These DIY faux velvet ornaments are the spitting image of Studio McGee’s with one big difference: price! See how easy they are to make!
I’ve got a problem with my balls.
I’m not sure why I haven’t noticed until now, but they’re just so smooth and gray and uninspiring.
Occasionally they’re shiny and brittle like glass, and I need to handle them with the utmost care.
Other times, they’re dull and plasticky, and they hang lifeless like waxy dead fruits from an old gnarled tree.
Yep, these ornament balls are ready for the retirement home and an endless loop of Matlock playing on the television.*
But instead of consigning them to an eternity of mushed peas, prune juice and golden oldies, we’ve decided to kickstart their heart and make each and every one the Belle of the Ball.
And it couldn’t be easier.
Once I show you how to turn your Moldy Oldies into hip Swagger Balls, you’ll be rooting through your attic for old ornaments like a truffle pig digging for delicacies in the soil.
Not because the end product is so beautiful – beauty is rarely enough of a motivating force.
But because they are easy.
Ahhh, easy and beautiful, now there’s a winning combination!
Let’s make some velvety Swagger Balls!
*To be fully transparent, Handan and I just finished a months-long marathon of all 9 seasons of Matlock. I can’t believe I’d never seen it before! Needless to say, we’re huge fans and sad that we’ve now watched them all.
Before we begin, I just want to acknowledge that I’m not the first guy to paint an ornament and sprinkle baking soda on it for a flocked and velvety look. Actually, I may be the first guy to do it – I don’t know for sure, as I’ve only seen women doing it online.
My point is, I’m not the first to combine paint and soda on an ornament.
But I may be the first to use spray paint.
Every other person on social media I’ve seen making faux flocked balls like these first paints the ornament with craft paint. Not only is this time consuming, but it gives a less-than-perfect finish.
With my spray paint method, the ball is painted in about 5 seconds with a flawless paint job – it’s the perfect base for the baking soda to create a perfect faux velvet Christmas ornament!
Faux Velvet Flocked ornaments VIDEO Tutorial
Watch our short and fun video below for an overview of our velvety ornaments before you read the detailed step-by-step tutorial.
Watch Our Tutorial On YouTube
DIY Faux Velvet ornaments Tutorial
Step 1 – Put a ball on a stick
After pulling the top from an ornament…
I stuck a dowel into the hole.
I found it easier to work with the ornament when the dowel was snug in the hole. This allowed for turning the ornament up, down and all around without any chance of it falling. If the dowel wasn’t quite enough, I added a skewer or two until the ornament was firmly on the stick.
Step 2 – Spray paint the ball
I used Behr spray paint for these faux velvet ornaments. I really like the colors they offer, and they look especially good with this project.
A little hint: interestingly, when you use this “flocking” method with metallic colors, you end up with beautiful neutral-color ornaments. Be sure to try copper, brass or any other of Behr’s metallic colors – you’ll be pleasantly surprised!
In a few seconds, I turned a silver ball blue.
Step 3 – “Flock”
After spraying, I brought my blue ball over to a tray and sprinkled baking soda on it until it was looking more like a snowball than a Christmas ornament.
It’s flocking awesome!
Step 4 – Let dry
I set the balls aside to dry.
How long they need to dry depends on your temperature and humidity. I made these on a muggy and saturated Florida winter day, so they needed a good hour or more to dry. Normally they’d only need about 5-10 minutes.
Step 5 – Brush
When the paint had sufficiently dried, I brushed off the excess baking soda with a soft-bristled paint brush.
I painted the metal tops with Metallic Antique Brass spray paint and then ran a ribbon through them to hang. We don’t have our tree up yet, so until then, we have our beautiful faux velvet ornaments displayed like any other Christmas decor!
The cheap metal tops look luxurious when painted and paired with nice ribbon.