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Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Salt Dough Ornaments

This is the most simple of projects but it's a lot of fun for the kids (and adults) who participate.  First, gather the ingredients that you'll need for the project::
3 cups flour
1 cup salt
1 1/2 cups warm water
That's it!

Next, you should find a helper to do the work for you as you dictate the directions. Mix flour and salt together.  Add water gradually and knead dough.  If dough is too dry, add water.  If it is too sticky, add flour.

 Roll out dough onto waxed paper about 1/4" to 3/4" thick.  The thicker the dough the longer the drying (cooking time).

 Use cookie cutters (or you can free-hand a design if you're artistic like that) to cut the ornament shapes and poke a hole using a wooden skewer or the end of a pencil.  

Transfer your shapes to an ungreased cookie sheet at bake.  I baked mine at 325 degrees for about an hour and a half (someone was in a big hurry to decorate).  The problem with baking at this higher temp is that your shapes rise a little bit and get puffy.  To get a flatter, neater ornament, I'd suggest baking at 200 degrees for two to two and a half hours.  Turn them half-way through the baking process, no matter which temp you use.

Cool on wire racks and decorate with paint.  Since I was decorating with a five year old, we just used a water based paint but if you want the paint to last, you could use acrylic and could even add glitter or seed beads to complete the look.
I forgot to take pictures of the painted ornaments and I just took down my Christmas tree yesterday. They turned out cute and Alexander was pleased to get to help with the whole process.  

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