Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Newbie sub-club

Our club Miniature Enthusiasts of Edmonton meets on the first Tuesday of the month for a workshop and the third Tuesday of the month for a general meeting. In addition to that, there is a sub-club working in 1:48 scale that meets at Tina's on the fourth Tuesday of the month.

When I started in this hobby almost 35 years ago, I didn’t know anyone who did miniatures, didn’t know about Nutshell News, and the only time I got to a miniature store was on an occasional trip to California. I had some wonderful books that guided me but that was it. When I discovered Small Stuff miniature digest on the internet, I thought the world was my oyster. There were other people like me out there … and they could and did teach me so much! Then I was lucky enough to find MEE and actually interact personally with fellow miniaturists! 

But when you are new to miniatures and are fortunate enough to find a club, you may feel sort of behind the eight ball coming into a club where so many of the members have been doing this for decades.  Pretty daunting...And believe me, I know how it feels. 

I’m no expert – more of a jack of all trades and master of none. But I’ve gained a certain amount of experience over the years and I’m pretty good at finding answers – and have ‘met’ a lot of people over the years who will help me find answers.

With that in mind, I offered to host any new members who were interested in a sub-club meeting once a month in my home to discuss/try techniques, trash to treasure, anything they might want to try.

Since it wasn't a good time for me on the second Tuesday of November, I called an initial meeting for tonight  mostly to discuss some of the things I thought we might try to do in the future and maybe make a couple Christmas ornaments.

The timing may have confused people as there wasn't a very good turnout but we had fun and found a lot of answers to questions so I felt it was a success.

Trineke is from Holland and has always thought in metric so working in the Imperial measurements of 1:12 can be a bit confusing for her. And since I was raised in Imperial, the conversion to 1:12 scale is just so automatic that I find it hard to explain it to someone raised in metric. But that is where Peter Tucker came to our rescue! Peter, who is an incredible miniature artist/builder, has gifted miniaturists with a scale conversion chart that you can download to your computer. Once you've saved it to your computer, you can enter a RL measurement in the chart and have it automatically converted to the measurement in one of several scales. 

One of the things that came up was painting Chrysnbon furniture - something I know nothing about! BUT I know enough to go to and put Chrysnbon in the Search engine. 

I had planned a project that we didn't actually do but I had done it so could explain it. I found some Christmas stockings on the internet. I copied them to a document then copied them again and flipped them horizontally. (Four sets of them shown here.)

I cut out the two matching stockings
TIP:  When you're cutting out something, turn the paper - not the scissors!
Using a toothpick, run a fine strip of glue around the sides and bottom of the stocking
 Glue the sides of the stocking together.

In this case, I put a layer of glue over the 'fur' part of the stocking and dipped it in a pile of sparkle. You could use a bit of suede paper to simulate fur, or fancy it up with strips of cell phone or fingernail decorations.

(When you glue the stockings together, you end up with a white edge on the paper, so you can take a red (in this case) or other appropriate colour marker to recolour that.) Or you can run a piece of red, green, gold or silver thread around it...

Tuck a candy cane inside the stocking to emphasize the dimension of it. Or you could find  picture of a teddy bear (or anything else), resize it, and tuck it the top of the stocking.

If you would like me to send you a .pdf file of the stockings, please comment and give me your address like this: mheucher at so I can just replace the space properly.

 We didn't get around to making Christmas ornaments but here a couple hints for working with very tiny things:

TIP: To place very small beads, lick the end of a piece of spaghetti, touch it to the bead and put it in place.

TIP:  Glue some low pile velvet/dollhouse carpet to a piece of wood or matboard. Use this on your work surface to hold beads, nails, anything small, in place so they won't roll off your working surface. (Three of them shown here.)


Hi, Susanne in Denmark. Thanks for being here...hope this gives you some ideas...


  1. I love your ideas, the stockings are really cute. I would love a copy of them. My email address is

    Thanks Alicia

    1. Hi Alicia,
      Have sent the page to you. Enjoy!

  2. Maureen! I am super duper disappointed that I didn't get to come! My laptop was down due to a chewed cord most of the week and I missed your email or FB post. I would really really like to commit to this mini sub group but I can not fathom travelling by bus in the cold and dark till the spring brings some warmer weather more suitable for public transit travelling. However..if you know someone else who's going and could drive..I could pay for gas..well, let me know if you have any ideas. Regardless I'll be there as soon as it warms up if I can't find a ride. You are so kind and generous to hold the meetings and for donating your time, your home, your knowledge and your supplies. Your a really good woman Maureen and I am so glad we have met. Thank you again for the absolutely beautiful set of pots that you gave me last was totally unexpected and I'm very grateful; I have some textured paint that makes them look like non-stick modern cookware! BTW..would you like me to pay cash for the castor wheels or shall I order some online and replace them (don't know if you need more or were glad to be rid of them??) Either or is totally fine with me..whatever you'd like my dear! Well I guess that's all for now! TTYL..Mini hugs and BIG love to you, one of my favorite mini friends! xoxo

    1. Hon, So sorry to hear about your chewed cord!! Must admit I miss having a puppy (and/or rabbit in my case – my daughter’s) around but don’t miss the chewed cords.

      Travelling in this weather is really a bitch…especially when you don’t drive/have a vehicle (I don’t drive so I totally understand).I think Tina may make an announcement at the Christmas party about the newbie group and maybe we can work out some carpooling – or something.

      If that doesn’t work out, you should know that all my days (except for Wednesday afternoons – and that’s cancelable) are free…so if there is ANY time that you can make it out here, we could spend some time together. Share ideas, go through my stash…see what you can use…

      St. Albert Transit isn’t great anymore (it used to be wonderful!) but it’s doable.

      Am so glad you like the pots and pans…am looking forward to seeing what you do with them. That will be exciting! I’m just totally blown away by your expertise in food and am so looking forward to seeing your expanding into other areas of miniatures.

      Oh, yes, the casters – I love to put them on almost all pieces of furniture (both in RL and in miniature) so keep a lot in my stash. If you’re like me and therefore want to keep some in your stash and order some for yourself, you can just replace them for me. But no rush on that. I have several sets and am not in a rush to have them replaced.

      BIG HUGS,