How to Prepare Pine Cones & Nuts for Decorations

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Things You'll Need

  • Soft bristle scrub brush

  • Paper towel

  • Disposable cooking pan

  • Newspaper

  • Clear acrylic spray

Collect pine cones or nuts shortly after they fall from the tree to prevent discoloration.

Walk around your neighborhood and gather the fallen pine cones and nuts, such as acorns. Take them home and use these two natural items to create beautiful craft projects. Pine cone wreaths, Christmas ornaments and jewelry are just a few of the things you can make. In order for pine cones and nuts to last more than one year, they must be preserved. This is easy to do, and you can preserve a batch of them at once to save time.

Step 1

Fill your sink with warm water and dump the pine cones and acorns in. Use a soft bristled scrub brush to remove any dirt. Lift the pine cones and acorns out of the water and spread them on a paper towel to dry.

Step 2

Preheat your oven to 200 degrees for pine cones or 175 for nuts. As you wait for the oven to preheat, inspect the pine cones and nuts for any damage.

Step 3

Spread the acorns or pine cones on a disposable, aluminum cooking pan. Place them in the oven. Pine cones will be done after 20 to 30 minutes. Nuts, such as acorns, take a little longer and may need to stay in for up to 3 hours. Use an old spatula to flip the nuts occasionally to prevent them from burning.

Step 4

Remove the pine cones or acorns from the oven once the sap has dried out. Spread them out on a piece of newspaper and allow them to cool. Once cooled, spray them with a clear acrylic spray. Allow the spray to dry, then flip them and spray the other side. Spray the tops and bottoms as well.


Add 1 cup of vinegar to the warm water and allow pine cones to soak for 20 to 30 minutes. If you do this, they do not need to go in the oven.