Dec 4 2012

Crafters unite! DIY Christmas ornament


By Veronica Batton, CFCA writer/editor

Friends! I have returned, and I’m eagerly anticipating the season for crafting.

The fall and winter seasons are jam-packed with craft-crazy holidays, and I’m a junkie when it comes to hot glue and felt.

I spent some quality time with my enabler, Pinterest, to help me reinvent the classic Christmas-photo-ball ornament.

Difficulty level: medium

Materials needed:

Color copy or photo of sponsored child
Printed Google map of your sponsored friend’s country
Clear ball ornament (found at most craft stores)
Glue stick
Hot-glue gun and glue (optional)
Felt (optional)
Rice or beads
Food coloring (optional)

  1. I always like to gather all my materials before I get started. That way I don’t have to make multiple trips to the craft store. Trust me. I only tell you this from experience.

My ornament opens along the middle of the sphere. You can also get ornaments that have an opening at the top of the sphere.


  1. Once you have all of your materials together, start by tracing a heart template, slightly smaller than the size of your ornament.

I first traced around the ornament, and then I drew a heart inside the circle.

D.I.Y. Christmas ornament

  1. Cut out the heart template. Trace the template over your photo, and then cut.

D.I.Y. Christmas ornament

  1. (Step four is optional) I love using felt. I decided to glue a tiny felt heart over the city where my friend lives.

4 Ω. Cut out a tiny heart.

D.I.Y. Christmas ornament


4 æ. Glue onto map.

D.I.Y. Chrstmas ornament


  1. Take your photo and then place it, photo side down, over the printed map. Trace and then cut the photo around the area you want to highlight.
D.I.Y. Christmas ornament

For sponsors with friends in Chile, try a circle or an oval shape. Chile is a long country, folks!

  1. Take your two heart shapes and glue the back sides together.

D.I.Y. Christmas ornaments

  1. Now that your photo is complete, you will need something decorative to hold it in place inside the sphere.

My friend, Thilothammal is from Chennai, India. I visited Chennai, in January 2012 on a mission awareness trip.

While I was there, several of the mothers groups participated in a Rangoli competition. Rangoli is a popular floor art in India. Rangoli is made of rice, dried mangos and other natural items, which are then coated in rich bright colors and scattered in beautiful patterns.

Rangoli in India

A rangoli competition on my trip to India ó Future DIY project?

OK, back to the ornament.

  1. I decided to use rice, which I colored with food coloring to hold my photo in place. I thought it might be a nice touch and represent the area where Thilothammal lives.

I mixed the rice with food coloring in a small sandwich bag. Shake it up, and let it dry overnight.

D.I.Y. Christmas ornament

If you want to use something else besides colored rice, try small beads, confetti, glitter or sand.

  1. Take your weighted items (rice or beads), and place inside the ornament along with photo.

D.I.Y. Christmas ornament

  1. Attach other side of the ornament (or reattach top of ornament), and hot glue a ribbon around the middle of the sphere to hold it together.

D.I.Y. Christmas ornament

  1. Tie a ribbon through the top of the ornament and hang it on your tree.

D.I.Y. Christmas ornament

All your guests will admire your craft skills, and you’ll be able to share CFCA with others. Two birds, one stone!

This was so much fun to make! Leave me a comment if you have a question, or if you’ve joined in the crafting fun!

If you have any DIY suggestions, let me know. I love to hear from fellow crafters!

Happy holidays,
Veronica Batton

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