Amy’s Free Ideas

This nativity scene is quite large, thanks to the building, trees, and “night” sky. But it does come apart easily because most of the pieces are held together with slits rather than glue. It can be stored in a fairly small box, such as a large cereal box. You do want to keep the pieces flat, especially the larger pieces. Otherwise, if they get warped during storage, they will not stand up next year when you get them out to decorate for Christmas.

It does have a lot of small parts, so it takes a bit of time to cut out and put together. But you can’t beat the price! For the price of a pack of multicolored foam sheets, you have a whole nativity set!

If you can’t find foam you can make this with stiff paper or thin cardboard just as well.



Bird’s eye view of the barn with stands.

Note: When cutting foam, the pattern pieces need to be cut out ahead of time, unlike fabric or paper where you can cut through both at once. If you cut both together, the paper gets pulled into the foam as it is being cut and leaves a ragged edge.

Make the flat barn stand up by making stands from scraps of green foam. Cut 3 notches in the tops of 2 scraps. Cut one notch in the bottoms of each barn leg and the 4 heart shaped bushes. Slide the barn legs into the middle slits, and the bushes into the slits on both ends of the scraps.

Shoes become stands for the people--cut notches in the bodies and shoes and slide them together.

Fold the two sides of the trunks so they line up with each other and glue  the palm fronds to the front, and an extra leaf to the backs of the trees to hide the tops of the trunks. (back view shown.)

To make the trees stand, hook one palm leaf of the taller tree between the top of the trunk of the shorter tree, then splay the legs apart so it looks like 4 trees.

The palm fronds make the trees quite top heavy, so glue bamboo skewers to the insides of the trunks to stiffen them.

Cut the night sky as shown in the pattern. Put notches where the arrows indicate. To make it stand, slide the notches together and make the 2 legs stand at angles to each other, like 2 legs of a tripod. They will stand this way, but to make them more sturdy, fasten a brace and bushes on either side of each leg. Fasten an angel to the top with notches, too.

Cut out the parts of the angel and sheep according to the pattern. (see below)

Glue them together as shown in this photo.

Make stands to look like shoes. Notches hold them together. Cut out staffs, too.

Make stands for the sheep out of scraps of green foam.

Make the building rigid with 2 bamboo skewers. Paint them white then glue them to the back side. (If the the foam is thick enough to stand without flopping over, it does not need these skewers.)

Cut the two parts of the domed building according to the pattern. Glue the dome on top  of the rest of the building with a strip of foam or thin cardboard to cover the seam. Glue another strip over the seam on the back. Glue more strips to the tops of each dome for decoration. Cut 2 slits on the bottom that will hold braces to make the building stand.

Make a standing camel by cutting out 2 of the same shape. Glue them along the top and sides, but leave the legs and bottom of the body open.

Make a lying down camel with just one layer of foam. Cut 2 stands. Notch the body and the stands, and slide together.

Push a short section of a plastic drinking straw inside the body to keep the legs apart so it can stand up.

Make stands to look like shoes for the wise men, too. Notches in the bodies slide into the slots in the shoes. Cut out gifts and glue them to the fronts of the wise men.

Here is a the view looking down on the braces on one side of the building

Make the building stand up with braces in the front and back. Use scraps of green foam and bushes cut from green foam. Put 3 notches in the tops of the braces, and one on the bottoms of the bushes. When pushed together, the bottoms of the bushes should stand flat against the table.

Store the disassembled pieces in a small box. Put layers of thin cardboard between the pieces to keep them flat.

Sunday School > Crafts > 3 Foam Nativity Crafts > Foam Nativity Centerpiece

brown  figures

white  figures

green  figures