Hand-Made Christmas Decorations from ETK

With most UK schools already finished for the Christmas holidays...  that leaves an "entire" week to "fill" before "The Big Man in the Red Suit" pops down the chimney - which will probably feel like an eternity for parents & excited Littleys alike, (possibly for very different reasons.)  

ETK have put together some easy & relatively quick ideas for a few Christmas decorations for you try out, which will hopefully alleviate some of the cries of "I'm bored"s that will be brewing by mid-week... & can be brought back out in years to come, when your kids are bringing THEIR kids over to you for Christmas...

There is a fair amount of "wait for it to dry" involved in some of these activities - so you could always try your hand at our sweet recipes whilst you wait!

(ETK warning: some of these activities involve copious amounts of glitter & glue, so be prepared to find glitter in the weirdest of places until about February....) 


Salt-Dough Handprints:

  • 500g flour
  • 300g salt
  • Food coloring
  • Drop of cooking oil
  • Water
  • Drinking straw / knitting needle
  • Ribbon
  • Paint *if desired

Gradually mix the flour & salt with water, (add the water very gradually), to form a dough

Roll the dough out onto a floured surface & cut out shapes (use a cookie cutter or a small plate as a guide), make sure the shapes are fairly thick

Use the straw or a knitting needle to make a small hole at top of the shape (this needs to go right the way through, as will be used later to hang your decoration)

Get your Littleys to make a hand-print onto the shape

Air-dry for 24hours, or pop into the oven at roughly 150 degrees, Gas Mark 2, for just over an hour 

Paint if desired when dry

Thread the ribbon through the hole & hang in pride of place on your tree


Snowmen Baubles:

  • Large plain coloured baubles
  • White acrylic paint
  • Felt pens
  • Ribbon

Paint your Littley's palm with the white paint

Place the bauble in your child's hand & get them to wrap their fingers round the bauble & hold for a few seconds

Leave to dry (empty egg carton is a useful tool)

Once dry - let your Littleys add details with the pens to turn their fingerprints into snowmen!

Thread ribbon through the hanger & add to your tree


Rudolf Baubles:

Same idea as above - but instead of white fingers, just paint the tip of your Littley's finger with brown acyrilic paint & place one "fingerprint" on the bauble.

Allow to dry & then turn it into Rudoplh with your pens!


Glittery Pine-Cones:

  • Pine cones
  • Craft glue
  • Glitter
  • Ribbon

Cover the pine cone with glue

Cover in glitter

Place the ribbon at the top & smother in glue

Leave to dry for a few hours, (it'll take that long to clean up all the glitter!)

Hang on your tree


Candy Canes / Trees / Stars:

  • Strong cardboard
  • Craft glue
  • Small pom-poms, buttons, tinsel, glitter
  • Paint
  • Ribbon
  • One-hole punch

Cut out candy cane, Christmas tree & star shapes from the cardboard, punch a hole at the top (to hang when finished)

Paint as desired & leave to dry

Decorate using the glue, pom-poms and/or buttons and/or tinsel and/or glitter

Leave to dry

Attach the ribbon & hang from your tree


Lolly-Stick Christmas Trees:

  • Lolly sticks
  • Craft glue
  • Paint
  • Tinsle & glitter
  • Ribbon

Use one lolly stick as the tree trunk.

Glue the others across the tree trunk & cut, so they get smaller towards the top, until they look like a Christmas tree

Leave to dry

Paint & leave to dry

Decorate with tinsel & glitter

Glue or tie the ribbon at the top of the tree to hang


Cup Christmas Trees:

  • Polystyrene or paper cups
  • Green paint
  • Drinking straw
  • Cereal box cardboard
  • Craft glue
  • Glitter, tinsel

Turn the cup upside down & make a small hole in the top

Paint green & leave to dry

Cut a star shape from the cardboard, decorate & leave to dry

When the star is dry, glue (or tape) the straw to the back of it & leave to dry

Decorate the cup with tinsel, glitter etc

When the straw-star is dry, poke the straw through the hole in the top of your tree


Button Wreath:

  • Green & red buttons
  • Thin string, or wool, or plastic chord
  • Ribbon

Tie a knot in one end of your chord

Thread green & red buttons onto the chord

Join both ends to form a circle & secure well (or you will have buttons everywhere)

Use the excess thread to form a loop for hanging

Tie a bow of ribbon at the top


Paper-Mache Baubles:

  • Plain cardboard Christmas shapes or baubles (available from most craft stores)
  • Lots of left-over magazines
  • Craft glue
  • Glitter
  • Ribbon

Tear the magazines into small strips or squares

Cover the shapes or baubles in glue & cover in the magazine pieces

Leave to dry

Mix glitter with some glue & give the shape a final coat with the mixture

Leave to dry - then add the ribbon to hang


Egg-Cup Bells:

  • Egg carton (best if it's empty really)
  • Paint
  • Glitter, tinsel
  • Pipe cleaner or ribbon

Cut out the cups from the egg carton

Make a hole in the bottom of each cup - either big enough for your pipe-cleaner, or to thread ribbon through to hang


Leave to dry & hang either by using the pipe-cleaner, or thread the ribbon through



(Well, Christmas wouldn't be complete without a few toilet roll decorations, now would it?)

  • Cardboard toilet roll
  • Cereal box cardboard
  • Craft glue
  • Red tissue paper

Using the ceral box cardboard, draw around your child's hands (spread out) & cut out (these will be Rudolph's antlers)

Make 2 slits either side of the toilet roll & wedge the hand-antlers into the slits

Draw/paint Rudolph's eyes

Make a small red tissue paper ball & glue onto the roll for his nose 

Draw/paint his mouth




  • Cardboard toilet roll
  • Cotton wool
  • Acrylic paint
  • Small buttons
  • Craft glue

Paint the toilet roll white & leave to dry

Draw or paint the face at the top & stick the buttons on

Using small pieces of cotton wool, stick around the tube



  • Cardboard toilet roll
  • Cereal box cardboard
  • Yellow pipe cleaner
  • Paint
  • Craft glue
  • Wool for hair

Paint the toilet roll white & leave to dry

Cut a heart shape from the ceral box for the wings & paint in whatever colour you like angel wings to be, leave to dry

Make a loop at one end of the pipe cleaner - which will be your "halo"

Draw or paint the angel's face

Stick the pipe cleaner to the inside of the roll at the back, so the halo is over the angel's "head"

Stick the wings to the back of the roll

If you want to give your angel hair, cut a few strands of wool & stick to the inside of the roll at the sides, so it "hangs" over the roll - either side of her face 



  • Cardboard toilet roll
  • Craft glue
  • Paint
  • Glitter, tinsel, sequins - anything really!
  • Hole punch
  • Ribbon

Cut downwards on the toilet roll, until about 1" from the bottom - making 5 or 6 "strips"

Fold back the cut-strips from the bottom, into a star shape - punch a hole in the top of one strip to hang

Paint & leave to dry

Decorate at will - then once dry, thread the ribbon to hang