Your mantel is prime Christmas decorating real estate. Develop it creatively with this chalkboard village of Christmas cottages. They’re as easy as cut, paint and customize.
Items may be Special Order in some stores. Product costs, availability, and item numbers may vary online or by market. Paint colors may vary slightly from those shown. Availability varies by market for lumber species and sizes.
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Sand the front faces of each board with 120-grit sandpaper. From 1 x 2, 1 x 3 and 1 x 4 poplar boards, cut pieces of various lengths for houses, skyscrapers and smaller accessories, such as trees, pets, signs, cars or Christmas decorations.
If you cut the pieces by hand, use a square or guide block against the blade of the saw to cut the ends square to the faces so the pieces will stand upright.
Mark the center of the top end of any block where you plan to cut a roof shape. Cut 45-degree miters to form a point for the roof. Sand the cuts with 120-grit sandpaper and wipe clean.
Apply two coats of chalkboard paint to the front face of each house and let dry overnight.
Prepare the chalkboard surfaces according to the paint label directions. Using chalk, mark the shapes of the doors and windows. Use any leftover scraps for figures or decorations to go with the houses and tall buildings.