You guys, Thanksgiving is only 2 days away! How in the world did that happen?!?! I swear, once September hits….fall races by so quickly, I can barely remember what day of the week it is! :) But as I was pulling out some of our fancier dishes and napkins a few days ago for our Thanksgiving meal, I was scanning our place settings and looking to see if there was anything we were missing. And you know….I remembered that I’ve always wanted Place Card Holders, but never wanted to spend the money on them. So, I decided that this year, I would make some!
But I didn’t want ones that were specific to one holiday….so that’s why my husband and I created these super cheap HOUSE Place Card Holders, that are perfect for any time of year!
And awww, aren’t they just so cute?!?!
My husband Steve saw something similar at the store that he had a picture of on his phone….because he knew they would be a CINCH to make! So we changed it up a bit, added a little paint, and then my favorite part — the HEART! :)
And yes, each place card holder is just a small hunk of very inexpensive pine…with a little stain and paint to fancy it up a bit!
Each with a little slit along the top, to hold the name card for each person eating with us!
The front and back of each house has a little distressed paint added to it….while the sides and roof just have the plain stain. (They kinda look like itty bitty little farm houses, right?!)
Now we have a whole collection of little wooden houses, that hold all the names of our dinner guests. (Even if these are just the names of our little family for our Thanksgiving meal this year!)
I know place card holders are a “non-essential”….but sometimes it’s the small details that are just so fun to include, and make hosting a meal so much more fun! (And let’s be real….my kids have been making name place setting for years from scratch pieces of paper, so they are so excited to have an actual holder that they can use any ol’ time them want to….because these things are definitely “kid-friendly”!)
And wouldn’t these be a really fun thing to make at a craft night? Or give away as a gift set?? (Anyone want to come over?? We have plenty of scrap wood!)
Okay, let me show you how easy these are to make!!!
First, create a house shape on a piece of paper to use as a template, or make one with a scrap piece of wood. You can create any size you want….because anything would work. But the finished houses we made were 3 inches tall and 1 5/8 inches wide (and about 1 1/2 inches deep….which is the thickness of a 2×4.)
If you want house the same size, begin by cutting your 2×4 down to 6 inches long. Then cut both long sides off, to give your block nice sharp edges.
Next, trace your paper or wood template onto your wood 2 times, using the corners of your block as two sides of your house shape. (Just an FYI….the angle of the roof is 31.5 degrees on the miter saw.)
Cut along the markings of your wood…..
….until you get your house shape.
Now, repeat as many times as you need…..until you have the number of place card holders that you want.
Now it’s time to stain. I didn’t want a super dark stain….so what I did is dipped a brush into my stain, set it on a plate, and then dabbed a paper towel onto the brush to soak up a tiny bit of the stain….and then rubbed that into the wood. The roof soaks in way more stain the the other surfaces…..so be aware of that and use even less stain in those areas.
Once the stain is dry, cut out little heart shapes from your tape and stick right onto the fronts of the houses. (It helps to stick your tape to wax paper and then fold in half and cut out little hearts….just like you did with construction paper in grade school. Then just peel off the wax paper and it’s ready to go!)
Paint right over the tape and along the front of the house with your white acrylic paint. Do the same thing along the back of the house.
Once the paint is completely dry…..use sand paper to rough up the paint a bit on the front and back, to give it a more rustic look.
Then, peel off the tape. (If you peel the tape off before sanding….you’ll rub paint into the heart shape…and it won’t look as good.)
And that’s it….a little house place card holder, with a finished front and back.
Now, use a small hand saw with a thin blade, and cut a slit into the top of the house for your name cards. Then repeat with all your houses.
And that’s it….your House Place Card Holders are ready for use!