Handmade gifts, trinkets and treats help make the holiday season special. Although cookies and other baked goods are some of the most popular homemade creations this time of year, gift-givers young and old can put their talents to use with various craft projects.

Ornaments and decorations are one such idea. Here are some clever and, not-too-time-consuming craft projects to try this holiday season.

  • Mini sleighs: Create miniature replicas of Santa’s famous sleigh. Paint several popsicle sticks to form the main body of the sleigh and glue them together. Put one at the top perpendicular to the others to serve as the steering rudder. Two silver-painted popsicle sticks placed on their thin sides act as the blades of a sled.
  • Popcorn garland: Garland made of popcorn is a classic handmade holiday project. For a new twist, toss the popcorn with food coloring and allow it to dry before stringing for some bright color on the tree.
  • Photo ornaments: Print out several different photos that you love. Purchase round or square thin wood pieces from a craft store and attach the photos with Mod Podge®. When dry, drill a hole through the top and thread with twine.
  • Wooden snowflakes: Have children collect small twigs from outdoors, as well as holly leaves and some sprigs of evergreen. Arrange similarly sized twigs in the shape of snowflakes and glue together, or tie with twine. Embellish with stickers, glitter, dried berries, and more.
  • Dough ornaments: Anyone can have fun molding their own ornaments, letting them dry and then painting them. Use cookie cutters to get perfect holiday shapes. Craft stores sell various types of modeling clays and lightweight modeling materials. Or, make your own salt dough.
  • Reindeer bottle topper: Put to use any wine corks you have lying around. Attach googly eyes and a small fuzzy nose to the front of a cork. Insert twisted, brown pipe cleaners to make the antlers up top. Add ribbons, small snippets of faux fur or any other extras you desire.
  • Sweet sentiments: Use old Scrabble® letter tiles to form a favorite holiday phrase, like “Joy to the World.” Glue the tiles together and hang from the tree on a piece of ribbon.

Interested in contributing local, family oriented content? Contact Erica Welch at ewelch@nrtoday.com, or 541-957-4218.

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