Lacy Punched Salt Dough Ornaments. Beaded Ones, Too!

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I had some salt dough left over (wrapped and refrigerated) from our stamped salt dough extravaganza and on a whim invited a friend over for some salt dough fun yesterday. She wanted to try stamping the dough, while I tried a couple of new ideas I've had in mind. Our toddlers wove in and out of the action with playing, snacking, fighting over toys, and working with the salt dough themselves.

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The first idea I wanted to try involved punching holes in the salt dough ornaments with a straw to create a lacy effect. We usually use straws to punch a single hole in the top for hanging; this time I punched holes all over. After a while the hole end gets too gunked up to use so I would turn the straw piece upside down, use the other side, then toss it and grab another. I cut the straws into thirds first to reduce waste.

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I also tried beaded salt dough ornaments, pressing small glass beads directly into the uncooked dough. I pressed them pretty far in, hoping that they would act kind of like stained glass and allow light to shine through the bead.

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Daphne made a few beaded ornaments, too. She loves poking beads in dough and has done it a few times in the past with playdough.

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Here is my cookie sheet of punched and beaded ornaments (with a couple of them combining the two techniques) ready for the oven. And once again, here's the salt dough recipe I used this time around: Mix 4 cups flour, 1 cup salt, 1 1/2 cups water. Bake at 225 (or so) Fahrenheit for 3-4 hours.

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I LOVE these lacy salt dough stars! They worked so well and are quite sturdy despite being only a 1/4 inch thick and punched full of holes.

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But I think I love the beaded "stained glass" salt dough ornaments even more, especially with the sun shining through them. This sweet one was made by Daphne. Love, love, love!

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  1. says

    I LOVE the stained glass ornaments. Reminds me of something I saw on Pinterest where someone had drilled holes in a fence and put colorful marbles. Great work. :)

  2. says

    Also, I wonder if you could use something like Pearler beads (sp?) that are supposed to be melted anyway. I wonder if the length of baking would be too long? Thinking as I type…

  3. says

    Just looked them up. The plastic perler beads aren’t transparent like the glass beads so wouldn’t have the same effect. Also it looks like you just swipe an iron over them quickly to fuse them together. 3 or more hours in an oven might not be a good idea.

  4. says

    I just tried to post a reply and it vanished so if this comes up twice please delete!
    You are probably right, it would be a mess, I have just always found perler beads kind of boring because they only go in certain shapes — I want to melt a big mess in the oven and see what happens. It can’t be a good idea though, eh? :)
    (PS, some of the beads are transparent — kind of sparkly, some glow in the dark too. We have a bucket of about 6000 of them and I’m looking for other fun uses. Maybe other readers have some ideas?)

  5. says

    When I made salt dough ornaments with my 3 year old, she unintentionally made lacy ornaments when the single hole intended for hanging turned into a hole punching party. Half the ornaments got the punched hole treatment, and those ornaments are my favorites. Yours came out so pretty — love the glass bead affect.

  6. says

    Awesome! I have 2 kids on my lap that want to try this now! But I think I’ll till tomorrow for this activity sounds fun :)

  7. eleashathorpe@rogers.com says

    Plastics can let off harmfull gases when heated, I wouldn’t advise putting perler beads in the oven for too long.

  8. Jo Ros says

    Those are beautiful! I cannot wait to try this..and the great thing is I have everything on hand..nothing to buy. I particularly love the black ribbon..looks fab…Thank you!

  9. says

    These are beautiful! Where did you purchase the glass pony beads? I’m tempted to try these with the regular plastic ones, but glass would be even nicer to use for parent gifts.

  10. Chris says

    What are the glass beads called? What size? Where can I get them? (New to all of this…) Thank you for your wonderful blog!