Sunday, November 18, 2012

We Made Ornaments!

We had way too much fun last night if this mess is anything to go by.  And, given my thoughts on the size of a mess being directly proportional to the amount of fun had, we definitely had a good time. :o) Who doesn't love decorating, glue, glitter, markers and watercolors?

Oh my stars! When I saw this photo I almost died laughing.  Look at us!
We started Friday night making our dough, rolling it, and cutting out our ornaments. 

The dough is simple to make and comes together quickly.

1/2 cup cornstarch
1 cup baking soda
3/4 cup water

Mix together and cook over medium-high heat, stirring constantly.  The liquid will eventually come to a slow bubble and will thicken to a smooth mashed potatoes consistency.  Collect it in a ball and put it in a bowl.  Cover with a damp cloth until it cools and is easy to handle. 

Dust your surface using a bit of cornstarch, roll out to about 1/4".  Cut out your shapes.

Gee, and I wonder why my girls poke out their tongues when concentrating.
Use a straw to make a hole for the thread/baker's twine/hemp twine, etc. to hang the ornaments. 
Let the kiddos blow the piece of dough out of the straw.  The girls both loved it! :o)

Put your cut dough on a parchment lined cookie sheet.  Bake at 175 for at minimum one hour until completely dry and hardened.  I flip my ornaments every thirty minutes for about three hours and then left them in the oven overnight to finish drying (yes, I turned the off the oven before going to bed). 

Last night I got out the markers, watercolors, glitter and glue and we went to town. 

A note: The dough will resoften if it is wet enough, just ask Beanie...

I let the girls decorate most of the ornaments they cut out.  However, I took over the mittens. ;o)

Two of Bean's designs. 

Bitty's creations.  How much am I loving that rainbow candy cane??? She's got it too, poor baby.

Oh, and I did also do up Beanie's stocking a bit.  Oh, and her candy cane.  Okay, okay, I couldn't help myself.  I just have this thing about glitter...

B's Christmas tree. :o)

When Lissie moved a few years ago, she gave me her cookie cutter collection.  There are a ton of cutters, and I had fun going through them looking for fun ones to make into ornaments.  Somehow, this monkey wound up in the basket with the Christmas ornaments.  The moment I saw it, I knew I HAD to make it. :o)  It was there for a reason, no?

I was terrified I would ruin it and was very careful coloring him.  I even pulled out my super nice SU! markers for the job. 

Although he was undeniably cute, I still felt there was something missing.

I figured it out--GLITTER!!!  That's why there was brown glitter in that package!! :o)

We preserved our ornaments by spraying them with clear paint.  (That clothesline sure came in handy...)

You can also use polyurethane, clear spray paint was what we happened to have on hand.

The only thing left to do is string them, and then hang them on our tree next week. :o)  I'm SO tickled with these!!

They are less dense than salt dough, and almost seem foamy or foam-like.  The dough would work well for hand prints as well. The ornaments are very delicate and brittle before they are fully dry, but once dried, are pretty tough--not that I would recommend dropping one or anything.  ;o) Like most ceramics, they are weakest at thin points, such as at the straw hole or cut-outs. 

I would love to do this again, and am seriously considering have Sadie, Sally and Alicia come over to decorate ornaments sometime before Christmas.  Cookie decorating parties are fun, but this could certainly be fun too. :o)


1.  Okay, this wasn't a sparkly, but the table sure was sparkly.
My iPad, the floor and my chairs were fairly sparkly as well.  Doh!  We left her unattended playing on the iPad for all of two minutes...She's good. 

You know what they say about glitter, right? ;o) (If you don't know, I'll be happy to share.)

2.  Holy smokes is there a RED tree in Bev's backyard:

It's utterly stunning.  I was refilling the bird feeder and saw it and was stunned.  I was truly gobsmacked at its intensity and beauty.

3.  We brought all the tubs and boxes of Christmas goodies in from the workshop attic, ready to be put out and up when we get home from Thanksgiving.
4.  I convinced GF to fly out here to be with us for Christmas.  I'm so excited I can hardly stand it!!!
5.  My girls are getting to the point where they play together all the time.  I LOVE hearing them play and laugh.  I'm not a fan of the screaming and yelling, but at least they're not fighting, right?
6. I made a sparkly star garland for Hannah's sparkly tree which I'll share tomorrow. :o)
7.  RE was pretty fun today--there's nothing quite like eight little boys who've just sat through Mass...;o)

No milestones.


Jess said...

That monkey is SO cute!

Korinthia Klein said...

Oh we are so making these! Thank you for the recipe and instructions! My kids are going to go crazy with happiness when I tell them tomorrow. Plus I needed an idea for some extra Christmas presents and this may have solved it. (Thank you!!)

Anonymous said...

The monkey is are the rest! Must try that recipe - Charlotte would love making those!


jaydee said...

Rach, what fun! Theyare amazing. The glittery monkey is perfect! What a great thing to do with the girls and I loved seeing them hanging on the washing line.
The red tree is gorgeous!

Jori said...

You are a fun mom with cute hair, and fabulous ideas! These ornaments are fantastic! I want to find some time and make them. I love all of the color. They are so wonderful!!