Festive clay Christmas ornaments! Homemade clay ornaments are beautiful and easy DIY Christmas ornaments and a simple Christmas craft to make this holiday season. In this step-by-step tutorial, you’ll learn how to make clay ornaments with air dry clay. You can use DIY Christmas ornaments as gifts and stunning holiday home decor.
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Clay Christmas ornaments – DIY Christmas ornament ideas
I’ve always loved DIY Christmas ornaments, especially homemade clay ornaments. Clay Christmas tree, glitter ornaments, gold leaf ornaments, and star ornaments – it screams Christmas, doesn’t it? My clay Christmas ornaments are not only beautiful to look at, but also easy and quick to make, even for kids and the not-so-crafty.
Clay holiday ornaments are very easy and beautiful! It takes just a few minutes to make homemade clay ornaments for Christmas and decorating air dry clay is a lot of fun, too. You definitely need to add these cookie cutter ornaments to your list of clay ornament ideas!
Materials and supplies for homemade clay Christmas ornaments
Clay ornaments are lovely Christmas decorations to make yourself. While clay Christmas ornaments can be made with different types of clay, I chose air drying modeling clay because this is the easiest and most convenient option for how to make clay ornaments.
Here are the materials and supplies we need for homemade clay ornaments:
For the clay ornaments
- air dry modeling clay
- rolling pin
- Christmas cookie cutter
- drinking straw
- embossing mats
- embossing rolling pin
- fabric with a lot of texture
- decorative glasses
- paintbrushes in different sizes
- Modge Podge or craft glue
- gold leaf and gold leaf adhesive
- acrylic paint
How do you make clay ornaments? Grab your Christmas cookie cutters and let’s find out how to make clay ornaments with air drying clay! Start your holiday crafting off with these Christmas ornaments!
Take a look at the easy steps for how to make clay Christmas decorations:
Roll out the clay
- It’s best to work on a hard, smooth surface. I lined the rolling area with parchment/baking paper because found that the clay was easier to lift from the paper, but that isn’t absolutely necessary.
- Take a chunk of modeling clay and knead it for a minute to warm it up.
- Place the clay on the work surface and begin to roll. Start rolling from the centre going outwards until the clay is approximately in 1/8 in/ 0.3 cm to 1/4 in/ 0.5 cm thick.
Emboss the clay
You can leave the ornaments plain or emboss them to create a textured surface. To decorate use fabric (burlap works excellent), or a crystal cut drinking glass. If you have, you can also use an embossing rolling pin or stamps.
- To emboss a pattern, press the fabric on the clay and roll over with the rolling pin.
- Alternatively, roll a glass over the clay to transfer the design.
Cut out holiday ornaments
- Using cookie cutters, cut out as many holiday ornaments as will fit on the clay.
- Gently pull off the clay around the Christmas ornaments.
- Using a drinking straw, make a hole in the top of each ornament.
- Smooth the edges with your fingers.
How many ornaments you get will depend on the size of your cookie cutters.
Air-dry the clay ornaments
- Pick up each ornament and place on a lined cutting board or cookie sheet/tray to dry, making sure each ornament is as flat as possible.
- Let dry for 24 hours. Turn the ornaments and let dry for another 24 hours.
- Once completely dry, tie with ribbon or twine for hanging.
Air dry clay decorating ideas – How to decorate homemade clay ornaments
White clay Christmas ornaments are beautiful, especially when they are embossed with a pattern, but don’t be afraid to decorate your handmade clay ornaments. Here are some ideas:
1) Gold leaf ornaments
Shiny gold leaf ornaments are sure to bring holiday vibes to your home. Of course, you can also use other metal leaves, like silver or rose gold or try this set of coloured sheets. Creating gold leaf ornaments is pretty straighforward:
- Brush each ornament with a thin layer of metal leaf adhesive.
- Wait 20 minutes before applying gold leaf.
- Gently rub the metal sheet on the ornament.
- Brush away any loose pieces around the edges.
- If necessary, fill in bare spots and tears with additional gold leaf.
I also painted some star ornaments with gold acrylic paint. I love both, the matte painted star ornaments and the shine gold leaf clay ornaments.
2) Snowflake ornaments
DIY snowflake ornaments are a wintery Christmas decorating idea, and I love the vintage look of these easy clay ornaments. Creating snowflake clay ornaments is easy:
- Cut out and dry clay snowflake.
- Once dried, paint each homemade snowflake ornament with acrylic paint. I used cold and blue, but any colour would look pretty.
- While the paint is still wet, sprinkle and gently press artificial snow on the ornaments.
