Paper Mache Santa Ornament

Paper Mache Santa Ornament
Paper Mache Santa Ornament
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This fun Santa ornament was a recreation of a gift I had received. He was so cute I really wanted to be able to make some and give to others.

You will need

A sheet of foam board from the Dollar Store
Instant Paper Mache
Acrylic Paints in red, peach, black and white
Yarn scraps
Elmers Glue
Ribbon scraps

What you do

The first step is to draw a heart template, approximately 4" wide by 3" tall.  To get a perfect looking heart shape, it is sometimes easier to fold your template paper in half, draw half the heart with the fold in the center and cut it out.  Both sides of the heart will match perfectly.  Use your heart template to cut a heart out of the foam board.  I drew it on and cut the foam board with a craft knife.

Mix up your paper mache according to the directions on the box.  The paper mache that I use just requires the addition of water.  Instant paper mache can be on the pricey side at $7-8 dollars a box, but that box will last a while.


Spread a 1/4" coat of paper mache over the front of your heart, being sure to get it all the way to the edges.  Turn your heart upside down.  

Then roll a tube-shaped piece and place it on your heart to form the fur on his hat.  Roll a ball of paper mache and add it to the top of the hat.  Roll a small ball and push it into the heart to create a "flattened" nose.  Do the same with two smaller balls to create his cheeks.  


Now it will need to dry.  It took 24 hours to get a dry ornament.  

Once the ornament has dried, paint the hat red.  Then using the peach colored paint, paint his face including the nose and cheeks.  You don't have to paint where the beard will go, but be sure to get past where the beard will start.  While the paint is still wet, dab a bit of red paint on your brush and add color to his cheeks.  


Once the paint has dried, it is time to add the beard.  Now one of the things that makes the original ornament look so antique or primitive is the fact that she did not use white yarn for the beard. I looked through my yarn scraps and found a skein of varigated brown yarn.  


I wrapped the yarn around my fingers until I had quite a bit and cut the yarn above my fingers and below my fingers so that I had a bunch of roughly 2" pieces.  They don't have to be exact.  

I then coated a section of the face in Elmers glue and started glueing the yarn pieces on.  I like Elmers or white glue for this because you can push the yarn around to butt it up against each other.  Where the beard is, you don't want any paper mache showing.  


Here he is after I put all the brown yarn on.  Kinda looks like Paul Bunyan doesn't he?  Well, we'll clean him up.


First, we need to trim him up.  After the glue has dried, use your scissors to trim the yarn, following the shape of the heart.  Better?  It's amazing what a good beard trim will do for a guy.


Now lets paint the yarn white. It took several coats of white to get the look I wanted, but the depth of color is what I was going for.  The finished beard looks primitive and warm.  This photo is after one coat.  

Final touches include painting on the eyes and the mouth.  And then adding a folded ribbon to the back for a hanger.


The finished project is close to the original.  (The original ornament is on the right).  Fun to make and very in-expensive too!


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