So you still have not decided where to display your new collectible Christmas village this next holiday season. Or maybe you are just tired of setting up your current display in the same expected location year after year and are looking for that ultimate new location to showcase your Department 56, Lemax, or other village collectibles. Grab a notepad and pen, because you may find your creative talents energized and anxious to be put to use when you hear about these 5 great locations for your village display.
Before I suggest the following possible locations for your Christmas village, it is important to remember that the viewability of your village is affected greatly by the space you have available. Never being a fan of displaying every single piece in my collection just for the sake of unpacking them out of mothballs, I always recommend striving for visual impact in a display over showing the quantity of a collection. For that reason alone, you can consider the following locations to place smaller vignettes, or groupings of your village collectibles to create more visually impacting village settings.
Curio cabinets: Not everyone has a curio cabinet, but for those who do, consider temporarily replacing some of your regular curios with a small village vignette or two. The key for success here is to keep the vignettes small because of the glass shelving you typically find in a curio cabinet. Rather than find out the hard way that your village display was too heavy for the glass shelves, why not simply group a small vignette or two where each can tell its own miniature story. You will love the glimmering effect created by the village house lights shining and reflecting off of the mirrored background and glass enclosure of the cabinet. It is very easy to camouflage the light cords with a few miniature pine trees strategically placed.
Wall units: Wall units are a strong and perfect location for displaying smaller village vignettes. Because the shelving is typically wood or a composite material, you will not have to worry at all about the weight of your village like you would with a curio cabinet. For that reason, you can experiment with terracing in your vignette. Elevate a village piece or two towards the background to create textured focal points for viewers whether their eyes are drawn to the back or the front of your display. Too often I see displays where a person has to strain their neck to see a beautifully detailed village building shrouded from view by another similarly sized piece or one bigger right in front of it.
Garage side window: Yes, you heard me right. Have you ever thought of showing off your village, or maybe a few of your village pieces in a smaller vignette inside of a side garage window? Perhaps you have been thinking for years of a way to incorporate your display in to your exterior decorating without the risk of damage from the elements. Well, a framed display inside a garage window that is viewable towards the front of your home is a wonderful way to add a storybook appeal to your holiday decorations. Be sure to see my article entitled ‘Creating a Magical Window Display for your Christmas Village’ for details on how to go about constructing this type of display.
Foyer sideboard table: Sideboard tables, sofa tables, and consoles are ideal locations for smaller village groupings. They are very easy to arrange village displays on top of, and are one of the better locations for isolating your display for a more focused viewing point. These tables offer the advantage of displaying at a level where even smaller children can see every aspect of your village setting. Of course that can also be its greatest disadvantage. If you believe tiny roaming hands may mean the destruction of your miniature town, choose another location.
Under glass of a wood-framed coffee table: This is a truly unique concept for displaying villages. Imagine family and friends sitting around the family room talking about your ‘village under glass.’ This idea takes a bit more time and care to assemble your display, but the results are amazing. If you have this type of table, simply remove the glass insert(s) temporarily while you construct your village. Place a large enough box underneath the table to elevate the viewing surface that will be visible when you replace the glass back on top, but not so large that the tops of the village buildings or trees are too high and protrude through the glass level.