This is my second attempt at a creepy gingerbread house. The first was during my first year joining Creepmas! That one was a haunted house kit that I tweaked a little with a skull wreath and some icicles. This year I wanted to make one that almost looked normal, at least from a distance, standing on one leg, with squinty eyes. The kind of house someone might make if they had seen a real gingerbread house, but then had gotten it all wrong.
I realize not everyone wants to muddle through my ramblings on a rather mediocre gingerbread house, so I will interrupt this post to show you this awesome creation by the Keeling family. If you remember last year I posted about their Overlook Hotel. Go to imgur.com to check out all the pictures, where all the movie magic of Psycho has been recreated with edibles. Yes, even the famous shower scene.
I heard somewhere that it's easier if you do the decorating first and then assemble the pieces together. I figure it couldn't end up any worse, so why not? The haunted house came with two packages of icing powder, one black and one gray. I still had the gray one left, so I mixed about a half cup of it with a bit of black coloring and enough water to make it fairly thin and painted all the pieces. While that was drying I assembled the houses from a mini village kit, because kids and normal stuff...
Dried it was a lot lighter of course, but it also had a mottled look. I don't know if that's because I added food coloring or didn't mix it as well as I thought I did. I wish I knew because I think the light and dark gray splotchiness looked very wall-like.
I meant to roll out black jelly beans and use them as windows. They where a bit hard so I warmed them up first. The second batch I gradually heated in the microwave a little bit at a time until they were just warm enough to roll out between wax paper. Oh the first batch, you're wondering? If you've ever said to yourself, "Well I might like to play with a bit of napalm, if only it was licorice scented." No. No, you wouldn't.
Moving on...I did get jelly beans rolled out and they did look quite interesting. Some of the shell melted into the center goo, some it cracked in an almost mosaic pattern. But I could tell they weren't ever going to be windows, no matter how hard they tried, so I decided to go with curtains.
I rolled out gumdrops to go behind the curtains for a little contrast. Last time I rolled out gumdrops and cut them into windows and then completely botched outlining them. But this time they were going to be perfect because everything was still laid out flat. All I'm going to say is that gingerbread icing is just mean and nasty. It doesn't stick when you want it to. You're going along thinking you're laying down a nice line of piping and then the whole thing just pulls off. And then you're stuck trying to push it back into place without smushing it. I swear it enjoys being difficult.
Since I'm not good at the whole icing thing I mostly used it to glue things on. I used the Wilton skeleton bones candy mold, mini skulls candy mold and a button mold to make stuff. I only partially filled the skull molds so they weren't too thick. I didn't utilize the foot/leg bone component of the skeleton mold, but now that I think about it, two of those together would frame out a window nicely.
My other plan was to have candy eyes peeking out the windows, because I remembered LadyM doing that and it looked awesome. She also knows how to accessorize a house with candy bones. Unfortunately, I forgot I used up my candy eyes on the cake pop monsters. So I used candy pearls and dabbed on a black iris with gel food coloring on a toothpick.
And here you can see my sorry swirls. I was trying to channel my inner Tim Burton, but the stupid icing wasn't seeing things my way. Again I did the roof décor prior to assembly. I think that did help, but then I dinked it up fumbling the roof while putting it together. The gingerbread gods hate me. I do like the skeleton hands capping off the ends of the roof.
...and this is my kiwi tree. I bought dried kiwi around Halloween, because it was green and funky looking and kiwi is delicious. Dried kiwi is not delicious, it's not good at all. But you can make little snips around edges of the slices and then layer them together with a spot of icing and boom, you got a pretty cool looking tree. The "rocks" are also from Halloween. A flavor of M&M's called Cookies & Screeem. They are too disgusting to eat, but great for landscaping.
Last up is this trio of snowmen. The one in the back is my daughters creation, beside the gaping wound in his belly and guts spilling out, his head has turned inside out. Who says kids don't use their imaginations anymore? The one in front lost his head. Actually I tried to use red icing to join his head to his body. Stupid icing wouldn't stick them together, but it left a red stain, so I just went with it. The guy in the back, without any blood is held together with a toothpick. The heads are regular marshmallows and the bodies are jumbo sized. The details were made with a toothpick dipped in black gel food coloring. Mind where you put your fingers, I transferred black coloring everywhere.