I always keep my eyes out for old games when I go to garage sales, flea markets or second hand shops. You can usually pick them for a steal and it's all usable! If you're lucky you can find an old Monopoly game with wood pieces but the plastic ones work just as well.
Rotary Tool w/Tiny Drill Bit or Diamond Bit
Mini Eye Screw or Head Pin
Paper Ephemera ~ Map, Dictionary Page, Book Pages, etc.
Acrylic Paint, Rub-On Paint or Paint Pen
1. The first thing you need to do is drill a hole in the top of the house. The drill bit you're using should be pretty small... I like to use a drill bit that is the same size or smaller than the size of the chimney in the Monopoly House.
Also, depending on the type of finding and what your house is made from will determine how you go about the drilling. If you're working with Head Pin or Eye Pins you'll need to drill completely through the house no matter if it's wood or plastic.
If it's a wood house and you're using an Eye Screw you only need to drill down about 1/2 - 3/4 the length of the threads on the screw.
If you're house is plastic and you're using an Eye Screw, you'll need to use a smaller drill bit or a diamond bit (shown below). I like to use the diamond bit because they come in MUCH smaller sizes and you can control it better because the diamond bits are much shorter than drill bits.
2. If you're using plastic houses with the Head/Eye Pins you'll need to scrape away the melted plastic and ream the hole with an exacto knife.
3. Attach the finding. Here are a few houses I made using the Eye Screw. Head or Eye Pins are attached just as you would with any bead.
Now you could use them like they are because they do make pretty cool looking charms or you could continue to step #4.
4. (optional) For a more vintage looking house I like to cover the houses with some sort of paper ephemera which might include: maps, sheet music, dictionary or book pages, newsprint, or even scrapbook paper.
After I cover the houses I like to give the house a bit of definition (no pun intended ;) lol!!!) by highlighting the edges with paint of some sort. I used Bronze Acrylic Paint by Golden for these houses. It's also great for covering the areas of the house that didn't get covered by the paper.
And here are the finished Altered Monopoly House / Hotel Charms
So what do you think?
Pretty cool looking for a simple game piece huh?