How we made foam glitter photo ornaments

Hello everyone!

We continue making some Christmas crafts. One of my favorites each year is to make ornaments. We have made ornaments out of citrus fruits and out of clay in the past, so this year I wanted to do some photo ornaments. They needed to be easy and cheap, since we wanted to make a lot. I want them to be gifts for grandparents and friends, as well as for children from our kindergarten.

 

glitter foam photo ornaments materials
Some of the glitter foam photo ornaments materials you will need

I searched online and tried a few things. The idea I finally chose was to make some easy foam glitter photo ornaments!

So here is what you need to make them:

  • Foam glitter sheets. I chose white ones, but you can pick any color you think will go with your tree! I think silver, gold, red or green glitter foam sheets would be great choices, too!
  • Your frame template (you can find a lot of frame templates online and just choose what you like most. A bubble ornament shape, rectangles, ovals, stars, hearts or one like I used – you can find it here – are all great ideas). You can make one by yourself, too, by drawing it on cardstock or by even using different sized cookie cutters as a guide.
  • Cardstock
  • Silicon glue gun
  • Ribbon
  • Scissors (or craft knife), pencil and ruler
  • Your favorite photos, printed dimensions 6×4,5 cm (height x width)

To make them:

First adjust your template so it will be the size of your choosing (and capable of framing your photos). I made mine so they would suit my 6×4,5 cm photos. Next, print out your templates on cardstock. You can print two templates – one to make your frame and the other to leave without cutting out the inner shape.

glitter foam photo ornaments template
Prepare your template by simply drawing or printing them onto cardstock and cutting it out

Now it’s time for the glitter foam (I love that stuff!).

glitter foam ornaments
You can use any glitter sheets, but I used a glitter foam sheet that has only on one side glitter

Using your template, pencil, scissors and ruler, cut out two pieces, one frame and one back side for each photo. To cut the inside piece, I used the knife to make a “x” first, so it was easier to use the scissors afterwards.

glitter foam photo ornaments diy
To make cutting out the inner piece easier, I made a “x” first
glitter foam photo ornaments frame
For each photo you will need one glitter foam frame and one glitter foam back side

Using your hot glue gun, glue your ribbon to the non-glitter side of your back side piece. Next, glue your photo onto the same non-glitter back side piece. Finally, put some hot glue on the back of your frame piece and glue it onto the back side piece, so you will end up with a frame that both front and back is glittery.

hot glue foam glitter ornaments
Final step: glue the frame onto the simple foamy back side of your ornament

Let it dry, cut off any excesses, remove any silicon residue and your beautiful Christmas ornament is ready to be given away or hung on your tree and bring joy!

I really loved how they turned out and they look so great on our tree! The kids loved them, too, as they got to choose their photos and hang them on the tree and they are really easy to make! I used black and white photos as well as colored ones and they all look gorgeous. You could also add some decorations to the frames and make them even more fun!

glitter foam ornaments christmas tree
My kids’ glitter foam ornaments, on the tree!

Try making them for loved ones or just to add to your family Christmas craft traditions! They will make a wonderful keepsake for many many years!!!

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Our DIY Advent Calendars

Every year as December begins, we prepare advent calendars for our kids. Sometimes we take the easy road and get some of those chocolate count down calendars as well, what can I say!

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Our book advent calendar

It has become kind of a family tradition to make a book advent calendar. It’s easy and kind of inexpensive, since we use a lot of loved and treasured books as well as a few new ones. I also include some Christmas activity books and even a Christmas Recipe booklet for kids – we will be making a lot of cookies I can tell you! You just wrap the books up and number them and open one book each day! It’s super fun and the kids really love it!! And so do I to be honest!!

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You can use whatever paper you want to wrap them…after all, it’s the book that counts!

The other advent calendar we made this year was my husband’s idea and he did all the work! He used cardboard and toilet paper tubes to make it! In each tube he placed a couple of treats, chocolates mostly, and a small piece of paper. On the paper he added a variety of “coupons” and activity suggestions that we can do on that day. The first was to decorate the actual calendar! We have coupons to watch a movie, make some DIY ornaments, bake Christmas cookies, sleep all together in the big bed, make some Christmas crafts and so on. The kids are really excited and can’t wait to open all of the surprises!

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These calendars are really easy to make and all you need is some inspiration and to put love into them! Here are some other ideas to make DIY Advent Calendars, there is still time!!!

diy advent calendar
Rustic and easy DIY Advent Calendar (image source: Pinterest)
advent calendar buckets
DIY Advent Calendar using cute buckets (image source)

Kids Christmas Craft With Cardboard Paper Tubes

We have been busy the last days, since Christmas is on our doorstep! One of the craft we did was making some Christmas people out of cardboard paper tubes! Those are so versatile, I did never thing about them that way.

You can use whatever tubes you can find, from paper towel rolls to toilet paper rolls everything goes. We also used some googly eyes, but you can paint the eyes on. So, you’ll need, other than the tubes and colored paper, glue and scissors and maybe some items for decoration.

figures out of tubes
Figures out of tubes (image source)

When you’ve decided what you want to make, measure the paper and cut it the length of the tube. Then put some glue on the tube and wrap it with the paper. If you don’t have colored paper, just paint on some plain white paper. Or you can paint directly on the tube or even use it as it is.

