How to Make a Glitter Ornament Nativity

An easy and inexpensive glitter ornament nativity! This wood framed ornament nativity is made using an inexpensive canvas and assembled in the shape of a tree. The gold vinyl adds a touch of glam.

glitter ornaments

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Who's excited about Christmas? Wave your hands in the air like you really care! 𝅘𝅥𝅮𝅘𝅥🤣

I'm over here with BOTH hands raised!

I think the whole world will be celebrating earlier and longer this year! 2020 has been a rough one, and we need something to celebrate!

Welcome to November's edition of Thrifty Style Team, hosted by Julie of Redhead Can Decorate. We're a group of home decor and DIY bloggers who share our projects, ideas and inspiration with you each month! Next month we have a big exciting giveaway so make sure you're following along! I'll link to the other projects at the end of my tutorial.

Did you know that the humble canvas can become amazing Christmas decor? Over the upcoming weeks, I'll be sharing several more DIY Christmas canvas ideas.

Each one is completely different and unique. like the painted buffalo check canvas sign with heat transfer vinyl I shared recently! So if you're not already a subscriber, make sure to SIGN UP HERE so you don't miss any Christmas crafts!

How to Make a Deconstructed Canvas Nativity with Glitter Ornaments

Whew! I know that's a mouthful, but that's exactly what I'm going to show you how to make!

Before we get into this project, let me just say that you are not limited to making a nativity! You could use any ornaments you find (or make) to customize this reverse canvas to suit your Christmas style and decor.

I got the idea to decorate the ornaments in a tree shape from my buddy Lynne at My Family Thyme. So I needed 10 ornaments and I found small ones at Walmart. Make sure you use the right size ornaments for your canvas!

I'll include the complete supplies list below.

Step One: deconstruct a canvas

Here's something amazing that you might not know and I'm happy to be the one to tell you about this little secret! There's a nice little wood frame underneath a canvas! We're going to reveal that frame, jazz it up a little bit, and put it back together with the canvas in a new and fun way!

I shared this canvas frame secret with you back in February when I made this Valentines day sign.

Start by slicing around the back of the canvas and removing the actual canvas. I used a craft blade.

Once the canvas and frame are separated, set the canvas aside. Pull off the strip of canvas that's still attached and throw it away. I just left the staples in place.

Now flip the frame over. On the front of the wood frame, there's a staple in each corner. Carefully pry that up and remove.

how to deconstruct a canvas

Step Two: stain wood frame and cut canvas

Let's give that wood frame some farmhouse style! Do you remember when I showed you how to use dark wax to 'stain' wood? I shared this quick tip when I made my cozy Christmas trees

It's great when you're pressed for time (or trying to do all the Christmas crafts and you don't have time to wait for wood stain to dry!) It dries in just a few minutes and then you can move on with your project. If you don't have any dark wax, you can use wood stain.

You simply brush on a little wax, working it into the wood, and in a few minutes wipe off any excess with a rag or paper towel.

Next, center the wood frame onto the canvas and use the frame as a guide to cut the canvas down to size.

using dark wax to stain wood

Step Three: staple canvas to back of frame

The other cool thing is that the reverse side of canvas looks a lot like drop cloth or linen. It's a natural color that is so perfect for all things farmhouse and rustic!

So flip the frame face down and lay the canvas on top, white shiny side up (this is the normal side of a canvas...we want it at the back)! Staple the edges to reattach the canvas to the back of the frame. You could also use hot glue.

reassemble canvas

Now flip it around and say "WOW, that is so cool!" For just a couple bucks, you have a great looking farmhouse frame ready for the next part of this DIY...the nativity ornaments.

Step Four: cut out nativity shapes

I used my Silhouette machine and a design I purchased from the Silhouette Design Store for .$99. I used gold glitter vinyl and cut each shape out and then attached it to my ornaments. I used clear glass balls that are 2" round. I like the sparkle that the clear ornaments have but you can use any ornaments you want.

