Monday, November 11, 2013

How to Make a Cathedral for your Wooden Saint Dolls

I have been so excited to see and hear about the saint doll exchanges that many of you have been doing! It really is a lot of fun and for those of you who have recently done one, I hope you agree.

Ready for the next step? Making a home for your dolls...

I think the most appropriate home is a cathedral. Last year I started building our saint doll cathedral and it's still not complete as I have so many ideas for making it awesome. I keep telling the kids that it took decades to build the Cathedrals around the world, so if it takes us a few years, then we are way ahead of the game.

Here is what I did to make this saintly home!

Step 1: Gather your supplies

You can purchase the castle cathedral at Michael's, with a 40% coupon, so it's roughly $15.00, not $25.00. (We took the "front door" off of ours.)

You'll also need a can of spray paint. We did ours in gray, but you could also do a shade of tan or white. I didn't get a picture of the spray paint at Michael's because spray paint is locked in a cage. I thought it would be odd to ask someone to take a can out just so I could get a picture of it on my phone... and this is about the time my two week old had a poop explosion.

If you don't have a Michael's near you, you could purchase this Melissa and Doug castle and cathedraliz it. It's more expensive, but you wouldn't have to paint it!

Optional items you might chose to purchase include:

Crosses for the top of your castle turned cathedral.

Liberty bells for a bell tower. Oops, fuzzy.

And some wooden blocks for an altar and tabernacle. I forgot to get pictures of these. I blame it on the explosion.

You also might need some acrylic paints. Gold, white, black, and blue are the colors I've used so far. You should have these on hand from painting your saint dolls. Look how green you are. Oh, and wood glue, you'll need that to glue on the crosses.

Step 2: Spray paint your cathedral inside and out

Step 3: Accessorize

First I painted the wooden crosses gold and then glued them to the top of the cathedral with wood glue.

Then I added a bell to one of the cubbies for a bell tower. Since the cathedral is made out of wood you can just screw a screw eye right into the ceiling to hold your bell.

For the altar I painted a small wooden cube white and bought the chalice and paten at Shepherd's Closet. They are currently out of stock :(. Alternatively you could get these from Mountain Miniatures. I also purchased this small crucifix from Shepherd's Closet.

The two little white cubes are the chairs for the celebrants and the tabernacle was made by gluing three cubes together, and then painting the bottom cubes white and the top cube gold. Finally I painted a cross in the middle and little angels on each side of the gold cube/tabernacle.

Above the altar I painted a blue sky with gold stars. A friend of mine is even going to paint the inside of hers with stripes like the Duomo di Siena!

And finally, I've been working on our "stained glass" windows. I made them out of a black shinny-ish scrapbook card stock and various colored cellophane. You have to cut the pictures out twice with an exacto knife and sandwich the cellophane between them. My idea is to have the symbols tell the story of salvation history, so the apple is for Adam and Eve and the rainbow is for Noah. I also have a sun for creation, but the rest of them need to be made.

And now your saint dolls can have mass.

Here is my Pal early in the morning setting up for mass. St. Cecilia is in the choir loft over the bell tower, Sts. Michael the Archangel and Gabriel are watching from above the altar, the faithful are waiting in their pews, and the celebrants are to the right getting ready to process in. It is so cute to watch how they play with their dolls.

And don't they look so happy to be in their special home?

Be saints, it's worth it!


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