Borax Crystals – DIY Summer Crystal Ornaments

Use this borax crystals recipe to make crystal ornaments of your favorite summertime treats. This crystal growing project makes it super easy to use pipe cleaner to make and grow crystals into fun shapes. Soon your whole room will be covered sparkly ornaments ready for summer!

holding an ice cream cone covered in crystals with a string hanging off and the title 'summer borax crystal ornaments'
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One of my favorite craft projects (and science projects) as a kid was to grow crystals. It didn’t matter what kind. It could be sugar crystals, salt crystals, borax crystals, and crystals that I didn’t even know what they were made of – if it was a crystal, I wanted to make it.

Even though I loved making rock candy, I’m not the most patient (probably why I made the new take on rock candy with the candy agate slices). Therefore making borax crystals ended up being one of my favorites because it was so quick! I would make little figurines and tie strings to them to make them into ornaments. I eventually made so many DIY crystal ornaments that I didn’t know what to do with them! That naturally meant I hung them around my room as sparkly room decor.

When I started making the ornaments I simply used white pipe cleaners (or chenille stems to some), but quickly discovered that you could use colored pipe cleaners and even draw on them to create fun colorful designs.

Therefore for this summertime craft project, I made some of my favorite summertime treats (watermelonpopsicle, and ice cream cone) into adorable crystal ornaments. I’ve even included a free template so it’s super easy to make the fun shapes!

Note: Some links in this post may contain affiliate links, which means at no cost to you, I may earn a commission.

Table of Contents

holding an ice cream cone and watermelon made of pipe cleaners and covered in crystals with the title 'summertime crystal ornaments, abcrafty.com'

Materials to Make Summertime Borax Crystals

  • Template
  • Pipe Cleaners (AKA Chenille Stems) in different colors
  • Thread
  • Permanent Markers
  • Borax (Amazon)
  • Water
  • Popsicle Sticks
  • Bowl

Downloadable Template to Shape the Summer Ornaments

To make it easy to shape the pipe cleaners, I’ve put together this ornament template you can use. Download it below or in the shop. Feel free to scale it to whatever size you would like to make your ornaments.

Image of template to make summer borax crystal ornaments in the shapes of an ice cream cone, popsicle, and watermelon slice

Download the Free Summer Ornaments Template

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Video Instructions to Make Summer Borax Crystals

Instructions to Shape the Watermelon Ornament

Take a dark green, light green, and white pipe cleaner and cut them to roughly the same size using wire cutters.

using purple wire cutters to cut a dark green, light green, and white pipe cleaner or chenille stem

Curve them together so that the darker green pipe cleaner is on the outside, then the light green, then the white. Then place a full pink pipe cleaner above the white one. You can also lay them on top of the ornament template to make it easy to form the curve.

Tie a piece of thread around the ends to hold them in place.

Tip: Use a thin piece of white thread to tie the pipe cleaners together. This keeps them all in place and doesn’t show up when the borax crystals grow on it.

using white thread to tie together the ends of a dark green, light green, white, and pink pipe cleaners that are slightly curved

Fold the pink pipe cleaner into a triangle to form the outside of the watermelon slice. Again, feel free to use the downloadable template as a guide.

folding a pink pipe cleaner or chenille stem into the shape of a triangle to form the outline of a watermelon slice

Wrap the pink pipe cleaner back and forth around the outline you previously formed to fill in the area.

Use a black sharpie or permanent marker to draw watermelon seeds on both sides of the slice.

Tip: If the pipe cleaner isn’t long enough to fill in the area, simply attach a new pipe cleaner by twisting the ends around each other so they’re secure.

using a black sharpie to draw seeds onto a watermelon made of pipe cleaners

Set aside to make the other shapes or skip ahead to start growing the crystals!

Instructions to Shape the Popsicle Ornament

Take a brown pipe cleaner and fold it over an inch or two, leaving one side a little bit longer. Cut it with wire cutters. This will form the popsicle stick to the popsicle.

(I only had dark brown pipe cleaners, but a lighter brown or beige color would make a perfect popsicle stick)

using wire cutters to cut the end of a brown pipe cleaner or chenille stem that has been folded in half

Then place a colorful pipe cleaner across it so that the longer bit is sticking passed it.

Note: I had this fun multi-colored pipe cleaner (similar to these), but you can use whichever color you’d like or combine them!

placing a multi colored pipe cleaner or chenille stem over a brown pipe cleaner that has been folded in half with one end sticking further out

Fold over brown pipe cleaner over the colorful one to hold them in place.

bending the end of the brown pipe cleaner or chenille stem over the colorful pipe cleaner

Shape the colorful pipe cleaner into the outline of the popsicle stick. You want to have a straight bottom and then curve it up.

Tip: Twist the end of the pipe cleaners together to secure them.

forming the shape of a popsicle with a pipe cleaner

Wrap the colorful pipe cleaner back and forth around the outline to fill it in.

Tip: Use the template to make shaping the popsicle super easy!

holding a finished popsicle made from a pink and orange striped pipe cleaner

Instructions to Shape the Ice Cream Cone Ornament

Make a long triangle with a pipe cleaner to form the outline of the cone. Wrap it back and forth around the outline to fill it in.

(I only had orange for this, but a light brown would be perfect)

making a triangle with an orange pipe cleaner

Take a white pipe cleaner and wrap it around the edge of the cone.

attaching a white pipe cleaner to a triangle made from an orange pipe cleaner

Fold it back over to form a small bump at the corner of the cone.

bending a white pipe cleaner over that is attached to a triangle of orange pipe cleaner

Do the same to the other corner and then bend the pipe cleaner into a half circle to form the outline of the ice cream scoop.

Tip: You can also use the template to help shape it. Simply place the pipe cleaner on top of the template and bend the pipe cleaner to match the template.

forming the loop of a scoop of ice cream using a white pipe cleaner on top of a cone made of orange pipe cleaner

Just as before, fill in the shape with the white pipe cleaner.

Then take some thread and tie the edge of the scoop to the cone to secure everything in place.

using white thread the top of a scoop of ice cream made of pipe cleaners to the cone

To give the ice cream cone some extra fun, use colorful permanent markers to draw sprinkles on the ice cream.

using a purple sharpie to draw sprinkles onto an ice cream cone made of pipe cleaners

Basic Borax Crystals Recipe

If you want to learn how to make crystals, this borax crystals recipe is the easiest way. You’ll be growing crystals in no time!

  • 1 Cup Warm Water
  • 3 Tbs Borax

How to Grow the Borax Crystals on the Pipe Cleaners

In a bowl (or in my case, tupperware container), follow the borax crystals recipe and mix together 1 cup of water and 3 Tbs of borax until the borax is dissolved.

If the water isn’t deep enough, add another cup and another 3 Tbs of borax.

Set it aside.

Tie a string to the side of the pipe cleaner ornament.

tying white thread into a knot on top of the pipe cleaner popsicle

Then tie the other end of the string to a popsicle stick and place it over the container. Make sure your pipe cleaner goodies are completely submerged in the liquid and aren’t touching the bottom.

Tip: If the popsicle stick isn’t long enough, tape two popsicle sticks together.

pink and orange pipe cleaner popsicle hanging from two popsicle sticks taped together and placed on top of a plastic container filled with clear liquid

Do the same to the other pipe cleaner ornaments. Make sure they’re not touching each other or the sides of the container.

Let them sit overnight. I left mine for 10-12 hours.

Tip: Leaving them for less time will form fewer and smaller borax crystals. Leaving the ornaments sit for longer will create more and bigger crystals.

three sets popsicle sticks taped together with strings tied around them attached to ornaments hanging in a tupperware full of a borax solution

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Here’s how they all turned out! The watermelon looks like actual candied watermelon to me!

holding a watermelon slice covered in borax crystals made of pipe cleaners

Then the popsicle looks like it just came out of the freezer!

holding a pink and orange striped popsicle covered in crystals made from borax

Here’s a close up of the borax crystals on the popsicle. Look at them sparkle!

close up photo of borax crystals formed on a pink and orange striped pipecleaner

And if you leave the string on it, like I did for the ice cream cone, you can hang them up as a crystal ornaments. I love how the sprinkles turned out for this one!

holding an ice cream cone crystal ornament that has multi colored sprinkles on the ice cream

More Crystal and Summer Projects to Make

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holding an ice cream cone and watermelon made of pipe cleaners and covered in crystals with the title 'summertime crystal ornaments, abcrafty.com'

Grow Borax Crystals to Make Crystal Ornaments

Use this borax crystals recipe to make crystal ornaments of your favorite summertime treats. This crystal growing project makes it super easy to use pipe cleaner to make and grow crystals into fun shapes. Soon your whole room will be covered sparkly ornaments ready for summer!
Project Time 10 mins
Total Time 10 mins

Materials
  

  • Pipe Cleaners
  • Thread white
  • 3 Tbs Borax
  • 1 Cup Warm Water
  • Popsicle Sticks

Equipment

  • Bowl
  • Spoon
  • Permanent Markers

Instructions
 

Shape the Ornament

  • Shape the pipe cleaners using the downloadable template
    Pipe Cleaners
    folding a pink pipe cleaner or chenille stem into the shape of a triangle to form the outline of a watermelon slice
  • Use permanent markers to draw on additional details
    using a black sharpie to draw seeds onto a watermelon made of pipe cleaners

Grow the Crystals

  • Mix the water and borax in a bowl until the borax is dissolved
    1 Cup Warm Water, 3 Tbs Borax
    pouring a tablespoon of borax into a plastic container of water
  • Tie a string to the side of the pipe cleaner ornament.
    Thread
    tying white thread into a knot on top of the pipe cleaner popsicle
  • Then tie the other end of the string to a popsicle stick and place it over the container. Make sure your pipe cleaner ornaments are completely submerged in the liquid and aren’t touching the bottom.
    Popsicle Sticks
    pink and orange pipe cleaner popsicle hanging from two popsicle sticks taped together and placed on top of a plastic container filled with clear liquid
  • Let them sit overnight (10-12 hrs)
    three sets popsicle sticks taped together with strings tied around them attached to ornaments hanging in a tupperware full of a borax solution
  • Take them out and let them dry. You can then either cut off the string as a decoration or leave them on to hang them up as an ornament.
    holding a watermelon slice covered in borax crystals made of pipe cleaners

Video

Notes

Use the downloadable template to easily shape the pipe cleaners.
Keyword Borax, Crystal, Dog Popsicle, Ice Cream, Ornament, Summer, Watermelon

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