Here are a
few tips to get you started thinking about your display --
think the best base for our Department 56
display is white styrofoam. It can be purchased in long sheets and is
used to completely cover the table. We like this styrofoam because it
is white (for snow), allows for hiding cords, and allows things to be
pressed into it for extra support.
sheets (or boards) can sometimes be found in an home improvement store
since some are used for insulation. Craft stores may also carry it.
Some styrofoam boards are 4 feet long, 13 inches wide and an inch thick
begin, make sure the whole table is covered with at least one layer of
foam and then start building from there. You will want to elevate some
parts of your display higher than others for an added effect.
When cutting smaller
sections of foam for elevating your houses, make sure you cut them big
enough for one or maybe two houses.
flat display, looks just like that – flat. A flat display with
valleys or peaks can be pretty boring. So one way to give it some
‘life’ is to elevate a variety of pieces. This is simply done by
placing extra layers of foam around your display to elevate your houses
and accessories. However, before you do this, you first need to get a
picture in your mind of how you want the arrangement of houses to look.
best if you elevate more towards the back of your display and make the
front more level. Don’t just stick a big elevation onto a flat surface.
It will stick out like a sore thumb.
Also, it’s better to elevate gradually, working up
to your higher peaks.
making your initial layout, look it over and move the pieces around to
your liking. It is better to do this now, than later.
Making and Placing Bodies of Water
Bodies of water are always nice to have no matter
which collection you are displaying.
There are many ways to make water. We use wax paper
and Reynolds Wrap
for both rivers and waterfalls. To do so, tear off a long piece of wax
paper and then crumple it up to produce lots of little creases. Then
unfold it and wrap the wax paper around the Reynolds
Wrap. This can be used as a stream
bed or water falls.
ideas to use with your ‘water’ -- Use bridges and small rocks to keep
the river in place. Line the edges of the stream with small rocks. This
makes it look like a wall.
When your display is
complete, use your ‘snow’ to cover little imperfections.
Your accessories can make or break a display. So
here are a few ideas –
just line up your people and wagons and animals in front of the houses.
Create action in your display. Think where they could be going or what
they could be doing. The pieces really help us in doing this since
they’re designed to be doing something.
because they come in the box together doesn’t necessarily mean that
they have to stay together in your display. Some will naturally go
together but you might want to try mixing them up.
Place your vehicles first
or at least have an idea where they might go since they will need more
creative in your placement. Just because we don’t usually see a sleigh
coming down our town square doesn’t mean that you can’t have one.
If you enjoyed these tips, please see our Dept 56
Display Tips e-book for over 100 more ideas or tips.