Friday, November 22, 2013

Dollar Store Christmas Village, Revamped

 I am SO excited about this little village! 
 My Mom has a village that she has collected for years and has it set up all winter on top of her piano, complete with a little skating pond. I have always wanted one, I just haven't found one that was "me"... that wasn't going to cost me an arm and a leg!! 
Then, a couple of weeks ago, I stumbled upon this blog, via Pinterest, that really got my wheels turning. She had taken a cheap village, the kind you can find at the dollar store or Walmart, you know the ones with the poorly painted details. What she did was GENIUS!
Here is my version.

I started with a dollar store village. I really liked the shape and texture of these three houses, and of course I had to have a church =). I haven't decided about the little people yet... but I picked them up just in case.

 On the other blog she had spray painted the pieces, which admittedly would have been much easier, but I decided to use what I had on hand. I mixed equal parts white and antique white acrylic paint, with just a little bit of pearlizing medium for a bit of shimmer.

I then started applying coats to the houses with a 1" artist's brush. It took about 4 coats to cover everything, especially the roofs and little nooks and crannies. Once that was dry I painted all the raised "snow" areas with white paint, to make the snow stand out against the ivory a bit.
I forgot to get a before pic of the trees.... but they are just basic bottle brush trees that you can get at Walmart, or anywhere they sell the villages. Walmart has them in white, and "flocked" green. To make them match the houses I dipped them in a white wash solution of my paint mixture with quite a bit of water, mixed really well! Spray painting would work much better for this, but again, work with what you've got ;).

The last part is making everything "snowy". For this I used modge podge and mica flakes, but glitter would work just as well. I applied the modge podge with a small brush on the houses, just where the white snow areas are, then sprinkled heavily with mica flakes.

 I brushed the trees lightly with modge podge, just on the tips of the bristles, then rolled them in the mountain of mica flakes that was covering my workspace ;). Nothing wasted!

 After that it was all about gathering up the perfect accessories around the house and making a little vignette. 
We have several old books that I use for various projects, and also for photo props, so I thought these would be a lovely addition.
I also added a few antique electric insulators that I have collected, and placed battery operated tea lights underneath, as well as gold painted pine cones as bushes.

 My boys were sweet enough to donate a vintage looking truck from their matchbox collection =). I will be adding a tree to the back as soon as I have an extra one.

I am excited to have a bit of winter up in the house! Can't call it Christmas decor until after Thanksgiving or the Hubby might just blow a gasket ;).
Next will come our "tree", which I have found the cutest idea on Pinterest for that too!!
Pics of that to come soon!

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