5 Easy and Fun Ways to Decorate Salt Dough Ornaments

posted: 12/01/16
by: Blythe Copeland

Salt dough ornaments are a foolproof holiday craft, whether you're trying to get a toddler to make a gift for her grandparents or looking for a beautiful present you can DIY for your best friend. The dough is a simple combination of flour, salt, and water mixed until it feels like Play-Doh; then you can roll, cut, and decorate it in nearly endless ways.

1. Stamp Them

Use a rubber stamp to create monograms or simple shapes using this tutorial from Oleander and Palm; keep them small to use them as ornaments, gift tags, or napkin rings. You can also leave off the ink and allow the stamp to create a textured detail to accent with paint, as on Knick Knack Craft.

2. Paint Them

This may be the simplest, most kid-friendly way to use salt dough: Roll it, use cookies cutters to create stars, snowflakes, mittens, trees, hearts, and other shapes; then give the little ones free reign with the paints (Mommypotamus even let the kids add glitter.)

3. Texturize Them

A rubber stamp is one easy way to give your ornaments added texture, but other easy-to-find items will work, too: Use one of your great grandmother's doilies to add an intricate, lacy design (and a little tear-jerking sentiment), or press a pine branch (or sprig of rosemary) into the dough for a Christmas tree-inspired look.

4. Print Them

Create a treasured memento by having your little ones make hand, foot, or fingerprints; capturing your pup's paw print; or imprinting the key to the newlyweds' first home.

5. Detail Them

Though the simplicity of the project makes salt dough great for kids, it's also versatile enough for your own more intricate projects, too. Use a small round object (like a pen lid) to make tiny half-circles and fold the dough into an owl shape with these instructions from Paging Fun Mums. Give snowflake ornaments a coat of shimmering metallic paint, and then decorate with elaborate ink drawings inspired by Scissors and Spoons. Or use two cookie cutters in the same shape -- one large and one small -- to make ornaments that are open in the middle; then fill with translucent beads and melt for sparkling suncatchers (like these from Homegrown Friends).