By Dave Pierik, Shelton-Mason County Journal
A garden home
Houses are a basic part of modular dioramas. Happy Tree City needs a farmhouse. This will be fun and easy to create! Time: about five hours or so. Cost: approx. $1 (mostly from using some paint).
Tools: ruler & marker, scissors, paintbrushes.
Materials: Corrugated and thin cardboard, regular sand, a flat toothpick, a plastic straw, masking tape, school glue, acrylic paints, small round beads.
1. Walls and floor
The floor, roof and garden are corrugated cardboard, 5”wide x 3” deep. For the walls, mark a 2” x 12” thin card strip, and then fold it for a 4” back wall, two 2” side walls and two 2” sections for the front wall. Tape the front. Cut ¾” window slots from the top. Glue to the base. Cut and glue ¾” x 1 ¼” cardboard doors.
2. Garden rows
Cut some leftover cardboard into loose confetti and set some small round beads aside. Run a few straight lines of glue, and then drop the confetti and beads onto it randomly. Then, drop sand onto it, let dry and tilt off the excess. Let dry.
3. Prime with texture
Bend the outer edges of the roof down, and cut 1/8” shingle edges with scissors, and glue onto the house. Let dry. Mix glue and sand with white paint. With a large brush, paint everything. Let dry.
4. Paint with washes
Coat the house with very watery black paint on the roof, very watery blue paint on the sides. Use dark and light browns and greens on the lawn and garden. Washes are a great way to deepen the shadows of color, and the white below will naturally give you highlights. Build up the color from there, including bold colorful garden produce.
5. Farm fresh fun!
The chimney is a rectangle of cardboard around two bits of straw inside it. Prime it black, and add some red and grey detail. The door handles are bits of a flat toothpick. Glue them on and paint with silver and brass. This colorful, cozy little farmhouse looks great on the table!
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