Hands tying homemade Christmas cracker

Have a cracking Christmas! How to make your own crackers.

This year try making your own Christmas crackers with the kids. This way you can avoid the throwaway plastic gifts which come inside shop bought crackers and have some fun in the process. Here’s how you do it.

December 10, 2020
Hands tying homemade Christmas cracker

You will need:

  • A4 piece of paper for each cracker (either patterned or plain to decorate)
  • Cardboard tubes (e.g. toilet roll or kitchen roll holders)
  • Cracker snaps (optional - available online at craft stores)
  • Ribbon or string to tie
  • Craft knife
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • Fillings – tissue paper hats, small gifts, jokes


  1. Place your A4 piece of paper face down on a table and so that the longest sides are at the top and bottom.
  2. Position your cardboard tube in the centre of the paper, lengthwise, making sure there is enough paper at each side to twist around the ends of the tube to make the cracker. Cut the tube down to size if necessary.
  3. At each end of the tube, score your paper softly with a pair of scissors, making sure not to cut through the paper. This will make it easier to create the ends of your crackers.
  4. Wrap your paper around the cardboard tube, overlapping the edges slightly and glue in place. The cardboard tube gives your cracker extra strength, so it won’t fall apart.
  5. Carefully twist one side of your cracker around the ends of the cardboard tube, secure it with ribbon or twine and feed your cracker snap through (if using).
  6. Gently add your cracker fillings (don’t overfill) and twist and secure the other side of your cracker.

Christmas cracker content ideas

You can choose generic gifts that would suit anyone or personalise a cracker for everyone.

Generic gifts could include:

  • A favourite recipe
  • A key ring
  • Chocolates
  • Candy canes
  • A packet of seeds

Personalised gifts could include:

  • Mini Lego characters for the kids
  • Mini soaps
  • Nail varnish
  • Mini bottles of perfume/aftershave
  • Drawings from the kids for grandparents

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