Monday, December 23, 2019

Easy DIY fingerprint holiday ornament

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It's just a couple days before Christmas.
Want a last-minute craft for the holidays?
Here's a simple and meaningful keepsake that's
so easy and inexpensive to make
that you can keep one for you
and send a bunch off to loved ones.

Start with blank ornaments. You can use whatever you have around,
or you can find some at craft stores or online. 
Round ones work, but I preferred the ease of use
of these flat wooden ones I found here.

Next you need at least three colors of paint. Easy peasy!
I went with tempera because that's what I had.

Red, yellow, and green are nice and bright,
but of course you can choose whatever you like.
Don't forget your paintbrushes.

For one kid to make a whole ornament, 
you'll use just one thumb and wash between colors.
Since I have three kids, I used one thumb per color, per kid.
That way, I sent just the one ornament, 
with three kids' thumbprints, 
to each family member.
I think this makes sense and I'm belaboring the point,
but if you have multiple kids, you could have them
share one ornament or make their own separate ones.

Make sure to practice on scrap paper beforehand.
Teach your kiddos to press down and then straight back up,
without wiggling around their thumb.
Also help them get the angle right for their print
to be straight up and down.

For kids with sensory aversions to painted thumbs:
I feel you, and I feel for your kids.
This might be a craft you need to wait on, 
whether a year or perhaps forever.
Some kids do mature out of a strong aversion
and can handle a short period of goopy thumbs,
as long as you reassure them
they can rush to wash their hands right after.

Once you're ready, show them on the ornament
where the first print goes,
and stamp.
This is my middle child's grubby little hands.

The second color goes in the middle,
as demonstrated by the pudgy mitts of my youngest.
Repaint the thumb after every two or so stamps.

My oldest rounds out the third color.

After the paint has dried (which doesn't take long),
use permanent marker
such as a black ultra fine point Sharpie
to draw your loopy wire lines
and the base of each bulb.
I practiced these on our scrap paper
to make sure I had the hang of it
before committing.

On the back or front,
you can add text.
I thought "Merry and Bright"
would be cute.
Dates and names are a must
to identify these little thumbs.

Once you're done, tie a ribbon hanger,
and pop these on your tree,
in the mail, or in a stocking.
These are so cute,
so fast (done within an hour
if you have the supplies at hand),
and such a good choice
for a sentimental last-minute present.

Merry merry to you and all the little hands in your home!


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