Learn How To Make a Vintage “First House” Key Christmas Ornament

Learn how to make a vintage “first house” key Christmas ornament to celebrate becoming new home owners or simply commemorate an address that’s important to you. Stay with me as I walk you through this step-by-step tutorial, complete with supply links for your convenience.

You know I love thrifting. Whether its a thrift store, estate sale or Facebook Marketplace, I’m there. I came across this set of vintage keys at an estate sale this year and thought they would make such a great gift for a first time homeowner.

I’ve written about reasons I love thrift shopping for home decor before (and why you should too!). Among the top 5 reasons includes being mindful of your environmental impact. I’m sure you’ve heard of the term “fast fashion” before, but “fast furniture” is a thing too! I challenge you to change your mindset and spend the extra time to invest in timeless, quality furniture and home decor pieces. Both the planet and your pocketbook will thank you.

I worked through a few ideas to achieve the final results. This is a fun beginner friendly project that makes the perfect gift for so many occasions. It’s great to give around the holidays to a couple celebrating their first season in a new home, or as a housewarming present when friends or family close on their first home.

Let’s talk about the supplies you’ll need first!

Supplies to Create a Key First House Christmas Ornament

-Vintage Key

-Ribbon to create a bow

-Brown card stock



-Hole punch

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I have come across plenty of vintage keys in my days thrifting. Recently, I found a set of 3 larger keys on the last day of an estate sale, meaning they were half off. I purchased them, knowing I would find a use for them someday.

Around Christmas, I decided they were the perfect size for a unique, custom and thoughtful Christmas ornament! My brother in law recently moved into his first house, so I made this key first house Christmas ornament for him and his fiance.

Step 1: Find a Key

Any key would work, and I’m sure you could source one from Etsy or Ebay as well. I’ve linked an option from Amazon here as well.

You know I sourced mine secondhand! So let’s dive into where you should be looking. I cover my favorite choices in this more in depth post here including thrift stores, Facebook Marketplace, estate sales, antique stores and flea market booths. Each comes with their own set of pros and cons. But my favorite place to thrift (at least in Memphis) is at Estate Sales.

Estate sales are unique in that they are larger and typically more “upscale” than your average garage or yard sale. The whole house is open, and used to display everything that is for sale. Usually, this includes the contents of the entire home from China, glassware, and silver to rugs, furniture, art and tools. To discover my top 5 estate sale shopping tips to go from beginner to pro and score the best finds, read more here. The keys that I purchased pictured above came from an estate sale.

Step 2: Make Address Label

Once you have chosen the key you plan to use, it’s time to create the address label. At first I tried to write the address directly on the chiffon ribbon I chose. After about five attempts, I realized this would not work. It looked too messy even with the finest tipped pen I could find. On to plan B.

I chose brown kraft paper, and wrote the address on that instead so the writing stayed neat and tidy. You could also type and print your address on this paper, or any cardstock of your choice. To attach it to the key, I used a hold punch to create a hole to feed it through the ribbon.

Step 3: Tie the Ribbon

I chose a neutral colored chiffon ribbon to dress up the key “first house” Christmas ornament. The length of ribbon you choose will depend on the size of your key. I cut enough so that I could make a bow, and still have leftover ribbon for a tail on each side.

Carefully feed the address label through the chiffon ribbon, then tie a bow to secure it. The ribbon is both decorative and functional!

Step 4: Hang or Gift your Key “First House” Christmas Ornament

You can choose to hang the key ornament directly on the tree by allowing open bow of the key to go through a sturdy limb. You could also use a wire ornament hook depending on how heavy your key is. Wrap it up to give a great, thoughtful and perfectly customized gift! Perfect for Christmas, or any time of year if you have friends or family that have recently bought a new home.

If you are looking for more DIY Christmas ornament ideas, I have plenty! Here are some other great ideas I have made throughout the years:

Have fun with this DIY! I love crafting, especially when I know I am creating a gift someone else will cherish. Let me know if you have any questions.

Enjoy the process,