Reindeer Ornaments

When I was a little girl, making handcrafted tree ornaments was a regular tradition under the supervision of my mom.  As an adult, it’s an annual activity that I’ve now incorporated into my own household with my own family.

Welcome to Day 2 of my holiday series, 25 Days of Christmas, where today’s project centers around reindeer ornaments… a fun and easy keepsake that can be hung or gifted to loved ones.

Reindeer-ornament-supplies

You’ll only need a handful of supplies for this project including a cookie cutter and paper clay.

Paper clay is a lightweight modeling clay that dries quickly and is very easy to work with.

Red markers are optional.

Reindeer--ornament-decor

For the embellishing elements, I used a few sprigs of artificial pine needles, red stamens, silver bells and some trusty peppermint-colored Baker’s twine.

You’ll find a million uses for this red and white twine and every crafter should keep some in their stash.

Reindeer-ornament-clay

Roll out the paper clay to about 1/4-inch thickness.

You can handle the paper clay just as you would cookie dough.

Reindeer-ornament-cut

I love the look of these jumbo cookie cutters and they’re really a fun size for this ornament project but any size cutter will do.

While I made all my ornaments with the one reindeer cookie cutter, consider mixing up the shapes for a little variety.

Reindeer-ornament-trio

What holiday cookie cutter shapes do you have in your kitchen drawer?

Stars, hearts, Christmas trees, mittens, snowmen, bells, candy canes and gingerbread men cutters would all look adorable as paper clay ornaments.

Reindeer-ornament-straw

Once the shape is cut out, use a straw to punch out a small hole for the ribbon or string holder.

It’s best to dry these ornaments on a cookie rack so the air can freely circulate around the entire shape.

It took about 48 hours for these reindeer shapes to dry completely.

Reindeer-ornament-letter-die

Metal letter punches can be used to embed a word or phrase directly into the paper clay.

You could also personalize your ornament by imprinting a child’s name into the clay.

Reindeer-ornament-stamp

Imprint your message as soon as you cut the shape out because once the paper clay is dry, you won’t be able to add any messaging.

NOTE: This is where the optional red markers come into play.  I left my imprint plain but after the ornament is dry, you could use a fine tip marker to carefully fill in the letters to add a dash of color to the finished ornament.

Reindeer-ornament-ribbon

Once the ornament is dry, you can start embellishing it.

Tie the ribbon in a knot on one end and then gently slide the knot down to the small hole toward the back of the ornament to conceal the knot on the backside of the ornament.

TIP: Once the ornament is completely dry you can use a small nail file to gently sand away any rough edges if you want to.

Reindeer--ornament-bells

Loop a strand of Baker’s twine through a few silver bells.
Clip some artificial pine sprigs and twist a few berry stamens around the wired pine needles.

Then, tie the bell around the stamens and finish off the collar with a small bow and tails.

Reindeer-ornament-wreath

Gently fold the wired pine sprig around the neck of the reindeer to create a festive and colorful collar.

This same embellishment could be added to whatever shape you end up using use.

Reindeer-ornament-collar

Your reindeer ornament is now ready for display or gifting.

Reindeer-ornament-group

In fact, a small set of personalized paper clay ornaments would make a lovely gift.

You could make a set of reindeer and imprint the name of one of Santa’s reindeer on each one.

What a keepsake that gift set would make.

Reindeer-ornament-group2

Consider starting your own tradition of creating paper clay ornaments.

It’s a fun and easy holiday craft for kids too.

TIP: Don’t forget to imprint the date on the back of the paper clay ornament before it dries, so years from now you’ll have a reference on when it was made.

Reindeer-ornament-standing
Day 2 down, 23 more days to go in my special holiday series.

In cased you missed it, here’s a look at:

Day 1

25 days graphic

Stay tuned, there is a lot more fun and inspiration ahead.

Hope you stop by again tomorrow (12/3) for Day 3 of my 25 Days of Christmas  series.

See you then.

 

 

 

 

  • Rosalie

    Lisa,
    I love this idea. I just happen to have a deer cookie cutter that I haven’t used in years. These paper clay deer would make pretty package toppers. Great idea!
    Warm regards,
    Rosalie – Sparks NV

  • SuzK

    I love these! I’ve been curious about paperclay for some time now and this looks like a great project to play with. You are so creative. Thank you for sharing another great project!

  • Thimbleanna

    Oh so sweet Lisa! I’m loving your series and can’t wait to see more!!!

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