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Clay ornaments yay! The Santa hat

Of all the fun Christmas craft projects you can do for your home I find the small handmade ornaments to be my favorite. The little goodies are so unique and completely yours, they don't look like the standard round shiny ornaments you can find at the store. These are tiny Santa's, comical snowmen, my pet dog, the favorite Christmas cookie, my own one of a kind snowflake, etc. They are a great activity for an individual or a family of ten. And even better, you can store them away and collect more and more each year, even pass some on to your children one day.
While handmade Christmas ornaments are very versatile in the shapes, sizes and materials used for this occasion I have decided to create a small clay Santa hat ornament, if you are curious to find out how just read on!
What you will need to make your own clay Santa Hat Ornament:
- Red Polymer Clay. You can get a block of it for two bucks at Joann's, Michael's or any other crafts store. You will need less than one fourth of the block.
- White Polymer Clay. Same applies as for red.
- A few toothpicks.
- A few sheets of printer paper. You can use other stuff to protect your work surface just make sure none of the color will transfer onto your clay.
- A knife or a crafts razor.
- Some festive string, not too thick.
- Some sort of a stubby screw driver or a different object of a similar shape. You will need this to put the hat on while fluffing the white of it.
How to make your own clay Santa Hat Ornament:
- First set up your work surface, protect it with paper or whatever else you might have decided to use and get your supplies ready.
- Break off a piece of the red Polymer clay, the amount depends on your desired ornament size so be vary of that when deciding how much you will use. Start shaping it into a sloppy cone.
- Once you have the approximate cone shape start working the top end out to shape it like the Santa's hat (photo 1).

- Every once in a while you might need to stop working on your ornament and let the clay set a bit. This depends on a ton of factors like humidity and temperature, but the point is you don't want the clay to become too soft and flimsy or it will be very fragile and a pain in the butt to work with!
- Take a small piece of white Polymer clay and start working it into a ball, this will be the fluffy tip of the hat. Flatten the ball and wrap it around the red tip of the hat.
- Repeat a few times until you get a bulb like shape on the end, once you have the shape apply one more layer of white (photo 2).

- Again, be wary of the clay becoming too soft. If it is OK to work with take a bigger piece of white Polymer clay and roll it out into a snake like shape.
- Apply it in circle around the base of the hat (photo 3) press down slightly so that it sticks to red but don't smush it.

- Now that you have the basic shape of the Santa hat going on grab that screw driver and the toothpick.
- Use the screw driver handle as a head and place the hat on top of it. Now, and do this carefully not to knock it off, scratch up the white around the base with a toothpick (photo 4).

- When you are done it should look something like this: (photo 5).

- Now repeat the process on the ball of white, make sure you are extra careful because the tip is thin and you don't want it all breaking off, (photo 6).

- Once again let the ornament set a bit. You might find this annoying but trust me it will help you as far as flimsiness and stability of it go.
- Take a toothpick and poke a hole at the top of the ornament, the top being where the hat folds. You will make the hole by slowly pushing the toothpick through the clay while spinning it. Have your finger on the other side where it should come out (photo 7), once you feel it poke your finger gently take it out and repeat the same from the other side. What this does is it ensures that you have a nice clean hole (photo 8).

- The pre-baked product will look something like this: (photo 9). You can smooth it out if it looks rough like mines.

- Bake your ornament according to the manufacturers instructions please!
- Once it is baked and cooled you can leave it as is or spray it with lacquer to give it shine, totally up to you.
- All you need to do now is pull the string through and your ornament is all finished!

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