In about an hour’s time, you can transform traditional wooden clothespins into charming toy soldier ornaments with this delightful DIY project!
With everyday materials, create handmade Nutcracker-inspired toy soldier ornaments for your Christmas tree, ornament exchange, or a delightful embellishment on a wrapped gift.
In this step-by-step guide, we’ll walk you through the simple process of crafting these adorable toy soldier ornaments from clothespins. Let’s get started on this fun ornament craft project!
Gather Your Wooden Clothespins Craft Supplies
[Printable instructions are available on our downloadable project sheet.]
Here’s your list of supplies for toy soldier Christmas ornaments:
For each ornament, you’ll need:
1 old-fashioned, traditional wooden clothespin (the kind without spring hinges)
7″ gold trim or ribbon, approximately 1/4″ wide
1 – 1″ or 1 1/4″ red pom pom ball
12″ length of string or clear thread (for hanging your ornament)
red, blue, white, and black craft paint
Tools you’ll need:
craft paint brushes
Hot glue gun or craft glue
Round Wooden Traditional Clothespins
- Durable round clothespins with simple, classic design
- Round wooden clothespins for different creative projects
- Perfect for those with difficulty gripping or squeezing spring loaded clothespins
- These round clothespins are used for making dolls, classroom projects, and crafts
- Use the wooden clips to attach photos, flags, as decor elements in flower arrangements and gift wraps
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1/4" Wide Gold Chain Cord / Ribbon
- Dimensions: 1/4-inch by 50-yard
- Fiber content: 100 percent polyester
- May arts item number , 348-14-30
- Also available in 5/8" and a silver
- Great for christmas and new years party décor, gift wrap and holiday craft projects
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1 Inch Yarn Red Pom Poms
- Package information: the package contains 30 pieces of red pom poms balls in 2 different sizes, the small one has 20 pieces, and the large one has 10 pieces, enough amount to meet your various decoration demands
- Soft material: the red yarn pom poms are made of quality yarn material, which has a delicate touch, soft and comfortable to touch, without any unpleasant smell, not easy to break or deform, which can serve you for a long time
- About size information: the pompoms arts and crafts have 2 different sizes, one is about 2.5 cm/ 1 inch in diameter, and the other is about 3.8 cm/ 1.5 inches in diameter, proper sizes are convenient for you to use, and easy to store without occupying much of your space
- Easy to use: the pom poms balls are simple and convenient to use, you can use them to decorate your handmade crafts, Christmas trees, gift boxes and any other item, or you can use a string to tie these balls of different sizes together, and then hang them anywhere you want to decorate
- Wide usages: the pompom balls are nice decorative supplies for your living room, bedroom, kitchen, garden, home party, housewarming, birthday, Christmas, Thanksgiving or other holiday parties, which can make your home and party look more charming and eye-catching
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Clear Nylon Invisible Thread String
- Package: includes a roll of 200 m/ 218.72 yard invisible thread and a beading thread needle
- Size: the diameter of this clear nylon thread is only 0.25 mm, almost invisible and the length of the needle is 7.6 cm/ 2.99 inch
- Material: the invisible beading thread is made of nylon polyester, clear and strong; Need a tool when cutting (not included)
- Usage: clear thread is suitable for hanging ornaments because it is nearly invisible, which make your ornaments seem to be suspended, adding beauty and mystery to your home
- Application: beading thread is suitable for hanging balls, paper cranes, pumpkin ball and paper lantern during Halloween, Christmas or even in daily life; Also can be applied to make bracelets and handicrafts
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Apple Barrel Acrylic Paint Set (Pack of 16 - 2 Fl Oz ea)
- CONVENIENT SIZE & FUN BRIGHT COLORS - This versatile acrylic paint set includes 16 - 2 oz bottles of colorful craft paint. The colors in this kit include: White, Black, Flag Red, Jack-o-Lantern, Bright Blue, Candy Pink, Nutmeg Brown, Bright Yellow, New Shamrock, Purple Iris, Too Blue, Fuchsia, Key West, Pewter Grey, Bright Magenta, and Parrot Blue
- MATTE FINISH - Each of these bold and bright colors dries to a brilliant matte finish - perfect for all your arts and crafts!
- EASY & SMOOTH APPLICATION - Use on a variety of surfaces including wood, Styrofoam, plaster, terra cotta, and more. This versatile acrylic paint can easily be brushed, stamped, stenciled or sponged to your projects
- SIMPLE CLEAN UP - Clean up is easy with Apple Barrel acrylic paint. Simply clean up while wet with soap and water. Great acrylic paint set for adults and kids!
- AMERICAN MADE - Apple Barrel is proudly made in the USA
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How to Craft a Toy Soldier Ornament
[Download Printable Project Sheet]
1. Using the graphic as a guide, lightly mark the position of the soldier’s eyes and optional mustache with a pencil on the upper section (head) of the wooden clothespin. Be sure to center the face on the imaginary line from the space between the two clothespin prongs. The eyes should be about halfway between the top and bottom of the head.
2. Paint the eyes and mustache on the head of the clothespin. Allow it to dry. (Paint white dots for the eyes first, allow to dry, then paint the black pupils and mustache.)
3. Paint the middle section (the soldier’s jacket) blue, and allow it to dry, then paint the lower section (the soldier’s trousers) red, and allow it to dry.
4. Cut two lengths of the gold trim: The chest trim should be 4 1/4″ long, and the belt should be about 2″ long. (Your trim lengths may vary based on clothespin size differences.)
5. After the paint has dried, attach the trim to the soldier’s chest area with hot glue:
a. Glue the center of the 4 1/4″ chest trim piece to the middle of the back neck area. At this point, optionally loop string or clear thread under the trim for hanging the ornament.
b. Cross the chest trim over the front of the chest. Hot glue the edges along the back waistline.
c. Wrap the 2″ belt piece around the waist. Hot glue the belt ends at the center back, covering the chest trim edges.
6. Glue the red pom pom ball on the top of the soldier’s head for his tall hat (or “bearskin“, as worn by the King’s Guards.)
Boom. That’s it! If you added a string to your ornament, tie the ends to create a loop for hanging.
- If you prefer your soldiers with no facial hair, use a pink crayon to add some rosy cheeks instead.
- My soldiers are “dressed” in blue and red, but use any color combination you desire.
- Instead of hanging your toy soldiers on the tree, purchase clothespin doll stands to proudly display your brigade on the mantle or a shelf.
Happy Crafty Holidays!
More Christmas crafts can be found here:
How to Use Rosemary: A Creative Guide for DIY Gifts & Crafts
How to Make Gingerbread Coffee Syrup (+ Free Printable Gift Tags)
Ping Pong Penguin Ornament: DIY Tree Ornaments (15 Minutes)
For a FREE Printable Wooden Clothespin Toy Soldier Ornament Craft Project Sheet, complete the form below to gain instant access: