Thursday, November 12, 2009

Frugal Homemade Ornaments

I am in the planning stages of an afternoon of letting the kids make ornaments. I want to have some pre-made one's to show them some ideas, and I want to make some ahead of time to make sure they are something that the kids would enjoy.

What I've been doing so far, is just taking pieces and scraps of things I had on hand, and making ornaments out of them. Here's what I have done so far.

Stocking Hat

You'll Need:
Toilet Paper or Paper Towel Roll

  1. Cut many (I never did count) lengths of yarn about 4 inches long.
  2. Cut a small section of the TP or PT roll off, not quite an inch in width.
  3. Fold the yarn in half, then put the loop end on the inside of the roll, from the bottom. Insert the string ends into the loop, and pull tight. Repeat 36,306 times. Ok, maybe not that many. It gets repetitive, though.
  4. Once the roll is full, use another piece of yarn to tie the strands together, then trim the extra length off. You can attach a small note, tag with the year on it to the tied piece.
End thoughts:

This one wasn't hard, but it is time consuming. I'll try to find a faster, easier way to pre-cut the yarn, and I'll get baggies to separate them into, so the craft is all set to be started right up. I found brand new large skeins of yarn at Goodwill yesterday. These are not the standard size, but larger. They were marked $2.99 from Walmart, but I paid just $.59 a skein! I bought one in Forest Green, one in Cream, and one in Burgundy, so these will make great Christmas colors.

Santa Ornament

You'll Need:
1 Ball Ornament
White Felt
Red Felt
9 tiny or small white pom poms
3 tiny or small pink pom poms
Googly eyes
Hot Glue

  1. Cut out a small beard from the white felt, and a Santa-esque hat from the red felt. I had sparkly red felt on hand, but plain works just as well. When I looked at how the hat would 'fit' on the ornament, I re-adjusted it, and curved the bottom section, so that it would balance around the top of the ornament, and not just sit across the top.
  2. Glue the white pom poms into place on the hat- one on the tip, and 8 across the bottom. It might take a few less if you use bigger poms.
  3. Glue the beard into place. You could make it fluffier by gluing more white pom poms to cover the beard, but I didn't.
  4. Glue the 'face' into place. I used googly eyes, and then pink pom poms for the nose and cheeks (I figure Santa has pink cheeks, right?)
  5. For the hat, I glued a straight line across the top, and added glue to the hanger portion of the ornament, then placed the 'hat' on the line, and leaned it slightly against the hanger.
End Thoughts:

This was certainly an easy ornament to make. I think for future projects, though, I would use maybe silver or gold ornaments, instead of the red. It was a lone left over ornament from the wreath I made, so I used it, but I think it's too much red for my tastes. This would be simple enough for a child to do, just supervise them with the glue gun, obviously.

Green Rhinestone Tree

You'll Need:
Green Felt
Glitter Glue
Hot Glue
Small colorful Rhinestones or Sequins
Small star shaped rhinestone, or a larger circle- whatever you want!

  1. First, cut your tree shape. Mine is pretty big, but still small enough for a tree ornament.
  2. Drag the glitter glue around the tree like garland, and let it sit for a few moments.
  3. Decorate with the rhinestones or sequins, using the hot glue. You could also use glitter glue instead of hot glue, but it will take a few hours for the whole thing to dry. That's about how long it took for the glitter garland to dry on mine.
  4. Glue the 'topper' you picked to the top.
  5. I also used a gold metallic paint marker to write 2009 on the trunk of the tree. This is optional, though I guess technically, most of it is optional, as you can pick and choose how you want to make them.
End Thoughts:

Very simple to do, and the kids will enjoy making these. The glitter glue helped to stiffen the felt, but the star area is floppy. I am guessing it's because the star is heavier, and because there is no glitter glue to stiffen it. I'll probably have the kids do some glitter glue in that area to help it stiffen first. I had the rhinestones on hand, but sequins would make this a more frugal ornament, and come in larger packs for less money.

Red & White Tree

You'll Need:
2 contrasting colors of felt. I used 3 types- plain red, plain white, and glitter red.
Assorted tiny pom poms
Hot glue

  1. I first cut out bars of red glitter felt, making each one smaller than the last. Once that was done, I trimmed the ends to angle them.
  2. I then glued these into place on the white felt, before cutting the white felt into the tree shape. Once that was done, I repeated the process on the red felt.
  3. I added pom poms to the 'branches' with hot glue. I started off just having 1 on the end of each branch, but I liked it better filled in.
  4. I trimmed a small loop of ribbon, and glued it to the back.
End Thoughts:

I think this would look better in green & red, but I was playing around when I made this. I didn't have a single idea in mind when I started it, and just sort of went where the ideas took me. This would be simple for kids, and the creative possibilities are large. You could use sequins or rhinestones in place of the pom's, or add a bell to the top. I also wrote "Christmas 2009" on the back.

I am excited to have an ornament day. We'll keep a few for our own trees (yes, plural- I have 2 regular full size trees, and 2 mini trees this year!) and give the others to relatives as Christmas gifts this year.


The Sheppard Bunch said...

It is so funny that I stumbled across your blog after I just wrote my post on frugality last week. I was looking for a cute thanksgiving snack for our playdate tomorrow and found your cute little turkey sugar cookies. Just what I was looking for! Thanks!

Heather said...

I'm glad you found my little site! I have long been a frugal person, but only recently started blogging about it. :)