Sunday, November 14, 2010

Do-it-yourself glittered Christmas houses

In the midst of (supposedly) getting a head start on decorating for Christmas this weekend, I somehow found myself elbows deep in glass glitter, tacky glue and faux snow...making a glittered house instead of hanging tinsel on the tree.  This is typically what I do when I clean too...sweep, sweep..."oh, look at that brooch, that'd look really cute with gold beads"...and then there I am, making a necklace instead of sweeping the floors.  And so it goes with the Christmas decorating.  I always love it when the house is decorated, but, oh boy, is it a project!!  Maybe it's because I've  collected SOO much stuff over the years, after all, some of my favorite things to collect are Christmas decorations: german glass beads, antique ornaments, bottle brush trees and houses - oh the houses!  This post will focus on those.  (Stay tuned because there will be future posts about the rest).

For years I've been collecting these glittery Christmas houses.  I didn't know who they were by at first as there was no designer name stamped on the bottom but, after some research, I learned that they are by the talented and sometimes kitschy, Cody Foster.   Other people make glittered houses too, of course, but his are the best. Here are the one's I have:



















Along the way, I picked up some plain, cheap houses to make my own glittery masterpieces.  These were $5.99 at Marshalls.
Here are some of the supplies you'll need:  crystal coarse glitter, glass glitter, tacky glue, acrylic paints, vintage inspired tinsel, and whatever embellishments you choose.
Once you've painted, glued and primped, the final stage is to spray the entire house with a spray adhesive and then pour this faux snow all over it. Here are the houses that my Mom & I made:
My Mom made this one.  It had a red roof, so she painted it pink, with gold accents and a turquoise door.  She made a big wreath out of an old pick and then wrapped turquoise tinsel around the trees.
For this house, I added gold dresden as the house trim and then painted the door, added a gold bird, gold vintage glass ornaments in the trees and finished it off with a big oversized "Merry Christmas".  The "MC" was purchased at Hobby Lobby.  That is a great place to buy lots of miniature items to place on your houses.  They have a whole section dedicated to decorating mini-trees so the dimensions would work for this project.  Even if the scale is off a bit, it's OK - the glittered house police will not be able to find you!
I painted the chimney and door aqua, added glass glitter trim,  and then used vintage miniature ornaments to adorn the trees and finished it off with a handmade bird. 
I learned how to make this little birdy from Jennifer Murphy at the Creative Connection event in Minneapolis.  She is a famous designer of hand crafted "bears & other silly things".   This was made out of pom-pom's, felt for the wings and tail, wire for the legs and a paper beak.
I love this ivy 'bush' made out of a Christmas pick.
I think this is my favorite.  I love the little vintage santa made from pipe cleaners.  I painted this a bright turquoise and then dry-brushed the same color on the trees. I trimmed the house in dresden (gold foiled intricate die-cut sheets popular in the victorian times - you can order it from Tinsel Trading company) and then topped the wreath with this pretty velvet ribbon that I just found at Anthropologie in their Christmas wrap section. The silver "tree" is torn off of a Christmas pick.
ho, ho, ho!
My Mom painted this house a fun pink color that she mixed up and then painted the window frames a metallic gold gloss enamel from DecoArt.  I then added a glittered pine cone to look like a bush and an aqua painted bird, wreath, and vintage ornaments in the trees.  It's also trimmed in the silver German glass glitter, though that's not showing up well in these pictures.




 I just love how whimsical these are - like a dreamy little neighborhood.  I'd like to live there! If Cody's houses are in the estate section, ours are where the hired help sleep, but regardless, we had lots of fun making them!  If you want the real thing, we will have a few Cody Foster houses for sale at our Lulubelles trunk show in Louisville coming up on November 19th & 20th.  Please visit our Facebook fanpage for more info.



What holiday projects are you making?  I look forward to your comments.
xoxo, Natalie 

20 comments:

  1. Natalie, your glitter houses are so pretty, girl! I have 2 that I am working on & just hope they are done by Christmas! I also love your Cody Foster collection! I hope you are doing well! Youe blog is absolutely gorgeous!
    hugs,
    Sherry

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  2. Thanks ladies! Hi Sherry, it's good to hear from you! Let me know when your houses are finished, I'd love to see them!!

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  3. natalie! i just found tyour blog. i LOVE it. i so so wish we were neighbors in this winter wonderland so we could do projects together! of course my snow would be real, and yours would be made of glitter! :) love you!

    sarah fitzgerald
    www.fitzfarm.com

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  4. I love that yellow velvet! And that gold DecoArt paint isn't so bad, either :)

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  5. SARAH- Me TOO!! haha, funny & true! Miss you :-(

    Mallie - Thanks! I used all of your products and love them so thought I'd give a shout out!!

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  6. These are so fabulous Natalie! Love them all!

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  7. WOW! THose are beautiful! I especially love the turquoise trees.

    I made some paper houses a couple years ago, trying to duplicate family and friends homes, etc.. it was an undertaking but now when I pull mine out each year (of the Greenwich Thrift Shop of course!) I forget how long they took. I think I might embellish that little storefront after reading this...I am making some Jennifer Murphy inspired pompom creatures right now, but when I am done with those. You know how that works! Great post, I look forward to perusing your site some more when my hands aren't wrapped in yarn!

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  8. Well I'm a bit slow at getting here but love these houses and trust me I have seen a few :) The colors are wonderful ! I love how you included a pic of supplies in the tutorial I'm old and slow ! Look forward to your creations this year. E in TN

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  9. Ran across your blog while trying to find Cody Foster houses in the Oklahoma City metro area. Just recently discovered these while visiting a precious boutique in Ardmore called Cloverleaf. I'd love to have an entire village, but they are quite pricey. Yours are darling...think I will attempt. Merry Christmas from Oklahoma!

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  10. I love the houses you made! almost more than the Cody and Foster ones:)))

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  11. Question - when you say "Once you've painted, glued and primped, the final stage is to spray the entire house with a spray adhesive and then pour this faux snow all over it." - where do you get that faux snow? Can it be purchased now? Looks like a very vintage box in your photo:) Please advise - LOVE your style and imagination with these! VERY impressive!! Thank you.

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  12. Really cute and fun craft idea.

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  13. I am coming late to the party. Your houses are amazing. I appreciate the work you put in them and you can cherish them for years.

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  14. Wow! I love these houses. Why not to have pink, turguoise or anything but green Xmas or Winter houses. These are adorable. I think soon my hands are messed with fake show, glitter and beads. =) Thank you for sharing.

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  15. I have been trying to add 'glitter snow' to my X-mas houses for awhile now, but at every try, they just look fake. Some of these houses were expensive so I've been reluctant to experiment on them. Can you give out any tips that might help me when I begin? I like what I see on your page although I might add less glitter. Thank you.

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  16. I have been trying to add 'glitter snow' to my X-mas houses for awhile now, but at every try, they just look fake. Some of these houses were expensive so I've been reluctant to experiment on them. Can you give out any tips that might help me when I begin? I like what I see on your page although I might add less glitter. Thank you.

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    Replies
    1. I solve the problem by building my houses with sparkly cardboard... A great 'second solution'!

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  17. Just gorgeous houses, thanks for sharing the pics and the tutorial!

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  18. Do you have patterns for your houses? I am always looking to make new ones. Yours are beautiful.

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