Gingerbread People Ornaments

Gingerbread People Ornaments | Mama Papa Bubba

One of my very favourite things about the holidays is making all kinds of fun homemade ornaments with Miss G.  I just love it.  We gather up our materials, put on some music, chat while we create side-by-side, and in the end, we’ve got at least a couple of new colourful and quirky ornaments to add to our colourful and quirky Christmas tree.  

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Now I’m sort of ashamed to say it, but these funny little gingerbread people ornaments are actually a year in the making….  Yes.  A year.  You see, we actually started making them last Christmas when Miss G was all about the book, The Gingerbread Boy. She would “read” this little book to us again and again and was obsessed with our gingerbread play dough and making gingerbread play dough people, so I thought that creating gingerbread people ornaments would be a perfect fit.  I’m sure it would have been, but life happened, and we’d only made the dough and cut out the shapes before we headed to Germany for our Christmas in Heidelberg.  Needless to say, our gingerbread people didn’t get decorated upon our arrival in the New Year.  Instead, they got tossed in a plastic bag and thrown into our Christmas box in hopes of better luck next year.  ☺

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Well, they got lucky alright!  When my friend Melissa from Mama Miss announced that this year’s 10 Days of Kid-Made Christmas Ornaments series would be book inspired, I got inspired to dig out both our half-done gingerbread people and our copy of The Gingerbread Boy {from this set} and finally get the project finished.  And I’m so glad I did.  Miss G was thrilled when she saw everything laid out, and the finished ornaments turned out more adorably than I ever could have imagined.

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Here’s how we made them… {Now hold on – we’re flashing back a year to the dreary days of having a dark wooden table – blech!}  First off, we created a spin off of the usual baking soda clay by sort of meshing Arm & Hammer’s Play Clay recipe with our gingerbread play dough recipe.  I wasn’t sure how it would turn out, but it actually worked out perfectly!  All we did was combine 2 cups of baking soda {baking powder won’t work, so don’t waste your time and resources trying}, 1 cup of cornstarch {aka ‘cornflour’ in many parts of the world}, 1 1/4 cups of water, 2 tablespoons of molasses {aka black treacle}, 2 tablespoons of cinnamon, 2 tablespoons of powdered ginger, 1 teaspoon of ground cloves, and 1 teaspoon of nutmeg in a pot.  Then we whisked the mixture over medium heat until it came together and resembled the texture of mashed potatoes.  Then we dumped it out on the counter and let it cool for a couple of minutes before kneading it well and placing it in a bowl covered with a damp tea towel {baking soda clay dries very quickly, so you need to keep it covered at all times}.

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Afterwards I set out our clay, several gingerbread people cookie cutters, a couple of rolling pins, some cinnamon for dusting, and some straw pieces to create hanging holes.

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Gracen didn’t waste any time getting to work.  Together, we flattened our dough, rolled it out until it was about 3/4 of a centimetre thick, and cut out several gingerbread people.

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Grae also added a small hanging hole to the top of each person’s head, making sure not to get too close to the edge.

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Then we let our pool air dry for a day or two, flipping them now and again, and here they are a year later…  Still strong and smelling delicious, and most certainly ready to be decorated!

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Along with our gingerbread baking soda clay people, I set out this little tray of decorating goodies that included small pieces of yarn, ribbon in a rainbow of colours, small googly eyes, and both regular and star-shaped buttons.  I made sure to have some scissors nearby too.

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To attach everything to our gingerbread people, I relied on our favourite ever crafting flu – Aleene’s Original Tacky Glue – and set it out in a small dish with some cotton swabs for Miss G.

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And with that, it was time to decorate!

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Grae got started right away, and while I went the more ‘traditional’ gingerbread boy route {aka the BORING route}, she decorated her first little person with a button nose, mutlti-coloured ribbon hair, and plenty of glue {love it!}

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When finished with one, Grae simply started on the next gingerbread person, and the next… Until she asked if we could add some paint into the mix…  Why not right?

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I got her acrylics in red and white as requested, and she got straight to work, obviously having a plan in mind.

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I gave her some space to do her thing, and before long, this adorable little guy emerged!

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A Santa gingerbread man complete with a beard made of fluff borrowed from her cotton swabs!  Hahaha – does it get any better than this?!  I’m pretty sure not. I just love him.

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It wasn’t long before all of our gingerbread people were decorated, each with their own personality and a unique sense of style.

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After letting them dry overnight, we added a loop of green satin cord to each and hung them on our tree!  Gingerbread people ornaments a year in the making officially DONE.  {Thank goodness.}


Alright, now for the fun part…  We have several other friends sharing book-inspired, kid-made ornaments today and I hope you’ll pop over and visit them too!  Here they are:

Kitchen Counter Chronicles  |  Living Montessori Now  |  Heart of Deborah

Crystal’s Tiny Treasures  | Kid World Citizen  | The Fairy and The Frog

The Educators’ Spin On It  | Lemon Lime Adventures  |  WillowDay

. . .

Also, check out the whole series, beginning to end here:



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4 thoughts on “Gingerbread People Ornaments

  1. I’m so excited to see that I have all the ingredients in my spice cabinet. How long do these last? Is this something that I should toss after the holidays or can they keep for awhile?

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