If you don't own a die cut machine, you could try stickers.

add glitter vinyl to ornaments

Step Five: paint ornament hangers

I didn't like how the silver ornament hangers looked with the gold vinyl, so I spray painted them! Here's a tip for doing this - use foam from the dollar store to secure the hangers while you spray paint! I use the package of two foam rounds and just leave the plastic on! That way, the foam is still useable for another project.

spray paint ornament hangers gold

Look how much better the ornaments look with gold tops!

gold glitter ornament

Step Six: secure ornaments to canvas

Lay ornaments out in the pattern you want. They do tend to roll around, but you can still figure out basic placement. Starting at the top in the center, hot glue the first ornament to the canvas. 

Hold it still for a few seconds to make sure it adheres and then glue the remainder of the ornaments.

glue ornaments to canvas

I actually thought of using those small velcro circles so that the ornaments could come off for storage. But I didn't have enough to experiment, and I didn't want the velcro to show through the clear glass. 

But that would be a really fun idea, especially if you have little kids! They would love to attach the ornaments every year! If you're making this ornament nativity with small children, I would definitely recommend using shatterproof plastic ornaments, not glass like I used here!

Finally, add a bow to the top of your frame if you want. I chose a simple black and white pin striped fabric ribbon and hot glued it into place.

I wanted the stars of the show to be the nativity!

I love how the nativity story is told with these glitter ornaments on framed canvas. I've got the star on top, then two of angels followed by Joseph and Mary with baby Jesus in the center. The bottom row is a shepherd, sheep, king and a camel.

wood frame nativity with gold glitter ornaments

You can hang the framed nativity or prop it up like I did.

close up ornaments

The framed display has great texture and it's interesting with the 3-D effect. I love how it sparkles and mixes farmhouse rustic with a little bit of Christmas elegance.

wood framed nativity sign

Wouldn't this framed nativity with glitter ornaments make a great Christmas gift?

Supplies for this project


Pin it to remember!

wood frame canvas nativity with glitter ornaments

You're definitely going to want to check out these Christmas projects from the rest of the Thrifty Style Team. We have a couple new members which  means more ideas for you!

Thrifty Style Team November Christmas projects and craft ideas

Thrifty Style Team Christmas Project Ideas

That wraps up today's projects! Hope you found a few to try making this Christmas season!

Happy crafting!


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  1. I love this project, Cindy!!! You’re amazing!!

  2. I love this project, Cindy! It's wonderful to decorate with the real meaning for the season.

  3. This is an amazing project! Makes me want a Cricut machine! Thanks for that tip about using dark wax to quickly "stain" the wood frame!

    1. Thanks Jane, it's an investment but I make so many items with my due cut machine! Glad you like it and found that wax tip helpful!

  4. Fun project, Cindy! I never would have though to deconstruct a canvas frame; brilliant!

    1. Thanks Lora, I've been busy making a variety of canvas DIY signs for Christmas!!

  5. This is such a pretty project, Cindy. And your tutorial is so helpful. Love the way it turned out!

    1. Thanks Angie, it's a fun take on a classic nativity!

  6. I love this so much Cindy! Such a gorgeous modern spin to the classic nativity scene. Great job my friend!

  7. You are so clever ad creative, Cindy. I love how you deconstructed the frame to design your advent calendar. Thanks for the inspiration, my friend.

  8. Cindy this is absolutely beautiful! I had never heard of a deconstructed are so clever! Your gold nativity is a beautiful way to remember the birth of our King! Merry Early Christmas!

    1. Thank you Kelly, the nativity has even more meaning this year as we look to our King and Savior for hope and meaning this year!

  9. This is such a pretty idea!! I love how the ornaments look like they are floating and the gold and white! Painting the gold tops was such a good idea! I just love this project!!!

  10. Cindy, I just LOVE everything about this. It's definitely the most clever nativity idea ever. And I'm loving all of the gold and sparkles everywhere.

    1. Thank you Kristi, that's such a huge compliment! I'm really enjoying adding more metallics this year!

  11. I love the nativity. Very creative.


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