WOW, there are a lot of interesting projects out there.
My name is Dave, I am a product designer based out of Brisbane with way too many hobbies. I have only just recently started tinkering with software and hardware.
I have several projects I’d like to start but am currently working on a small train layout (N Scale) as a Christmas display. It is a relatively simple project, making it a good place for me to start. I am using an Arduino to allow control of a fancy light show integrated into the display. If you’re interested, see more here: https://github.com/DevineSea/NeTibEddie
Here’s what it does:
A blinking x-mas tree effect with selectable functions,
Some gas / candle light effects for lamps,
and a colour changing RGB light in a church, which runs either automagically or manually using 3 pots for user selectable colour fun.
Hardware has just been upgraded from a spaghetti mess on breadboards to a couple shields. However, ultimately I will make a custom PCB to fit better into the display base with an inbuilt Arduino.
It is in early stages, and probably won’t be ready for this Christmas, but hopefully for the next one.