Easy Handprint Ornament

For Myla’s first Christmas in 2011 she was only 1 month old. We received one of those Handprint Kits with plaster and a mold. It seemed like a great idea and easy enough to do. Just take her hand and place it in the plaster, right? Wrong, so wrong. We tried quite a few times - having to tap the mold on the table to get the plaster to level out again and again, and clean off her hand again and again. Each time her hand hit the plaster, she curled her fingers grabbing a wad of plaster along the way. After several failed attempts, we decided to try her foot… since she couldn’t curl her foot quite like her hand, we got something that we felt was “good enough” after a few tries.

During that next year, we discovered Myla is a very sensory-seeking child. There is no way we could possibly try something like that again. Or… any of those ideas that included handprints with paint or plaster-type material. I know exactly where all the paint and plaster would end up… all over her and me and quite possibly the walls and dogs. (I’m not complaining… she’s just like me - I used to squish spaghetti through my hair at her age… so I get it - but I also didn't feel like trying to clean her and everything around her.) But alas, I had to come up with another idea as I really wanted to make a homemade ornament with her.

I still had some Model Magic Clay from the Clay Owls I created for the Baby Shower Centerpiece and figured I'd try that. What I thought was neat about this stuff, is that it’s lightweight. I don’t know about you, but heavy ornaments kind of annoy me. Even if they’re pretty, they pull the branches down so much that they can leave a bare space... and ultimately more work trying to figure out how to camouflage that area. Anyways, once I tested the clay and knew it would work, I decided to make an ornament for each set of grandparents. I used a mini quiche pan as a "cookie cutter" for a snowflake type shape. And, surprisingly, Myla was happy to have me squish her hand into the clay… and even REPEAT it three times. I made a hole for the silver ribbon which I knotted in back and covered with a heart-shaped piece of clay. After letting it sit out to dry for a few days, I used a Silver Sharpie marker to write her name and the year. Relatively quick and easy - and most definitely cute!

I ran out of white clay when it came to making our own, so I used some of the light brown clay and the remaining white clay to make little snowflakes which I cut out with an X-ACTO blade (a favorite tool of mine). I wrote with the Silver Sharpie on the back for ours and used red curling ribbon to hang it.