The holidays used to mean something; giving a gift was a personal thing, not about the monetary price tag. Nowadays, the holidays seem to be about breaking the bank to please everyone, when they should be about spending time with those you love and giving gifts with meaning, from the heart and that took you a little bit of time to put together. Call me old fashioned, but I’d prefer a small, thoughtful gift over an extravagant one any day of the year.
For some of us, families are small, for others, large and extended. For me, it’s like living Brady Bunch and trying to come up with gifts for Mom 1, Mother-in-law, Grandma 1, Grandma 2, sisters 1, 2 and 3, brothers, fathers, grandfathers, dogs and probably the mailman too. The holidays can be pricey and, while gifts aren’t always expected, it’s nice knowing that you don’t have to show up empty handed or with an empty wallet.
These ornaments can hold reign for the entire winter season, are inexpensive to make (I made them in bulk – 12 ornaments in a sitting) and so adorable, they’ll probably be a crowd pleaser for even the tiniest Grinch heart.
Lightbulb Snowmen Ornaments
Lightbulbs – I bought 4 packages of bulbs, 3 per package at Dollar Tree, $4 score!
1 bottle of Glue – I bought a 2 pack at Dollar Tree
1 medium sized (think Parmesan cheese shaker) bottle of white glitter, ACMoore – I suggest scoping out their website or your local Sunday newspaper for coupons. I found one for 40% off 1 item which brought the glitter in at a whopping $2.67
1 small bottle black fabric paint
1 small bottle orange fabric paint
1 roll of twine
Hot glue gun and glue sticks
Twigs – you’ll need 2 small twigs per ornament for arms, I found mine in the backyard.
Wax or parchment paper
1. Place the parchment paper on a flat surface – I put mine on a cookie sheet so I could easily move the project around (especially since I commandeered the kitchen table).
2. Fill a ziplock bag with a generous amount of glitter. Depending on how many ornaments you intend to make, you can always add more.
3. Holding the metal base of the lightbulb, glob glue on the ball of the bulb and use your finger to smooth it all over the surface, avoiding the metal.
4. Once you’ve coated the bulb in glue, drop it in the ziplock bag of glitter, seal, and shake and bake that bulb!
5. Carefully pull the bulb out and place on parchment paper, allow to fully dry, I can’t stress this enough — just ask my Frankensnowman prototype how important this step is. If you’ve got the time, I would allow them to dry overnight.
6. Using your black fabric paint, draw two dots for eyes, six dots for a smile and three dots for the buttons. The fabric paint came out fairly quickly, so I was very cautious in applying.
7. Next, using your orange fabric paint, draw a small line for the “carrot” nose.
8. Allow drying time for your faces, keeping in mind that the fabric paint tends to dry fairly quickly.
9. Heat up your hot glue gun and have plenty of extra glue sticks ready and waiting. Taking a pair of stick arms, first break them down to a length that you’re happy with. Then apply a generous glob of glue to the side of your snowman and press an arm in, holding and pressing it until it’s completely dry or immobile. I can’t stress this part enough, otherwise your snowman might have arms that look like he’s directing traffic and I promise you that it’s not cute (Frankensnowman, I’m looking at you!). Repeat on the other side.
10. Cut a piece of twine (if your twine is thick, pull apart so it’s only 1 thinner strand, the brand of twine I used could be pulled into four separate pieces), wrap around the metal part of your snowman twice and secure with a knot. Then make a loop and knot your excess twine to make your snowman hangable.
Gift wrap creatively, and give this bright idea to friends and family this holiday season!