How to make glitter Christmas ornaments | DIY

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glitter ornaments handmade with clear plastic bulbs

(You can download a free PDF file of this tutorial…just click HERE)

 UPDATES:

  1. I tried these with plastic bulbs, and they look great! Read about it HERE.
  2. The Pledge product I used in this project is now called: Pledge floor care multi-surface finish. One of our lovely readers contacted Pledge and found out that this is the same exact product…she didn’t leave her name, but I sincerely thank her for clearing this up for us!

I’ve had lots of people asking me how I made my glitter birthstone ornaments, so I thought doing a tutorial would be a good idea. This would also be a GREAT project to do with kids, for an awesome handmade Christmas gift idea, because they are so quick and easy.

And the best part? The glitter is inside the glass ball, so you can admire them all you want without becoming sparkly head to toe yourself.

Unless you want to be sparkly head to toe, and in that case, I can’t help you. At least not in this blog post.

You will need:

  • clear glass ornaments (Joann’s and Michael’s carry them during the Christmas season, or you can get them online right HERE).
  • glitter (this is my favorite glitter).
  • okay, are you ready for this one? floor wax. (sounds weird, yes, but this is the amazing secret ingredient.)

First, make sure you start with a clean ornament. I use rubbing alcohol to clean them, and I explain how and why in a previous blog post I wrote about how to make these glass Easter ornaments.

Now, about the floor cleaner…I read about this idea more than a year ago when I was reading a crafting forum somewhere, and I completely dismissed it. I had visions of bald-headed men and toxic looking yellow Lysol-like stuff, and decided that whoever had had this idea must have been a little cuckoo. Then one day I was shopping in the cleaning products section of the black hole of doom, oops I mean Walmart, and I saw this:

pledge floor cleaner glitter ornaments

I immediately realized that this was exactly what that person must have been talking about, so I decided to try it out…and I am so glad I did, because it works a-MAAAzing.

(ps. The look of the bottle has changed… you can see what it looks like now, right HERE.)

So pour a little bit into the ornament, and swirl it around. I don’t shake it, because then it gets kind of bubbly.

swirl floor cleaner around inside glass ornament

Then pour the excess back into the bottle. This stuff is a little bit expensive, but it goes a long way. In fact, this bottle is the only bottle I’ve bought…and look how little I’ve used. I might even use it to clean my floors one day.

pour excess floor cleaner back in bottle

Now pour in your glitter and swirl it around the same way as you did with the floor cleaner. You could shake it, but for some unexplainable reason, I don’t like to…I like to swirl it all nice and evenly around the glass. (I guess I’m weird.)

swirl glitter around inside glass ornament

And voila!

i love elvis

oops, sorry. You wanted to see the ornament…

glitter glass ornament

Let it dry for a little while before putting the cap back on…I always take the little wire out of the cap, and put the cap on first (put a little glue around the inside of the cap for security):

clear glass ornament lid

and then stick the wire back in…this will keep it from scratching off the glitter on the way in.

put cap back on glass ornament

All done!

But wait!

Look at what a few little scrapbook stickers and some rhinestones can do…

how to make glitter ornaments

There are endless ways you could dress these up…any other ideas?

(P.S. You can download a free PDF file of this tutorial…just click HERE)

UPDATES:

  1. I tried these with plastic bulbs, and they look great! Read about it HERE.
  2. The Pledge product I used in this project is now called: Pledge floor care multi-surface finish. One of our lovely readers contacted Pledge and found out that this is the same exact product…she didn’t leave her name, but I sincerely thank her for clearing this up for us!
389 Responses
  • Emily
    March 18, 2015

    I made a few and now the glitter is at the bottom. I used Pledge Floor Care Squirt and Mop for Hardwood floors, and didn’t leave the cap off to let them dry (not sure which (or maybe both) caused it?) I need to fix it, but don’t want to redo the whole ornament. What would you suggest? Is this possible?

    • Staci Ann Lowry
      March 23, 2015

      Hi Emily…. it could have been either of those things! They definitely do need to dry completely before replacing the cap. As far as the Pledge you used, is it acrylic-based? That’s what makes it work.

      It does sounds like you’ll need to re-do the ornament, unfortunately! Sorry :( I’ve tried adding new floor polish and glitter, and it just doesn’t work out very well. However, if it all pooled to the bottom and didn’t stick, maybe you can get it all out and at least be able to re-use the ornament? Maybe some rubbing alcohol will do the trick.

      Sorry, I hope that helps!

