEE, but I find breaking it off--FROM FRONT TO BACK--works best for me.

step 12.2 for faux fused glass geometric fox
Photo: DIY Maven

When you're done with the big bits, you'll have some jagged bits. You can use a straight craft blade to shave them off, but I find my fingernail works pretty well too. 

Step

step 5 for faux fused glass geometric fox
Photo: DIY Maven

When you're done trimming the excess UTEE, you'll probably end up with some rough spots on the FRONT of the image. Don't worry. Just pop it back into the oven and let the UTEE melt ever so slightly. Doing so will fill in the rough spots and smooth everything out. It kind of works like when you "flood a cookie" with icing. When you take the ornament out of the oven this time, you'll have to re-ream the hole at the top--again, do this when the UTEE has set but is still slightly warm. 

Step

 

faux fused fox ornament pinterest image
Love it? Pin it!

Add a hook or string to the hole and display as desired, letting all who cast their gaze upon it admire your mastery of making a faux fused glass ornament. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Curbly Original
How-To: Gold Thumb Tack Ornament

by Faith Towers
How-To: Gold Thumb Tack Ornament
Photo: Faith Towers

This holiday season, a group of the Curbly writers decided to team up and each of us created a simple and stylish new Christmas ornament. We're calling it the "Curbly Ornament Challenge" but there's not much competition involved...just a lot of fun, seasonal crafting. See all of the ornaments here.

 

During the busy holiday season there's always less time for complicated DIYs, so simple down-and-dirty projects are much more feasible. In that vein, today we're sharing a fun tutorial which will show you how to create a gold Christmas ornament using thumb tacks! Click through to check it out.   

 

How-To: Gold Thumb Tack Ornament
Photo: Faith Towers

The tacks only cover the top portion of the sphere, revealing more and more gold glitter as they go down. So let's get started. (And be sure to check out the video tutorial at the bottom of this post!)

How-To: Gold Thumb Tack Ornament
Photo: Faith Towers

Here's what you'll need for this project:

 

  • Styrofoam ball
  • Gold glitter
  • 6 inches of gold chain
  • 1 package of gold thumb tacks (200 ct)
  • Wire Cutters
  • Foam brush
  • White school glue
How-To: Gold Thumb Tack Ornament
Photo: Faith Towers

Begin by covering the top two thirds of the styrofoam ball with school glue using a foam brush. Make sure it is well-coated, otherwise the glitter won't stay put. 

How-To: Gold Thumb Tack Ornament
Photo: Faith Towers

Next, use your fingers to coat the entire area with gold glitter. Continue adding more and more until there are no bare spots (aside from the bottom third of the ball which will be covered in thumb tacks). Let the glue dry completely.

How-To: Gold Thumb Tack Ornament
Photo: Faith Towers

Begin inserting thumb tacks about halfway down, spreading them out and then adding more and more as you go toward the bare part of the styrofoam ball. Make sure the tacks start to overlap each other once you get to the bare section. 

Continue on until the entire top of the ball is covered in thumb tacks, and the lower section has a smattering of them. The point is to achieve a gradation of tacks, as you can see in the photo below.

How-To: Gold Thumb Tack Ornament
Photo: Faith Towers

Cut the chain to 6 inches with your wire cutters. Hook the end links onto the tack, creating a loop in the chain. 

How-To: Gold Thumb Tack Ornament
Photo: Faith Towers

Put a dab of glue on the tack to make sure it stays secure and insert it into the very top of the ornament. And that's all there is to it!

How-To: Gold Thumb Tack Ornament
Photo: Faith Towers

These golden spheres are sure to add some glamour to your tree this holiday season!

How-To: Gold Thumb Tack Ornament
Photo: Faith Towers

Here's a quick video tutorial:

 

 

How-To: Gold Thumb Tack Ornament
Photo: Faith Towers

 

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