Friday, December 2, 2016

DIY Crystal Snowflakes

So my daughter came home from her science 4H class with a cool little snowflake that she had made.

Right away I knew I needed to make more for our Christmas tree.


Note: This was originally posted back in 2012 - I thought it might be fun to do again with my younger kids and thought I'd share it again with you.

I don't know the science behind it, but these little snowflakes are amazing.

These are quite easy to make and if you're like me you'll already have the supplies on hand. That's my favorite kind of project!

You can find more winter craft projects here.

Supplies Needed for Crystal Snowflakes

  • white pipe cleaners
  • string
  • wire cutters {or old scissors that you don't care about}
  • pencil
  • wide mouth pint mason jar
  • water
  • borax
  • food coloring {optional}

Steps for DIY Crystal Snowflakes

Start by cutting your pipe cleaner into thirds.

Take two pieces and make an x. Then wrap one around the other.

Repeat with the other piece to make a snowflake shape.

Tie the string onto one of the ends.

Place it in the mason jar to figure out where to tie the string to the pencil. You don't want the snowflake to touch the sides or the bottom of the jar or else it will become crystallized to the jar.

I trimmed the ends a little bit so it would fit better.

Once you have the snowflakes hanging in the center of the jar, remove them.

Fill the jar with boiling water.

Add food coloring, if desired.

Add 6 T. borax to pint jars. {or 12 T. to quart jars}

Stir until dissolved.

I found it was easier to pour some borax into a bowl for the kids to measure out.

Then place your snowflake back in the jar. Make sure that it's not touching the sides or bottom of the jar.

Now comes the hard part. You have to wait overnight for the crystals to form.

I pulled them out the next morning and put them on a paper towel to dry. 

You can see that the blue one is just lightly colored.

We used probably 12 drops of food coloring.

The kids thought this was really cool.

I did too. I've made quite a few for the tree and am still going to make a few more.

So what do you do when your jar has crystals all over the bottom?

Here's the trick. Pour a little boiling water in it and grab a fork to scrape the bottom a little and they'll come right off. Sometimes it will come out with super hot tap water too.

I had a hard time finding borax, but finally found it at Walmart. The two local grocery stores didn't have it. It's in the laundry soap aisle.

I may try them with colored pipe cleaners. It might give it kind of a frosted look.

I love projects like this. You can mess around with different things. If it doesn't work, oh well...since it doesn't cost much.

I honestly cannot get over how pretty these are. I can just imagine the Christmas lights bouncing off those little crystals once I get the tree up.


how to make crystal snowflakesDIY Crystal Snowflakes


  1. That is soooo cool. I actually have everything I need for this project because I use borax occasionally in the laundry. Pinned it to share with my Cub Scouts!

  2. I have done these before, with my kids at home & with my son's class at school, but I love these snowflakes so much!! They are very classy compared to the robots & initials I've been party to. I bet they will sparkle beautifully among the lights on the Christmas tree too.

    Colored pipe cleaners make nice brightly colored ornaments, much more colorful than using food coloring in the water.

  3. What a fun idea to do with the kids! Thanks for sharing.

  4. how fun!!! I've been wanting to try doing these with the kids!

  5. Yay! this is going to be one of our countdown to Christmas projects. Thank you for sharing! I am stopping by from the Mom on a Time out Blog Hop/Party. Cheers!

  6. This is fantastic. I love Borax and have made a few other kid's crafts with it. I love how these look like ice! Thanks for sharing. I was intrigued because I have been making beaded snowflakes. I may link up to your party with another homemade ornament I just finished. Merry Christmas, Lisa

  7. So amazing I didn't knew that was possible! Love the frosty look!

  8. Oh, this is so cool...not only are they beautiful, this would be a great project for kids..especially those who love science! I'm so glad you linked up this project on our homemade holiday party! Don't forget to come and cast your votes for your favorite 5 (and have your friends come out and vote for you too!)


  9. This is such a neat idea!

    I would LOVE it if you could come and share this project on my Friday Link-up!

    I'm going to be pinning this as well! :)

  10. Apparently, I need to invest in borax because I have about a million projects I want to do with it and now I'm adding one more. These look great! Thank you so much for sharing!

  11. What a fun project, Rachel. My kids would love this!! I'm going to FEATURE this post on Tasty Thursdays this week. Thanks for linking up. The party will be live tonight. Nichi

  12. Pinning and featuring tonight Rachel! Thanks so much for sharing at Mom On Timeout!

  13. Pinning this. What a great project! I love how it was inspired by your kid's school science project. :)

  14. So fun, it reminds me a little of rock candy. Wouldn't that be yummy? Great idea!

    You may have heard, but we are giving away a SIlhouette Cameo along with free ad space every week at our link party. Would love if you stopped by!

  15. SOOO fun and creative!!! I will have to get my son to make some of those, he would love it!! Thanks for linking up to Tasteful Tuesdays at Nap-Time creations. Your project is being featured this week. Link will go live Monday night at 8:30 central time!

  16. I made these! What a great idea. Thank you!

  17. Rachel, Thanks for linking up last week at the Humble Brag. Hope you'll come back tomorrow to link up. Also the Silhouette Cameo giveaway ends this weekend!

  18. These look so cool!! Well done and thanks for sharing :-)

  19. Very cool! I love how these turn out. I may have to make some to add to my winter wreath. Link up anytime to I Made It! Monday at Ninth Street Notions.

  20. does it work with salt? id love to do this but my stores wherei live dont have borax

    1. I don't think so. I think the salt would dissolve. You could try to find borax online maybe.

  21. My daughter is going to love these! Thank you for sharing the tutorial at The Really Crafty link Party. Pinned.

  22. love this idea. Wrote it down to keep with my Christmas ornaments so that I can make some next year. My farmhouse Christmas decor is all about snowflakes. Thanks so much and Merry Christmas.

  23. Is this 6 teaspoons or 6 tablespoons of borax per pint?

  24. Is this 6 teaspoons or 6 tablespoons of borax per pint?

  25. Wow that was such a quick response! Thanks so much!!

  26. I've done it with my class using metallic pipe cleaners, they look dazzling.

  27. Do you have to use a glass jar? Will plastic work?

  28. Do you have to use glass jars? Will plastic work?

    1. I think plastic would work just fine. Let us know how it goes.

  29. I have never tried it, but my guess is that it will be just fine.