I’m clearly obsessed with tiny houses as Christmas decor this year and I don’t even know why!
After making my DIY A-Frame Winter Cabin a few weeks ago, I thought it would be really cute to make a tiny one as an ornament for the tree… and then I sort of forgot about it until I was decorating the tree on Friday with the girls and pulled out my two favorite ornaments of all time, which happen to be… tiny little houses.
I believe these tiny little mid-century modern (homes) Christmas ornaments were my Grandma’s and they look to be from the ’50s or maybe the ’60s, but based on the bright pink and blue colors, I’m going to guess the ’50s, but I’ll have to ask my mom to see if she remembers. ANYWAY, I love them, and have always loved that I can set them on my tree instead of hang them becaused of their flat little bases. Also, they’re made from fine cardboard so they’re super light and surprisingly detailed. I’m not sure if they’re handmade or store-bought, but either way, I love them.
I decided to try to make a few of my own and found some old white cardboard pieces that come with printer paper that I always used to save for future projects and it seems I have finally found the perfect project to put them to use!
I originally grabbed my glitter glue for this project thinking I’d paint them in a similar fashion to the vintage ornaments I love, but once I made my little houses, I really liked the solid white look, especially once I added the little trees to the exterior.
I started by making only three houses, but then they were just so cute I made seven, total, and I kind of want to make MORE!
You can use them to create a cute little village if you’d rather not hang them on your tree, but either way, they’re pretty simple and fun to make.
Here’s What You’ll Need…
* White cardboard (I used inserts I found in printer paper packages). It’s similar to poster board, maybe a little thicker. You can use any thin cardboard, from a shoe box, to the back of a spiral notebook, etc. and paint it to the colors you desire.
* Scissors and Pinking shears
* Hot glue gun
* Strong clear tape (packing tape)
* A large needle or bead reamer to puncture a hole in the roof for the string
* Pipe cleaners
Well, to put this simply, you basically just cut out pieces and glue them together. I’m hoping the photos give you a clear idea on how to create these, but if they don’t, just start cutting shapes and you’ll figure it out by trial and error 🙂
How to Make the Houses…
* Below are the shapes you’ll be cutting out.
* Begin with any shape house you like and cut it out. You can draw it out first or simply cut out a shape and if you like it then you’re set.
* Trace it and cut out a second one for the back of your house.
* On the back side, draw on your door and windows and carefully cut them out with a blade.
* Measure the sides of your house and cut out two small pieces (one for each side) and bend the corners in the same width on each.
* Glue the front and back of your house to your side pieces. (NOTE: You can use tape for this if you prefer, but hot glue ended up being the best option)
* Cut a long narrow rectangular piece with pinking sheers for a fun and jagged roof line.
* Line it up with the top of your house to determine where to fold it… then carefully bend it to fit.
* Poke a hole in the center of the bent roof, cut a piece of string and fold it in half. Slide your looped string through the hole in your roof, tie a knot and tape it in place to secure it (on the under side).
* Apply a layer of hot glue to the top of your house and secure your roof on it. (NOTE: In this particular house – shown above – I glued the base first, but for the rest of the houses I glued the roof on first, which was a better option to determine the size of the base you want IF, for instance, your roof is low to the ground on one side like a few of the others I made)
* Apply a layer of hot glue to the bottom of your house and secure it to your base. (Note: set your house back and to the side of your base instead of centering it for a more whimsical look)
Making Tiny Pipe Cleaner Trees…
* Depending on the size/height of the trees you want, bend the top or end of a pipe cleaner to size and cut it. Squeeze the top together for a pine-look or leave it bushy. Apply hot glue to the bottom and set in place on your base.
How to Make the A-Frame Cabins…
* Cut out a triangle to the desired size.
* Trace your triangle on another piece of cardboard to create the back of your house.
* On the back side of the front of your triangle house, draw on a door and windows if you wish and using a razor blade, cut them out. If you want the door to appear halfway open, cut out only the top and one size and push it forward or backward.
* Roofline… Cut out a long rectangular strip with your pinking sheers to create a fun edge. NOTE: Make sure this roof is wider than the one you cut the for the regular houses
* If your roof ends up too long, you can cut away the ends later, but begin with 3-4 inches, unless you truly want teeny tiny houses, then go smaller… but base your roof size on the triangle you cut.
* Fold it in half and puncture a hole in the top center of your roof.
* Thread your string through and tie a knot. Secure your knot with a piece of tape, which also strengthens your roof.
* Apply hot glue to the sides of your triangle, line it up under the roof so the roof sticks out/over a little and hold in place until it adheres. For extra strength, run your glue gun around the inner edges/seams.
* Repeat the step above with the back of your triangle
* If you want a base (I made one with and one without), cut out a piece that runs vertically under your A-frame… since the roofline might shoot out over the edge, it’s easier to make the base stick out the front a little instead of on the sides. OR you can cut your roof down a little to make it work.
* Run hot glue around the base of your A-frame and stick it to your base.
Get creative and make a bunch of different shapes and sizes!
Hang them from your tree branches or simply set them on top, nestling them into the needles.
Create a little winter village with your houses by placing them on a tabletop or mantel.
Make them as big or as small as you want…
You can even give them as gifts OR tie them onto your ribbons of your wrapped gifts!
They’re just so cute I can’t even!
Trevor approves 🙂
Check out more DIY Christmas ornaments…
* as seen on my tree above *