Making a Paper Holiday Village with Creativebug

Published Saturday, November 9, 2019

Looking for a new hobby? Embrace your artistic side and check out Creativebug! Creativebug allows Edwardsville Library cardholders unlimited access to thousands of online art and craft classes, all of which are taught by recognized design experts and artists. Watch classes anytime, anywhere. Since their classes never expire, you can start and stop projects at your own pace. No pressure, just endless possibilities!

You can find Creativebug on the “Resources” tab on the library’s website at www.edwardsvillelibrary.org. Please ask library staff if you’d like any more tips for using this wonderful database. We’re happy to assist you.

The Paper Holiday Village was a project that jumped out at me because it looked so festive and so visually appealing. It's also very easy and allows for some artistic expression. The entire video for the course takes just over 19 minutes to watch. Search for 'Paper Holiday Village,' and then click View Class. This video was originally published on 12/13/18.

For Starters

The list of supplies we need for this project is short and simple: craft paper and gel pens. You could use markers and other pens as well. In the video, they use Gelly Roll pens made by Sakura. These are widely available in retail stores with the office supplies or crafting supplies. The video calls for rectangular craft paper. I used square paper, folded it as instructed in the video, and my houses came out okay.

We want each paper house to end up looking like a gingerbread house, so we want to use pens and markers that will end up looking like icing and candy. I used a white gel pen liberally, and it came out looking quite a bit like white icing.

Lessons Learned

While this is a fairly simple project, I rewatched the folding instructions a number of times. The card stock craft paper I used can be tricky to fold precisely. It is important for the edges of the paper to line up as closely as possible after each fold. If the big folds are off, the paper house will have a flimsy foundation.

Although the video doesn't call for it, I found rubber cement and/or Tacky Glue to be very helpful in keeping my folds in place. This kept my paper houses from expanding, splitting in half, and generally getting all puffy. Add some Tacky Glue between the folds of your finished houses, and you'll end up with a Paper Holiday Village that you can be proud of.

Express Yourself

Once you've folded up your paper house, you can start using your gel pens and markers to make the paper house look like a gingerbread house. Gingerbread houses always seem to have white icing all over the roof, and it looks very snowy and delicious. To recreate that look, I used a white gel pen, and made big round swirls along the roof lines. I used my red pen to add some stripes to make some candy canes and peppermints to my white spaces. I made some gumdrops and green icing trees with my green pen.

Draw whatever you like. Make it look like candy, or make it look like veggies. It's your little paper holiday village--make it what you want. Just grab some Gelly Rolls and start doodling. A Google image search for 'gingerbread houses' can give you lots of ideas and inspiration.

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About the Author

Jacob has worked at Edwardsville Public Library since 2001. He moderates the library's monthly book discussion group. Jacob enjoys literary fiction, general non-fiction, and dabbles in sci-fi.