It’s a tradition – every year my daughter decorates a gingerbread house. And every year it’s my post-holiday tradition to sneak it out of the house and into the trash while no one is looking. What a waste! Here’s a happy solution – a sparkling, candy-covered gingerbread house crafted from STYROFOAM™ Brand Foam. You can store and display this Faux Gingerbread House for years to come. Because the making is half the fun, you can still make a new one each year, creating a village of sparkling, Faux Gingerbread Houses.
To make a Faux Gingerbread House, you’ll need:
- STYROFOAM™ Brand Foam:
- One 12” x 36” x 1” sheet
- One 12” x 36” x 2” sheet
- Acrylic craft paint in brown, 2 – 3 bottles
- Candies, real or faux, including candy canes, peppermints, gumdrops, mints, etc. (If you plan to store your house and use it in the future, skip the real candy and use faux instead.)
- Trims, such as velvet tubing, cording, rickrack and ribbon
- Spray glitter (Krylon Glitter Blast is foam safe)
- Fiberfill, small handful
- Quilt batting, 18” square
- Thick, white craft glue
- Low-temp glue gun
- Optional: Spackling and cake decorating tools (for piping on “icing” accents)
- Tools needed: Scissors; ruler; sharp pencil; serrated knife; old candle or bar of soap; toothpicks; stiff paintbrush
To make a Faux Gingerbread House:
1. Following the cutting diagram, use your ruler and a sharp pencil to measure and score the individual pieces on the foam sheets. Wax the serrated knife with an old candle or a bar of soap, and cut out the foam pieces along the scored lines.
2. Windows: Using the ruler and sharp pencil, draw a 2-1/4” x 4” window on each side. Cut out the window with the serrated knife.
3. Door: Using the ruler and sharp pencil, draw a 2” wide x 5” tall door on the front piece. Cut out the door using the serrated knife.
4. Assemble the house:
- Test fit the pieces first. If there are gaps or pieces don’t fit together snugly, sand them against each other till they fit cleanly and without gaps.
- Apply glue to the ends of several toothpicks, and insert the toothpicks into one edge of a side wall.
- Apply glue to the edge of the side wall and the other end of the toothpicks. Gently press the front piece onto the toothpicks, joining the two pieces.
- Repeat, connecting the other side wall to the front.
- Add the back wall in the same manner.
6. Paint the house and chimney brown and let dry.
7. Cut the door in half so it’s 2” wide, 5” tall and 1” thick. Paint door brown.
5. Cut 2” wide scallops along the sides and bottom of the roof pieces. Shape and mold the scallops with your fingers so it looks like snow.
6. Cut the top edges on each roof piece at an angle, so that the two roof pieces will fit together snugly. Test fit the two roof pieces on the house, and adjust as necessary. Attach the roof to the house, attaching one side at a time. Use toothpicks and glue to attach each piece. If there is a gap at the top, you can fill it in with foam scraps.
7. Attach the chimney to the roof using toothpicks and glue. Glue a small handful of fiberfill to the top of the chimney to look like smoke.
8. Position the door in the opening, and attach with toothpicks and glue.
9. Decorate your house by gluing on the candy and the trims. Optional: You can use lightweight acrylic spackling and cake decorating tools to pipe on faux “frosting” details. You’ll find detailed instructions for this technique in the tutorial to make Faux Frosted Flower Eggs.
10. Spray the house with glitter.
11. Cut the quilt batting into a circle. Center the house on the circle and display!
Earlier this week, I featured this sweet, Miniature Christmas Village. I’ll have another creative idea for building a Christmas village tomorrow.
Do you decorate a gingerbread house each year?