  • Anonymous
    April 14, 2015

    First off….thanks for the tute on the glitter ball and the spring ball…..great ideas to do with my granddaughters…..Best of all…I LOVED THAT YOU INCLUDED ELVIS…..that was awesome! I’ve been a fan since ’56 and at 73 yrs young….glad to see young folks appreciate THE MAN…..now on to buy silk flowers, beads, pins and balls….
    Thank you for your inspiration….

    • Staci Ann Lowry
      April 15, 2015

      I’m so glad you like the tutorials! (and my Elvis reference, hee hee…. ) Thank you and have fun! :D

  • Debbi
    July 13, 2015

    LOVE LOVE LOVE these. I was wondering what to use on the inside and now I know — floor cleaner. You’re right – it serves 2 purposes but who has time to clean the floor when we’re crafting? LOL. I love your writing style too. Great site! Thanks for the tips.

    • Staci Ann Lowry
      July 30, 2015

      haha exactly! I would MUCH rather use floor wax on an ornament than on my floors. ;)

  • shannon
    July 24, 2015

    I wonder if spray adhesive would work too?

  • MARCO
    August 5, 2015

    GOOD IDEA
    THANKS

  • Diane
    August 20, 2015

    I read another one and they used Mop and Glow. I think any floor stuff that is sticky that leaves a layer and glitter would work. I have heard that fine glitter is better like Martha Stewarts. I am going to try this with a Christmas Glass candy jar. I hope it works….I am not going to use what I have because I want to be sure it turns out, so Mop and Glow I on my list to buy.

  • Jennifer Wolf
    September 1, 2015

    Hi-
    Not sure if I’m missing the point — do you use Modge Podge after you clean the ornaments but before you put the glitter in? or are you using “glue glitter”…?

    I tried to make “Ninja Turtle” ornaments with green paint inside the ornaments last year and it was a little trickier than I thought.

    Love your beautiful ornaments! Thanks for the tutorial.

    -Jennifer

    • Staci Ann Lowry
      September 20, 2015

      Hi Jennifer…. I didn’t use Mod Podge or glitter glue at all in these. I clean them first with rubbing alcohol, and then swirled a little of the Pledge floor wax around. After draining that out, you can then add the glitter. Hope that helps!

  • Bea Ramirez
    September 8, 2015

    I know how to make the glitter ornament that is used with wax. I have seen ornaments with rubbed on stickers. Do you know how to use this and if you do where can I purchase the rub on stickers? Your work is just beautiful.

  • Barb
    November 7, 2015

    I used this method and there is a white residue that showed up on the glass hours later. Im supposed to be selling these at a craft show in 5 hours. Please help!

  • Anonymous
    November 10, 2015

    I used Mop n Glo and the horrible smell seems to be lingering on the ornaments. Will this go away??

    • Staci Ann Lowry
      November 13, 2015

      I honestly cannot say. I have never tried to use Mop n Glo. I would imagine that any smell will eventually dissipate though.

  • Alison studt
    November 29, 2015

    Is pine sol floor cleaner ok to use???

    • Staci Ann Lowry
      November 30, 2015

      Hi Alison… No, I wouldn’t use that one. The Pledge is actually a floor polish (with an acrylic base) which is why it works so well. The Pine Sol is a cleaner and wouldn’t work the same. Sorry about that!

  • Susie
    December 2, 2015

    I just started making these with glass cubes! They look great, but the fine, light colored glitter I’m using is a bit see-through, even though I’ve coated it thoroughly. Any thoughts on how to get a thicker coat of glitter inside?

  • Kelly
    December 3, 2015

    I love reading your tutorials. I have completed a few ornaments this way and i noticed if you hit the ball slightly (im using plastic ones) the sparkles come off in clumps and then makes missing spots on the balls. Is this normal? Is it because its not dry yet? Did you encounter this problem? Im making for teacher gifts and dont want the glitter coming off for them. Please advise. Thanks!

    • Staci Ann Lowry
      December 13, 2015

      Kelly, this has not happened for me, but I do think that if it wasn’t all the way dry yet, that could certainly be the cause. Another thing, did you clean them on the inside first (and dry well) before adding the wax and glitter? If they are not clean, it could also cause an issue with the glitter adhering.

  • linda nelson
    December 8, 2015

    I found that you can add a little water to modge podge to make it thin and then pour and swirl in the glass or plastic ornament. There is a glue called glitter-it that is made for this purpose, you can get it at Joans online. It dries quickly, the modge podge takes longer to dry but the result is the same and its alot cheaper. Hope thhis helps.

