The girls and I like to make salt dough ornaments every year. Aside from a couple of years when I was just too depressed and couldn’t keep the tradition up, we’ve made them every year since 2009. We’ve got a bunch of different ones because last year, I believe, I changed the cookie cutters we used (Michael’s had a pack with some awesome options) and now we have some really cute ones.
We made ours a couple of weeks ago, I think week before last, but I’m just now getting around to posting about them. I thought I’d show off what my girls can do.
If you’d like the recipe it’s
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup salt
1/2 cup water
Yarn or thick string
Sharpie or other felt tip permanent marker
Optional: glitter glue, felt, Pom poms, etc.
You may need more water. You just kind of have to eyeball it to get the right consistency. You want it to be easy to roll out, not sticky, but for it to hold together well on its own. I double the recipe because the recipe as is doesn’t make very many ornaments at all. If you only have one child it would probably be enough though.
I’ve seen recipes before that put cinnamon in there and said it would make them smell nice. I tried it one year and it didn’t work. I may not have used enough cinnamon though. You can always experiment with your own spices.
Preheat your oven to 200°. Mix everything together in a large bowl then roll it out onto a floured surface until it’s about 1/4 of an inch thick. Too thick and they’ll take too long to dry, not thick enough and they won’t be very strong. Use whatever kind of cookie cutters you like and cut until you run out of dough.
Place ornaments onto ungreased cookie sheet and using the straw make a hole in the top of the ornament for you to thread the yarn or string through to hang it. (I almost always forget this part and have to pull them out of the oven and do it.) Bake for about 2 hours, turning halfway through.
When they’re finished baking and all cooled off its time for the fun part, painting! The girls love coming up with different designs for their ornaments. We use glitter glue also to give them that extra pizzazz but you could glue any kind of craft item you wanted to on them. After the paint is dry turn them over and write the child’s name and the year on the ornament. It’s always fun for them to look back and see how their skills develop over the years. Thread the yarn/string through the hole in the top and VOILA! You have beautiful Christmas ornaments your babies will be proud of. I haven’t done it yet but you may want to get some sort of clear coat spray paint or maybe mod podge to seal them with. Sometimes they crack over the years.
We’ve given these to teachers as Christmas gifts before, to family members, our whole tree is nothing but these ornaments they and friends have made over the years. It’s a tradition your kids can pass to their kids and they will always remember.
I’m going to close this with some pictures of my girls doing their creative thing this year and a picture of the ornaments they made. My youngest daughter’s are on top and my oldest’s daughter’s are on bottom. There’s no limit to what they can do!