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  • Mud Huts how-to

    Today, we are going to make a mud hut for the villagers:

    You will need several del Monte fruit cups, a hole saw and a drill (or an x-acto), paper towels, yellow glue, paint, disposable cups, paper plates, tweezers and water.

    Start with clean del Monte fruit cups. They come in packs of 6 so save them and wash them out.

    Got what you need? Ok, drill out a 1" diameter hole in each one. (villagers have to have a door in their mud huts) Optionally, you could do this with a circle template and an x-acto knife, but it wouldn't be near as much fun.

    Now if the noise and plastic shavings haven't gotten you kicked out to the garage, let's get messy. Take a disposable cup, about half an ounce of yellow glue to an ounce of water (15 ml of glue to 30 ml of water) for each 3 huts (your mileage may vary). Tear up a paper towel into little shapes about an inch to an inch-and-a-half square (25 mm to 40 mm). Use the factory edge along the bottom of the cup. One sheet of paper towel will do about 2 huts. Set you plastic mud hut on a paper plate. Dip a piece of paper towel in the glue solution. Touch it to the side of the cup to drain out the excess, apply it to the hut.

    Continue applying wetted paper towels to the hut. Overlap all your joints by half the width of the previous piece. You should have double coverage at least when you are done. Move up a row and repeat. This should put you about even with the top. Be sure to overlap the row below as well as the previous piece. There is a depression at the top of the hut. Several layers of paper towel will build this up to a domed shape. Continue applying paper towels until the entire hut is covered and there are no thin spots. Here is one almost done.

    And a closer look:

    If you have any areas that are standing out, smooth them down with your fingers.

    Take a paper plate and invert a disposable cup on it. Set the hut up on the cup to dry. This will let the excess glue drain out and not glue the hut to the paper plate. Repeat as many times as you have huts. Let dry overnight.

    Looks icky? Take them out and invert them. Spray the insides with flat black.

    Let that dry a bit and prime the outside. I used a brown automotive type primer (rustoleum) to save a few steps here. Spray a fairly heavy coat. This will seal the paper towel and glue.

    All that is left is the painting. I gave the brown primer a dark brown ink wash. About 50/50 brown ink and black ink very diluted with water. A large brush will help speed things along here.

    Finally a couple of layers of highlights are added. I used a heavy drybrush of Oiled Leather (Reaper pro paints) but any medium brown will do. (I think a bit of red helps in the brown, but I grew up in red clay country). Finally, a lighter yellow/brown for the final highlights is added. I used Hawkwood. GW could use Bubonic Brown and Vermin Brown. Feel free to change here. Your world’s mud may be a different color than mine.

    And here is an ettin ready to go home after a long day of pillaging adventurers.

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