This is a beautiful homemade Christmas Ornament; and it could easily be used to make ornaments for anything...key rings, gifts, other holiday decorations, etc. This one takes a little bit more preparation and some materials you may need to plan ahead for; but as you can see, the finished product is worth it. Very lovely. It increases small motor skills for young children or other challenged people. Check it out, you may want to make these!
1Either ask your child or you fill the blender with 1 quart of warm water.
2Have her tear a sheet of cotton linter (about 8 inches by 7 inches) into strips about 1 to 2 inches in length. Allow the linter to soak for 5 minutes
3While the cotton linter is soaking, ask your child to spray the inside of the ceramic molds with a light, even coat of vegetable oil.
4After waiting about 5 minutes, invite your child to blend the water on low speed for 30 seconds; then, add 1 teaspoon of paper casting powder and blend for a full minute on high speed. The consistency should be comparable to that of apple sauce
5Have your child pour about 1/3 of the mixture into the strainer to drain the excess water. Spread wet pulp evenly in the ceramic mold, making sure to overlap the outside edges of the mold just slightly.
6Show your child how to compress the paper into the mold with a damp sponge, wringing out the sponge periodically to rid it of excess water. She should repeat this process 3-4 times and then carefully press the paper with a folded dish towel to absorb any remaining water.
7Make sure she allows the mold to dry. You can dry the paper overnight in the mold or place the mold in an oven at about 125-150° F for 3 hours or so, until the paper is completely dry.
8Have your child use the blade of a nail file or knife to loosen the edge of the paper and gently remove the ornament from the mold.
9Using a needle and a thin cord or ribbon, create a hanger for the ornament. Thread the cord or ribbon through the top of the ornament, tying the ends at the top.
10Plain white paper ornaments with gold thread make an extra special addition to your tree. Otherwise, use embellishments such as watercolor paints, ribbon, buttons, etc., to trim your ornaments as desired. Enjoy the holiday season and its accompanying crafts!