Thursday, 17 December 2015

 How to make Salt Dough Ornaments and Gift Tags

Are you having too much time on your hands? Let’s get busy. This is great activity for kids. 
A few years ago we made a bunch of ornaments using animal shapes. Kids had fun painting them all kinds of crazy designs.

My salt dough recipe is:
1 cup flour, sifted
1 cup fine salt
½ cup water
For great smelling, faux gingerbreads, add 1 teaspoon of gingerbread spice
Or 1 teaspoon of cinnamon just for the colour.

You can make 26-30 larger ornaments (have a look at the picture to get an idea).

Mix the ingredients. Knelt the dough for 10 min. or as long as you can so it is really smooth.

Roll the dough out to about ¼” (5 mm) thick. I use silicon mat to prevent sticking. You may lightly flour the rolling pin or place the dough in between two thick poly folders, than roll it out.
If you like use small twigs, leaves of cedar wood or a doily to press the design.

Cut out desired shapes and place on aluminum foil (shiny side up) lined cookie sheet.  
Make holes large enough for you twine or ribbon. Remember that the dough will expand slightly and the holes will become smaller after drying. You can also use gardeners wire to make loops. Just cut ½” long pieces, make loop with pliers on one end and insert the straight end into the ornament.

Preheat oven to 200 F (90C). Dry ornaments for 30 min, than increase temperature 280F (140C) and dry for another hour. The last 10-15 minutes open the oven door a bit to let the moisture out.
It is important to let the ornaments dry well. Do not raise the temperature too much as the dough will raise and may burn.
Let cool completely before painting.

Use acrylic paints. After the paint dries, brush with Mod Podge of spray with acrylic lacquer. This will help moisture from penetrating and will preserve the ornaments.

Have fun and get creative. It is quick, easy and not messy activity. 
Let me know what you have made.

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