Instagram, like blogging and Pinterest, is a good place to explore and find new ideas and inspiration for gaming and crafting and keeping your hobby hands busy.
“Here’s one somebody else did earlier …”
That’s how I found these charming Christmas houses, designed as a crafty fundraiser and awareness raising for the work of the homeless charity Crisis
So I sent off my donation / order online and a week or two later (due to postal delays?) I received this attractive pack containing three different patterned houses on A4 card, with and instructions and crafting ideas sheet.
Not exactly a “family Christmas tradition” but we often pitch in at home to create a simple Christmas display, toy soldier band parade or even in past years a temporary Christmas railway along a mantlepiece.
A previous 2017 post showed another set of Christmas village houses, although sadly or ironically the original ones that I made up were accidentally flattened by boxes of Christmas decorations!
As a result of the current hiatus in my table top games, post the invasion of Ukraine, I have focussed more this year on DMZ or Demilitarised games such as my snowball fight games, Scouting Wide Games and others.
So Christmas village figures and snowy white felt game mats have already been part of my gaming year 2022.
I thought these Craft with Crisis houses might be a good simple stylised template for a crafty Christmas or toy village.
Here you can see three house designs using the same template, and more crafting instruction sheet of ideas, nestling on our sofa throw / quilt. This quilt looks like it might see use in the future as another stylised Land Of Counterpane games mat for old toy soldier games
The craft4crisis houses reminded me very much of the fun biscuit houses for Little Wars made with his family by Alan ‘Tradgardland’ Gruber.
Some examples of finished houses are featured on the handy Christmas decoration or craft ideas sheet.
The ideas or instructions sheet suggests that you could use one house, snowman or tree as a template to make more houses as a family or group craft activity. (Photocopying lots on to card might undermine the spirit of the fundraising.)
The instruction page suggests that “You can create additional trees and Snowmen by drawing around the cut out templates onto card. Then simply add any other decorations before cutting and adding a slit in each before sliding together. For more sturdy trees and Snowmen use thicker card.”
I think that is what I will do with one of the houses; once cut out, I will keep it as a template.
I think these craft kits are a good simple way to raise much neededChristmas funds for this charity, raise awareness of the homelessness and housing crisis and tap into the enthusiasm for Christmas crafts.
Smart also in that every time someone proudly shares these craft projects on social media with the hashtag or tag #Craft4Crisis they are promoting this worthwhile charity.
I think I may play around with the house design template traced onto white card and replace the colourful Christmas patterns with a pattern of roofing tiles and snow.
As some of you scale monkeys will already be wondering, what size are these houses?
Here is a helpful mixed line up of 28mm, 32mm Pound Store plastics and railway OO/HO and the Airfix 20mm figures. 20 to 25mm seems a good match.
I’m sure with a little effort, you could scale these simple house designs up to match 54mm traditional toy soldier figures.
The welcome letter says a little more about where the pack donation money goes, the role of art and craft therapy and how these houses were designed with the help of Crisis service users.
It’s an interesting alternative to buying the annual charity Christmas cards.
Season of Peace?
If the military figures or toy soldiers seem at odds to some with the general peaceful “Happy Christmas War is Over” sentiment, these #craft4crisis houses remind me, as does the ModelsforHeroes charity, of the challenges and struggles with mental health and homelessness that many ex-Service personnel have.
It also reminds me of the great value that hobbies and crafting have for our mental health and the good company in our hobby’s social networks.
As the Crisis website mentions, it’s a good deal, in that you get a fun craft kit for the family, whilst you also “help people have a safe place to stay and a hot meal this Christmas, as well as access to our year-round services including housing advice, training, education and health support.”
I will post pictures on the blog and social media of our Christmas houses once done (should we get these done this fast vanishing year!) with appropriate social media hashtags #Craft4Crisis
Blog post by Mark Man Of TIN, 4 December 2022.
B.P.S. Blog Post Script
I’m sure that my Salvation Army Life Saving Guard (Guides) lassies would approve, even through they are 42mm scale / range and a little big for these houses.
4 thoughts on “Crafting with Crisis at Christmas”
Delighted to support this and get some houses too. I am pleased you brought this to all our attentions.
I thought you might enjoy these! If you cut out a template, all your family can have a go decorating these.
I spotted this in an unrelated search and am not surprised you chose it. A fun, creative craft for a worthy cause! I’ll buy one, though if it is a physical kit I may not be able to use or display it before Xmas.
The version I have is a physical card kit; I have no idea if they post to the USA.