Greetings from The Christmas Village

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American Colonial kept simple without roof windows, OOHO railway figure and vintage Merit trees
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Templates to scan or photocopy, scale up and build once you have made the original buildings …
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Colonial and Alpine buildings …

Being the Christmas blogpost from the Man Of TIN. No Christmas Railway this year to entertain and entrain the troops, instead the first part of a new Christmas Village.

Build a Christmas Village by Leonard Hospidor, 2011, Sterling Innovations, New York, USA

The pre-punched cardstock buildings come with a sheet of see-through Vellum paper for the window glass, which can have details inked in with a suitable pen or black biro. This window element looks extra festive and good at night if you put a small LED battery candle inside.

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Portrait of a very clever man, the author or creator Leonard Hospidor, USA

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The box and book were created in 2011 by US papercrafter Leonard Hospidor and published by Sterling Innivation. They are still available online. I bought mine in a shop a Christmas or two ago for about fifteen pounds. The website BuildAChristmasVillage.com sadly appears to be no longer functioning.

The pressout buildings seem to be suitable for about 20 to 30mm scaled figures.

What makes this set extra useful is the reusable template section  of the book that can be freely scanned or photocopied and scaled up or down as basic buildings for gaming, such as the American Colonial house for Revolutionary War or Civil War Games. The snowy bits can be overpainted as needed.

We have yet to build the church or English Tudor Revival timber framed building, but the glue supplied was good PVA craft glue that stuck card quickly. There is also a doghouse (small barn for tiny figures?), stark winter oaks and green snowy fir trees. All useful. All a bit of fun for all the family.

I have resisted the masses of  other Christmas village houses and figures, the all-singing, musical LED  ones etc around in the shops at this time of  year, even though the gaming mind thinks “Hmm, useful civilian figures, useful country cottage in snow …”

Wishing all my Man of TIN blog readers and Pound Store Plastic Warriors blog readers a  very happy toy filled Christmas and a Happy and Healthy New Gaming Year 2018. 

2017 has been a good hobby and blogging year. Thanks for all your comments, likes and emails this year and for sharing your hobby on your blogs too. It’s been fun! 

Blosposted by Mark, Man of TIN, 22/23 December 2017

Look out for a suitably cheap plastic festive offering on our other blog soon!

https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com

 

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Simple Seaside Buildings Not To Be Sniffed At!

 

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Round the Back view in black and white …

Pirate duelling rules apply here https://poundstoreplasticwarriors.wordpress.com/2017/04/26/duelling-in-the-sandpit-lunge-cut-and-stop-thrust/

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A glimpse at the roof gives away their secret as the pirates lie await in ambush for Blackbeard. Figures:  Papo bandana pirate (left), Safari Ltd Blackbeard (centre) and Anne Bonny female pirate (right) 3.75 inch  / 85 to 90mm preprinted plastic pirate figures

 

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Ahaaargh! The secret be out … ”tis a Waitrose tissue box.
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FSC approved Sustainable games building? Reduce Reuse Recycle or Upcycle!

Sadly my nearest  branch of Waitrose does not stock these stylish 2015 award winning tissue box beach huts at £2 a box, although they are available by Waitrose order  if you spend over £40 online, but that’s an awful lot of tissues!

http://www.waitrose.com/shop/DisplayProductFlyout?productId=422895

Maybe not as stylish as Alan Tradgardmastre’s family made breakfast biscuit houses, but they are fun anyway:  http://tradgardland.blogspot.co.uk/2017/07/breakfast-biscuits-little-wars-house.html

I was keen to take one of these Waitrose tissue beach huts apart and use it as a card template for making a few simple cardboard houses.

However, as I did not own the originals (they were in somewhere I stayed on a recent break), I was very restrained and haven’t hacked these apart without permission.

Blogposted by Mark, Man of TIN, 5 September 2017.

 

John Mitchell Card Buildings

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40 years on from their first design, I’m making one of the late John Mitchell’s  card buildings for 15mm figures as a small and ongoing tribute to John in my tabletop games.

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John Mitchell 15mm building sheets no 1 and 2 (JM1 and JM2?)

As mentioned in my previous tribute to the late John Mitchell,

https://manoftinblog.wordpress.com/2016/08/19/simple-ecw-starter-rules-a-john-mitchell-tribute/

here are two of my surviving unmade John Mitchell buildings photographed so that fellow Peter Laing enthusiasts can build again and attack or defend their own John Mitchell tribute town.

What finer tribute can there be for a wargames designer’s products than for them to live on and give pleasure long after him?

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Scalpel –  check. Cutting board – check. Peter Laing Union rifleman to advise on scale – check. John Mitchell Building Sheet No. 2 Farmhouse – check. Ready to go!

My original John Mitchell card buildings from the 1980s have not survived.

Luckily two of my spare original sheets have survived. I scanned and printed these onto card to preserve the originals.

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Cutting out the farmhouse pieces.

40 years after they were designed in 1976 by John Mitchell, these buildings are back being made on my cutting board. They were first designed not long after Peter Laing launched his first 15mm figures in 1972.

I remember making this farmhouse before c. 1983 and had few difficulties.

The farmhouse chimney sits a little oddly, so needs an additional flap added along on its left side before you cut it out.

Additionally a larger fold-over flap at the top of the single house wall with door is needed to get a level roof; just align the new flap with the height of the other wall with a door.

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The finished basic Farmhouse model defended by my small advisor. I’ve marked up in red on the cut-out sheet overlaid on the original where flaps need to be altered or added in future.

John Mitchell made suggestions for adapting the basic card model as “base for experimentation e.g. Painting walls in poster colour, texturing walls and roofs in plastic filler and adding beams and window frames in balsa wood.

John mentioned his intention to work across “all periods of history” towards “Castles, and other large constructions” not just these slightly humbler 15mm dwellings.

Launching his buildings not long after Peter Laing launched his first 15mm figures in 1972, the only other building I came across mentioned (but sadly never bought) was the JM5 desert type dwelling mentioned in this Peter Laing advert in the early to mid 80s, a snip at 40p.

Not sure what the Barrack Room range was.

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Another Peter Laing  range I wish I had bought more of along with John Mitchell’s card JM5 desert buildings. Oh well,  there’s always the Airfix Desert outpost and Foreign legion fort.

So if JM1 was the Elizabethan house, JM2 the Farmhouse / Barn and JM5 the Desert building, does anyone know or can show what JM3, JM4 and JM6 onwards were?

I’d be interested to see more of them.

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Unpainted John Mitchell card farmhouse JM2 ready for action with garrison of Peter Laing Northern troops on my portable hex game board. (Photo / figures: Man of TIN.)

Enjoy building your John Mitchell tribute houses and may you have many happy hours with these as a pivotal battlefield feature to defend or attack in John Mitchell’s memory.

Posted by Mr MIN, Man of TIN, August 2016.