The beautifully adorned Christmas tree is not finished until you add a pickle. According to legend, the first child to find the hidden pickle ornament on the tree, on Christmas morning, gets an extra blessing and gift from Santa Claus. Although both Germany and America claim this legend as their own, no one really knows how this intriguing tradition started. You can adopt this tradition and make it your own by getting the entire family involved in creating some pickle crafts for the Christmas season.
Christmas Pickle Ornament
Making a Christmas pickle ornament is a hands-on project for children of all ages. Simple craft materials can be purchased at local craft supply stores, or from online stores specializing in craft materials. With adult help, young children can fashion pickles out of white modeling clay. Older children can do this independently. Make sure to use a drinking straw to poke a hole at the top of the pickle. This is how you will string the pickle on the tree. Use package directions to dry the clay, which usually takes 24 to 48 hours depending on the brand. Once dried, children can paint their pickles green with tempera paint and paintbrushes. While the paint is still wet, sprinkle with glitter. Once dry, you have an original pickle ornament.
Tissue Paper Pickle Ornaments
A tissue paper pickle ornament will add to the holiday spirit when hung on the tree. Gather green construction paper, green tissue paper, and craft glue. Cut out pickle shapes in whatever size you choose keeping in mind that the smaller ornaments will be harder to find. Punch a hole at the top of the pickle using a hole-punch so that the ornaments may be strung. If these ornaments are for decoration throughout the house, any size will work. Have children help by ripping the tissue paper into small pieces. Instruct children on how to spread glue on the paper using a cotton swab or craft stick. Children may stick small pieces of tissue paper wherever they wish on their pickle. Once dried, these pickles make festive ornaments.
Pickle Print Ornaments
Pickle print ornaments use real pickles to create funky prints on white paper. This is a project for the entire family to enjoy. Gather white construction paper, green paint, and whole pickles. Roll a pickle in green paint and use to make pickle prints on the white paper. Once the white paper is filled with green pickle prints you can cut out pickle shapes and use them to decorate the house. Make sure to cut out a small one to use on the Christmas tree.
Laura Gordon has been writing since 1988. She was the features editor for "The Scarlet" at Clark University. In 1996, Gordon published a thesis entitled "Successful Functioning after Trauma: Positive Correlates of Healing from Treatment Abuse." She holds a Bachelor of Arts in sociology from Clark University and a Master of Arts in applied sociology from the University of Massachusetts-Boston.