I love a snow village as much as the next guy, but there’s no way the $100 per building price tag is going to fly in my household. So I’m recycling cracker, Pop Tart, Gold Fish and you-name-it boxes into a village of my very own….and it didn’t cost me a red cent!
– Boxes (use your imagination to see what buildings certain boxes are dying to become!)
– Utility knife
– Glue gun
– Scrapbook or gift wrap paper
– Spray Glue
– Clear or crystal glitter
– Wax papper or tissue paper
– Battery operated tea light
You really use the same steps with simple variations for all the buildings. I’ll show you how I made the church, which is a little more complicated, then you can apply the technique to anything.
Cut your your windows and doors using a utility knife. I cut a simple template out of paper and then just used it to outline all the windows so they’d be uniform. I didn’t bother measuring the spacing, eye-balling it works just fine. Also, cut an opening in what will be the bottom of the building (make it pretty big, it’ll make getting in there later easier).
For the church tower use a cracker box. Cut the tops into triangles and then cut openings for the bell tower and the doors. Leave about an inch on the sides of the door attached to act as hinges and bend the doors open. Use hot glue or tape to form the triangles into the peak of the tower.
Open up the pour spout for the cracker box and snip the four corners so you can fold the end flaps flat. Apply hot glue around the flap edges to hold them down (just like flaps on a cardboard box). Use hot glue to attach the tower to the main building.
If you want to get fancy, add triangles to each side of the main building to support the roof. I did this with my first church and it looks great. With my second church I skipped this step and it still looks good.
Paint the church. I did one white and the other grey. You can use whatever paint you have laying around – spray paint, house paint, seriously, whatever.
Cover the bell town roof with patterned paper. The easiest is to glue a triangle in the rough shape to the roof and then trim to the roof line with scissors. For the main roof cut a piece of poster board or cardboard to slightly wider than the width of the building and roughly 18″ long. Use a utility knife to make a line halfway down the length and fold it in half. You can cover this roof with paper (I used a solid blue/gray) or you can paint it. Secure it in place with more hot glue.
Now comes the fun part – adding the magic. Give the entire building a good coat of spray glue and then sprinkle clear glitter all over. Be very generous with your sprinkling as a lot of it will fall off (speaking of which, make sure you do this over a piece of paper so you can pour the extra glitter back in your glitter shaker). Cut wax paper or tissue paper and working through the hole on the bottom attach it on the inside to cover your window openings. Secure in place with tape or glue.
Now that you’ve got the basics down, here are a few tips for the other buildings:
For the Villa, I painted white show drifts on the roof. I also added construction paper shutters.
The water tower is an instant oatmeal box on top of chop sticks, just add a construction paper cone roof. Add the adhesive letters and then paint and glitter the whole structure.
The barn is a Ritz cracker box. I created an angled hip roof (I did use the side panels as with the church to make sure it was secure). I glued the rectangle from the door cut out to a bottle top and glued it back to the front partially covering the door so it looked like it was rolling open. For the silo I used a plastic water bottle with the bottom cut off and placed upside down over the neck.
To finsih it all off, use batting for snow, try a mirror for an ice skating pond, add battery tea lights inside for some sparkle and give the whole village a squirt of spray snow!