These sparkly nature ornaments have to be just about the EASIEST Christmas craft ever. Granted, glitter is messy as anything, but we’ll show you how we contained the glitter mess to keep it to a minimum (sort of, haha).
This is also a good way to get the kids outdoors by collecting fallen pinecones or (as we have) fallen Jacaranda tree seed pods – or anything else that you think would look pretty covered in paint, glue and glitter.
This craft was first published in 2014 and has been updated and republished for today’s audience.
You might also like our Christmas leaf painting
Sometimes in the Christmas rush it’s hard to get around to doing everything you’d like to, and at an already busy time of year kids crafts and activities can seem way too time consuming and fiddly to bother with – but not this one.
This sparkly nature ornament craft is very easy and perfect for younger children like pre-schoolers, just so long as they are past the glitter-eating stage!
How to make sparkly nature ornaments
You will need:
- Fallen seed pods, pinecones or similar items
- PVA glue
- Kids acrylic or poster paints in the same or similar colours as your glitter
- Optional mod podge (or home made mod podge) to seal in the glitter
Collect your natural items and set them all out ready to go over a covered table. If weather permits outdoors is always a good idea because it’s more glitter-friendly.
Mix up a batch of sticky paint. Mix 50% glue with 50% paint. This will help the glitter stick better to the paint, and the paint will help cover the patches of seed pod that the glitter doesn’t stick to. It also means you don’t need to paint multiple coats of paint and wait for them to dry which preschoolers would get bored with.
Paint the seed pod with the sticky paint.
Hold the pinecone or seed pod over a plastic container and sprinkle glitter liberally over the top of the sticky paint. The container catches the excess glitter so it can be used again. It’s a good idea to use glitter the same colour as your paint to keep it all one colour, but it’s your project so go crazy if you want to!
Allow the nature ornaments to dry before tying string to them and hanging on the tree, or making them into a garland if you prefer.
Depending on what type of seed pods you have collected you might need to dry each side before flipping over and glittering the reverse so it doesn’t stick to the surface you are drying it on. We didn’t bother with that and there were a few little white patches of butchers paper stuck to the ornaments but nobody noticed.
Optional extra step: Paint a final coat of mod podge as a sealer to stop loose flecks of glitter from going everywhere once you’ve hung them on the tree. You can make your own DIY mod podge by mixing 50%PVA glue with 50% water.
These sparkly Christmas ornaments add plenty of colour and a gorgeous kid-made touch to your tree!
They turned out so pretty and sparkly and add a nice glittery glow to our tree. It’s such a simple Christmas craft but the simple ones really are often the best.
More Christmas crafts for younger kids
- Christmas leaf art is fun and easy for all ages
- My kids adored making ornaments from cardboard cut into simple Christmas shapes – free template included
- You can’t go past a batch of Cinnamon cookie play dough to keep the kids entertained for a long while!
- These mini paper lanterns are a classic, easy craft for kids. Perfect for cutting practice and free printable template included
- Create some super cute arty gift tags to personalise your Christmas gifts
- Preschoolers art can be repurposed into cute cards and wrap to make your loved ones smile