Category: "Flowers and plants"

Milo Valley Farm - landscaping, part 1

by brae  

I made the initial landscaping base from builders foam.  Before going further, I went ahead and ran wiring for the barn since the landscaping will be put in place over it.

I used my floral lead wire that I had installed when I glued the floor board to pull one final wire and one scrap wire through the hole.  Once those were through, I taped the final wire to hold it in place and used the scrap wire to bring another final wire and the floral wire back through the hole.  I used the floral wire to bring one final wire back through.  Why not do them all at once?  For some reason, it never fits.  I end up with the same amount of wire through the hole at any given time, but it never wants to budge.  :D

I opted for three wires though I am figuring on needing only two in the barn.  I can always pull the extra out in the end or leave it curled in the sea chest in case inspiration strikes later.

To protect the wires, I taped aquarium airline tubing to the main board near the end and over the edge.  I don't usually do this step, but there are so few wires that will come out of the building, and I wanted to make sure they didn't pull or get damaged.  I usually have a lot more wires.

I did need to make a channel in the foam for the tubing and wires going into the foundation.  I dabbed black paint onto the tube and then pressed the foam over it.

I cut where the paint line was.  :]

I glued the front lower foam piece to the landscaping board using Weldbond glue.  I applied glue to the foam with a scrap of foam core board and then pressed it into place.

I painted the pieces with gesso. I had left the pieces closest to the building removable since I didn't want to risk getting gesso or paint on the foundation.

Once dry, I painted them with a mix of black and brown.  I won't bother touching up the base trim until I'm done with the landscaping prep work.  I glued the remaining pieces of foam in place.

I added some stucco patch to fill in the gaps between the pieces and to even out the ramp. It will be easy enough to touch up the paint once it dries without marring the foundation.

I added stone near the front edges where I hadn't been able to apply earlier.  This completes the stone foundation toward the front of the barn.

We, of course, need a rabbit hole.  :D

To be continued....

Milo Valley Farm - landscaping - flowers, part 2

by brae  

I've spent some time making more white flowers.  I now have 81.  It doesn't look like a lot, though, so I will need to keep going.  :]

Keli recommended some green origami paper for the calyxes since my painted paper wasn't working so well.  It's a great paper, slightly textured and just the right weight.  You get four pages each of 12 shades of green.

Two were good dark leaf colors, and the more olive one was closest to my painted paper so I went with that one.

My punch makes multiple sizes of stars, but I saved the larger ones for projects down the line.  I got 86 calyxes from one 6" x 6" sheet, which was a pretty good yield considering I used only the smallest stars.

Milo Valley Farm - landscaping - flowers, part 1

by brae  

I've got something up my sleeve which will require a lot of tiny white flowers.  *a lot*  I'm starting with tiny pre-cut impatiens from Small Talk (no website, purchased at the local shows).  They have some imperfections in punching, but they will work well overall.  I'll clean them up a bit as needed.

I also punched out tiny green stars using a Martha Stewart multi star punch.

I had to make the paper for these since I didn't have any thin green paper on hand.  I painted regular computer paper with acrylics on both sides.  Markers on paper work better since the paint can make it hard to punch the paper and white shows around the edges.  If any white shows, it will just blend in with the flowers in this case.  With any other color flower, I would have to buy markers.  Since this is just my prototype trial, I might do that still and add the calyxes later.

I shaped each flower with a stylus.

I poked a hole in each tiny flower with a sewing pin.  I found it easiest to put the flower on a paper towel and poke the pin through.

I cut wire stems 2 inches in length.  This will give me room to trim when I put them in place.  The wire is very thin, purchased at a local miniature show.

I topped the stem with a tiny drop of glue then dipped into fine landscaping foam.

The foam is from A Little More in Miniatures, purchased at the local miniature show.

I put two flowers on each stem, followed by one green star to form the calyx.  I'll worry about leaves later.  :]

This will be one of those side projects to do until I'm ready for these.  These are tiny, tiny, tiny, and I can stand to make only so many at a time.  :D

Milo Valley Farm - landscaping - leaves

by brae  

I've made leaves from scratch in the past, but this time I am using a different approach.  I bought two packets of pre-cut maple leaves in brown paper.  These are by Marcy Jaffe, but I bought them from a secondary seller on eBay.  I decided to make up one packet, which includes two sheets, to start.

The instructions tell you to stipple on paint to add depth, so I used Calico Red by Americana, making several passes with lightly added paint.

I added Camel to the red for the reverse side to make the backs of the leaves pale pink.

I colored each stem while the leaves were still on the frame using thinned brown paint.

I then cut the leaves from the frame.  I think this is the right amount for the small lawn around the barn, so I will keep the second packet in my stash.

I began shaping them with a stylus, adding veins as well.  I like to use magazines or catalogs since they are just soft enough to allow for good veining and they can transfer some ink onto the backs of the leaves.  That little pop of color helps define the leaves more.  And, then I can just recycle the magazine once I'm done.

I haven't officially decided that this will be an autumn landscape, but in mini-land you can have autumn leaves and blooming flowers all at the same time.  I just think it will be nice to have some color on the scene.

And, no, I don't have plans to build another maple tree at this moment.  :]

Potted plants

by brae  

I've got spring fever!!!  I miss greenery and soft breezes, so I've made some new potted plants in two sizes for my etsy shop.

I also miss the Brownstone!

Roland has one of these.  :D

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