Disclosure: this post may contain affiliate links, which means I may make a commission if you decide to make a purchase through one of my links, at no cost to you.
Hey friends! And if you’re here today because of the Creative Christmas Challenge hosted by Remodelaholic, welcome! I’m Sarah. In this tutorial, I’m sharing how I created new wooden Christmas tree ornaments using my angle grinder!
Over the last year, I’ve really learned to love the versatility of this amazing tool. I especially like it for wood carving, like I did when I made some wall art earlier this year. Now, I am taking roughly the same skill set and applying it to crafting a set of DIY Christmas ornaments.
DIY Rustic Carved Wood Ornaments
For this project, you don’t need many tools. This can be a great intro project for a novice woodworker.
- scrap wood
- angle grinder
- coarse grit flap disk (I used 60 grit)
- scroll saw (if you don’t have one, you can also cut out shapes with a jigsaw, band saw, or make squares/diamonds on a miter saw if it’s easier… just always be smart about it!
- wood stain (I used this and this)
- drill bit and drill
- Optional embellishments (yarn, beads, acrylic paints, etc.)
Step 1: Add texture to some thin scrap wood.
I used a piece of pine because it’s a nice soft wood, but you can also use hardwoods if you have them.
As you can see in the video above, I experimented with different textures: one using the grinder at a 45 degree angle, one making marks along the grain, and one going against the grain. Repeat the pattern on both sides for best effect.
Step 2: Mark ornament outlines
Using a pencil, mark lines to guide your cuts on the textured areas of your scrap wood. I searched for “ornament outline” online until I found a few shapes I liked. TIP: Cookie cutters make great templates for tracing a silhouette.
Step 3: Cut out shapes on scroll saw
Sometimes it sucks to think you can’t do a tutorial if you don’t have one of the tools, but not having a scroll saw can be easily worked around! If you don’t have a scroll saw, it’s still possible to cut out alternative shapes, such as diamonds with a miter saw or larger ornaments with a jigsaw. Just be careful.
Last year, I didn’t have a scroll saw and borrowed a friend’s band saw to make a tulip bell shape. It wasn’t really the shape I originally wanted, but I made it work. I got this saw as a gift a while back and really like having it as part of my tool arsenal. Definitely a tool I would purchase on my own dime, though!
Step 4: Rough up edges with the angle grinder
I wanted each piece to look really rustic and vintage, so the crisp lines made from my scroll saw were too perfect for my liking. I used my angle grinder to remove the sharp edges, rounding them off just a bit.
Step 5: Stain and string
I originally tried to stain the ornaments with “Sunbleached,” which felt a little too gray and farmhouse for my liking. After layering over it with a warmer brown stain, it made a perfect worn-old-wood look.
Just before trying them out on the tree, I found some black and white striped baker’s twine. A simple knot and I had a cheap hanger! I chose to add a ribbon bow around the twine loop on one. These homemade ornaments are going to look great with the blue color scheme I’m going for this year!
Given that this is the second year in a row that I’ve made my own wooden Christmas ornaments, I think I’m going to continue this tradition from now on. I have a few other ideas already for more wooden ornaments, such as brass inlay, resin, or even sawdust, but time will tell if I can get to them all this year or will have to put them off until next!
Don’t forget to pin!
As I mentioned at the beginning of the post, this DIY is part of a Creative Christmas Challenge! There are 21 other bloggers sharing their DIY ornaments and Christmas decor today too, so head on over to the links below and watch the YouTube playlist as well to see all the other projects!
Nutcracker Christmas Tree Decorating | Remodelaholic
Copper Christmas Ornaments | From House to Home
DIY Rustic Carved Wood Ornaments | Ugly Duckling House
Snowman Globe Ornaments | Kailyn Williamson
Dollar Store Snow Globe Ornaments | Our Crafty Mom
Wood Disc Ornaments | Everyday Party Magazine
Button Christmas Ornaments | Girl Just DIY
Handlettered Ornaments 3 Ways | Lemon Thistle
Wood Slice Snowman Ornament | Creative Ramblings
Mini Wreath Ornaments | Love Create Celebrate
Buffalo Plaid Ornaments | Leap of Faith Crafting
Easy DIY Geometric Ornaments | Practical and Pretty
7 Cheap and Easy Christmas Ornaments | Toolbox Divas
Macrame Ornaments | Frazzled JOY
Grapevine Christmas Wreaths | Grace in My Space
DIY Apple Candle Village | Life on Summerhill
Festive DIY Christmas Card Holder | Red Cottage Chronicles
Lettered Tree Sign | Smiling Colors
Modern Christmas Wreath | Sister’s What!
Reversible Holiday Easel | Queen Bee of Honey Dos
Pretty Decorative Clothespins | Sustain My Craft Habit
DIY Wooden Triangle Christmas Tree | Adventures of a DIY Mom