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How to Make a Simple Nativity Scene for Christmas

Effortless Paper Mache Nativity Scene

Effortless how to article Paper Mache and paper mache clay Nativity Scene completed
We will show you how to wade up newspaper cut recycled cardboard and transform it into a lovely nativity scene.
This paper mache project is easy and perfect for someone wanting to learn the versatile art of paper mache and paper clay.
This small Nativity Scene we think you will enjoy so much and anyone would love to receive this for Christmas.

Quick List
Recycled Newspaper
Masking Tape
Cardboard & knife
Paper Mache Paste
Paints and Paint Brushes
Paper Clay (Optional)
H20 and Rags

Steps to Make Your Little Nativity

1. Build Your Armature
Nativity scene armature
Begin by drawing your fan shape for Joseph's body onto a piece of cardboard and cut this out. You can make Joseph any size you like and scale your Mary accordingly.  You will need to wade up newspaper into a ball shape for Joseph's head. Tape this into position on his fan body you just cut from the cardboard.

Using masking tape to shape your Joseph and hold him into place.

To make Mary cut an oval shape for her base. Cut strips from a cereal box to create a frame to wrap with a plastic bag. Please refer to the video for your visual example, thanks.

Baby Jesus is newspaper wrapped into a oval shape and masking tape holding our shape.

At this point you can add anything you like such as animals on the outside of Joseph, perhaps.

This is your finished Nativity Scene armature and you are ready for the next step paper mache.

2.  Paper Mache
1st Session

Covering Nativity Scene armature with three layers of paper mache
Cover the Nativity armature with 3 to 4 layers of newspaper soaked in paper mache paste. Lay your paper flat onto your Nativity armature and work out all air bubbles. As you continue to apply layers of paper your Nativity will begin to take shape before your eyes.

Once you have covered the Nativity with paper mache they must completely dry before adding more wet paper mache.

Tip: If you are using the paper mache method only then you can at this point: Check for soft spots or weak areas and if you do not find any then you can skip 2nd session. If you need to add more layers and usually I find for a sturdy piece of paper mache you will need to add a total of estimated 8 layers.

2nd Session
Paper Mache: Cover with 3 to 4 more layers of paper mache all at one time. Let it completely dry before moving on to paint.
After each session of paper mache your Nativity must completely dry. The size of your Nativity will determine how long it will take to dry.

Covering nativity armature with handmade paper clay

Quick Link to Paper Mache Paste Recipe: http://goo.gl/BH5lgM
If you need once Nativity has dried you can lightly sand with sandpaper and wipe off before painting.

3. Paint and Varnishing the Nativity Scene
Paint a white coat of primer paint onto Nativity to give a white canvas for painting.
Once the Nativity has dried you can paint then paint it with layers of acrylic paints.
Paint your paper clay nativity scene with acrylic paints and seal

Let all you painting completely dry before sealing with varnish.

You must seal your paper mache pieces with varnish for protection.  We use 3 to 4 layers of Poly-acrylic Minwax at the studio to seal all our art sculptures.

Nativity Wrap Up

This is just one way to make a Nativity Scene; we would love to hear your thoughts and see your paper mache Art work.

Finished view of the Paper Mache Nativity Scene

Thank you for stopping by the studio please subscribe before you leave and Merry Christmas to you and yours.

If you don't know how much Jesus loves you then please enjoy the Gospel of Matthew 1:15-18.
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