How-To DIY Marbled Christmas Ornaments
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Every year around the holidays, I run into the same dilemma: I want my apartment to be as gorgeous as the Instagram influencer girlies, while I know in my heart that I am just genuinely cheaper than them. Have you seen the prices on bougie Christmas ornaments lately? In this economy? Not happening.
Thankfully, there are so many affordable ways to add some flair to your holiday decor if you have Anthropologie taste but are on a Target budget — a lifestyle that I’ll proudly claim any day.
That’s why I’m very excited to share these DIY marble ornaments with you. They’re easy to make, plus you might even already have a lot of the supplies at home. And the best part? You’ll be able to make these in an afternoon for under $30 (or even less if you’re a crafty hoarder like me and the employees at Michaels see your face far too often). Fair warning: it can get a little messy, but the results are worth it.
Ready to add some razzle dazzle to your tree?
Let’s get into it!
For these ornaments, you’ll need:
- Pouring medium (this is also sometimes referred to as flow medium or marbling medium). I used 32 ounces to cover 20 2.5” ornaments and had plenty left over.
- Plastic Christmas ornaments. Go for the cheap ones! It’ll be all the more satisfying.
- Plastic cups and spoons for mixing and pouring.
Step 1: Prep your space
Make sure you have a space ready for your ornaments to dry. Once you start painting, you’re likely not going to want to stop, so take a bit of time to prepare a little station for yourself. For mine, I taped some old wrapping paper onto a table, used a chunky knitting needle to poke holes in an Amazon box, then gently stuck my ornaments in the holes to dry. I’ve also seen people stick skewer sticks into packing foam and hang their ornaments on there. Use whatever you have on hand, but make sure to protect any surface you’re working on from the paint!
We’re trying to make more nice things here, not ruin the ones we already have.
Step 2: Pick your palette
Now onto the fun part: let’s prep our paint colors. You’ll want to pour each color into your plastic cups, making sure to leave at least half of each cup empty. For my ornaments, I decided to use leftover paint from projects I worked on throughout the year, so I spent some time mixing colors that would look good with the rest of my holiday decor. This is optional! Feel free to buy acrylic in the exact colors you want. Just make sure to keep in mind that your pouring medium will lighten your paint a bit and you’ll want to create contrast. I recommend using white as your base and having at least one dark or metallic color on hand.
Once you love your color palette and your cups are ready, it’s time to break out the pouring medium.
Step 3: Mix in your pouring medium
Next, add some pouring medium into each cup. You’re aiming for equal parts paint and pouring medium here. Then mix each cup very thoroughly. The paint tends to settle in the bottom of the cups, so take the extra time to mix your colors until the consistency is even throughout.
From here on out, we’re done with mixing things well.
Step 4: Set yourself up
Pull the tops off of your ornaments and set those aside for later. Then, arrange your ornaments bottom-up on your workspace making sure to have an inch or two of space between them. Now that your ornaments are ready, you’ll set up your marbled paint. Grab an empty cup and take turns pouring different colors into it, taking care not to blend them together. Let loose here. The splotchier the content of your cup looks, the prettier the ornament will be.
Now we’re onto the fun part!
Step 5: Pour your paint
Take your cup of splotchy paint and slowly start to pour it over an ornament. This is a really satisfying moment, so take your time, pause, and check and ensure that all spots are covered. When you’re satisfied with how your first one looks, you can move on to the next.
At some point, you’ll need to refill your cup to continue. This is a great chance to experiment with different color combinations.
Step 6: Let them dry
This is the easiest step! Give them a few hours to rest and check on them just to see if anything needs a touch-up with some extra paint.
These ornaments will dry fairly quickly and have a semi-matte finish. If you want them to be shinier, you can spray them with a polyacrylic spray. But if you want to save your coins, you can put the tops back on and get to decorating.