The tubes can also be used to create wreaths or ornaments and some even use them as gift tags, napkin holders or treat or gift boxes; when they are beautiful crafted and decorated that is.

This beautiful wreath is easy to make. Who could imagine what you used for them?

Wreath out of tubes
Wreath out of tubes (image source)

If you take just one of those “flowers” and use some glitter, they can become ornaments for your tree!

tube ornaments
Tube ornaments (image source)

Here are some instructions on how to make little santas to use as gift tags or ornaments, even to hold some treat or gift themselves. You can see also a little gift package out of a plain tube tied beautifully with a ribbon. Aren’t they just adorable??? And they are so simple to make!!!

how to make some santa ornaments
How to make some santa ornaments (image source)

And finally!!! My son’s creations with a little help from me cutting the paper pieces.

My boy's tube creations
My boy’s tube creations

Try it and have some easy, inexpensive, creative fun making these or try making easy Christmas ornaments from dried fruits!!!

Great hand-made gift idea: DIY Heart-Shaped Mini Album

heart shaped mini album
Heart shaped mini album (image source)

This idea is just beautiful, especially as a gift for the grandparents. It has some work involved, though, but I guess it is worth the effort!
I guess you could make it somewhat more long-lasting, like covering it with some self-adhesive foil? I don’t really know.
Anyway, you will need some 12×12 kraft cardstock, glue, a scissor, patterned papers, photos and embellishments.
Fold the cardstock four ways and draw a half heart and then cut it out. This you will need to do two times, so in the end you will have 4 hearts. The next step is to make hearts out of the patterned papers, using the cardboard hearts as a base. Then, glue the cardboard hearts together, so you will have a 3D heart. Now you can glue the patterned papers onto the cardboard hearts. Finally, decorate your pages with photos, dried flowers, whatever you think would look nice and are worth being there or are telling a story. Now you could ( Note: this is just an idea that I thought of, I haven’t tried it or seen it!!!) use self-adhesive foil in order for the album to become longer lasting.

Step-by-step instructions
Step-by-step instructions (image source)

Is that a great gift for Christmas for your loved ones or what?
For the original post and detailed step-by-step instructions and images, click on this link:
http://americancrafts.typepad.com/studio/2011/03/heart-shaped-mini-album-tutorial-by-leslie.html

Toddler Fun Play With Pompoms

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Colour learning with rainbow pompoms- for more ideas and patterns click on the link (image source)

I never thought pompoms are that versatile! There are a lot of great, fun ideas out there, to entertain a toddler with them! Of course you have to supervise them heavily, especially if you want to give them to a young toddler (under 20 months or so).

Here is something funny. I started out writing this article about pompoms because I saw great uses for them, believing that you only buy them from a craft store. And then I saw tutorials and I thought: Hey, I’ve done this!!! I recalled a long forgotten memory…somewhere in my past, I had made pompoms myself! I must have been somewhat under 10 years or so, and I really did never think about that until now. Isn’t that great?

So, having shared that interesting fact (!), I am going to also share with you some ways of making and using those great pompoms! …continue reading

Amazing Dried Fruit Christmas Ornaments

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Dried citrus fruit ornaments (image source)

Making our own christmas ornaments with my kids is one of my favorite activities this time of year. One cheap but awesome and beautiful idea is to make some Dried Fruit Christmas Ornaments using citrus fruit peels! Sooooo nice!

You can use any citrus fruit you like; oranges, mandarins, limes, grapefruits or lemons. Then, you have two choices. Either cut the fruit carefully into thin slices or peel carefully the skin off the fruit.

If you choose to slice the fruits, arrange the slices on a lined baking tray and put the tray in a preheated oven at about 90-100°C. They should not touch each other. Bake them for about 2-3 hours, depending on how thick the slices are, while turning them on the other side every 30 minutes or so. You should check every slice separately and when one dries out, get it out of the oven and let the others dry some more. Let them cool down completely and then pierce a hole in them. Now you can use anything you like, some yarn, cord or a nice ribbon, depending on the use you are planning for them. Even paper clips or ornament hooks could do the trick.

If you choose to use the peel, take some nice cookie cutters, like for example a star-, moon-, tree- or heart cookie cutter and cut the shapes out. Now, do the same as above. Isn’t it easy? Here is another awesome use for citrus peels: making citrus peel roses!

You can use also some spices or essential oils for more aroma, and even decoration!

For more ideas and information, read our related articles.

 

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Dried citrus fruit ornament with cinnamon decoration (image source)
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Dried citrus fruit ornaments on hooks (image source)

Toddler Fun Play with “Mais”

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Autumn tree decoration (image source)

So, do you know the craft material “Mais”? It’ s an amazing, versatile, creative toy! They are like those eco-packaging material, with the difference that they come in colours! They stick together just with a little water and you can cut them, in order to get the shapes that you need. It’s a really great toy for toddlers and younger children. It promotes fine motor skills, colour recognition, imagination and creativity. You can really build whatever you want with it – well, we build mostly chains, but that’s another story! – and here are some examples of what you can do with them. …continue reading…

Sock snowmen

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Cute Sock Snowmen (image source)

I had to share this, they are sooooooo adorable!!! I will definitely try to make some of them together with my kids (well, at least with the older one). When I do – and if they are somewhat presentable 🙂 – I’ll post the pictures. The link for the really easy instructions is http://www.darkroomanddearly.com/2011/12/10th-day-of-christmas-sock-snowmen.html