Well there are lots and lots of crafty websites out there, but I'll post what comes to mind!
1- One of my favourite things is to get objects from nature (especially pine cones, acorns, that sort of thing) and spray them with gold and/or silver paint or glitter. They look so beautiful in a classic sort of way.
2- You could also make ornaments out of dough and cookie-cutters, then you either let dry or bake and then decorate however you like (sounds pre-school but you can actually make some really nice ornaments with some good paint and a steady hand!)
3- Get clear glass balls/bulbs from a craft store, and get some paint. Take the tiny lid off the bulb and pour in some (not much!) paint, cover the opening, give a shake. Experiment with 2-3 colours, and maybe some glitter, it's fun and with practice you can make some REALLY pretty designs.
4-Decorate candy canes with ribbon, pipe-cleaners and googly-eyes to make little reindeer. I definitely did this in preschool and I still love it!
Here are some links, because it occurs to me that I don't have enough interesting ideas...
Making ornaments are fun. Last year, the youth girls at my church got together and had a very girly christmas party (one of many)- we ate lots of chocolate (chocolate chip cookies, hot chocolate etc), and we decorated ornaments.
Many people chose someone they wanted to make a special gift for, and they wrote on a round see through glass ornament with a thin red/green/gold/silver pernament marker. Those came out really nice and made great pressents.
Then, there's the collection of elementry school ornaments... those are cute, it's like memory lane, even though it looks messy. If you have kids, you can get away with things like the candy cane raindear and give them away intead of buying gifts.
Thanks for all the ideas! I've seen a few things on other websites about making baked dough ornaments: the basic idea is to mix up a dough or flour, salt, water, and maybe a few other things depending on what recipe you use, cut into christmas-y shapes, and slow-bake in the oven for an hour or two. Then, you paint/decorate the ornaments. Has anyone ever done this? Any tips? Thanks!
Wow, this thread has been a trip down memory lane. I remember making a lot of these ornaments when I was in grade school. I forgot how cute these ornaments were! I think next year I'm enlisting the help of my nieces (3 and 5 years old) and we're making a handmade Yule tree.
Ooooh. This one isn't really toddler/pet safe, but it's pretty...
Take pipe cleaners and twist them into an angel (One pipe cleaner for the head/dress, and one cut in half and twisted into wings and a halo, then take a paper clip and make a hook on the top.
Mix 6 tbsp borax powder (hence the non child/pet safeness) and a cup and a half of boiling water in a jar. Put a chopstick (or pencil) over the top of the jar and let the angel hang into the borax water for a night until crystally and beautiful ^^
I made these with the Brownie troop- they loved them.
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