Chitenge Fabric Christmas Baubles

My love of fabrics has opened up lots of doors of enjoyment for me and last year I came up with a bright idea to add a bit of African flavour to jazz up our Christmas tree  – chitenge covered Christmas baubles of course!  I made the mistake of cutting a bunch of fabric before I’d come up with a master plan for covering the balls, so I was left with a bunch of 7 inch squares that had to fit around 2.5 inch Christmas baubles without using a gallon of super glue and completely destroying my hands.

I went to my husband and being Mr Solutions, after a few variations, he put me on the right track with a strategy that worked.  Instead of balls, I now have angels!   I’ve put together a little DIY tutorial if you would like to make some yourself this Christmas.


  • good pair of material scissors
  • super glue (or strong glue)
  • 7 inch squares of fabric (use a rotary fabric cutter and board to get even edges)
  • 2.5 inch diameter Christmas baubles

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To make:

Begin by folding your fabric in half twice to make a small square. Then cut a tiny curved bit off the corner of the square which forms the middle of the fabric.

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You should end up with a shape that vaguely resembles a circle in the centre of your fabric when you open up the square.

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Place the fabric over the bauble, with the circle around the bit where the string attaches.

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Then tightly fold three corners of the fabric over the bauble using your thumb to keep it in place.  This bit is the tricky part, but it can be extremely satisfying when you get it to all sit nice and tight.

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While holding down your 3 corners with your thumb, use the other hand to put some super glue on the edge of your remaining corner of fabric.  Fold over the remaining corner and press firmly for a few seconds until you can feel that it has set. Arrange the little ‘wings’ as you please.

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Ta-dah! It’s amazing what you can do at your kitchen table…

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  1. yvette says

    I have been looking to making our christmas tree more traditional and will be making these with my 3 and 4 years olds this year – I know they will love wrapping chitenge around the baubles and then working with glue. I might also decorate fabric with colored beads, which will add flavor to my african heritage. Thanks for sharing!!

    • Marisa Shearer says

      I love the idea about the beads, I will have to try that one myself. This year I’m planning on using a large twig as a branch so I can already see that it’s going to be very colourful. Thanks!

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