Hobbies: Fun crafts to make house merry and light

Ellen Harter Wall
FamilyFun magazine

Four fun felt projects to decorate your home this holiday season. To get the templates, go to familyfunmag.com/printables.

A Banner to Tweet About

Set the scene for the holidays with this 2-footlong wall hanging.

You will need:

16-by-27-inch piece of white glittery felt, plus a scrap for the snow on the branches

Tacky glue

9-by-12-inch piece of red felt

9-by-12-inch piece of tan felt

Scrap of orange felt

3 buttons

Several sheets of 8 1/2-by-11-inch white paper

17-inch-long dowel (ours was 1/4 inch in diameter)

String for hanging

1. Make a casing at the top of the banner by folding over one inch of the white felt and gluing it in place.

2. Download our templates for the birds, branches, beaks and snow, use them to cut out pieces from the various colors of felt, and glue the pieces and button eyes in place.

3. Cut snowflakes in various sizes from the paper and glue them to the back of the white felt. This will add a subtle pattern when the banner is hung against a wall.

4. Slide the dowel into the casing and hang the banner with string.

Adorable Elves

Turn inexpensive papier-mache boxes and cones into an eye-catching place to store wrapped holiday treats. Even more fun: The elves’ pupils can be repositioned, giving them a host of changeable expressions.

For each, you will need:

16-inch-square piece of felt for the hat

16-by-8-inch piece of felt for the face and ears

Felt scraps for the eyes and hat decorations

Tacky glue

13 1/2-inch-tall papier-mache cone (available at craft stores)

4-inch-wide papier-mache round box (available at craft stores)

Embellishments, such as sequins, pompoms, glittery pipe cleaners and bells

1. Download our templates for the hat, face, ears and decorations and use them to cut the pieces from the felt.

2. In a small bowl, mix 2 tablespoons water with 1/4 cup tacky glue and set the mixture aside.

3. To make the hat, cover half the cone with the glue mixture. Begin wrapping the felt hat piece around it, smoothing as you go, then glue and wrap the other half. Glue on the ears, decorations and other embellishments.

4. Make the elf’s face by gluing the felt pieces to the box and lid as shown on the template. Glue the whites of the eyes in place, but not the pupils (so that they can be repositioned).

Cute Forest Friends

Set tea lights inside the larger cottage to cast a pretty snowflake shadow on the roof.


For two houses you will need:

2 (9-by-12-inch) pieces of white glittery felt

Clear plastic deli container and clear plastic cup (we used a 16-ounce container and a 5-ounce cup)

Tacky glue

Small piece of blue felt

81/2-by-11-inch sheet of white paper

9-by-12-inch piece of brown felt

Cotton ball

2 battery-powered tea lights

1. Cut pieces of the white felt to wrap around the container and cup with some overlap. For the large house, cut out a door and window. Wrap the felt around each container and glue the edges together. Tip: Hold the felt in place with a rubber band while it dries. For the small house, cut a door from the blue felt and glue it in place.

2. For the roofs, download our templates. Cut the large roof from white felt and glue the overlapped edges together. To make the snowflake shadow (which will appear on the roof when the cottage is lit), cut an 8 3/4-inch-wide circle from the paper, then cut it into a snowflake. Unfold the paper and cut it in half. Fold one half into a cone to fit the roof and glue it inside. Cut a heart from the white felt and glue it to the roof. Cut the small roof from the brown felt and glue the overlapped edges together. Glue a piece of the cotton ball on the rooftop for smoke.

3. To light the large house, place one tea light inside the container and the other on top, then set the roof in place.

Forest critters

You will need:

Small pieces of white, light gray, dark gray, orange and light brown felt

4 wine corks

Tacky glue

8 small buttons

1 small black pom-pom

1 small white pom-pom

Embroidery floss or crochet thread

1. Download our templates and use them to cut the pieces from their corresponding color felt.

2. For each animal, wrap the felt body around a cork and glue the overlapped edges together, taking care not to glue the felt to the cork. This allows the corks to be removed so that the animals can be used as finger puppets.

3. To make the owl and raccoon’s heads, pinch the felt together at the top of the cork with a drop of glue between the layers and clamp with a clothespin until dry.

4. For all the animals, glue on any remaining pieces of felt, buttons, pompoms or whiskers, as shown, and let the glue dry.

Candy Castle Felt Board

The beauty of this castle (aside from its looks!) is that it’s meant to be played with.

You will need:

Tacky glue

Cardboard boxes and tubes (such as potato chip canisters or sections of a mailing tube)

White felt (enough to cover your boxes, tubes and cones)

Papier-mache pieces, such as cones and round boxes (available at craft stores; we used 7 1/4-inch-tall cones)

Assorted colored felt pieces

White glittery felt

Glitter glue

Adhesive-backed gems

1. In a small bowl, mix 2 tablespoons water with 1/4 cup tacky glue and set the mixture aside.

2. For each box and tube, cut pieces of white felt to cover the sides and top. Tip: For smoother edges, cut one piece that is long enough to go around all four sides of a box. For each 7 1/4-inch papier-mache cone, download our template and use it to cut the shape from white felt. Brush the box, tube or cone with the glue mixture and smooth the felt over the surface.

3. Download our templates for the decorative pieces, cut the pieces from the colored felt, and cut the icicles from the white glittery felt. Glue the castle components together and the flags onto each cone. Add glitter glue and gem embellishments.