Seed name: xydexx-squeakypony (466125152) w/large biomes option
The first phase of building a Minecraft village is assessing what you have to work with. Fortunately, there's a village a mere cat's throw away from spawn at 16, -144. It's a desert village, so a bit hard to see on the Minutor screenshot below, but it has 5 small houses, 2 large houses, a church, a well, 6 farms, and a lamp post. There are an adequate number of villagers wandering about. The roads in town (such as they are) are a mess. I'm probably going to improve the infrastructure and stabilize the town before proceeding. I've claimed the large house at the north end of the village as my base of operations for the moment.
Minecraft Village Assessment. Look at what you have to work with first.
Next, determine where you want your new village to be. I'll be building my new village in the swampland just north of the desert at 25, -400.
Minecraft Proposed Village Site. Just north of the desert village.
As a rule of thumb, I build the center of my villages at least 100 blocks away from the center of an existing village, and with the following guideline: No buildings more than 20 blocks in all directions from the center of the village. This is because villagers will wander up to 32 blocks from the center of the village (or perhaps from the last door they entered?1) and I don't want to risk my village depopulating. That gives me plenty of buffer space to work with.
More updates once I get my desert village improved. It's generally good practice to improve the infrastructure of your village (i.e., remove hazards like cactus so villagers don't walk into them, fence off any ravines, ensure the buildings are well-lit outside and inside, &c.).
Actually, before I do any of that, I'm going to need to build a bed. Which means:
* Find iron ore
* Build a furnace to smelt the iron ore
* Make shears
* Shear sheep for wool (fortunately there's a flock nearby)
* Build a bed
Next: Creating a Minecraft Village, Phase 2
1 On the server, I've noticed unusual villager behavior in that the village center seemed to "shift" over time, with villagers swarming toward one side of the village and leaving the other side completely deserted.