Yule Ornaments

01
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Salt Dough Ornaments

Use salt dough and cookie cutters to make your own Yule ornaments. Image by ansaj/E+/Getty Images

Salt dough is one of the easiest things in the world to make, and you can create just about anything from it. Use it with cookie cutters to make your own Sabbat ornaments.

You'll need:

  • 4 Cups flour
  • 1 Cup salt
  • 1 ½ Cups hot water
  • 1 tsp vegetable oil

Combine the salt and flour, then add the water until the dough becomes elastic. Add the oil at this time and knead the dough (if it's too sticky, add more flour). Once it's a good consistency, make your decorations with cookie cutters. Bake ornaments at 200* until hard (about 20 - 30 minutes). Once they've cooled, paint them with designs and symbols, and seal with clear varnish.

If you're planning to hang them, poke a hole through the ornament BEFORE baking them. Then, after you've varnished them, run a ribbon or thread through the hole.

02
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Cinnamon Spell Ornaments

Cinnamon Ornaments
Westend61 / Getty Images

Will you be decorating a tree this year for your Yule celebrations? There are all kinds of things you can hang on it! Try making a batch of cinnamon spell ornaments as a fun and magical holiday project.

For starters, let’s be clear about one thing – these ornaments may be made with cinnamon, but they are NOT edible, so make sure you hang them out of reach of hungry pets or roaming bands of feral toddlers.

Let’s talk a little bit about cinnamon. It smells good, sure, and it tastes delicious… but what else is it good for? Cinnamon has been used in a variety of ways for thousands of years. The Romans burned it in funeral ceremonies, believing that the aroma was sacred and pleasing to the gods. Because it was hard to come by, during the Middle Ages, wealthy Europeans made sure to serve cinnamon at feasts so their guests would know that no expense had been spared. Now, fortunately for us, you can buy powdered cinnamon in bulk just about anywhere.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 1 Cup cinnamon
  • ¾ Cup applesauce
  • 1 Tbs. nutmeg
  • 1 Tbs. ground cloves
  • 1 Tbs. allspice
  • 2 Tbs. plain white glue

This recipe makes about a dozen ornaments, depending on the size of your cutouts.

Mix all of your ingredients in a bowl. You can start out stirring them with a fork or spoon, but as the mixture gets thick and dough-like, just give in and use your hands to mush it all together. Squash it around until you can form a nice big sticky ball of dough – if it seems like it may be too dry, you can always add a little more applesauce, or a teaspoon of water.

As you’re blending the dough together with your hands, think about your intent. What is the purpose of the ornaments you’re about to craft? Are they for protection? To bring well-being and health? For financial prosperity and abundance? Think about the goal, and send those intentions through your hands into the dough as you mix it.

Sprinkle a clean surface – if you have a baker’s mat for rolling, use it – with cinnamon, and roll out the dough until it’s about ¼” thick, and use your favorite magical cookie cutters to cut out the dough. You can choose random holiday shapes, or drag out those old gingerbread man cookie cutters to make little people for your ornaments. Cut out house shapes for ornaments that focus on security and family stability. Use hearts for love, and so forth.

Make a hole in the top of each ornament – use a toothpick or skewer –so you can hang it up after it’s been baked.

Now, here’s where you get to make some additional magic. Remember how you focused your intent into the dough as you blended it? We’re also going to add magical symbols to it. On each ornament, use a toothpick or small paring knife to inscribe a symbol of your intent. You can use any kind of symbol at all that’s meaningful to you, but here are a few ideas to get you started:

Once you’ve inscribed your ornaments with symbols, place them on a baking sheet in the oven. Leave them in there on a low temperature, around 200, for several hours – the goal is not to bake them so much as just dry them out completely. Once they’re dry, let them cool all the way down.

Finally, thin a little bit of white glue with some water, and brush a light layer over the top surface of each ornament, to give it a nice glaze. Once the glaze has dried completely, thread a string or ribbon through the hole, and hang it on your holiday tree – or give it as a gift to someone you care about!

Tip: Another option, rather than inscribing the ornaments with a symbol, is to use icing piped into place. Use your favorite decorative piping tip to create sigils on your ornament AFTER you’ve dried and cooled them. Once your icing has dried completely, apply the coating of thinned glue for a glaze.

