I have always always always wanted to have a nativity set. I’ve looked around for so long, a few have caught my eye…some were too big…some too tacky, some too expensive…so every year I continue to look. Oh and of course finding a spot in the house for one is another problem. I will say I also have always wanted one on the front lawn, but maybe that will be fulfilled later in the season. Today I am checking off the box of having my very own Nativity set in our home. I could have never imagined such a beautiful one either. It was all inspired by my friend Ellen @featherglass on Instagram. If you don’t follow Ellen, it’s a must! She’s a creative genius with probably the prettiest house in all of IG land. Well, then I had another friend attempt her DIY Nativity scene also on IG @thecedarwoodcottage. Jolene made one using those clay paint sets. Here’s a link to one!
Well, I just so happen to be at Christmas Tree Shops that same day that Jolene shared hers, and there on the shelf was a paint set of a Nativity. I decided today would be the day that I would just make my own….
Okay, you all are probably a bit lost or confused now. Why would I pick up a nativity set that would be so crafty like. Not a beautiful wooden one or realistic looking one??? Well, it’s what you do with this clay set that sets it a part.
The creative genius Ellen, came up with an idea to paint it using chalk paint and crackle. Mine was a bit different because as usual I was impulsive and decided to use what I had on hand. Which wasn’t bad because I had some pretty good paints that allowed me to re-create the vintage looking nativity set that she had made. Stick with me….
- Texture Chalk Paint
- Fusion Mineral Paint with Fresco (another texture)
Either way will work, the crackle is how Ellen did her’s on @featherglass. Each way you want to start with your gray base. I like the texture chalk gray because it really created the piece to look and feel like cement. (We are going for an old-world feel to our miniature statues).
From there as Ellen did she applied crackle and finished with white chalk paint to create a crackled effect.
I used fusion mineral paint with fresco (which also has a texture to it) or you can use white chalk paint and dab over the gray to create a distressed look.
There is no right or wrong way to do this, you just want to play with your paint until you have a distressed patina feel to your statues. (See no color paint here).
Then from there you want to invest in a Cloche. I love them so much and here are a few of my favorites:
From here this is where you can use your own touch…each of us had done something different. I had an old vintage vessel that I added a slice of wood inside and then taped my nativity pieces on top. I surrounded mine with some pine and filled the bottom in with some moss. Each of us used some twinkle lights to fill the top to create a magical look to our nativity scene.
I just adore how it came out and I think it’s by far my favorite piece to our Christmas decor this year.