DIY Air Dry Clay Christmas Ornaments

Step by step directions with photos for making DIY air dry clay Christmas ornaments. These charming little tags make the perfect handmade gift!

air dry clay christmas ornaments on cookie sheet

A few months ago, I wrote a post telling the story of how air dry clay Christmas ornaments became a best seller in my handmade online shop. Writing that post was emotional for me, but like everything hard we do, it was worth it in the end. I promised I would do my best to get you a tutorial so you can make the ornaments yourself…and in time for this holiday season. I wasn’t sure I would make it, but here we are. It’s finished and ready to go. These sweet ornaments are a lovely handmade gift for a loved one…or for yourself. Enjoy!

To read our clay ornament story, click {HERE.}

air dry clay christmas ornaments supplies needed

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Air Dry Clay Christmas Ornaments Supplies Needed:

To begin, prepare the rolling area by taping down two skewers about six inches apart. (You need a hard, smooth surface.)

Tear off a chunk of clay and mold it in your hands. The chunk should be about the size of the palm of your hand. Knead it several times until it warms up.

Place the clay between the skewers and begin to roll.

air dry clay christmas ornaments clay on surface

The skewers will gauge the thickness of the tags, so roll and smooth until the pin glides smoothly over the skewers. Even though these air dry clay Christmas ornaments will not be perfect, it’s important to make them all the same thickness. This can only be accomplished by using skewers, or something similar, as guides.

Using cookie cutters, cut out as many tags as will fit on the clay. It’s best to cut out 3 or 4 ornaments at a time. Don’t try to roll out a large piece of clay because it will dry quickly, and be more difficult to work with.

air dry clay christmas ornaments cookie cutter on clay

Gently pull off the clay around the tags.

air dry clay christmas ornaments cutting out

Pick up each tag, and before placing on a cookie sheet, smooth the edges with your fingers.

After placing on a cookie sheet, make sure each tag is as flat as possible. When you have a cookie sheet filled, it’s time to do your stamping (if desired.) Stamp the ornaments one tray at a time. Again, the clay will dry quickly, so stamping when they are still moist will garner the best results.

Air Dry Clay Stamping Tips:

  • Choose short words. Six letters or less is about all that fits on a tag.
  • Hold the alphabet stamps tight together (as pictured below) and stamp an entire word at the same time. For the word “peace,” I stamped the first four letters and then added the “e” on the end.
  • Watch the pressure when you apply the stamps. If you press too hard, the outline of the stamp will show. This is one step in the process where practice will make the job easier. Before stamping on ornaments to keep, it’s best to roll out a piece of clay, and try out your words. Practice lining up the stamps, and get a feel for how much pressure you need to make the letters legible.

air dry clay christmas ornaments stamping

Using the sucker stick, make a hole in the top of each tag.

Let dry for 24 hours.

Carefully turn each tag and let dry for another 24 hours.

When completely dry, tie on a piece of twine for a hanger.

air dry clay christmas ornaments stars gingerbread men christmas trees

Air Dry Clay Christmas Ornaments Tips

  • As mentioned above, the skewers guarantee that the tags will be uniform in thickness. If you use a wider rolling pin (ours is 8 inches) place the skewers further apart.
  • Anything will work for a rolling area as long as it’s smooth. If you have a pie crust mat, that’s perfect. The clay easily washes off with soap and water.
  • Practice makes (almost) perfect. It’s helpful to practice rolling and cutting a few times before making tags to keep.

air dry clay christmas ornaments trees

  • Leftover clay can be re-used. The clay that is pulled off around the cut-outs can be re-rolled. If you make a mistake, just mold and roll again.
  • When the ornaments are dry, the edges can be smoothed with a small nail file.
  • How many ornaments can you get from the 2.2 lb. package of air dry clay? That depends on so many things…but my best guess is between 30 and 35. That’s if you roll out with scewers, and use 3 -4 inch cutters.
  • These air dry clay Christmas ornaments will last for years if stored properly. They need to be stored completely flat, so layer them in a plastic bin with an air-tight lid. Use parchment paper or wax paper in between the layers.

air dry clay christmas ornaments gingerbread man

These ornaments are far from perfect…there are wrinkles and cracks. I believe that’s part of their charm, so just embrace the imperfections. No two are alike, and if you give them as gifts, the recipients will know you took the time to make them something handmade. I think that’s pretty special. This is a Christmas craft that takes a little planning, and some time. However, the outcome is so worth the effort. A handmade gift is something that you make with your hands, and it comes from your heart. This is a timeless gift for friends and family of all ages.

air dry clay christmas ornaments doves hearts

A printable copy of this tutorial is available to my email subscriber’s in the Member’s Only Library. If you aren’t on my list, and would like to join, just fill out the short form below, and the eBook will be sent directly to your inbox.

air dry clay christmas ornaments tutorial pin

If you read our clay tag story, you know that these ornaments are close to my heart. I can’t tell you how happy I am that this tutorial is finished and at your fingertips. I’ve been thinking about it for two years and I’m honestly not sure what actually made me finally do it. Whatever it was, I’m glad the inspiration hit at exactly the right time. Thank you so much for taking a look. Until next time…