Spray painting weather...is that you?

by brae  

Finally a break in the weather!

I have been airing out the house with fresh spring air and preparing pieces for spray painting outdoors...but that's a secret project.  I also prepped my landscaping base with iron-on trim and have applied some siding to the building...also under wraps.  So, nothing but a cute cat photo to distract you today.  :]

Building a solid foundation

by brae  

After the roller coaster of cat drama subsided, I was finally able to get back into miniature work.  I've bricked the foundation with egg carton bricks.  Always time consuming but with a big return on investment.  :]

I had two partial tubes of Burnt Sienna.  I did one coat by Liquitex (darker) and the top coat by Daler-Rowney (more orange).  I sealed the color with Delta Ceramcoat Satin Varnish and then grouted with DAP Spackling.  I added some dark brown washes to stain the grout.  Once that dried, I sprayed the bricks with Testors Frosted Glass finish.  The final result is a matte red brick with an off white grout.

Friedrich approves.  :D

I've made changes to the walls and front layout, too.  I have three major components to address, possibly four, one of which I'll be able to share along the way.  Stay tuned...

Postcards from the Moon   #HBSCreatinContest2016

Miniature artisan, lovely person, good friend

by brae  

I had the pleasure of hosting Elga for a long weekend during the miniature shows in April.  She came all the way from South Africa!  Oh, what a lovely time we had!  I had always enjoyed our email exchanges, but we got on like a couple of old friends during her stay.  We enjoy so much of the same things and have similar temperaments.  It was a great time, and I was sad to see her go.

Elga applied for Artisan status for The International Guild of Miniature Artisans and was accepted.  This was no surprise to me.  I had the honor of seeing her remarkable furnishings before she sent them in for review.  She does intricate woodworking and even makes her own brass hardware, not to mention the exquisite petitpoint.

As a surprise, Elga presented me with a lovely bookcase for Gustav, though I am sure this piece will move around in scenes.  :D  It's simply gorgeous!

It even has a hidden drawer!  :O

There are tiny details in each side (correction: turned on a lathe - not carved :] ).  It's made from a hard South African wood called mopane that Elga tells me is extremely difficult to work with due to its hardness.  She has to make several small cuts for every detail, whereas a softer wood takes less effort.

The grain is perfect for scale, set with a fine polish.  I will have to get to work making books!  :D

Thank you, Elga, not only for the fine bookcase but for the weekend of fun and your friendship!  :]

Ready for a mini excursion

by brae  

I had the pleasure of meeting Fran in person during the miniature shows in April.  We had been chatting online for a few years, and I had bought some of her lovely items in the past including some vintage suitcases and well-loved umbrellas.  We had pizza and chatted and shared some laughs.  :D

I've added a few more of her items to my collection.  Here's a lovely suitcase and travel bag.  These two umbrellas are brand spanking new and ready for the rain.  Love the dots and the red!

There's a blanket roll, all ready for camping or a picnic.  I'd love to have one of these bags in real life.  Of course, I'd be terrified to get a thing on it.  Maybe I would just put it on a shelf and look at it.  haaaaa!

She doesn't have anything listed right now, but be sure to favorite her etsy shop FranMadeMinis so you can be in the loop when she returns.  :]

Mom's Kitchen

by brae  

I made mom a gift for Mother's Day, though I was late in the offering.  :D  I got the idea from Blondie -- this was a project one of her local mini groups did where they made a little kitchen setting in a jar.

I went to Hobby Lobby and bought a well-made, locking jar.  It was pricey for a plain glass jar, but I had my 40% off coupon.  :D

I had scraps of wood flooring, so I cut a piece to fit the bottom.  I lined it with black foam core board for stability.  It is held in place with glue dots.

But, the jar had a bump in the bottom that made the flooring unstable.  After some brainstorming, I decided to add a coil of rope in the recess to level the base.  It goes well with the country kitchen theme and disguises the foam core circle.

The hutch base is made from a House of Miniatures Hutch Cabinet that was missing the drawer pieces.  I made a new false drawer front but left the doors off so I could display more minis.  I built the hutch top from strip wood along with some laser cut brackets to add some interest.  Mom likes blue, so I chose Folk Art French Blue.  I added a towel bar from ELF Miniatures and jewelry finding hardware.

The plates, canning jars, vase and cooking set are Hobby Lobby purchased miniatures.

I printed a new cover to make a Betty Crocker Cooky Book, some recipe cards and a wall calendar to add a date to the project.

I printed a wine label for a bottle blank and made chocolate chip cookies from a tutorial by Sugar Charm Shop, but I used a paper towel to press the cookies since mom's cookies have a soft texture.  I must admit, they do look like the real deal.  nom nom nom!  :D

I searched my minis stash for other items to add - cow pitcher from The Dolls House Emporium, tea pot, rolling pin from Honey and Bee, clock from The Dolls House Mall, and copper pot.  I also added one of my flour sacks and made Bonnie Lavish wildflowers for the vase.

Everything is glued in place.

Since the glass glares a bit, here is a photo of the full setup outside of the jar.

I love how it turned out.

And, so did mom!  :D

I needed this small project to get my juices flowing again.  :D

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