  • Ashley Gaskill
    December 14, 2015

    I only have pledge squirt & mop does it work the same i dont want to go spend another $5 and pack up 4 kids to do so! Please i need feed back!

  • Bethany
    December 18, 2015

    Girl, you are such a nut. I love this tutorial. You have a sense of humor and are not afraid to show it…I love it! Keep up the great work…you are inspiring us. Keep posting on FB, we love seeing what you are doing.

  • iulian
    December 22, 2015

    So beautiful thank you for sharing with us these wonderful ideas..And if you want to make your own glitter, the real stuff not the salt glitter..You can check my video http://www.youtube/watch?v=O99fDevsYsc

  • Barbara MacKenzie
    October 6, 2016

    I want to use glitter sparingly on the inside of glass balls. I want them to sparkle but also to be able to see figures (Santa, Gingerbread House, reindeer, etc.) inside. I welcome any suggestions.

    • Staci Ann Lowry
      October 6, 2016

      Barbara, if you use a very light color glitter, like a pearl or white color, you may be able to achieve the effect you’re looking for. The white glitter is the only one I’ve had difficulty getting full coverage with – it sounds like that’s what you’re after. :)

  • Laurie Sharp
    October 8, 2016

    I read previous posts where they have lasted in your attic for a couple of years without the wax melting and causing the glitter to run. My husband is concerned that if one of the ornaments is hung near a light on the tree and it gets hot, it will melt the wax.. Thoughts? I bought a set of glass ornaments and some ultra fine glitter today at Hobby Lobby. Just trying to figure out what adhesive to use! Thank you for your tute!!

    • Staci Ann Lowry
      October 10, 2016

      Hi Laurie… You know, I really don’t know! I imagine it might be possible for that to happen. I can tell you that hasn’t happened to me yet, but that could very well be that I never had one close enough to the lights. I’m sorry for not being more help! I don’t want to tell you the wrong thing though..

  • Lisa
    October 11, 2016

    Do you know if this will this work with beach sand? I’m making a beach-themed ornament and sand would be perfect.

  • Vonne
    October 23, 2016

    My cousin Debria turned me on to using Pledge. The Pledge cracks after a while. The polyurethane doesn’t..

  • Rae-Ann
    October 25, 2016

    I love this idea. I have been thinking about doing it to candle holders for makeup brushes? Do you think it will be the same Lol I am pondering the thought. =)

  • kelly
    October 26, 2016

    How have the ornaments you used Pledge on held up over the years?

    • Staci Ann Lowry
      October 31, 2016

      So far, very well! Most of them are several years old now, and I live in SW Florida, so it gets VERY hot up in my attic, where they are stored. I haven’t had any issues as of yet, but I will update again once I pull my decorations out this year. :)

      • Carlos
        November 26, 2016

        I have a question ? Some of my bulbs are have bald spots can I put a little more finish and glitter to fix or would it ruin the ornaments.

        • Anonymous
          December 12, 2016

          Good question Carlos , I’d like to know too!

        • JC
          December 17, 2016

          So I had this happen and thought I’d give it a shot… Found out that no you can’t… But I discovered adding more floor polish will completely remove all of the glitter if you need to start over :/
          Swished it around, all the glitter came off – added a little water swished it some more and rinsed out the bulb… Couldn’t tell there was ever glitter in it to start !

  • deb mowen
    October 28, 2016

    I just started painting ornaments and loved your idea on using the pledge floor wax..less messier then acrylic paint inside the plastic ornament..thanks for sharing. .I’m on FB and have a craft page under my name..

  • Leslie Cahill
    November 4, 2016

    God bless you for updating the name of the Pledge product. I couldn’t find it under it’s previous name anywhere! Can’t wait to try this now that I have all the supplies.

  • REV Kymm Blair
    November 5, 2016

    Thanks for the tips, and you’re humor was WONDERFUL, I truely Enjoyed reading your l posting, I now just need to know how to our names on the ball, if someone isn’t great w a paint brush? I use stickers then paint over w that hidge podge in a bottle dries really clear n pretty, but I know YOU have a much better Idea, can you PLEASE share it? I’ll make you one, haha, okay I’ll give ya 5 bucks, haha, you’re so interesting I LOVE reading your How to and floor cleaner tip, B.T.W. how do your floors look?
    thank you again, im so pleased and will b looking for more of yours soon as I submit this msg. can’t wait to see more of your helpful hints/tips,
    GOD BLESS & warmest regards
    Rev.K.Blair

    • Tricia Latham
      November 15, 2016

      Use a paint marker

    • linda
      December 5, 2016

      for initials…maybe letter stickers in scrapbooking dept…

    • Joanna
      March 28, 2017

      Do you own a Cricut? I made personalized ornaments last year and added vinyl names and themed cut-outs and they came out so cute.

