We were full of festive spirit here in Shropshire thanks to a magical combination of tree decorating, a muddy walk and even muddier bike ride - and a spot of salt dough craft.
If you haven’t made salt dough before, it’s super easy and lots of fun. Though some I’ve spotted on social media are way beyond our capabilities, even young children can join in the sensory fun and homemade tree decorations make a lovely, long-lasting memory of a point in time. 2020 feels like it requires marking in some (more positive) way - so ours are signed and dated. Each child was able to get stuck in and make one of their own - and the next day we mixed up some paint and embellished them further.
How to make salt dough decorations:
2 cups plain flour
1 cup salt
2 cups warm water
Mix together to form a stiff dough
Using a rolling pin, roll out your dough until it’s fairly thin. If it’s much thicker than about half a centimetre it takes ages to dry out. Once you have your dough rolled out, you can raid the cutters and choose your shapes.
Your decoration will need a hole at the top to tie a ribbon/piece of string on - avoid making this too close to the edge and make larger than you think, as the dough does shrink a little as it dries.
We experimented with patterns and textures from plants. Rosemary was our favourite, though it was fairly subtle and so it was decided that we’d paint the whole decoration with white paint and then go over later with greens.
A spot of gold paint and a ribbon to get them tree-ready and we were done. A precious homemade gift, or a reminder of the year we stayed at home.