Faux Taxidermy Ornaments

Okay, I will admit it, this is totally “out of the box” for me.

In fact, I am having palpitations writing this post right now!

But when Dean and Shannon of AKA Design invited me to be part of a Christmas Decorating blog hop – I wanted to do something different.

I think this fits the bill!

“Antler Art” has been popular for a while –but it can be very expensive. So why not make your own for Christmas?

So, if you want to make your own faux taxidermy ornaments – here are the step by step instructions.

Step 1: Gather all of your materials.

Materials Needed

- Random plastic animals that you have no emotional attachment to. I found some at Tractor Supply and some at a craft store.

- Wood plaques of varying sizes. These were found in the wood craft department at a craft store.

- Craft paint and glitter of your color choices.

- Adhesive of some type. I used the above pictured adhesive for some ornaments and other I used hot glue. I especially found that the antlers set quicker with the hot glue.

-Varying sizes of paint brushes for painted, adding glue and a dry one for dusting away extra glitter.

-A cutting board and cutting tool of choice (more details below).

Step 2: Prime your wood plaques and upper portion of your animals.

Step 2 - Taxidermy Ornaments

Turn on a Christmas movie and sit back and prime away. I just used white craft paint and I found it did need two coats. If it were warmer weather, I may have taken them outside and used spray paint. There was something relaxing however about painting them by hand.

Step 3: Paint the plaques and animals your desired colors.

Step 3 - Taxidermy Ornaments

I chose to use bright blue, green, red and silver. However, it could also be done in metallics or neutrals would be really nice as well.

As you can see, I have painted most of the animals “still intact”. I tested it both ways, some I cut before I painted and some, after. It is definitely easier to paint before you cut them even if a little touch up is required. I also decided to add a subtle coat of glitter paint over all of the animals as well as the animals so that they would reflect light better.

Step 4: Cut your animals heads off.

Sorry, there is no gentler way to say that. And, there is no picture because this is a tedious part that is impossible to complete and photograph! The antlers easily clip off with heavy duty scissors. The smaller deer removed with a kitchen knife on a cutting board. The moose required time, patience, a kitchen knife and strong utility knife. The last two, I will admit, Hubby took out to the garage and cut with his band saw.

My point, you can try a multitude of methods – just understand the bigger animals are surprisingly stubborn.

No matter what method you use – please use common sense and tons of caution. Keep all fingers out of the way and cut away from your body!

Step 5: Adhere head to wood plaque.

Step 5 - Taxidermy Ornaments

Using hot glue sets up pretty quickly and holds quite well. However, I did use another adhesive on some to ensure it was a long lasting hold.

For the antlers, the hot blue is better since it sets up quicker.

This is also the step where I added glue to the certain places to accent with glitter.

Step 6: Add glitter and other details.

Step 6 - Taxidermy Ornaments

I added the glue to the edges of the antlers, the edge of the plaques and in some cases, all over the back. Mixing up each one and putting your own spin is the best way to go. Honestly, the possibilities are kind of endless. It all depends on your own taste and the direction you want to go. You could even make them “year round” in colors that work in your home and maybe minus the glitter.

Step 7: Hot glue a loop of floral wire in the back to have something to hang from.

They can then be hung as a display…

Faux Taxidermy Blue Moose

Or on a tree…

Faux Taxidermy Moose on a Tree

Faux Taxidermy Moose Antlers

We all voted in our house – which one is your favorite?

Faux Taxidermy

And don’t forget to stop by and visit all the other blogs for Christmas inspiration!

AKA Design

House of Hepworth's

Things that are Pretty

Thistlewood Farm

Cozy Cottage Cute

Satori Design for Living

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