There’s something magical about venturing out into the night to see houses decorated with dazzling Christmas lights. You can create your own little piece of magic by creating a colourful Christmas house that you can light up and enjoy.


– Manilla folder to make the house template

– Paint

– Transparent beads

– A craft glue that dries clear

– Grease proof baking paper

– Torch  (we used a 200 lumen head torch for each house).


– Manilla folders were used to make our Christmas houses.

Once you have a house shape you are happy with (with doors and windows cut out), it’s time to paint.

Taking inspiration from MaryAnn Kohl’s book, Art with Anything (pp. 108-109 Waxed Paper projects) we set  about creating a colourful piece to secure to the doors and windows in the houses – something colourful and perfect to have light shining through it.

Tear some pieces of grease proof baking paper. Use glue to “draw” the shape and size of the door and windows onto the grease proof baking paper. Then fill this shape in with glue. Make sure there is excess paper around all of the glue. Have children place transparent beads into the glue (which will eventually, around two to three days, dry clear).

The finished pieces (still wet) that are secured when dry and the glue is transparent (with tape) inside the house to cover the doorways and windows – hence the need for the excess grease proof baking paper.

Then create a dark space, or wait until night time, to admire your creation in all its glory. These houses are a great addition to bed time Christmas stories.