Every year since I’ve been married the the illustrious James Hornsby, we’ve drawn dinosaur Christmas ornaments for our tree. The tradition started when we realized at our first Christmas as a married couple that we had one hand-me-down tree and approximately 5 ornaments. (This number came after going out shopping and buying 4 of those ornaments, to go with the one that came with the hand-me-down tree)
Shopping for ornaments at that time made me realize one of my favorite things (dinosaurs) are sorely missing from the ornamenting world. So I bought some inkjet Shrinky-Dink paper online, we digitally drew up some awesome, and a tradition was born!
It’s gotten trickier to come up with ideas after 4 years, but we still manage to come up with some winners. Usually we doodle various ideas on paper, and make every attempt to have dinosaur variety so that our tree isn’t just full of T. Rexes and Stegosaurs. This year, I made a point to include the reasonably recently discovered dragon-ish dinosaur known as Dracorex. Mostly because it has a really, really sweet skull.
Traditionally, James and I will each draw some ornaments, then ink/color the other’s ornaments just to change it up.
Drawing digitally means the dinos are high-res, so we can print them very large. Which needs to happen, as when the ornaments bake on their Shrinky paper, they will get smaller and more crisp.
Once they’re printed, the ornaments are cut out with plenty of an edge for breathing room, and hole-punched so there’s a place for a string/ribbon to attach. After baking ‘em at 200-ish degrees for 2 -3 minutes (plus cooling! Hot ornaments burn, kids!), we string ribbons through them and hang them up.
And that’s how you get past the severe lack of dinosaur ornaments available at local retailers! If you know of a tree that is severely lacking in dinosaur Christmas delight, I have added some of our past ornaments to my Zazzle store in ceramic form for purchase.