easy, cute, & free salt dough gift tags (+ present wrapping tips!)

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Christmas presents have become somewhat of a sport to me. I love the challenge of finding the perfect gift for someone (especially if they are notoriously hard to by for like my dad, dad-in-law, and husband. And now that I’m a grown up and have a real job, I took the opportunity to really have fun with gifts this year. I won’t reveal anything yet to keep prying family eyes in the dark, but I’m pretty proud.

One of the things on my super fun Christmas To Do List was to spruce up our presents with some easy and cheap (my all-time favorite combo) salt dough gift tags (like these!). This project is simple, easy to customize, and saves you all that printer ink! Because even though all those printable gift tags are adorable, my printer’s poor little cartridge just can’t handle it.

For this project you’ll need 1 cup flour (plus extra), ½ cup salt, ½ cup water, a rolling pin, cookie cutters, and a tray lined with wax paper.

Salt Dough Gift Tags (2)

Mix the flour, salt, and water in a large mixing bowl until a smooth dough forms. I kept adding flour until it wasn’t sticky any more.

Flour your work space and use your rolling pin to spread the dough. I would estimate that I stopped at around ¼ inch thickness. You’ll want to make sure they’re thick enough to be sturdy after drying; not thin and brittle.

Salt Dough Gift Tags (3)

Then, use your cookie cutters to cut out shapes and place them on your lined tray.

Salt Dough Gift Tags (3)

Since it was my first time with this project, I just kept it simple with circles and used a tiny heart stamp to make an imprint.

Salt Dough Gift Tags (4)

Use a straw to cut holes into the shapes so they can easily be tied to presents.

Salt Dough Gift Tags (5)

Now, you wait. I let my tags sit for about 3 days, turning them over about twice per day to make sure they were drying all the way through.

When they’re completely done drying you can decorate them more with craft paint, stamps, or sharpies! I chose the latter and add names with a gold metallic marker.

Salt Dough Gift Tags (6)

And, here’s the finished product. For my presents, I stuck with brown kraft paper and made bows using different shades of green fabric. There’s something really charming about fabric bows and how they fray a little around the edges after tying them. Plus, if you stick with broadcloth or discount fabrics, you can get away with spending much less than if you went with fancier ribbons!

2012 Present Suite (6) copy

I also always put presents in boxes if I can help it. Not that there’s anything wrong with gift bags, but I personally loving boxes and I think it adds a little more excitement to the unwrapping process.

2012 Present Suite (7) copy

And there you go. A super easy, practically free project to make unique and personal gift tags! What do you’re presents look like this year? Do you stick with a theme? Change it up from year to year? Or stick with the basics like kraft or newspaper? Share below!

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