Crazy hat crackers

Amber from the sensational Kids Craft Weekly sent us this wonderful idea

Guest Post

Amber Cracker 06

For my first guest post I thought I’d write about how to make your own Christmas crackers – with a fun twist! Once you’ve discovered the joy of these handmade crackers you’re unlikely to go back to the commercial variety. In fact, these are so popular at our place that we’ve had to incorporate them into our birthday celebrations also.

The idea behind these crackers is that once they’ve been pulled apart, you get busy constructing your own Christmas hat using the items found within. The only rule is that you have to use *all* of the contents of your cracker. The hat construction materials include a sheet of tissue paper and some rubber bands, plus a colourful selection of bits and bobs for embellishing the hat. For a bit of a challenge it’s fun to add some crazy miscellany – in this example I’ve used a small plastic horse and a medallion of Kevin Federline.

If you have a sit down family meal this holiday season, crazy hat crackers are a great way to keep the little people (and the big ones) occupied between courses.

You will need:

For the crackers

Crepe paper
Paper towel roll
Sticky tape
Ribbon or rafia
Bits and bobs to decorate

For the crazy hats

Tissue paper
Rubber bands
Crazy miscellany

1. Cut your cardboard into 15 cm (6 inch) squares and then cut your crepe paper into rectangles, roughly 36 x 18 cm (14 x 7 inches).

Amber Cracker 01

2. Roll up the cardboard into cylinders and fasten with stickytape. To get all your rolls the same size, use a paper towel roll as a guide. Once you’ve created a cylinder for each person, cut your paper towel roll in half. These two smaller rolls will be used to keep the ends of the crackers in place while you’re folding them.

Amber Cracker 02

3. Place a cracker cylinder and your two short rolls onto a piece of crepe paper – then roll it all up.

Amber Cracker 03

4. Fasten the crepe paper with double-sided tape. Then make a twist at one end (between the cylinder and one of the short rolls) to seal off one end of the cracker. Tie the end with a ribbon and insert your cracker contents through the open end.

Amber Cracker 04

5. Twist and fasten the open end of the cracker, trim off the ends to even them up and embellish as you wish.

Amber Cracker 05

6. When the time comes to pull the crackers, get creative in your hat making skills and have fun spending time with family and friends!

6 Responses to “Crazy hat crackers”

  1. Tamsin

    Amber, these are fantastic. And finally, a great use for Kevin Federline!

  2. simone

    I love these! Here’s a question–how do you get the hats to stick together? One can only use the paperclips and rubberbands to contruct a hat–or is tape allowed to be used?

  3. Amber

    Hi Simone. There are a couple of ways to hold the hats together.

    1. Tie two ends into a knot. This works surprisingly well.

    2. Fold or scrunch two ends and wrap a rubber band around them.

    3. If you have a large enough rubber band you can actually put the tissue paper over your head and then pull the rubber band on top.

    4. If you include stickers or paperclips or bulldog clips in the cracker these also work well.

    Give it a go – you’d be amazed at the number of ways you can hold them together.

  4. Annette

    I love this idea so much.. we only have four days left of school so time is short…I think I will try it next year.
    Merry Christmas from Canberra Australia!

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