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DIY Ornament Ideas Using Layered Tea

DIY Layered Tea Ornaments

Great Homemade Gifts for Tea Fanatics 

Remember those salt ceramic ornaments we used to make as kids for our parents? They were ugly, smelled weird and crumbled all over the place when you picked them out of the ornament box the following year. Was that a wreath? Or a reindeer? Um, definitely Christmas poo. But, I guess you have to start somewhere.

The internet has come too far with great crafts that I couldn't even find any pictures or examples of awful salt dough creations to show you what I mean if you're lost right now.

I've come a long way since kindergarten and over the years, I've made a lot of Christmas ornaments. Crafting is a creative outlet for me and a fun way to pull meaningful gifts together for friends and family. You've probably made those 'fill your own' ornament bulbs or at least seen them before. The 'melted snowman' or 'glitter glue' filled clear bulbs.


A person holds a DIY Christmas tree ornament beside text that says "Melted Snowman Christmas Ornament"
A table full of green and red Christmas tree bulb ornaments.


I took inspiration from these crafts and added my love for tea to create a list of DIY ornament ideas that I think you'll love. I wasn't sure at first how to make a tea-inspired Christmas ornament, but remembered those layered sand art things I used to make a fairs and carnivals (again, fun, but not something I was putting on display after age 12). So, I needed to improve on the idea.

That led me to my unorganized, overflowing tea stash that is in a box in a cabinet that my husband refuses to even go in. You tea freaks know what I'm talking about. Some of tea in your stash is so old you're not even sure how old they are or when you'll ever want to brew and actually drink them. Well, I pulled mine out and found a lot of cool experimental tea ingredients I used to build Embrew tea blends and got to crafting these DIY ornament ideas.

How to Make DIY Layered Tea Ornaments in Clear Round Christmas Tree Bulbs.

I started with empty plastic round ornaments from Joann and even found a really cool hollow glass tree table-top decoration I could fill. 

Then, I created a funnel out of paper so I could get the ingredients into the ornaments easily. Some ingredients were whole leaf teas or random whole ingredients that wouldn't go down the funnel or into the ornament, so I had to crush them a bit. I also made sure to choose contrasting colors of tea so that I didn't end up with a bunch of dark brown layers that were indistinguishable from the others. 

Tea Ingredients for Layered Ornaments:

Here are some of the ingredients I had on hand to work with:

  •  Black, green, white and oolong tea
  • Chai spice blend
  • Cardamom pods
  • Juniper berries
  • Cedar leaf
  • Rose petals
  • Lavender buds
  • Chamomile flowers and petals
  • Peppermint leaf
  • Rooibos
  • Cornflower petals
  • Dried apple pieces
  • Bourbon smoked sugar

  • Filling Ornaments with Layers of Tea

    I got to work tilting the bulbs and layering ingredients to fill them. It was important to tap the bulb many times, to allow the ingredients to settle before starting a new layer. Otherwise, at the end, the bulb would be more empty than I wanted.

    Two glass holiday ornaments filled with tea leaves.

    With the tree, I started with smoked sugar at the top, which fell around the other ingredients below it when I tilted it up at the end. This created a cool affect, it kind of looked like snow falling down the sides, but in hindsight, since the granules are so small it was probably best to use it as the last layer that ended up at the bottom so there wasn't as much of a gap at the top of the tree. 

    A DIY Christmas tree ornament made with tea leaves sits on a counter.

    There are a lot of ways to go about layering tea ingredients into ornaments and it is a great way to use your older tea stash, even if it's in tea bags. Herbal tea bags are typically more colorful than traditional tea and throwing in some sweeteners create a nice layer of contrast. The tea-lover in your life will appreciate the effort of a home-made gift, especially if you pair it with their favorite tea to brew up while they decorate the tree with their new ornament. 

    Some of those in your life love tea, but you're just not sure what kind they would like for a gift. We have a great variety pack of lightly sweetened tea bags for them to try our five favorite blends. It's hand's down our most popular gift tea every year. And, if you need some holiday food and drink inspiration, be sure to check out our recipes for vegan eggnog infused with Cinnamon Oolong Chai, and our infused maple syrup caramel sauce

    Have fun with this idea and create DIY ornaments that you’ll actually want to put on display, my crafty tea people!