I wanted to put up a large Nativity scene in the foyer of our children’s building at First Baptist Church Tuscaloosa.
I found a backdrop scene at Oriental Trading called Christmas Nativity Scene Design-a-Room Pack for $39.98.
Note: this backdrop scene is made of the common Oriental Trading cheap plastic.
After receiving the kit, I couldn’t find any helpful information on how to assemble this kit. So this is what I decided to do. I hope it helps you.
Nativity Kit = $39.98
Foam Boards = $43.92 (4 x $10.98)
1/2″ white Mounting Tape = $79.60 (20 x $3.98)
1″ clear Mounting Tape = $9.96 (2 x $4.98)
Additional items I purchased from Lowes
Four 4’x8′ 1/2″ foam boards (lowes.com/pd_15355-46086-389697_1z0vill__?productId=3365568&pl=1&Ntt=insulation+board#img)
20 packs of 1/2″ and 1″ Scotch Double-sided Mounting Tape (I love this stuff!) (lowes.com/pd_488024-98-410/DC/SF___?productId=50053419&pl=1&Ntt=mounting+tape)
I used some old lumber I had lying around from other projects to build a wooden frame to prop the panels on so I didn’t have to purchase any lumber for my frame.
First I opened and laid out the 30’x4′ backdrops to get an idea of how they would fit together.
NOTE: The lower section (city scape) was shorter and not the full 30′
I slid the four foam boards underneath to measure where the cuts would be.
I trimmed the excess from the backdrops leaving about 12″-18″ on each end, just in case.
Using the 1/2″ Mounting Tape, I put a 4′ strip down the edge of the board making sure to press the tape down well.
I used one 4′ strip for each side. 1 piece for the upper section and 1 piece from the lower section.
There may be a better way to do it, but I attached my tape on one side of the backdrop. Then I stretched and trimmed the other side.
After I trimmed the plastic, I placed a 4′ strip of 1/2″ tape on the opposite side and attached the backdrop.
One of my favorite things about this Mounting Tape is that I was able to de-attach and re-attach the backdrop several times without ripping the plastic. If you’ve used anything from Oriental Trading made from this plastic, you know how HUGE this is!
I cut and attached the lower section (city scape) on each board first then came back to do the upper section (sky). I overlapped the upper section over the lower section by 1/8″ or 1/4″.
I wanted the backdrop to be completely free-standing.
I had some old lumber lying around that I used as frames. I didn’t have to build it because I was making use of some old pieces that were already put together.
I let the frame lean just slightly and screwed in 4 additional pieces of lumber to prop up the frame.
I used command strips to attach the foam board to the wooden frame. These seemed to work fine. My backup plan was to use some of the Mounting Tape.
Also, I duct taped the seams of each board in effort to keep them together (see pic above).
Then finally, to keep the frame from tipping forward, I used some small rope to tie it to a bucket of sand.
Attaching the Characters:
The characters come on 2 sheets (per pack) in random orientation. The will need to be cut out.
Using scissors, I (and some ladies helping me) cut out each of the characters. We cut them relatively close to the edge, but I was not very concerned to get them unnoticeably close.
I cut thin strips of the 1″ clear Mounting Tape, as many as needed, to attach the characters to the backdrop.
This is what I ended up with. While not perfect, but I am happy with the final product.
In the last few years, many resources have been produced to help guide families in celebrating the season of Advent and Christmas together. You can find a few of them of the under the “Articles” link at ttownparents.org.
At FBC Tuscaloosa, we encourage families to set aside time to worship together throughout the week, but we realize that having family worship times can, sometimes, seem intimidating and overwhelming. We want to encourage you to use this Advent season as a time to begin, restart, or just continue to worship together as a family. To that end, we are providing a simple resource to help you.
During Sunday worship, beginning Sunday evening November 30, we will celebrate Advent corporately as a church. Coming alongside our corporate worship, we are providing a Family Advent Devotional to help guide you in leading your family through the season of Advent.
“How do I get a copy?” Glad you asked. There are 2 ways:
- Click here for the digital version (or the Family Advent Devotional link in the top menu).
- Printed resources are available in the foyer of the Children’s Center and the Hub of the main building. Look for this:
We pray you will find value in these resources! May God bless your time together as a family!
Minister to Preschool & Children