- Let dry for a few minutes then tab of any excess.
- If you see bare spots, add more paint and snow.
- Optionally, paint the edges with gold acrylic paint.
3) Glitter ornaments
How do you make glitter Christmas ornaments? Add sparkle to your holiday decorating with DIY glitter ornaments! While I chose clay Christmas trees, any shape will look stunning. The steps for how to make glitter ornaments are similar to the snowflakes:
- Apply a thick layer of Modge Podge or white craft glue on each ornament. The adhesive has to be thick for the glitter to stick, not just a thin film. Pay special attention to the edges.
- Generously sprinkle the ornament with glitter. Make sure to cover the entire surface.
- Tab to shake off excess glitter. I recommend to line your work area with a parchment/baking paper or a paper towel, so you can easily collect leftover glitter.
- Let dry for 2 hours.
4) Heart-shaped Christmas ornaments
For the hearts, I embossed a piece of lace ribbon into the clay and cut out hearts with one half of the heart being embossed and the other half smooth. After the ornament had dried, I painted the patterned half with rose gold acrylic paint. I think that the contrast between colour and texture looks really nice.
5) Gold rim ornaments
This DIY Christmas ornaments design looks very elegant and modern. I used the embossed clay Christmas ornaments and coated them with metallic acrylic paint. The shiny colour will bring out the texture well. Then I used gold to paint on a thin gold rim. You could also create a gold-rimmed ornament using gold leaf.
6) Painted DIY Christmas ornaments for kids
Making homemade Christmas ornaments with kids is lots of fun! My niece Paula painted these adorable Scandi Christmas ornaments. She used red paint and drew stars, hearts and other designs on the bell ornaments. She did a great job, didn’t she?
Making DIY Christmas ornaments for kids is a wonderful holiday activity and perfect for children to express their creativity!
Have you more ideas for personalized clay? Leave a comment and tell me more about your clay Christmas ideas!
Homemade holiday ornaments decorating craft party
Clay cookie cutter ornaments are fantastic classroom craft idea and perfect for craft parties! You can either make it a two-day event, where on the day 1 you craft the clay Christmas ornaments, let them dry overnight and decorate on the next day.
Or you make it a Christmas ornaments decorating party, meaning you create air-dried clay ornaments in advance and everyone gets together to embellish the homemade holiday ornaments.
Simply, set up a space with clay ornaments, decorating materials and enough tools for every participant. Everyone can decide how they want to decorate their no-bake clay ornaments. The DIY aspect makes it hands-on and a lot of fun for everyone involved.
DIY Christmas ornaments as gifts and for gift wrapping
Aside from holiday decorating, you can use DIY Christmas ornaments as gifts and for gift wrapping. Paired with a cute Christmas card, you can gift homemade clay holiday ornaments as an inexpensive gift idea to co-workers, neighbours, or as a gift for teachers or hostess gift.
Clay ornaments are also lovely accessories for gift wrapping. I used craft paper, holly leaves, and candy cane yarn to wrap a few small presents, but the possibilities to decorate gifts with Christmas clay tags are literally endless!
More Christmas craft tutorials and holiday decorating projects
If you love this Christmas ornament tutorial, check out some of our other holiday craft projects:
- 3 pinecone holiday wreath ideas
- holiday felt wreath
- jingle bells wreath
- easy paper advent calendar
- birdseed ornaments
- paper pinecone ornaments
- essential oil ornaments
- giant red and gold paper flowers
- quick 3-D paper ornaments
- stovetop potpourri jars
Over to you!
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very wonderful blog thanks for posting.
Very fun! I love all the texture you created on your ornaments!
Thank you so much, Jessa!
These are so pretty! I love how you embossed some of them for more texture. These are on my list of things to do soon.
Goodness, but these are cute. Love the look of the gold and red on craft paper packages.
They turned out very cute! And I love that they are just the right size for package embellishments!
Many thanks, Cherryl! Clay ornaments are very versatile, you can make them from tiny to big.
These are really really pretty and I got all excited seeing how you decorated them. I’m definitely making some of these to send overseas. Thank you for giving me such a great idea for my international penpal friend’s gifts this year!
Thank you so much, Marie! What a sweet idea to send some to your penpal friend.
I want to make clay ornaments now, these are so cute. I love how each one is unique and different.
Thank you so much, Jenny! Every ornaments is really one-of-a-kind.
These are beautiful! I love the idea of using them as a design element for gift wrap.
Thanks a lot, Rebecca! Yes, they look very lovely as accessories for gift wrapping.