These stitched salt dough Christmas star decorations are not only simple to make and look beautiful they also are perfect for working on kids’ fine motor skills. They are an ideal Christmas craft for making with a class or group of children as they are inexpensive and make great parent gifts to than on the Christmas tree at home.
Salt Dough Christmas Star Decorations
I am a big fan of salt dough Christmas ornaments – they make brilliant, inexpensive DIY Christmas decorations and as long as they are looked after or sealed you seal them (I talk more about that in the tutorial) they will last for years. My friend Lucy designed this fabulous take on classic salt dough ornaments for an event she was attending. She is a talented designer and creator of beautiful embroidery patterns and items and is well worth following on Instagram.
Making salt dough ornaments is one of our favorite holiday traditions, it is such an inexpensive homemade craft material and I usually have all the ingredients needed at home.
Salt Dough Recipe and Supplies
Although the salt dough is made from flour, salt and water it is inedible!
For the stars: (Makes approximately 25)
- 150g plain flour (all purpose flour for you US folks)
- 75g table salt
- 75-90ml tap water
Optional: 2 tblsp glitter – this adds another sparkly touch to the stars!
- Rolling pin
- Mixing bowl
- Star shaped cookie cutter
- Tool to create holes in the stars – you can also use a skewer or cocktail stick. Make sure the hole is big enough for the needle and thread to go through.
- Baking trays or cookie sheets
- Greaseproof or parchment paper
- Felt tips, posca pens or sharpies
- Blunt needle with a wide eye
- Sparkly thread, yarn, twine or string
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How to Make Stitched Salt Dough Christmas Star Decorations
To make the salt dough, mix together the flour and salt in a mixing bowl. If you are adding glitter, do so at this stage. Now add the water gradually until the mixture comes together into a dough.
Knead for a few minutes until the dough is smooth and pliable.
Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface to a thickness of 4-5mm.
Use the star shaped cookie cutter to cut out the stars.
Now create holes approximately 9mm-1cm from each star tip using the hole cutter, a skewer or a cocktail stick. You will have 5 holes in each star. Double-check at this point to make sure the hole is big enough for the needle to go through.
Place the stars on greaseproof paper lined baking trays and bake in the oven at 100°c for 3-5 hours until the stars are hard. Cool the stars on a wire rack.
Once the salt dough stars are cool, decorate with the felt tips, posca pens or sharpies. If you want to seal your ornaments now is the time.
How do you seal salt dough clay?
You can either spray with polyurethane spray, coat with mod podge or coat with PVA glue. The method you use to seal can change the finish of the stars, PVA and spray tend to add a gloss.
Once decorated, cut about an adult’s arm length of sparkly thread (approx 75cm). Thread the needle.
Keeping hold of the thread in the eye of the needle, begin to stitch through the holes in a salt dough star, using the pictures as a guide.
Start at point 1 which is the top of the star, taking the needle from the back to the front of the star, leaving a tail of thread about 12cm in length.
Next, take the needle from the front to the back at point 2, from the back to the front at point 3 and so on, until number 11, where the needle and thread will go from the back to the front of the star.
Remove the thread from the needle and make a knot in the two threads just above the top of the ornament.
Make another knot towards the ends of the thread according to the desired length for hanging.
After the festive season, store the salt dough stars in a cool, dry place and your decorations will keep for years!
How to Store Salt Dough Ornaments so they last
You need to store your salt dough in a dry environment. We store our Christmas decorations in the loft and I use an airtight container with a small bag of silica gel (I keep the ones I get in packages throughout the year) You could even add marshmallows or store them in rice as both will absorb any excess moisture.
You don’t have to make 25 starts you can use your excess dough to make different ornament shapes and you can adapt the recipe by adding cinnamon, spices, essential oils or ginger to make really sensory dough perfect for making gingerbread salt dough ornaments. If you are you can use a drinking straw or chopstick to make a hole at the top of each ornament to thread ribbon through.
If you prefer a whiter dough, then try our DIY White Clay Dough which is a fab alternative to salt dough.