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Old-Fashioned No-Sew Quilted Fabric Christmas Ornaments

Updated: Jun 27

These charming Christmas ornaments have been in my (“Emmaline’s”) family for a long time. I remember sitting with my grandmother at the kitchen table making these as early as age 9. Depending on your choice of fabrics, ribbon, and adornments, your Christmas ornaments could look anywhere from classic, elegant, rustic, or anywhere in between. This project is an easy no-sew process that creates an amazing quilted fabric result that will last for generations.

This project is especially fun to work on with a beloved friend or family member … or if you are binge-watching 24/7 Hallmark Christmas movies. It’s also a great project to make with kids.


Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, we will receive an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you. All opinions remain our own.

  1. A dozen 3 inch Styrofoam Balls

  2. Jelly Roll (2½ inch fabric strips) or 1/4 yard fabric in 10 different colors (cut into 2 1/2 inch fabric strips)

  3. Satin pins

  4. Spool of 7/8 inch wire ribbon

  5. Spool of 1/2 inch ribbon

  6. Corsage Pins or Cutesy Bling Wedding Bouquet Pins

  7. Rotary Cutter

  8. Self-Healing Cutting Mat

  9. Quilting Ruler that measures 2 1/2 inches

  10. Scissors

If you plan to make a lot of ornaments here are some of the best deals that I found:

——– LET’S BEGIN ——–

First of all, if you haven’t watched the video above do that first. In the video, Marie and I go over all of the supplies, fabric cutting process, and making the Christmas ornaments, as well as some tips and tricks I have learned over the years. Watching it once before you begin will help you understand the entire process. Then as you begin to make your own Christmas ornaments watch the video again, pausing it as you make the ornaments along with us. Below I am including the written instructions, supplies, progress photos, etc, but honestly, it’s not the same as seeing it on the video.

Let’s begin with going shopping at your favorite fabric store … this includes your own fabric stash if you already have amazing fabric laying around. Admit it, you have an addiction, just like M.E.!

Choose how many ornaments to make

If you are making only one ornament select 3 colors. If you are like Emmaline “E” and decorating your entire Christmas Tree then select 10 coordinating colors. Also, collect all of the other supplies and take them to your favorite work area.

Trim the fabrics to have a clean straight edge. Then cut your fabric into 2 1/2-inch strips. If you are making 1 ornament you should have 1 strip of each color. If you are making a dozen Christmas ornaments then you should have 30 strips of fabric, 3 of each color.

Select your first three strips and lay them out in front of you and decide which color you want to be the center of your ball (color 1), the middle (color 2), and the edge (color 3).

Next, we need to cut the strips into 2 1/2″ x 2 1/2″ squares. Each ornament requires the following:

  1. 8 squares of color 1

  2. 16 squares of color 2

  3. 16 squares of color 3

Cut the squares 2 1/2 inches wide. Because your fabric is already in 2 1/2-inch strips this makes perfect squares.

TIP: If you are making a dozen ornaments you may want to cut all of your squares arrange each ornament and set it off to the side. Remember, we have 30 strips that seem to make 10 ornaments, but there are 8 squares remaining. You want to arrange all of the partial squares into another 2 coordinated Christmas ornaments. This may take moving a few colors around at the end.

Emmaline made 3 dozen ornaments. The image below shows how she organized the ornaments ahead of time.

Homemade No-Sew Quilted Fabric Ornament Cutting Fabric Strip
Homemade No-Sew Quilted Fabric Ornaments Fabric Sorted and Prepared

Optional step

This next step is optional, but as an experienced ornament maker, I find it necessary for my own sanity. I advance prepare the center pin in each fabric square. I do this so that I do not have to continually pick up and set down my ornament and chase it around the table as it rolls off between prepping each square.

To prep the center pin fold each fabric square in half, making a rectangle, then in half again, making a smaller square. Then place a satin pin in the center of the square with the flat head of the pin on the wrong side of the fabric and the point of the pin sticking out on the correct side of the fabric.

Position your fabric

Now the fun begins! Pick up your 3-inch styrofoam ball and your first fabric square. Stick the first pin anywhere in the ball. At this point, you should have 1 square of fabric with the wrong side of the fabric on top. Fold the square in half towards you. You should now have a rectangle. Fold the upper right edge of the fabric rectangle to the bottom center, making a triangle. Pin the two edges. Repeat on the left side. You should now have your fabric square pinned into a triangle with the center pin hidden and 4 pins showing at the bottom edge.

Turn your ball so that the triangle is upside down and pick up your second square, placing the tip of the pin as close as possible to the already pinned triangle repeat the pinning process directly opposite the first triangle.