  • Michelle Croft
    November 6, 2016

    Thank you so much for the instructions on the glitter bulbs, this is exactly what I was looking for to do with my kids for a craft day this year. Awesome!!!!

  • Ann Boos
    November 9, 2016

    No, I missed the cleaning part. I will do that. And I went and got fine glitter, which was in another tutorial. Thanks for responding so quickly!!!!!

  • Steve Cook
    November 12, 2016

    I just wanted to say that your use of the word floor “wax” kinda confused me. I guess I just wanted to point out that maybe saying floor “finish” might be a better way of putting it since that’s what it says on the bottle and might prevent any possible confusion. When I saw “wax”, I was picturing something more like what we typically think of when thinking about wax, such as a candle. Maybe that’s just me though. Otherwise, very nice tutorial and I look forward to doing something similar other than the ornaments. Thanks!

  • Sarah Nesfeder
    November 12, 2016

    What size bulbs did you use?

    • Amanda Gossage
      November 24, 2016

      I used the 2.65 inch glass balls from Hobby Lobby, but I’m pretty sure you can use any glass (or plastic) ornament you wanted. I’m getting ready to make some more Ornaments using the glass light bulb ornaments, also found at Hobby Lobby.

  • dora
    November 16, 2016

    Hi. Was just wondering does the shimmer stay after? Or does it eventually fall off inside the ball? When the floor cleaner dries?

    • Amanda Gossage
      November 24, 2016

      I’m pretty sure that once the floor cleaner/finisher/wax dries, the rainbow shimmer dries up as well. My finished bulbs are at home (i’m at work now) and the bulbs that I just made aren’t dry yet.

      • Staci Ann Lowry
        December 1, 2016

        They’ve lasted for several years now. I can’t say forever until it’s actually been forever lol, but so far, so good – and even after spending every off-season in a hot Florida attic. :)

  • Reina Stevens
    November 17, 2016

    Would this work with plastic ornaments…I’m thinking of making them with kids at a birthday party.
    Thanks!

    • Anonymous
      November 26, 2016

      Yes!

  • Penny Mindham
    November 17, 2016

    I saw your Christmas ornaments with glitter. One question. Do you pour in the glitter, swish it around, then pour off the excess the way you do with the floor cleaner ? I would like to make these for our Christmas party for the organization that I belong to in a few weeks.

    • Amanda Gossage
      November 24, 2016

      Yes, you want to swish out or shake out the excess glitter, just like you do with the excess finish/cleaner/wax. Not all the glitter adheres to the liquid after it’s been swished around, so shaking out the excess helps save on glitter as well.

  • Karen Glover
    November 17, 2016

    I tried this tonight and my ornaments came out lovely! You are crafting goddess!

  • Anonymous
    November 18, 2016

    Does the smell go away?

  • barbara berger
    November 20, 2016

    I decided to go off the grid completely a few years ago and got a white christmas tree. (Everyone was pissed but had to admit it was beautiful). Made most of my ornaments by painting glass balls green, copper, gold. I spray them with Elmers Craft Bond, sprinkle them with a fine glitter. My question is: What is the best sealant to use over the glitter so that they last for many years? I am elderly but would like to know that they will survive years after me. Thank you in advance for responding to my question and I appreciated all of your other suggestions. bb

    • Anonymous
      November 26, 2016

      Mod Podge!

      • CaliSuz
        December 14, 2016

        Krylon or any glitter sealer that you see on the shelf — I saw several options in the glitter section of the craft aisle in Walmart! I got Krylon and it worked fantastic. But it did have a strong flammable odor that will hopefully go away. The different sealers I saw were between four and six dollars, not bad considering one small can sealed my 100 glitter pinecones! :)

    • Troy G Brock
      December 29, 2016

      Hair spray

  • Robin Barnett
    November 20, 2016

    Do you recommend cleaning the plastic ornaments with rubbing alcohol?

  • Lori
    November 20, 2016

    I needed pink sparkly Christmas balls and couldn’t find any. You inspired me to make them! They are beautiful. Thx! Can’t post a pic??

  • Donnie Van Wie
    November 21, 2016

    I saw this link, which offers other ideas as well for adhesive inside the ornaments for the glitter.

    http://www.clumsycrafter.com/2015/12/diy-glitter-ornaments-what-should-you-use-to-make-them-polycrylic-or-floor-polish/

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