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snowman and mountainside

If the answer to the musical question “do you want to build a snowman” is a resounding yes (and really, it should be), then read on!

While building a snowman is easy and fun, building the perfect one takes a bit of finesse and a lot of snow (at least two inches). Sorry, for those of you living in the tropics. You’ll just have to be content with drawing one or making a miniature out of marshmallows – also fun!

Not all snow is created equal

When it comes to building the perfect snowman, the snow must be packable, or a bit on the wet side. This means, ideally the snow at your disposal comes from temps hovering around 30 degrees, not the powdery 0 degree stuff. Unless you’re Jack Frost or have some control over the weather, you’re just going to have to use what you’ve got.

If the snow is really powdery you can try to pull one over on Mother Nature by spraying it with a little water. For the purists of the group, this technically renders him more of an iceman than a snowman, but unless the judges are looking you can probably get away with a little dowsing.

It’s all in the snowball

Begin by molding a snowball in your gloved hand. Don’t try to do this in your bare hands. Not only will you freeze your fingers but your body temp might melt the snow – nobody wins. Keep packing on the snow until it’s the size of a bowling ball then gently place it on the ground.

making a snowman two little girls

Roll it

Your bowling ball will grow in girth as you roll it around your yard. Roll it out until you get bored, run out of snow, or it’s the size you want for the snowman base. Make two other balls after this. The next one slightly smaller for the upper body, and the head, smaller still.

Stack it

With the largest ball as the base, stack the smaller balls on top from largest to smallest. Where each ball joins the next you’ll want to pack extra snow to give them more stability. Be careful not to add too much snow to the spaces between the balls, lest you have a snowman who looks more like a snow mountain. We all know what happens to mountains – they get climbed, and that won’t end well for your snowman.

Personify it

This is where the true snowman creator’s artistry becomes clear. Sure you can go with the tried-and-true carrot nose, eyes made of coal, and a top hat that will never stay on his snowy head, or you can set yourself apart from all the other snowman creators by using red, green, and black food coloring and melting half of his face making the first-ever zombie snowman. Up to you.

Of course some winter yards just aren’t ready for zombie snowmen. In that case, a simple scarf, a couple of rock eyes, a protruding object for a nose, and a stringy substance will work for a mouth.

Arm your snowman

Don’t forget your snowman’s stick arms. Who wants an armless snowman? Feel free to place a broom or shovel in his hands just in case that story about snowmen coming to life turns out to be true. Might as well have him help you with the shoveling.

 

 

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Cate Morgan-Harlow

Cate Morgan-Harlow is an all arounder, writing about how-to, DIY, and design with gusto. She is a shadowy figure with a mysterious past.