Christmas Décor: How to Make a DIY Giant Nutcracker

3 Materials
1 Hour

Are you looking for a fun and creative way to spend some time this holiday season? If so, you'll love this DIY giant nutcracker! This nutcracker project is simple and easy to complete, and it can be done in just a few hours.

Read on to learn how you can make your own DIY oversized Christmas decorations.

This post was transcribed by a member of the Hometalk editorial team from the original HometalkTV episode.

All you'll need for this project is scrap wood, paint, and rose gold wax. Once you have all of your supplies, you can begin.

A piece of shelving to use as the base of the DIY giant nutcracker

1. Find a suitable board

To begin my decorative toy soldier, I used an old shelving piece, but a reclaimed wood piece would also work.

Marking off the board in thirds with a pencil and ruler

2. Mark the board

I marked my board in thirds using a ruler and a pencil. It doesn't have to be exact, but you want it roughly in thirds.

Additionally, I want to make another line in the top third of the board that will be the hat for my DIY nutcracker decoration. I made this line several inches from the top of the board. 

DIY life size nutcracker

I also marked off a ruler width at the bottom of the middle third, for his belt and two rectangles on either side of it for his arms.

Nutcracker painting ideas

3. Paint

With the sections marked off, I was ready to start painting my board. It is important to paint all the way to the board's side for each section.

I used Annie Sloan chalk paint for my little nutcracker because I knew it would stick to the surface, but you can use any craft paint that you would like. 

Painting the bottom third of the board black

Using a paintbrush, I painted the bottom third of the board in black.

Painting a black hat for the nutcracker

I also used black on the little section of the top third that I had marked off. This will be the DIY life sized nutcrackers hat. 

Painting the DIY giant nutcrackers vest

My next step was to paint his vest. You are welcome to tape off sections if you so desire. I chose blue because I have blues all over my house, but you can choose any color you prefer. 

Peeling off painters tape after the paint has dried

With the blue paint dry, I went ahead and peeled up the painters tape.  

Mixing blue and black paint for the arms of the nutcracker

For his arms, I made a slightly darker blue by mixing a little of the blue I used for his vest with some black.  

Painting a peach colored section of the board for the nutcrackers face

Next, I moved onto the block at the top. To make his face, I painted this section with peach-colored paint.

Outlining the boots of the toy soldier in gold

Then came the gold! I used gold paint to make all kinds of embellishments on my DIY painted nutcracker.

I started by outlining his boots.  

Painting the belt of the giant nutcracker in gold

Then I painted his belt. 

Gold buttons added to the vest and hat

I added some buttons to his vest and hat.  

Painting gold laces onto the boots

I also used the gold paint to add laces to his boots  

Painting gold chain between the buttons

Don't forget those chains that attach to the buttons.  

Using peach paint to make hands

The final thing I did before moving on to his face, was to add little hands. I used the same peach color that I used to paint his face to add small semicircles below the arm rectangles to make his hands.   

The DIY giant nutcrackers face sketched out in pencil

For my wooden nutcracker's facial features, I sketched it out in pencil first, then played around with it until it looked good.

Painting the facial features of the nutcracker in black

Once I had the face drawn out, I painted it in with the same black paint I had used on the rest of him.  

How to make a nutcracker at home

To finish off the face of my DIY giant nutcracker soldier, I used some rose gold wax for his cheeks.


DIY giant nutcracker

How to make a giant nutcracker

DIY giant nutcrackers are a fun project that the entire family will love! You can use them to decorate your home during the holidays, or you can give them as gifts to friends and family. I have decided to display my DIY giant nutcracker on my porch to bring luck to my family and protect our home.

More DIY Giant nutcrackers

Here is another DIY giant nutcracker idea for you to enjoy.

The next time you have an old piece of shelving or wood at home, I hope you'll make this super cute and easy DIY giant nutcracker. Let me know how your project went and share your soldiers in the comments below.

Wishing everyone a healthy and happy festive season!

Resources for this project:
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Recreated Designs
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!
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  • GeorgiaBulldogsFan GeorgiaBulldogsFan on Jan 06, 2022

    I love nutcrackers and this has just been put on my projects list to do before this Christmas. Great job!

  • Katen Katen on Dec 11, 2023

    I’m not really that much into nut crackers but I am into your lovely painting. Very neat and indeed does look like a nutcracker with great face and face tones

    • Recreated Designs Recreated Designs on Dec 12, 2023

      Thanks ;) I'm not very into them either but I couldn't resist turning this old shelf into this cute guy.