Felt Ornaments: even toddlers can make them

Felt ornaments
Felt ornaments

The tomato plants are now dead and the leaves are falling by the bushel; it must be time to start making gifts and ornaments for our own tree.  The Sage, The King and I began making some felt ornaments today.  I cut two identical stars from felt (use a cookie cutter if you aren’t comfortable cutting them freehand).  I used the biggest needle I had (my grandmother would call it a sword!), threaded it and knotted the ends together so they couldn’t pull the needle off the thread.  Pull the thread through one piece of felt at the top (you’ll use the thread that you have left over when you finish to hang it from) then lay the second piece of felt on the back to hide the knot.  Do one or two whip stitches to hold it together then give the needle to your child.  The Sage is 2 1/2.  I held the felt while he sewed.  He is NOT a calm child and does NOT tend to follow directions (as evidenced by the shoes we found on the fan blades!), but no one got stuck with a needle!  Sometimes I had to remind him to sew the edge where he hadn’t sewn yet, but for the most part, he did a good job with little coaching.  I had planned to stuff the star with a little stuffing before he was done, but I think that probably shouldn’t be attempted with a toddler because they aren’t going to keep their stitches close enough to the edge.

The Sage's Star
The Sage’s Star (age 2)

The Sage’s second ornament was a tree.  I added a third layer of felt to the center to make it puffier and to easily give the tree a trunk.

Three layers of felt
Three layers of felt

Again, I got the needle started for him, but didn’t try to confine his stitches to the edge, thinking that the stitches would help break up the solid mass of green tree.

The Sage's Tree
The Sage’s Tree (age 2)

This is The Sage’s first Christmas in the US and he really liked hanging the two ornaments on knobs.  I really wonder how things will go when we put the tree up.  The glass ornaments will likely stay in the boxes this year and I’m sure The Sage will ‘reposition’ ornaments more than I ever have!

The King's Gingerbread Man (age 4)
The King’s Gingerbread Man (age 4)

The King also made an ornament.  When he was 4, we made felt gingerbread people ornaments, sewing beads for the face and buttons before whip stitching the two pieces together and stuffing them.  (We read a lot of gingerbread man stories that year.)

This year, he decided to learn and use a blanket stitch.  We cut three different shapes, piled them on top of one another and he blanket stitched around each one.  We then decided to add a final big blue heart to the back and stitched that on, hiding all of the other stitches.

The King's Pieces
The King’s Pieces
The King's Star-Heart (age 9)
The King’s Star-Heart (age 9)

For older kids and adults, you can look at these Flickr pages for inspiration and at these tutorials:

The I Made It Shop
Bugs and Fishes by Lupin
Sunshine’s Creations
Save on Crafts
Dog Christmas Stocking
Better Homes and Gardens

And as you can see here, sewn felt shapes aren’t just for Christmas ornaments!  These would make great stockings and gift tags, with the person’s name embroidered on the front and your name on the back.  I wonder how many ornaments the kids want to make.  I’d love to have a garland of them across the kitchen windows.



3 thoughts on “Felt Ornaments: even toddlers can make them

  1. Wow that looks like fun I am 11 and her is the thing I am looking for a present very sweet for my mom like somthing homemade becuase even when I get my mom somthing that I spend like all my money on her my sister veats me she is 24 and she gets a thousand times better gift and my mom just puts my present away and my sister gets all the attenchen so I am looking for somthing cool to make for her PLEASE!!!!!!!!!!!! if you have any fun and cool ideas that an 11 year old can do please tell me them!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. Well, it depends on what your mom likes. My 9 year old has made felt ornaments, too, just more careful stitches. You can also make felt ornaments for other holidays. You could make a string of hearts for Valentines or any time, for example. You could make a coupon book with jobs you’ll do to help your mom that are jobs you usually don’t do- but that only works if you follow through and do the jobs. If your mom sends many cards you can make blank note cards by cutting a piece of scrapbook paper in half then fold that in half. Draw a picture on the front. One way to do this carefully is to draw it on another sheet of paper just the way you want it, then trace it with a dark pen. Put the card over the pen drawing on a bright window and then trace. Cards made with only bold black pens can look very professional. Cards colored in with watercolor or colored pencils can look bright and festive. Good luck.

  3. just thought i would leave my idea for today…. we cleaned out the toy boxes today and found an etcha scetch that no longer works and a broken slinky, we are using both to glue pictures of the kids, string with ribbon and turn into awesome christmas ornaments:)

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