How to Plan a Salt Dough Ornament Exchange Christmas Party

Are you tired of the same ol’ Christmas party ideas?

Looking for something new, different, creative, unique…and a little frugal?

I promise you that I have something you haven’t seen or heard of before!

A Salt Dough Ornament Exchange Party is a sure way to bring people together for a memorable, fun, and fresh Christmas party!

What is a Salt Dough Ornament Exchange Party?

salt dough ornaments

Good question!

Salt dough ornaments are made of three ingredients – salt, water, and four!

You likely have all of these in your house already!

You will have all the ornaments prepared (I’ll show you how!) before your guests arrive.

They will enjoy painting the ornament of their choice, writing on the back, and swapping it with another friend/family member at the party.

The best part of this party is that NEXT Christmas, your guests will be able to pull out that ornament and remember all the festivities, people, love, and joy from Christmas past!

Who should exchange ornaments?

This is such a versatile and fun activity for people of all ages!

Here are some ideas though for who would love to swap salt dough ornaments at your Christmas party:

  • Cousins at a holiday family reunion
  • Grandparents and grandkids
  • Homeschool Co-op friends
  • Neighbors/neighborhood kids
  • Church small group friends
  • Ladies Bible Study friends
  • Playdate friends
  • Sports friends/teammates

You could probably think of many more!

Let’s Get Started with Planning Your Christmas Party!

Looking for a fun, fresh, unique Christmas party idea? While trying to stay on a budget? I will show you how to throw a salt dough ornament exchange Christmas party! Your kids, family, and friends will love the fun, creative energy, Christmas cheer, and lasting memories!

1. Gather Your Salt Dough Ornament Supplies

Supplies for Salt Dough ornaments

Preparing the salt dough ornaments is the biggest part of the party prep, but thankfully it can be done far in advance. No last minute prep required!

And thankfully the materials are likely things you already keep around the house.

To make your salt dough ornaments you will need:

  • 2 cups white flour
  • 1 cup salt
  • 1 cup warm water
  • Rolling Pin
  • Christmas Cookie Cutters
  • cookie sheet
  • drinking straw
  • Paint (used later during the party)

2. Make your Salt Dough Ornaments

Preheat oven to 250 degrees.

Mix flour, salt and water in a bowl until well combined.

Turn the flour out onto a floured working surface and work the dough until no longer sticky.

Roll your dough out with a rolling pin so that is smooth and approximately 1/4 inch thick

Preparing salt dough for Christmas ornament exchange party

***Remember if they are too thick, the ornaments will take forever to bake completely. Too thin and they will break easily.

Use assorted Christmas cookie cutters to cut out shapes

Salt dough and Christmas cookie cutters to make ornaments

Place ornaments on a cookie sheet. Use a drinking straw to punch a hole in each ornament for hanging.

Prepared salt dough ornaments for the oven

Place ornaments in oven for 90 minutes. Flip over and bake for another 90 minutes.

***Ovens vary, so check them occasionally.

Allow to cool completely.

The most difficult part is done! Just store in an air tight container until your party.

***If you party is for kids, consider making enough ornaments so they make one to take home AND one to swap with a buddy.

3. Gather Supplies For Your Guests

Now you will need to make sure you party has everything your guests will need to decorate their salt dough Christmas ornaments with flair!

Make sure to have all of these on hand:

Paint: Blue, White, Green, and Red paint will be the most popular. Kids may want other colors too, so maybe have a rainbow of options. I love washable crayola paint for kids, but there is also a washable tempera paint available now that might have brighter results. Adults will have find acrylic paint produces a higher quality finish, but it is permanent.

Painted salt dough ornaments for a Christmas party

Paint Brushes: You will want brushes with varying thickness for fine details. This is a great option for all ages.

Paint Pallets: This may be as easy as a piece of cardboard or a paper plate to put dots of paint. If you have the budget, these paint pallets from Amazon would be a fun touch for you Christmas party.

Plastic Table Cloths: Dollar Tree will have every imaginable color! Well worth it for a quick clean up.

Smocks: Tell people to come in clothes they don’t mind getting a little washable paint on. You can also tell people to bring an old button down shirt to wear backwards while painting. Works like a charm!

Water dishes/paper towels: Use paper bowls and have paper towels available to clean brushes.

Drying Racks: Use cookie sheets lined with parchment paper or your baking racks for guests to let their ornaments dry after painting.

Colorful Sharpies: To write messages on the back of your ornament!

Messages written on back of Christmas ornaments

Curling Ribbon and Scissors: Have red, green, or white curling ribbon to hang the ornaments.

Small Christmas Tree (optional): Consider hanging dried ornaments on a small Christmas tree. Depending on how well your adult guests know each other, they may prefer to pick an ornament off a tree instead of swapping with someone.

4. Plan Food

Food for a Christmas party

Having easy finger foods to grab and munch is a must for a party like this!

The age of your party guests will likely drive what you serve, but here are some simple ideas to get you thinking:

  • Assorted cheeses and crackers
  • Mixed nuts
  • Dried fruit tray
  • Christmas cookies (of course!)

5. Don’t Forget Christmas Music!

Music can make or break a party, but it is also one of the easiest things to forget about.

The right music will be the perfect backdrop to your creative party and get everyone in the mood for Christmas cheer!

Be sure to have a good Christmas music mix ready to go on Alexa, your phone (if you have external speakers), or even your favorite Christmas CDs!

That’s it!

Girl hanging a salt dough ornament on a Christmas tree

Now you have the perfect blueprint for a successful, fun, unique, fresh Christmas party that people will be talking about long afterwards!

My family did this when we were together for the holidays years ago. My kids still love pulling out their ornaments from their cousins and remembering that Christmas!

A handmade Christmas ornament is such a special way to preserve a memory.

More Ideas!

Your family may really love the idea of making these beautiful ornaments. My family sure did!

Here are some fun ideas to use them in other ways:

  • Hand them out at a retirement home with a Christmas card
  • Inexpensive gift for your kids to give to their friends
  • Gift to bring along when invited over for dinner during the holidays
  • Teacher’s gift

The possibilities are endless!

Want to make sure you remember this for later? Be sure to pin to your favorite Pinterest Board and share with your friends and followers!

Looking for some more help with your holiday planning? Then this post from FreddiesMummyUK is a must read! Just click the image below:









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