Christmas crafts: Salt dough ornaments

From wrapping gifts to baking mince pies to getting creative with the decorations, December certainly is the most wonderful time of the year.

This month we’re embracing our kitchen creativity without adding more food to the Christmas mix by making salt dough ornaments. The kids will love putting their own spin on the Christmas decorations and, as the ingredients are not perishable, salt dough ornaments can be proudly hung on the tree for years to come. They also make for adorable personalised gifts.

There are some pretty complicated recipes out there for making salt dough, but we like to keep it simple and find the below recipe ideal, especially for younger children.

Decorating salt dough stars

INGREDIENTS:

4 cups flour or, if you wish to add a deliciously Christmassy smell to your ornaments, replace one of the cups of flour with a cup of ground cinnamon 
1 cup salt 
1 1/2 cups water 
1 teaspoon regular craft glue (this is optional but we find it helps to make them last longer)

METHOD:

  • Combine the salt and flour 
  • Gradually add the water until you have a dough you’re able to roll with a rolling pin (add more water if needed)
  • Cut your festive shapes (there are countless festive cookie cutter selections to choose from at this time of year, or if you’re feeling brave you can always go freehand)
  • At this point you can add texture to your shapes such as little carvings made with cocktail sticks
  • Add a hole at the top of each shape for the ribbon (we find drinking straws the ideal size)
  • Bake at 110 degrees Celsius for around 3 hours (or until completely dry), flipping once halfway through
  • Alternatively, these can be air-dried in a cool, dry space over the course of two to three days 

TO DECORATE:

Once your shapes have cooled it’s time to decorate, and rather than following step-by-step instructions, we think it’s best to unleash the creativity and go wild! These lovely little ornaments can be left as they are and will still look fantastic hanging on your tree, but if you’re feeling creative we have a few ideas to get you started…

  • Go bright with non-toxic acrylic paints
  • Bust out the glitter and have fun (we can worry about the mess later)
  • Use white glitter to create a beautiful snow effect
  • Making little Santa’s or reindeer? Googly eyes are a must
  • Experiment with different materials such as felt or fluffy pom-poms
  • Write the year and artist on the back with a marker pen – we love looking back on Christmases past when decorating the tree

We hope you enjoy getting creative this festive season and from all of us at Trex, have a very Merry Christmas.

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