This is not about arts and crafts! This is about taking those sentimental things you have and making them into something you actually use and cherish. We all have boxes of things from our childhoods, or cherished items from when our children were younger. What do you do with all of these items? One option is to make DIY Christmas ornaments — no worries, we’re not talking craft skills DIY. These are ones you really can do with little skill! Here are 10 ideas that we are using on our own trees this year.

These are the sweetest, easiest, DIY Christmas ornaments. They truly answer the need of what to do with some items around the house that you likely have no idea what to do with!

10 Unexpected DIY Christmas Ornaments You’ll Love

#1: Baby or toddler shoes

Do you have a box with some of your children’s baby shoes in them? Or perhaps you have your grandparents’ baby shoes. Wherever the shoes came from, you likely don’t have a permanent location for them. Make these shoes into a Christmas ornament and have happy thoughts each year when you pull them out to place on your tree.

Baby Shoes Christmas Ornament: Take those shoes out of their box and hang them on your tree each year!

If you’re not the type to have bronzed your baby shoes, take them out of the box they are likely stored in and hang them on your tree!

#2: High school graduation tassel

Unless you’ve made one of those box frames filled with mementoes, your high school or college graduation tassel is likely sitting somewhere and you don’t quite know where … Find it and make it into an ornament! It will add a memory to your tree that you will smile at each year. Let’s keep celebrating these milestones!

High school graduation ornament

These clear ornaments are found at your local craft store (think Michaels, JoAnn and such) and protect the tassel. Image: Pinterest

Graduation Tassel DIY Christmas Ornaments

But you really could simply hang the tassel on the tree without the glass encasement for ease.

#3: College ID/learner’s permit

Do you still have your college ID, or perhaps you have a child who just upgraded their learner’s permit to the real deal? Take that old ID and make it into an ornament. You will love it, and for decades to come, it will be one that family members check out, as the photo is a cherished moment in time!

Craft stores sell these photo frame ornaments and you can place the license or school ID within. Or, you can simply punch a hole in it, add a ribbon, and be done!

Craft stores sell these photo frame ornaments and you can place the license or school ID within. Or you can simply punch a hole in it, add a ribbon and be done! Image: Pinterest

#4: Baby sonogram

If you have children, you likely have an ultrasound photo floating around. They start out hanging on the refrigerator and then … where do you put it? Once your baby is born, their out-of-utero photos are far more display worthy! Ha! Anyway, one way to preserve the memory is to make your baby sonogram into an ornament. If it’s your first child, that photo likely stirred all sorts of emotions about becoming a parent for the first time. Relive that feeling each year by making that keepsake into an ornament.

Sonogram Ornament

SB Birmingham Editor, Lauren Helmer, made her sonogram into an ornament and loves hanging it on her tree each year! As she and her husband elected not to find out the sex of their child, the ornament is simply about “Baby Helmer!”

#5: Pet’s collar or name tag

We all have pets that we’ve loved and lost. Making their tags or collars into Christmas ornaments is a nice way to remember them.

You can get fancy and buy some of these frames and the craft store, decorate them, and add bells and ribbons. OR you can add the ribbon through the hole and have that be your ornament! You can also leave the tag on your beloved pet's collar and hang straight to the tree. Image: Pinterest.

You can get fancy and buy some of these frames at the craft store, decorate them, and add bells and ribbons. OR you can string the ribbon through the hole and have that be your ornament! You can also leave the tag on your beloved pet’s collar and hang it on the tree. Image: Pinterest

#6: Piece of child’s pottery

If you have kids, you likely have lots (and lots!) of handmade, art class pottery. Lopsided mugs, bowls … or if you are like me, you have bacon and eggs made out of pottery! Wrap some wire or ribbon around these sweet memories and make them into ornaments!

Eggs and Bacon DIY Christmas Ornament

Some kids make vases, plates, flowers … I got eggs and bacon! I made them into Christmas tree ornaments (I have two more just like this … My son must have been hungry the day he made these!).

#7: Old tea cups

If you have been given china from your grandmother, great-grandmother or great-great-grandmother, you just may have a few tea cups that you have no idea what to do with. Tie ribbons through the handles, and place them on your tree. I can’t think of a better way to cherish your family heirlooms and allow them to be used and admired each and every year.

Tea Cup DIY Ornament: I have several of these old tea cups, each different from the next. Making them into ornaments allows our family to talk about my grandparents and great-grandparents, which I love!

I have several of these old tea cups, each different from the next. Making them into ornaments allows our family to talk about my grandparents and great-grandparents, which I love!

#8: Grandma’s or Mom’s costume jewelry … or your own!

What should you do with all the costume jewelry accumulated through the years? If you don’t have an eager recipient for it all, or you inherited a box full of items that you have no idea how you would wear any of it, make them into beautiful, jeweled, luxe ornaments! These cost hundreds at the store, but you can make your own. You may need to buy some sequins and such from the craft store to make a base, but your jewelry will make up the bulk of it … and then it will actually be used and you’ll get to continue passing down the jewelry — in the form of ornaments — to the next generation!

Vintage Jewelry DIY Christmas Ornament found on etsy

This one actually needs a little patience and skill, but you may be able to find a local crafty person and pay them to make it for you. But isn’t this so pretty? You just may have enough vintage jewelry on hand to make one or more! Image: etsy

#9: Wine cork ornaments

Are you the type who keeps all your wine corks, but you’re never really going to make that wine frame or other craft item you’ve seen but don’t have the desire to complete? Add a hanger and just make them into ornaments! They will fill in with other ornaments quite nicely, but they also make a fun tree for a kitchen or bar top. Just grab a smaller tree and put these all over it for festive fun! On the bottom of each, write the date and occasion for which you drank the bottle for extra memory-making.

This tree in front of Commonwealth TAP in Louisville, KY inspired us to think about a small kitchen tree with the same theme ... wine! Super easy to accomplish, which we like! DIY Christmas Ornaments

This tree in front of Commonwealth TAP in Louisville, KY, inspired us to think about a small kitchen tree with the same theme … wine! Super easy to accomplish, which we like!

#10: And one that you actually have to make, but will love

I used to ask my kids what they wanted for Christmas and write it on an ornament each year that they would then decorate. I love these so much! And the only thing I had to do, until they were old enough to write, was write down what they said. They decorated the rest. Thus, this really takes no craft talent to conquer! Just pick up the ready-to-decorate ornaments at your local craft store and have some markers, glitter, glue and sparkles on hand!

DIY Christmas Ornament Kids Craft: My then 4-year old daughter told me what she wanted and I wrote it on the back of this pre-made ornament (pick up at local craft store). Her writing was too big at the time. But, I will never forget how excited she was to decorate it! The more sequins the better!

My then 4-year-old daughter told me what she wanted and I wrote it on the back of this premade ornament (pick one up at your local craft store). Her writing was too big at the time. But I will never forget how excited she was to decorate it! The more sequins the better!

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