Who would have thought that with some humble salt and flour dough (baker's clay), Chanukah cookie cutters. paint, glitter and sequins, one could create such jewel-like ornaments? I have to admit, I made these two years ago, and back then I was quite amazed at how beautiful the results were. At the time I couldn't quite figure out where to hang them, so we mostly enjoyed looking at them displayed on a gold plate on the dining room table!
This year I just happen to be a source in blog land for Chanukah crafts, so I figured I'd share this project with you, and even hang a few to see how it looks! I hung these from a wall sconce, but I dream of hanging a whole bunch in a doorway. As usual, you'll be the first to know the fate of these decorations this year!
Those little fingers are in the photo because those ornaments just wouldn't sit still! And anyway I always love just a little human presence in my photos! This is a great project for all ages and you can whip up a big batch and give some as gifts as well. They really do keep for years in a dry spot (though mine were in the very hot and very humid attic, and they seem to be fine) so whatever you invest now, you'll enjoy for years to come!
- Baker's Clay Dough (recipe to follow)
- Metallic Gold or Bronze Acrylic Paint
- Blue Acrylic Paint
- Gold and Silver Glitter
- Gold and Silver Very Fine Glitter
- Light purple sequins
- Pearl beads (optional)
- All purpose glue
- Acrylic varnish/sealer
- Chanukah cookie cutters
- Light purple embroidery floss for hanging
Baker's Clay Recipe:
- 3/4 cup all purpose flour
- 3 tbsp salt
- 1 tsp cooking oil
- 1/3 cup water
Mix together the flour, salt, and oil in a bowl. Add a little water and mix until you have a smooth and thick dough, that doesn't stick to the sides of the bowl. If dough is too sticky, add more flour. If dough crumbles too easily, add more water.
Sprinkle flour on your working surface, and knead dough until it is smooth.The dough can be stored in a sealed container for a few days in the refrigerator.
Bake in a preheated oven at 250 degrees F (not celsius!) for about three hours (yes, really) until firm. Baking time varies depending on thickness of ornaments, and you may need to turn them over part way through. Ornaments are baked when they are hard throughout.
- Make dough according to recipe, left overs can be stored in the refrigerator for another day.
- Roll out dough to a thickness of about 1/4"
- Use cookie cutters in two ways, the traditional way, and to merely make an impression in the dough as seen directly above.
- Make beads in a variety of shapes and sizes, and make some sculptural ornaments built from snake shaped pieces of dough if desired. Use items from the kitchen to add details to ornaments — bottle caps, skewers, forks and dull knives are all good tools. Don't forget to make holes for hanging!
- Place ornaments on baking paper on an oven tray and bake according to directions above. Baking time is long, so it pays to do a large batch.
- Once ornaments have cooled, you can paint and apply glitter,sequins and pearl beads where desired. Apply glitter by brushing on white glue with a paint brush and sprinkling glitter on top. Once dry, shake ornament to dislodge any extra glitter.
- Give ornaments a protective coat of glossy acrylic varnish and set aside to dry for at least 12 hours.
- Hang and enjoy, or use as decorations on gift packages. Small light weight ornaments can be used to make magnets glue a magnet to the back! Or make some festive jewelry by affixing a pin back to your favorite piece.
- Have a very Happy Chanukah!