Monday, December 21, 2009

Embossed Aluminum Ornaments

Well the kids are out of school and bored already. What's a mom to do??? At our house it's project time-I try to keep 'em busy. And since everything I do with the kids is pretty easy and inexpensive, I thought I'd share what we did today so maybe you moms, grandmas or friends out there might try it over the holidays. You'll need some medium weight aluminum (I ordered mine from DickBlick awhile back, it's called Art Emboss Aluminum Sheets, but I think you can get aluminum sheets in craft or hardware stores), Sharpie permanent markers and scissors. You can also use heavy duty regular aluminum foil but you will need to glue it to a cardboard backing of some sort for support.

It's a pretty simple, so I'll let the pics explain the process. Be sure though to emboss the design with a blunt pencil on a piece or cardboard and then flip the ornament over before you color in with the Sharpie.

You know I like me some fun, funky colors, but I was thinking the gold and brown sharpies would look gorgeous for those of you who have the more neutral color palettes.

I love to give hand-made gifts, both that I make and that others make. And if I were more organized, I would give hand-made gifts all the time, but alas, I am very unorganized and scatter brained. I do however, do a lot of little things like this....they are an easy add-on to a store bought gift. My daughter had a birthday party today so I whipped up an ornament to attach to the present that she picked out at the store. To me that always adds a nice personal touch. I purchase these ornaments from Michael's at the end of the season on sale and then I always have them on hand to add to gifts during the holidays. Here's a couple I did today. I have fun packaging them up too. I love the zebra stripes for girls and camo design for boys--topped off with an initial. Polka dots are always fun too!

I use paint pens on ornaments-they go on smooth and shiny, dry fast and are easy to draw or write with.

You can also use acrylic paint, but you will have to seal with varnish.

This will be my last project post until after Christmas! Hope you have a WONDERFUL Christmas and take time to reflect on the true meaning of why we celebrate this holiday!
Hope I see you at these parties this week. I'll be linking up at:




  1. Your DIY is DE liciously lovely!

    Have a merry and bright Christmas.

  2. Love the aluminum foil ornaments. Can you please tell what you used to do the rub/embossing. I'm trying to figure out what to use to the embossing. Thanks -Amy

  3. HOw pretty and fun these look. MERRY CHRISTMAS

  4. thank you for the hint about the paint pens. I was just wondering how to jazz up some plain ornaments.

  5. Do you cut the ornaments out or do you fold the edges under?

    Please help me finish them the right way. It seems like they would be sharp on the edges if you cut them.

    Thanks! They are very cute!

  6. With the type of aluminum I use, the edges are not that sharp, especially when you cut along the embossed edge. It is a product I order from Dick Blick-it's not a regular stiff aluminum. Hope that helps!

  7. Can you tell me if you used an existing ornament that you placed the aluminum over for embossing? I couldn't tell by the pic how you got the shape onto the aluminum. Thanks in advance...
    Melinda Strange
    Huntsville, TX

  8. I just drew my design directly onto the back of the aluminum. If you wanted to draw your design first on paper or trace something, you could. With a blunt pencil or embossing tool, just lightly trace over your design with the backside of the aluminum underneath so you can see the design. Then put cardboard underneath and go over the lines again with your tool so that the lines really pop out on the shiny side. Hope that helps :)


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