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How to Make Mouse Ornaments for Christmas with Walnut Shells

Maren has taught pre-school through college. She loves the wonder of learning.

A Christmas mouse—the idea conjures up the line “not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse,” or the British tradition of giving a child a sugar candy mouse at Christmas. So, it is easy to understand why mice ornaments are popular for Christmas trees. This is a simple project that can be done in one day plus another day for drying.

I made them with my own children when they were elementary school age. Even now, it warms my heart to look at the Christmas tree and see these adorable Santa mice made by my precious sons.

Supplies (Makes 10 Ornaments)

Laugh, if you wish, at the first item on the list. Of course, an adult can make this craft without the help of children, but a child should never be unsupervised when a hot glue gun is in use.

  • 2 or more people (child and adult mix)
  • Paper to protect your work surface and paper towels and water for cleaning fingers
  • 10 walnut shell halves
  • 20 plastic googly eyes
  • 10 pink pom-pom balls (half-inch diameter)
  • 10 white pom-pom balls (half-inch diameter)
  • 10 cotton balls
  • Thick black thread
  • Gray felt (about one 11-inch square)
  • Red felt (about one 11-inch square)
  • 14 feet of thick dark thread cut into 30 3.5-inch pieces (whiskers) and 10 6-inch pieces (hanging loops)
  • Elmer’s or other clear-drying glue (ideally a hot glue and glue gun with adult supervision—this is the one I use, and it works great)
  • Scissors
  • Pen or marker that can write on felt
  • Ruler or tape measure

Instructions

Depending on the age and patience of the child helpers, the adult may want to do the first few steps as preparation before the joint work begins.

  1. From the red felt, cut ten narrow triangles 2 inches tall with a 1.5-inch base. Fold them in half lengthwise. These will be the Santa hats.
  2. From the gray felt, cut 10 tails: .5 inch by 3.5 inches. Also on the gray felt, trace a penny or nickel and cut 20 circles. On each circle, cut one straight line from the outside to the center. These are the ears.
  3. From the gray felt, trace each walnut shell half (or be an optimist and trace the same one 10 times). Cut outside the pen marks—you are making the back side of the mouse which must be slightly larger than the shell so it can later be glued onto the shell.
  4. Spread glue along the outer rim of the shell. Fold a looped piece of thread in half and stick the loose ends on the back center glue. Put an edge of a gray felt tail on top of it. Apply more glue if needed. Press the felt bottom onto the shell half.
  5. Pull a cotton ball to make a line of white to be the white fur trim of a Santa hat.
  6. Then re-open the red triangle hat to spread a little glue inside. Refold in half gluing it shut. Place another dab of glue on the wide base of the hat and glue onto the walnut shell about half an inch above the tail. Put drops of glue surrounding the hat connection point and glue on white cotton trim.
  7. Fold two ears so that the open line edges overlap each other. Glue this. Now glue an ear on each side of the shell.
  8. Put a little glue on the top of the hat. Fold the tip of the hat down towards the white trim. Glue a white pompom at the end.
  9. Glue three whiskers onto the front center edge of the shell. Only put glue in the center so that the whiskers are free to move around. Glue the pink pompom over the center of the whiskers.
  10. Glue two googly eyes between the nose and the white fur.
The finished ornaments will look adorable!

The finished ornaments will look adorable!

Be Proud of Your Family's Artistic Creations!

This is a lovely project that can really pull a group together to create some cheer. It's also a lovely activity to do during lockdowns or extended time in the home. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!

© 2011 Maren Elizabeth Morgan

Comments

Maren Elizabeth Morgan (author) from Pennsylvania on December 20, 2011:

2uesday, they can even be done between Christmas Day and New Year's Day as an activity, then save d to decorate next year's tree.

2uesday on December 20, 2011:

Lovely idea for Christmas craft project.

Maren Elizabeth Morgan (author) from Pennsylvania on December 11, 2011:

randomcreative, you are very welcome. As you can tell from my kids' craft hubs, we had lots of family bonding activities when my sons were young.

Rose Clearfield from Milwaukee, Wisconsin on December 11, 2011:

These ornaments are really cute and perfect for kids! Thanks for the tutorial!

Maren Elizabeth Morgan (author) from Pennsylvania on December 10, 2011:

zenlikejenn, thanks. I think they are fun to make and to see.

zenlikejenn from Glendale, Colorado on December 10, 2011:

These are pretty cute and look like they are fun to make.