Eliza and I started our Ornament a Day project a week early this year so you can play along with us if you’d like to! Ornament a Day is just like it sounds: each day in December, Eliza (7) and I make an ornament together. We’ve been doing this since 2010 and have amassed some pretty awesome handmade ornaments (and new craft skills!) along the way. This year, Jonas (almost 3) is going to be joining in sometimes too.
If you don’t know about Ornament a Day or would like some tips from Eliza and I, check out our Ornament a Day vlog post at rukristin papercrafts.
The ornament Eliza is holding up there was made from a kit we found at Target. They often have great little handmade ornament kits for cheap (find them on endcaps near the crafty stuff). These are great for days when we don’t have time to get messy or Eliza needs to make an ornament on her own while I’m busy with other things. I love that sometimes we get super complicated, but sometimes it’s more about just taking the time out of the day to make something. Kits are a great way to fill in the gaps.
Our fancy pants ornament this week was a tree plushie ornament. We had some scrap green fabric, so here’s how we made it:
1. Draw a tree shape on the fabric and cut it out. Use that cutout to trace and cut out a second tree shape. If your fabric has a wrong side (the side you don’t want showing), make sure that your tree is symmetrical or that you place the template wrong side to wrong side (or right side to right side) so that the two pieces will line up when you sew them together.
2. Sew “ornament” buttons on the right side of the front of your tree with embroidery floss. Bonus points if you top your tree with a star.
3. Place the “wrong sides” of the fabric together and begin sewing the two pieces together, leaving a two inch gap.
4. Turn the fabric inside out (so that the “right sides” are out) through the gap you left.
5. Stuff the plushie full of pillow stuffing.
6. Sew the two inch gap shut.
7. If desired, sew once more around the perimeter of the tree for extra stitching practice!
This is a fun project for a beginning sewer, and it’s still cute even if it comes out kind of wonky. We might be making even more plushie ornaments, because Eliza thought the sewing was really fun! If you are crafting with younger kids, you do the sewing and let them do the button picking and the stuffing.
The most fun ornaments this week were by far these paint swirl ornaments from the Crafty Christmas Crate by Kiwi Crate. I was so proud of Eliza for sharing the project with her little brother. They loved squeezing paint in the empty plastic bulbs and swirling it around. I know having Jonas as a helper meant more color mixing than Eliza would have liked, and I thought it was so cool that she let Jonas having fun override her final vision of the project. The topped them with cork and cool shiny pipe cleaners (which are way easier to hang on the tree than sting; we’re going to have to pick more pipe cleaners up!).
She also made a cardboard gingerbread house from the Crafty Christmas Crate, which we’re going to go ahead and count as ornaments because they’re hanging out at the base of her little trees. (Sometimes you gotta stretch to make a daily project work: she was super exited about the kit and there was no way this AND ornaments were gonna happen.)
Eliza came up with more ideas using the leftover supplies from her crate. She made a candy ornament from a pom pom ball and tissue.
She also made a simple ornament ball with her leftover pipe cleaners. (Not all of the ornaments have to be complex; this one took about one minute!)
Last but not least: glittery monogram. Draw your initial on a peice of chipboard or cardboard, slather it in glue, and pour on the glitter. My #1 glitter tip: pour over aluminum foil, because you can tap off the excess onto the foil and then bend the foil to funnel it back into the jar!
Join in and make an ornament a day too, by yourself, with a friend, or with a child! We’ll be sharing our crations every Saturday, and you can follow along with the hashtag #ornamentaday on social media.
Need more ornament ideas? Check out our Ornament a Day Pinboard.
Kiwi Crate isn’t sponsoring this post, but we wanted to let you know that they have awesome deals this weekend! Get a percentage off of a new subscription with the coupon code on the banner! The three kits we’ve gotten this autumn have been Eliza’s favorite thing. Right after making things from the one they sent us to test out, we bought more and feel even more in love. So we got E a subscription for Christmas. (Shhhh! It’s a secret.) It was at the top of her list. If you have a crafty kid in your life, we highly, highly recommend these kits (they have subscriptions and single crates)! We’re affiliates, so any purchases you make through these links help to support the Nerd Nest.