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2023 Christmas Village Setup!

I have always loved Christmas Villages (and miniature things in general) and ever since I was a little kid I wished for a Christmas Village of my own! Over the past several years I've collected a bunch of Dept 56 Christmas Village pieces from estate sales and ebay! These are mostly from the "New England Village" sets, but there are lots of different themes. 

First I pull out all my boxes from the attic, set up my tables, and make the foundation for the houses to sit on. Here I have a 6-foot folding table and a square card table. The upper part is cardboard boxes with a later of leftover styrofoam from insulating my garage door to make an upper level. 

Next I unbox the houses and large pieces and play around with where I want them to go. I stacked up smaller pieces of foam to create variation in height among the houses. 

Then I take all of the houses off, run the cords to every spot where I planned to put a lit piece, and then lay the snow blanket on top. (A snow blanket is a length of fluffy fleece material made for this purpose. I bought these ones off of amazon.) Once the blanket is arranged nicely I cut holes in it and pull the bulbs through so that the rest of the cords are hidden. This is the trickiest part! (There are a few bulbs out in the above picture)

Next the houses and big pieces go back on! The bulbs fit inside the houses and light them up! This is my favorite part! 

Finally the trees and people figurines can go in! I cut a small hole in the snow blanket where I want to put each tree and then stick the base under the blanket to hide it so that the trees look like they are growing out of the snow. Then I add the skirt to the tables (attached with velcro) and sprinkle some loose glittery fake snow onto the snow blanket to add texture and depth. 

Tada! Magical Christmas Village! 

Other notes: 

-To turn it on and off I use a remote-control outlet device so that I don't have to crawl under the table and flip the switch on the power strip, but you can also use a timer or strategically place the power strip to be accessible. 

-The lamp posts and big lit tree are Lemax brand. I like these because they can be powered either by batteries or plugged into an adaptor.  

-The trees are a mix of different brands. I bought most of them in a lot at an estate sale. 
The frozen pond was a piece of card stock that I painted to look like ice and then covered in transparency paper. 

-"Nightlight" bulbs from the grocery store work as replacement bulbs for the houses in a pinch, but they won't glow the same nice yellow as the ones made for these houses. You can probably tell in the picture which ones were nightlight bulbs! 

-I only have 13 lit houses in this village, all of which were bought second hand. It really isn't as expensive of a display as it might seem! If you are interested in starting a collection, ebay during the summer months is a great place to start looking!