Saturday, November 25, 2017

Putzing around by Betsy Skagen

 There are so many delightful ceramic Christmas villages that people display this time of year. While I have occasionally been tempted to begin such a collection, I have remained true to the Putz houses that stem from an earlier era.

These Japanese-made cardboard houses adorned with sparkly materials, tiny bottle brush shrubbery and cellophane windows were mostly made between 1930 and 1960.

At the heart of my Putz village are the worn and slightly tattered houses that I played with as a child. Since I was born after that timeframe--I am old enough, I don't need to add on extra years--they were tattered and torn even then.

I decided to make my own little home fashioned after these Putz houses. Here's how I did it:

 Tutorial to make Putz-Style Christmas House

After you assemble the four walls of your house using a strong adhesive such as Beacon Fabri-Tac, go ahead and paint the house, roof, chimney, dormers, windows and doors.
Once the paint is dry, mix craft glue with a bit of water and paint the exterior of the house. Then sprinkle fine white glitter over all exterior surfaces.
Cut tissue paper to fit the doors and windows. Adhere the tissue to the interior walls and brush matte medium over the tissue. 

Assemble your windows, with the base layer being a darker color and the top layer being lighter. This way, the dark color will show through the top layer of the window's cut-outs. Glue the windows and doors onto the house.
Then assemble the dormers and glue the dormers, chimney and roof in place
Next apply faux snow to the roof and around the base of the house. While the snow is still wet, sprinkle it with Diamond Dust.
Glue vintage mercury beads to tiny bottle brush trees and attach to the house. Add a little faux white fur to the chimney to create wisps of smoke.
 Insert a tea light through the trap door in the bottom to light your home.
Hopefully future generations can enjoy your Putz-style  home.

Great Stuff

House Ornament Kit
House Ornament Chimney and Dormers
House Ornament Window Trims
Beacon Fabri-Tac
Acrylic paint
Fine white glitter
Diamond Dust
Tissue paper
Faux snow paste
Faux white fur
Bottle brush trees
Mercury glass beads


  1. This is so cute!! Love the colors that you used

    1. Thank you Teresa! I seem to love Christmas in pink.

  2. Oh my, Betsy, this is so adorable. I love how you decorated it. It is perfect!!!