Friday, September 27, 2013

silhouette nativity blocks {a tutorial}

As much as I love the Chunky Nativity Blocks for Kids that I showed last week, I love these just as much.  These are the slimmer, more grown up version of a similar idea.  This set has more pieces, and because they are not specifically designed for little hands, I don't feel the need to go to the extra steps of a Mod Podge covering and a sealant.  (Although you definitely could.)

Don't you just love the silhouettes?

These are just as simple and inexpensive as the other block tutorials I've shown.  This project cost me about $7. 
2023 UPDATE:  Heritage Makers and Snap2Finish became YPhoto under Youngevity (which purchased Heritage Makers in 2013).  YPhoto uses only templates, so the creativity showcased here is no longer available there, and they also no longer have capability to print previously-created projects like these from the old system. 

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Here's what you need:
  • Heritage Makers template 112226. This is actually my own template--I created it!  Then I just submitted it to Heritage Makers and let them add it to the template gallery.  Just click the "template gallery" link at the upper right, then type 112226 into the search field.  
  • about 2 1/2 feet of a 1x4 piece of wood (This size is also found at home improvement stores.  I had no idea this even existed.  But I REALLY LOVE the slimmer look for this particular nativity set.  I just think it's more sophisticated than the 2x4.  Again, even though the wood is called 1x4, it actually measures smaller--about .75"x3.5".)  You'll need to cut the wood into one 5.5" piece, two 4.5" pieces, and four 3.5" pieces.
  • a saw (power saw recommended), or a nice person at said home improvement store who will cut the board into pieces for you--just be sure you take the measurements with you.
  • black paint (Craft paint or spray paint; I use craft paint.  I chose black because the silhouettes are black.  I think it looks really sharp.  But you can choose whatever color paint you prefer.)
  • adhesive  (spray adhesive, Xyron, double-sided tape, Mod Podge, or UHU stick)

STEP 1:  create the beautiful part
You can always create your own designs from scratch, but feel free to use my design (template 112226).  Place the template into your account by doing a search for it in the Template Gallery.  Once you find it, click on it.  Then click "personalize."  
While you wait the 7-10 days for it to come in the mail...

STEP 2:  cut your wooden blocks

I've put directions right on the Heritage Makers scrapbook page, so when it's printed, just follow the directions.  I'd recommend that you cut the blocks with a power saw, to save time and to get a cleaner cut.  

You'll notice that the wood is cut slightly larger than the Heritage Makers pieces--it's easiest to have a little bit of a wood border around your HM pages.  It protects it a bit, and it's easier to place the pieces on the blocks without worrying about how the edges meet. 

I really love this slimmer 1x4 wood!  

STEP 3:  prepare the wooden blocks
Sand rough edges.  Paint (I'd recommend painting all sides, but I suppose you could leave the back and the bottom unpainted if you'd prefer.)  

Let dry completely.

STEP 4:  cut out the cuteness
Once you get your finished scrap pages in the mail from Heritage Makers, just cut out the pieces. 

STEP 5:  adhere the cuteness to the blocks
Use spray adhesive, Xyron, double-sided tape, Mod Podge, or UHU stick on the back of each of the pieces of scrap page.  I used double-sided tape for my decorative tiles, and Mod Podge for my Chunky Nativity Blocks for Kids.  This time I am trying the Xyron...which I have never used before!

It's so easy and fast!!  You just put your pieces in the machine and turn the handle.

Keep turning the handle, and when they come out the other side,

they are essentially a sticker!  Just peel it off and adhere it to the corresponding size blocks.

I loved the Xyron for its ease and speed.  The only thing I didn't like was that the edges of the piece are sticky, so I had to rub off the excess.  I liked it so much, though, I'd definitely use it again.  Feel free to use whatever method you prefer to adhere the pieces to the blocks.  You can spray with a sealant if you want, but I didn't.

Next Step:  Wait for the compliments!

That's it!  You've just made a simple, classy, crafty ($7) nativity!!  Show off in your home or give as gifts.

Save and share by Pinning this image to Pinterest!

UPDATE 2022:  Another option for creating your own digital scrapbook pages and making them into nativity blocks just like this is to use Artisan digital scrapbooking software by Forever.  You can learn about Artisan here:

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