It’s July! Or better put, the end of July, and I felt the need to upload some Christmas in July crafts/posts for your perusal this week. So, today I pulled together a really small and quick step by step DIY ornament craft for some of the most beautiful and inexpensive filler ornaments you can make for your great Christmas tree.
Before I created this blog and was addicted to making miniatures for dollhouses or fairy gardens, I was very dedicated to making art out of melted crayon pieces. (I have always had a flare for reusing materials. Talk about a green thumb.) I made a lot of melted crayon art on canvas with my handy dandy heat gun from Home Depot because I was a professional who liked the control of a heat gun over the craziness of a hair blow dryer. I practiced a lot of different techniques from drop art, having the crayon wax run down the canvas and even mixing different colors in swirls, but one of my favorite creations was when I would make glass Christmas ornaments colored and swirled through melted crayons. One day, I will share on here some pictures of my melted crayon adventures and talked about the fun of having a craft booth at a craft fair, but for today I’ll be sticking to ornaments.
Steps For creating melted crayon ornaments
- The first step for any craft is to gather the supplies. You will need a hair blow dryer or heat gun, a box of crayons or old crayon pieces (it is okay if they are broken), gardening gloves/oven mitts (to help protect your hands from warm glass), safety glasses or googles, X-acto knife or strong scissors, decorative string, and glass ornaments (I recommend rounded ones because they will be easier to move the melted crayon around but most shapes should work with patience.)
- After you have gathered your materials for your craft, set up your work area. It might be smart to work outside if you can bear the weather and you need to be by an outlet to hook up your heat gun.
- Now comes the time to decide what color or colors you want your ornament to display and whether you would like one solid color or a swirled effect. You can look at my pictures for some examples. If you want a traditional candy cane look then go for white and red, if you want a color you do not have maybe use several crayons and make sure they melt together fully when swirling the crayons. Some other fun ideas are buying specialty crayon packs like glitter crayons or iridescent crayons. I used glitter in the candy cane ones and an iridescent crayon in one of my unique blue creations.
- After picking out your crayon you are going to want to strip the wax paper off. You can use slightly warm water for this or like me you can just get peeling.
- Next, cut little pieces off your crayon that are small enough to go into the opening of your glass ornament. You can use as little or as much as you like. If you find you did not put enough to cover the whole ornament then you can add more later in the process. No worries. I found depending on how much I liked my creation, I would use about 1/4 to 1/2 of what would equal a full crayon.
- Now, put on gloves and safety glasses. I personally did not always use gloves but instead built up a tolerance to the heat or just set down the ornament when it got too hot and worked on the next ornament. The safety glasses are in case the ornament shatters for some reason under the heat and this is another good reason why I should have used more gloves. I never had any shatter but this is possible if the ornament you are working with has a slight imperfection that you cannot detect. Also, please make sure you are using glass ornaments. Yes, they are more expensive than plastic, but they are only about $8 for 12 and if you use plastic with a heat gun you will melt it.
- The next step is to start heating up your crayon pieces inside the ornament. I did not always leave on the toppers to the ornaments because they are usually plastic. You will start warming the crayon bits until they are melting and able to slide around the inside of the glass ornament while leaving a residue behind. Just keep turning the ornament and heating up the glass to continue the process until the whole ornament is covered with no cracks. Sometimes it might be better to start with one color like while and then add in your red pieces to swirl afterwards. If you find you swirled away your white and you want to add more just do it.
- When you are happy with the ornament you need to let it cool off. If there are little pieces of un-melted crayon bits that you do not want to melt then just try to heat it up and swivel it outside the top of the ornament by turning the ornament upside down over a protected surface like a paper plate to catch the un-melted piece.
- When the ornaments are cooled put the top back on and take your decorative string and tie it around the little loop provided on the top of the ornamet to make it easier to hang on your tree.
That is all it takes to make a melted crayon Christmas ornament. This project is extremely quick and great to do while listening to Christmas music. It is not exactly suitable for younger children but middle school and up should be fine since they can grasp the risk of burning their little hands. I hope you have fun and make a lot of cut little ornaments to help fill and balance out your tree, and since you can make any color out of the crayons it is perfect for whatever theme your tree may be. Maybe swirl together your favorite sports team colors or go for a fully sparkly white one and then paint on a snowman’s face on the outside. The possibilities are endless.