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Button Ornaments




The basic technique for all the ornaments is the same. 


  • Pipe cleaners
  • Buttons
  • Felt
  • Craft glue
  • Thread


  1. Step 1

    Bend a pipe cleaner in half and twist once at the top for a loop.

  2. Step 2

    Slide buttons over pipe cleaner ends, slipping one end into each hole (if the button has four holes, use two diagonal ones). Use larger buttons for bellies and hat brims.

  3. Step 3

    When finished, twist ends of pipe cleaner to secure, and trim.

  4. Step 4

    For reindeer legs and antlers and for Santa's arms, bend 2-inch pieces of pipe cleaner in half, slip on between buttons, and twist.

  5. Step 5

    Glue on felt for Santa's beard and the snowman's nose.

  6. Step 6

    To hang the reindeer, loop a thread around its middle and tie.

Martha Stewart Kids, Volume 20 2005



Reviews (36)

  • DarbySmart 12 Dec, 2012

    Love this idea! It is a fun activity for the family. You can look for your own buttons at craft stores and thrift shops or DarbySmart sells a kit with everything you need to make your own ornaments.

  • Nancy Bell 12 Sep, 2012

    Buttons galore on Orential

  • Madrequn51 17 Nov, 2011

    You could use buttons found at garage sales or thrift stores. I have a huge collection I found at these two places. As far as patterns she probably wants you to use your crafting imagination or look at the pictures and try to copy them for your tree.

  • xavie 16 Nov, 2011

    Is there a source for the buttons?

  • mahagg 30 Sep, 2011

    Where can i find more details on how to make these adorable ornaments?

  • VAPAGirl 23 Sep, 2011

    Details for each ornament.

  • VAPAGirl 23 Sep, 2011

    Is it possible to get a detailed instruction to print out? Thank you.

  • woodviolet 19 Dec, 2010

    These are so cute ! They would make great last minute gifts for my associates ! Could you please sent the directions

  • CraftFoxes 8 Dec, 2010

    My name is Bethany Marcello, and I write for the yet-to-be-launched - a crafting and social networking site. One of our writers came across this picture of the button ornaments and was wondering if you would grant us permission to use it? We'd give you a link to your site.

    Thanks for your consideration!

    Bethany Marcello

  • Kasupcake 7 Dec, 2010

    Is Santa's face made out of buttons? I'm excited to do this ... Iwe hope to make these for my kids' teachers.

  • Melisa_72 12 Dec, 2009

    I found a good selection at Hobby Lobby in the scrapbooking area and in the notions dept.

  • erc423 6 Dec, 2009

    Any ideas where to buy buttons in the same color but assorted sizes? I have been to several craft stores and can't find anything that will work

  • MissSmiley 8 Dec, 2008

    I used the 6 mm size and they work fine, I had no problems sliding buttons on. I used about 1/2 inch diameter buttons to bigger with no issues. I just went to the local hobby store and they had a "tube of buttons". Just a bunch of random buttons, but it was great because the tubes had a themed color.

  • HuaLover 4 Dec, 2008

    Jojo what size pipe cleaner did you use? I can only find 6mm but I think 4mm would be easier to work with. The santa's and reindeer are super cute too. Does anyone know where to get a large lot of buttons?

  • jojosilveira 3 Dec, 2008

    It's SO EASY! We just finished a snowman and it took less than 15 min. to make. We used our hodge-podge button collection and the pipe cleaner as directed. The hat is a bit too big for our snowman, but it still looks so cute! Just make sure you look at the picture for guidance and create the "snowballs" by starting with small buttons, then larger, then move back to smaller...For the head of the snowman, we only used 3 buttons-it all depends on the sizes you have. Wonderful craft!

  • roccocooks 1 Dec, 2008

    For those of you wanting more detailed instructions, I haven't found any. I did get pipe cleaners and folded it in half and experimented with sizes of the buttons. I've made 9 snowmen, some are more curvy than others, but they are wicked cute. Just play around with the sizes

  • laurasm 30 Nov, 2008

    I'm having some issues making these, mainly because the button holes on most of the buttons I have don't seem big enough for the pipe cleaner. It's been a tug of war with the pipe cleaner and seems to be more of a headache than originally anticipated.

  • tl87 30 Nov, 2008

    would love the directions too with advice on the best button sizes,,,,asap of course since its almost December. THanks!

  • kwoolse 29 Nov, 2008

    The perfect, inexpensive gift.. Can I get the instructions for these too?

  • shantrice 29 Nov, 2008

    Super cute! Can you pleae send me directions for these? Thanks

  • tbeddies 28 Nov, 2008

    How neat! Can you please send me directions also of these?

  • tbeddies 28 Nov, 2008

    Oh these are beautiful! Can I please get directions on how to make these?

  • arw07 28 Nov, 2008

    Can you please send me directions and a larger picture of the snowman ornament? I am a second grade teacher and these would be perfect for my students to make as a gift for their parents. Thanks!

  • FloridaKatie 21 Nov, 2008

    Please send me detailed instructions. This is to tiny and I need them to make decorations for 2008, please hurry so I can get these done. I am older and my eye are behind glasses, I need some help from your Santa Shop.
    Thanks, Katie

  • FloridaKatie 21 Nov, 2008

    Please send full directions, these are cute but I can't see them well, I am an older crafter. These would make great package ornaments.
    I love crafting with you, thanks. Please don't wait too long, we are running out of time. Thank you for doing such a great job.

  • paolam 18 Nov, 2008

    please senda a larger picture!

  • CindyBH 18 Nov, 2008

    Would you please send me the detailed directions for the button ornaments?
    I need a craft for our Annual Cookie Exchange. THese look perfect!

  • jaynie111 1 Sep, 2008

    Can you send me a larger picture adn detailed instructions? Looks like a fun project. Iwant to decorate my tree this yaer with homemade ornaments. thanks

  • jaynie111 1 Sep, 2008

    Can you send me a larger picture adn detailed instructions? Looks like a fun project. Iwant to decorate my tree this yaer with homemade ornaments. thanks

  • heleninparis 4 Dec, 2007

    As of today, (12/4/07) if you go to the Homepage and click Holidays you will see a selection to choose from in the large pictures. Click "Ornaments". These Button Ornaments are featured on the 2nd picture (2 of 11). It's a much bigger picture than the one here and you can see the detail much better. However the link for instructions come back to this, not as helpful. But seeing the larger picture made the idea of how to put these together much clearer for me. Hope this helps.

  • hummingbird765 30 Nov, 2007

    I really love the idea of this, but I agree, you need alittle more instructions or at least a bigger picture would help. I tried to enlarge, but just got a bigger, fuzzy picture.

  • DianaJ36 30 Nov, 2007

    I would like to make if someone could please send the instructions on how-to --Thanks

  • craftabulous 29 Nov, 2007

    I just made the santa and snowman and they are so so cute! Great for reducing my huge button stash!

  • 2create 29 Nov, 2007

    Since this craft is featured for kids, it would be helpful for young children and less creative adults to see a few example patterns before asking participants to come up with them on their own. Thanks for your help with this undertaking.

  • Lulubelle30 28 Nov, 2007

    I love buttons! This craft is the best for my collection of old buttons.

  • Lulubelle30 28 Nov, 2007

    I love buttons! This craft is the best for my collection of old buttons.