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Penguin Christmas Decoration: Dollar Tree DIY Light Up Penguin with SVG!

Make a cute penguin Christmas decoration with some glitter, supplies from the Dollar Tree, and a FREE Penguin face SVG. This light up penguin can be used as a night light or decor!

You might remember the cute DIY snowman that lights up that I made last year and then the Grinch decoration.  Well, today we are going to make a cute penguin Christmas decoration!

Using the same Dollar Tree fish bowls, I am going to show you how to quickly put together a light-up penguin to add to your DIY Christmas decor.

I can’t decide which one of my glass bowl decorations is my favorite, but this adorable guy is definitely up there!  Anytime I add glitter to any craft, it makes me happy.  How about you?

penguin christmas decoration pinterest

This post is part of the “glitter” Craft Lightning Challenge hosted by Country Chic Cottage, 30 Minute Crafts, and Pineapple Paper Company.  Make sure to check out their sites for a bunch more glitter project ideas!

Materials Needed for Penguin Christmas Decoration

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links from Amazon and/or I receive a small commission at no cost to you when you make a purchase using my links (purple text). As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

You can find the majority of this list at the Dollar Tree if you have one close by.  I visit mine a lot!!  If you do too, make sure to check out a bunch of other Cricut Dollar Tree crafts you can make.

Making a Glass Penguin

Make sure to watch the video at the top or side of the tutorial to see how easy it is to put together this glass penguin Christmas decoration!

The secret to getting the entire DIY penguin to light up is having the openings of both bowls face each other.  The larger bowl will be face-up, but the smaller bowl will be turned upside down and placed on top.

The first thing I did was to use a marker to draw a circle on the larger glass bowl and two humps on the top bowl (that looks like the white section of a penguin face).  This is so I knew where to put the glitter.

penguin christmas decoration

I held the bottom bowl to the top and marked where the lines started on the bottom bowl so that they would align correctly.

penguin christmas decoration
penguin christmas decoration

Then I used a flat paintbrush to paint on Mod Podge inside the bowl where the marked off circles were.

penguin christmas decoration

Then dump some glitter into the bowl and roll it around so it covers all of the mod podge.  Dump out the extra glitter on a piece of paper or wax paper.

penguin christmas decoration

The white part of the penguin is now there!

penguin christmas decoration

Repeat for the top bowl.

Now you are going to paint the outside of the bowl with black acrylic paint.  Use the marker lines so you know where to stop.  I used a small paintbrush to get to the tip on the smaller bowl.

penguin christmas decoration
diy penguin

Let both bowls fully dry for at least a few hours or overnight.

Adding Vinyl Decals to the DIY Penguin

If you don’t have a cutting machine, you can easily just use a paint marker to draw on the eyes and nose.  If you’d like to learn more about what a Cricut can do, check out my ultimate guide of Cricut ideas.

As a reminder, all of my FREE SVG files are for personal use only and not for commercial use. Please click here to purchase a commercial license if you want to use the files for commercial purposes such as to sell items for your small business.

Sometimes the file will look blurry when you first open it, but once you download it, the SVG will open up clearly.

If it doesn’t automatically download, you might need to right-click on it and Save As. If you need additional help, make sure to check out my post on how to download and upload files to CDS.

Or check out my Cricut Design Space 101 series for even more tutorials.

Download the FREE penguin face SVG by clicking here if you have a Cricut.

Upload it into CDS If the eyes are not attached, so put a square around them with your cursor and click attach in the lower right-hand corner

If you need additional help with downloading and uploading files into CDS, make sure to watch my video at the bottom of my Cricut Design Space tutorial.

Cut out the eyes and nose with vinyl.

diy penguin

Weed off the extra vinyl.  Use transfer paper to center it on the penguin glass bowl head or you could probably just use your fingers.

diy penguin
light up penguin
light up penguin

If the vinyl doesn’t lay down flat, you can make little cuts around the transfer tape so you can maneuver better.  Or lift it up and place it back down.  Or just scrape it down as well as you can.

Take off the string hanger and hot glue down the hat to the top of the bowl.

Cut some fabric for a scarf.  I used a piece that was about 1 inch wide by 20 inches long.

diy penguin

Finishing the Light Up Penguin!

Find the middle of a strand of fairy lights.  Place half of the lights in the bottom bowl and the other half in the top bowl.  Make sure the battery pack is sticking out the back.

light up penguin

Place the bowls together and use some hot glue to glue around the edges where they touch.

light up penguin

Tie the scarf around the middle of the glass penguin decoration and cut little slits on the ends of the scarf if you want.

diy penguin

That’s it!  Your cute light up penguin is all done and ready to be displayed.  Kids would love this as a holiday night light!

penguin christmas decoration diy
penguin christmas decoration diy
penguin christmas decoration diy

And he’s even cute with the lights off!  Though not the easiest to take pictures of!

penguin christmas decoration diy

If you’d like to save this idea for later, simply hover over the top left of the image below and PIN It now!

diy glass penguin christmas decoration with free SVG file

Here are printable instructions for you!

penguin christmas decoration diy

Penguin Christmas Decoration: Dollar Tree DIY Light Up Penguin!

Yield: 1 cute light up penguin
Active Time: 15 minutes
Drying Time: 1 day
Total Time: 1 day 15 minutes
Difficulty: Easy
Estimated Cost: Under $5

Make a cute penguin Christmas decoration with some glitter and supplies from the Dollar Tree. This light up penguin can be used as a night light or decor!



  • Cricut
  • Paintbrushes


  1. Use a black marker to draw a circle on the larger glass bowl and two hump circle on the upside-down smaller bowl as outlines.
  2. Paint mod podge inside the bowl inside the black outline.
  3. Dump in some glitter and roll it around so it covers the mod podge and then dump the rest out. Repeat for both bowls.
  4. Paint black acrylic paint on the outside of both bowls up to the black marker outline. Let fully dry overnight.
  5. Cut out penguin face with adhesive vinyl. FREE SVG file in the post.
  6. Weed out extra vinyl and add it to the top bowl.
  7. Glue on the hat.
  8. Add half of a strand of fairy lights to the bottom bowl and the other half to the top bowl. Leave the battery pack sticking out.
  9. Glue the bowls together. Tie a scarf around the neck and cut slits in the end if you want.
  10. Enjoy your cute light up penguin Christmas decoration!


FREE penguin face SVG file instant download in the post.

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As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Did you make this project?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Instagram

Pair the glass penguin with a handpainted penguin canvas for extra cuteness!

Thanks so much for stopping by and have a creative day,

leap of faith crafting

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