Doubles as a Year Around Halloween CD Storage Rack
Ok groovy gang, you’re going to love this! It is our dream as Halloweeners to increase storage no matter how we decorate or celebrate our holiday, and my storage got a boost on my latest trip to Michaels. I spotted an unfinished House CD Holder for just $5.99!
Gang, I got ya covered with this dual-purpose haunted house display case that turns into a Halloween Music/Soundtrack/Roomscape holder after Halloween. I plan on using my CD holder all year since I constantly listen to Midnight Syndicate. Oh, and this is another way I can display Halloween collectables or miniatures during October.
Can you see your own items in this display? I can feel it . . . shocked and excited, aren’t you? I know I was, and I happy to say that this project is an inexpensive, simple project that anyone can do. Here we go!
- House-shaped CD Holder (I got mine from Michaels)
- Black poster board for your shingles
- Acrylic Paint (I used black, gray and white)
- Several different sized paint brushes
- Black Ultra Fine Sharpie Marker
- Sandpaper (100 grit)
- Quick dry craft glue
- Dry, soft rag
- Furnishings for the inside
Sand the whole house inside and out. Take a dry, soft rag and wipe off all the surfaces, being careful not to get sawdust on your roofing supplies or paint.
The poster board will be your shingles, so matching the color (mine is black), paint a fourth of an inch stripe around the edges of the roof, around the chimney and the eaves of the roof. Paint it the same color of your shingles so that the unpainted part of the roof won’t show under your shingles later.
Paint the chimney your desired color now as well, because then it doesn’t matter if you accidently drop paint on the roof, because the shingles will cover everything. (I learned this the hard way, oops!) I painted my chimney white and made random rock shapes in dark gray paint. Take the fine point Sharpie and draw cobwebs and dangling spiders onto the painted chimney. The Sharpie makes it easier to draw small items.
Making Poster Board Shingles
The vertical width of my roof measures 6 5/8 inches. Cut 22 strips of poster board that measure 6 5/8″ x 1″. Mark one strip of poster board 6 5/8″ – the length of the roof – and cut the rest of the strips. Bag up the scraps in case you need them later and turn the strips over.
Mark the strips with small “v’s” and cut a small notch out, being careful to not cut them apart. You can make many different shapes of shingles, but this is the easiest, especially if you don’t want to spend a lot of time measuring each notch or trying to do half circles freehand. I used eleven strips of shingles on each side of the roof, but you can make yours larger and use fewer shingles if you want. I think the small shingles look better.
Now take your fast-drying craft glue and put a thin strip on the side of the poster board strip where you marked the notches, so you’ll have the unblemished side showing on the roof. Start gluing the stripes of shingles on the bottom of the roof and let the shingles hang over the roof just a tad.
Now go up toward the top of the roof, but be careful as you go. It’s important to keep the rows of shingles evenly spaced and in a straight line, or it’ll look goofy when you reach the top. I often have someone else come in and look at the roof and ask the person if it’s straight just to be sure the rows are even.
Now cut a thin strip to fold over the apex of the house so the edges of the shingle strips won’t show. Only make it wide enough to fold over a bit on each side and be careful with the glue! Just a dab will do so you won’t have it run onto the shingles and be visible. You need to hold the ridge row strip in place until it dries but that should only take a few seconds because there is very little glue.
House Painter Wanted
Grab a larger paint or sponge brush and start painting both floors inside the house. I suggest that you paint it a lighter color so your furnishings will stand out more. Give both floors two coats and let them dry completely between coats. Take your time when you paint the windows and check the outside often to make sure you don’t have any drips.
Now it’s time to paint the rest of the outside of the house with your base coat. First, carefully paint the window sills on the outside of the house. I decided to use black on the trim so it’d match the roof, and dark gray for the base coat because it’ll better show the details I plan on adding later.
Let all this dry before moving on. It’s way too easy to stick your hand in wet or tacky paint because you really can’t be sure all of it is completely dry.
Details Details and Oh More Oh More Ah . . . Details
I like to add details all over the house because I think they take this project from a typical homespun craft to a real project. Eeeewwwww! I hate happy cutesy little crafty stuff!
I painted rocks on the chimney because it adds to the haunted effect and is easier to paint then straight-edged bricks. I had my daughter (who’s a super artist!) do more spiders and cobwebs on the house. You can do anything you like. You can add shutters with one hanging crooked or missing; you can put mini crows on the chimney or paint a ghostly shadow show on the side of the house looking around the front.
I got a lot of inspiration from Ed Emberly’s Orange Book of Halloween. These are unusual, cartoonish-looking creatures that are fun to draw and will serve my purpose without a lot of pain-staking painting. Be sure to look closely at all the photos of the details I painted on my house for inspiration with your own project. I painted a haunted tree, cracks by the windows, bricks showing through the stucco, and added a few bats.
Furnishing the Inside
This really gets fun! Gather up all the little odds and ends and collectables you have to put in the house. I used one of the hutches I’d made earlier and then added all kinds of little stuff I had. I decided to make it two floors of a Halloween Flea Market because that way I didn’t have to worry about scale and I could use all the little things I had.
Don’t get me wrong! There are many fine miniature shops out there with one-inch-equals-one-foot scale furniture and even smaller Halloween items. You can make a stunning scale room box out of this CD storage box if you want. Or you could add pieces every year, too.
This is a fun, easy project that you can do in several days without putting a lot cash out, and it actually adds to your storage the rest of the year. You don’t find that too often!