03
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Scented Pine Cone Ornaments

Use your favorite spices to make scented pinecone ornaments. Image by Mike Bentley/E+/Getty Images

If you want to keep an earth-friendly theme to your Yule decorating, one way to do so is to use the elements found in nature as part of your decor. This is a project that you may have made before if you have a Girl Scout -- simple things such as seeds, acorns, feathers, and other found items are easy to make into ornaments and other decorations.

For this simple project, you'll need the following:

  • Pinecones, of any shape or size
  • Equal amounts ginger, nutmeg and allspice, blended
  • A 1:1 mixture of water and craft glue
  • Glitter
  • Ribbon
  • A small paintbrush

To prepare the pinecones, rinse them under running water and then spread them out on a baking sheet. Bake at 250 for about 20 minutes -- this will make them open up, and also get rid of any trace amounts of bacteria that might remain on them. Don't worry if there's sap on them - it will harden into a shiny glaze and look pretty. If you bought your pinecones from a craft store, they're probably open already, so you can skip the rinsing altogether.

Once the pinecones have cooled, use the small paintbrush to apply the glue to the cones (I'd recommend spreading out some newspaper ahead of time). You can either cover the entire cone, or just the outer tips of the petals for a more "frosted" look.

Add the spices and glitter to a zip-loc bag. Drop the pine cones in, and shake until coated with spices and glitter. Allow to dry thoroughly, and then tie a ribbon around the end so you can hang it up.

Add a few springs of greenery if you like. Use it on a holiday tree, or place them in a bowl to scent your room.

04
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Easy Pipecleaner Pentacle Ornaments

Patti Wigington

Use chenille stems in your favorite color to create one of these. They're easy, and your kids can do it once you show them how to bend the stems. You'll need three pipe cleaners, or chenille stems, for each pentacle.

Bend the first stem into a circle, and overlap the ends by about an inch, so you can twist them closed.

Take the second stem, and create three arms of the star inside the circle. Be sure to twist it around the circle as you make the points, because this will keep it from sliding apart.Take the last stem and create the final two arms of the star. Use the remaining length of stem (don't snip it off) to twist into a loop so you can hang your ornament.

05
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Yule Spell Ornament

Close-Up Of Decoration Of Christmas Tree
Fill a glass ornament with magical goodies!. Jordene Knight / EyeEm / Getty Images

As Yule approaches, the opportunities for spellwork are seemingly endless. If you have aholiday tree this year, why not use ornaments as a way of directing your magical energies? Make a spell ornament to bring prosperity, love, health, or creativity into your life.

You'll need the following:

  • Clear plastic fillable ornament
  • Filler material associated with your purpose: herbs, small stones, colored paper or glitter, etc.
  • Colored ribbon
  • Fill the plastic halves of the ornament with items that are associated with your purpose. Try a couple of the following, or come up with your own combinations:

  • For a money spell, add shredded bits of play money, Bay leaf, basilchamomile, clover, cinquefoil, tonka bean, Buckeye, pennyroyal; stones such as turquoise and amethyst; bits of green, silver or gold glitter.
  • For love magic, use Allspice, apple blossom, bleeding heart, catnip, lavender, periwinkle, peppermint, tulip, violet, daffodil; crystals such as rose quartz or emerald, coral; small heart-shaped cutouts, bits of pink or red glitter.
  • For workings related to creativity and inspiration, add feathers, sage, tobacco leaf, hazelwood or birch, symbols of artistry such as paintbrush tips, crayons, or colored thread. Add diamonds, quartz crystals, also consider colors like yellow and gold.
  • If you're doing healing magic, use Apple blossom, lavender, barley, comfrey, eucalyptus, fennel, chamomile, allspice, olive, rosemary, rue, sandalwood, wintergreen, peppermint.

As you're filling your ornament, focus on your intent. Think about what your purpose is in creating such a working. For some people, it helps to chant a small incantation while they work - if you're one of those folks, you might want to try something like this:

Magic shall come as I order today,
bringing prosperity blessings my way.
Magic to hang on a green Yule tree;
as I will, so it shall be.

Once you've filled your ornament, place the two halves together. Tie a colored ribbonaround the center to keep the halves from separating (you may need to add a dab of craft glue for stability) and then hang your ornament in a place where you can see it during the Yule season.

Gift-giving tip: Make a whole box of these with different purposes, and share them with your friends at the holidays!