Holiday Plaques for DIY Gifts or Decoration

As December beings and the days between today and the holidays go by faster and faster, getting your family ready for this busy season is a priority. Are you looking for a holiday decoration that doubles as a possible gift? It sounds like a stretch, but this week’s Make It might solve two holiday dilemmas at once! It’s time to think of how you’ll turn a plain, wooden plaque into a cherished decor item or gift. Using miniature Christmas decorations, vintage holiday trinkets from garage sales or even a favorite toy, creating inexpensive gifts and/or decorations is easy to do.


  • Wooden plaques in a variety of sizes
  • Craft paint
  • Paintbrush
  • Sand paper
  • Holiday decorations (new, old or favorite toys)
  • Scissors
  • Hot glue and hot glue gun
  • Ribbon (optional)
  • Plate stands (optional)
  • Staple gun (optional)


1. Remove any price stickers from the plaque, sanding thoroughly with a piece of sandpaper; then, paint both the front and back sides. Let dry.
2. While the paint is drying, gather supplies and come up with your design or your child’s design. Look for fun, vintage craft supplies, such as old ornaments and decorations; if purchasing new items to use, try fake flowers, holiday gift toppers and glittery adornments. For the toy route, look for a small action figure or doll.
3. When using fake floral decorations, cut off each object, trimming the plastic stems away. This makes it easier to glue the materials to the plaque.

4. Practice your arrangement before gluing. Once your design scheme is complete, remove, piece by piece, and get ready to attach.

5. Start with your bottom layer and add in elements.
6. Make sure each item is firmly secured to the plaque before adding another element.
7. If you’re going to hang your plaque, add a long length of ribbon. Loop at the top and lay flat on the back of the plaque, stapling into place.
8. If you don’t want to hang the plaque and/or give as a gift, add a size-appropriate plate stand to show off anywhere in your home.

How else can you decorate these plaques? Take a look at these two ideas.

Vintage Decorations

This 1950s Santa Claus Christmas tree decoration doubles nicely as a simple accent on a red plaque.

Favorite Toys

A liberal amount of hot glue is all that is needed to keep a small toy from moving on this plaque. Paint with holiday colors or add a favorite hue for a child-friendly gift.


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