You should now have two triangles pinned to your styrofoam ball with the tips touching each other.

Stick the pin of the third square as close as you can to the other two in one of the two remaining quadrants. Fold and pin as before. Then, working opposite the third triangle place the fourth and final square of your center and pin it as you did the others.

Note: The edges of your triangles may overlap a little and that is just fine.

Homemade No-Sew Quilted Fabric Ornaments Round 1 Partial
Homemade No-Sew Quilted Fabric Ornaments Round 1 Done

Congratulations! You finished the first color round.

Let’s begin color round 2. The number one thing you must remember on color rounds two and three is how important it is to work a square/triangle and then ALWAYS work the one opposite it. We will be placing our first 4 squares/triangles and then the second 4 will lay over the top of the first 4. If you work them next to each other rather than across from one another your design will be messed up and you will end up having to remove and re-pin some squares/triangles.

Place the tip of the satin pin in the center line approximately 1/2 inch down from where the pins all come together in the center. For me, this is a distance about the width of my thumb. Fold your square into a triangle in the same manner as before, making sure that the center folds of the triangle of color 2 line up with the center folds of color 1.

Work opposite and do the same until 4 of your 8 squares are pinned. Your Christmas ornaments should now look like this.

Homemade No-Sew Quilted Fabric Ornament Round 2
Homemade No-Sew Quilted Fabric Ornament Round 2 Partial Square
Homemade No-Sew Quilted Fabric Ornament Round 2 First 4 Squares

Next, we need to place the remaining 4 squares. Pick up the first one and using the same opposite fashion place the remaining 4 fabric squares. These four fabric squares will overlap the previous 4 on each side of the triangle. As you place these 4 triangles, using the same approximate distance, for me a thumb width. You will notice that the first rectangle fold of the fabric is slightly below the tips of the triangles on either side. This is correct and how we form the central star shape.

If you did this step properly color 2 should have 4 triangles placed partially under 4 other triangles.

Using this same process complete the third round with color 3.

Homemade No-Sew Quilted Fabric Ornament Round 3 First Square
Homemade No-Sew Quilted Fabric Ornament Round 3

Congratulations! You finished the first half of your Christmas ornaments.

It’s time to repeat the entire process on the other side. Be sure to place that first pin of color 1 center round as close to the center as possible so that your ornament is symmetrical. Also, make sure you line up your center folds as best you can and always work opposite each piece placed.

Tip: After you place the center pin, but before you fold and pin the first triangle inspect the four corners of the fabric piece and see if it is the same approximate distance from the edge of color 3 from the first half of the ball on all four corners. This will ensure the best placement to begin your second set of color 1.

Pin, fold, and pin some more until the second side of your ornament matches the first.

Yay, the folding and pinning are done and your ornament should look really beautiful at this time.

My grandmother used to say the ornament was dressed, now we just needed to accessorize!

The accessories are a ribbon and a hanger.

There are two ways to affix the center ribbon to hide where the fabric comes together. The first method uses a hot glue gun and hides all of the pins. That’s the advantage, a perfectly clean finish. The disadvantage of using a hot glue gun is that the glue becomes brittle with age and you may need to reaffix it in future years. The second method is pinning your ribbon using the same pins we used to make the ornament or purchase some cutesy pins.

Whichever way you choose is correct!

I choose to pin mine because if I’m going to go to the effort of making a dozen beautiful ornaments I want them to last forever.

First I will explain how to hot glue the ribbon. Place hot glue on the center of the ornament where the fabric and pins come together. Make sure you glue to the edge of the ribbon and press it down firmly to secure it. When you have gone all the way around your ornament fold the edge of the ribbon under and secure it for a finished look.

If you are pinning your ribbon it is essentially the same process only you pin the ribbon instead of gluing it. I begin by pinning the ribbon on the corner of each side. Then, I pin the ribbon at the distance of the center line of each triangle. Once I have secured the ribbon all the way around the ornament I fold the end under and secure the final corners with pins.

Homemade No-Sew Quilted Fabric Ornament Ribbon Preparation
Homemade No-Sew Quilted Fabric Ornament Ribbon Finished
Homemade No-Sew Quilted Fabric Ornament Ribbon Completed

Finally, it’s the last step; let’s secure the hanger. Cut a piece of ribbon about 12 inches long. Fold the ribbon in half and tie a knot at the top. At the center bottom slide in the corsage pin and then secure it into the ball on the line where the ribbon is secured.

VIOLA! You completed your first Christmas Ornament.

We would love to see your ornaments, submit a comment below and be sure to load a picture so we can check it out.

For another no sew Christmas ornament design, follow this link:

Video Music: Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairies by Kevin MacLeod Link:

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