Paper Mache Ornaments

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Paper mache is a super messy and very fun craft. You will want a nice sized workspace, like a kitchen table. A disposable table cloth, or newspaper taped together, over your workspace will make clean up much easier. You will also want to periodically wash your hands as you work (just with water) to keep the paste from drying on the back of your hands or your arms.

The instructions below are for simple Christmas ornaments, but the same method can be used to create many types of objects. You can build a basic pinata by inflating a balloon and giving it three coats of paper mache. You will need to let it dry over night between each coat, and make sure to incorporate a hanger and opening for getting the candy into the design. After the last coat, you let it sit until it is completely dry. Then pop the balloon and decorate your creation any way you like!

Materials

  1. Flour
  2. Water
  3. News Paper
  4. Heavy Cardboard
  5. Acrylic Paint
  6. Sealer
  7. Hot Glue
  8. Ribbon
  9. Brushes
  10. Pencil or Chalk

Instructions

1. Print up one or two copies of the ornament pattern page. Cut out the ornaments you want to use, and then trace them out on the cardboard. Now cut out the cardboard shapes and shred the newspaper into 1/4 inch strips. (You don't need to be exact.)

**If you don't think you can draw these out by hand, print up an extra sheet of the patterns and rub colored chalk into the back. You can then use it to transfer your design by tracing over the lines.**

2. Mix 1 cup warm water and 1 cup flour until it forms a thick paste (it should be similar to pancake batter), if it seems too thick or thin add flour or water as needed.

3. Dip a piece of paper into the flour mixture, pull it out and scrape off the excess goop. Use your fingers to spread the paper onto the first of the cardboard shapes (this is a nice and messy craft). Repeat the process until the entire shape is covered in paper strips. Cover all shapes in this manner, then allow them to dry over night.

4. Using the same method as in step 3, give the shapes a second coat. Allow them to dry overnight.

5. Draw the designs onto the proper shapes (using the chalk page to transfer them). Paint them the colors you'd like with the acrylic paint. Allow them to dry (once again) overnight.

6.Coat the finished ornaments in sealer, when they are dry use a glue gun to stick a loop of ribbon to the back of each ornament as a hanger.


That's all there is to it. If you would rather work with wood than in paper, trace the shapes out in wood and have an adult cut them out. Sand the edges then finish them in the same manner as step 5 above.