Sunday, September 11, 2011

Harry Potter Halloween: Miniature Village

Inspired by this post on Dollar Store Crafts that shows how to spray paint the Dollar Tree miniature village all one color, I went out right after Christmas and bought a bunch on sale.

Now I am finally able to use them. I wanted to pick a color that was both cheap and that could be used for Halloween and Christmas. I choose a bright navy blue. The cans of spray paint cost about a dollar at Menards or Walmart.

At first I was going to go with a simple abstract design but got so into it that it turned out rather detailed. This year's Halloween theme is Harry Potter so I decided to do a Harry Potter themed Miniature Halloween Village. I almost got everything I needed at the dollar store.

First I divided all the houses by shape. The flat roofed ones I used for Diagon Alley. The pointy roofed ones for Hogsmead. The church with the biggest steeple became Hogwarts and for Hagrid's hut. I used one of the small white ceramic houses with light.

Then I laid them out where I thought they looked best. I chose a random few to paint black for variety and painted the others blue. On the black ones, I wanted to use rubber cement and superfine black glitter to sparkle up the roofs and eaves. I kept a few unpainted for the Christmas set. I'll remove the black ones and replace them with the unpainted ones which I'll color in a more festive color like white, baby blue or bright pink.

For the base and levels I used disposable pie and baking tins inverted. I covered the large oval pan with brown fleece for Diagon Alley. For the double leveled area that Hogwarts and Hagrid's sits on, I used rubber cement to cover the sides with decorative sand. I cut moss sheets to fit the tops. The lake is a square mirror with the frame removed. I covered three sides if the mirror with a cutout of sandpaper to build the banks of the lake. Then added black electrical tape on the raw edge to prevent injury.

Hagrid's garden is a piece of mass with bits of flowers and tiny pumpkins from a craft store floral pick hot glued on.

The forbidden forest is green pine trees from the same Christmas Village set and a large fuzzy black spider from the Halloween section.

Then I just had fun adding to it with a bag of pebbles, more sandpaper cutouts, moss sheet, spanish moss, "mossy rocks", etc. (The gravestones in Godric's Hallow are from Michaels.)

I made the cobblestones of Diagon Alley with a permanent marker on a strip of sandpaper. I later replaced it with a printout of cobblestones but either will work.

The final touches were printables of the hippogriff, moon, Durmsrang ship, the Hogwarts Express and ribbon banners. I made the cutouts stand by taping cardstock triangle to the backs of the pieces. I made the cobblestones of Diagon Alley with a permanent marker on a strip of sandpaper. I later replaced it with a printout of cobblestones on cardstock and taped together. Either method will work.

I labeled it all with printed ribbon banners.

Finally I printed this map on two sheets of paper and stuck it behind the village with ticky tack.

Unfortunately I had the finished photos on a phone that died so you'll have to image how they looked painted.

I can't wait to see how I can convert it for Christmas. I already bought a sheet of white flannel "snow" that I plan to lay over these same baking tin risers.

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