Thursday, December 31, 2015

A late Christmas gift, Grandpa's Dollhouse

My friend and neighbour, Pamela, dropped by  this afternoon to give me a Christmas gift. It's a beautiful Christmas tree made from yo-yos!

I immediately put it in my cake stand living room scene.

Special message from Liz at Grandpa's Dollhouse!

We have just purchased a very large miniature collection and we will have some fantastic offerings from that………items that are no longer available and even a few artisan items!  All of these items will be marked “gently used”.

NOTE:  All items from the collection will be in pristine condition.  Some will even be groupings of items.  I can guarantee you that these will be hugely sought after so you might want to check out the deals as soon as the email arrives daily.

Just to refresh your memory, this is how it works:

·        I send you an email every day in January at 9pm EST.

·        If you wish to order anything, you click on the link at the top of the page to go to the website (see note below for further details) and place your order OR you can email me and let me know what you would like.

·        You continue to watch for the daily emails and order anything you like throughout the month

·        At the end of the promotion I send you an invoice

·        You pay the invoice and I ship you the order…… payment, one shipping charge!

·        It’s that simple!!
NOTE:   If you order them on the website, just be sure to choose the following options:

Shipping Method: click on "Invoice me Actual Shipping Charges"  and

Payment Information:  click on "Daily Deal Order pay when invoiced"

With this method, your order will be placed with the same terms as if you had emailed or called me to place the order.
Please note that, because orders come in through the website and via email, the item may be sold out before it is reported so on the website.  Orders will be filled on a first come, first served basis according to the time received.  Website orders are received immediately after the order is placed and are time stamped.  Thank you.

Complete information and suggestions can be seen on my website at this link: 

Happy and healthy New Year to all!

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Year in Review 2015

Actually I'm going to cheat just a bit and include the nursery for David and Laura. Although it was finished in December 2014, it wasn't delivered until a couple months later.

MAY: The Cake Plate One of my favourites which sits on my coffee table in the living room.

Have added a pair of clogs to the floor since this picture was taken.

SEPTEMBER: Art Gallery Lamp This is our club project for the year. (From Grandpa's Dollhouse) Love it! (I have two more of these kits to do.)

SEPTEMBER: Three Bears' House For several years now, Joanne and I have displayed our work at Leo Nickerson School Alberta Culture Day. For two years now, I've done a roombox and this year, the house, We have a draw and one of the student's gets a special gift.

(The house itself is a Russian breadbox that was given to me by a teacher that I worked with at Sir George Simpson School when she retired.)

OCTOBER:  Christmas vignette Fellow board member, Val, asked me to make a Christmas vignette for her friend who collects all things Christmas.

OCTOBER: Bird Cage Garden My DS Marie's brother in law and sister in law, Gary and Lorraine, have a prize-winning garden that is SO incredibly beautiful. When I found this bird cage, I knew it was meant to hold a garden that they could enjoy through the winter. Unfortunately, it still has not been delivered to them. One of these days....

DECEMBER: Christmas Vignette #2 This is the second year we've had a Christmas potluck dinner in the condo and it's also the second year I've given a vignette away at the dinner.

DECEMBER: Leslie's Christmas vignette  Leslie is my friend and the condo board chairman. When she didn't win the vignette at the potluck dinner, I knew I wanted to make one for her. (This was done in the gift bag of the thank you gift that Val gave me for the vignette I made for her friend.)

While it appears that nothing much was done in the early months of the year, I did do a lot of work on the three room roombox and Vern's attic. Those of you who have been following me over the years know that it sometimes takes me three or four years to complete larger projects. I putz around, work on a project, then it doesn't come together immediately and I abandon it until something happens and suddenly it comes together and I either get a big spurt and make a big advance or, if I'm lucky, it suddenly comes together and I finally finish it.

Over all, I think the year went well. Including the nursery, I completed 7 projects, added to a couple existing projects, and worked on some upcoming projects.

Right now I have three unfinished projects and one 'thinking about it' project. I'll discuss those on New Year's Day.

Some fun shopping!

Was awakened at 6:15 by the chirp-chirp of the battery dying in one of the smoke detectors. Tried to get back to sleep but it was a lost cause. So had to add a 9V battery to my shopping list.

Joanne and I spent a good portion of the day shopping. Went to Michael's first and I picked up a few things:

Picked up these lovely frames for Barb who can use them for her wonderful petitpoint miniatures.

The framed Christmas tree was actually a gift tag on one of the boxes of canning from DS Carol.

The wreaths and stockings are from the scrapbooking section at Michael's. Bit pricier than I had planned on but my Christmas stash is getting a bit lower after making the three vignettes this year and these will fit in most anywhere.

The archery pieces will be perfect for something (a card maybe) for DGS Jonah who has taken up archery - even got a bow for Christmas. The ballerina items will become something for DGD Holly.

We looked at containers at Michael's for Joanne's folk art Wizard of Oz pieces that she bought in Arizona. Nothing spoke to us.

But we stopped in at Home Sense and found a great cake cover that was perfect! We had the Scarecrow with us and it worked. Walked around looking for a base - thinking of a wooden base - and a couple aisles over found a glass footed base to go with it - both pieces for $30. Yippee!

Actually later we saw a pizza pan which would also have worked as a base.

Had a great lunch at Swiss Chalet then headed to Canadian Tire where Joanne got her Weldbond glue (just about missed it as it's in new packaging - and more expensive) and I got a battery for the smoke detector plus a few other household items.

Great day!

(Now I'm thinking about doing a 'year in review' for tomorrow. I didn't really finish a lot this year but sometimes I get more done than I realized. So we'll see...)

Monday, December 28, 2015

Couple Christmas gifts

Thanks for all the lovely comments on DS Marie's addition to the Christmas shop.

Forgot that I got a couple other mini-related gifts.

DD Leanne gave me the Ferrero Rocher Christmas tree (for the tree more than the chocolates - although I do like those too).

DS Shirley gave me the turntable under the Christmas tree.

My Mom also gave me a scarf that is perfect scale leopard fabric that may come in handy at some point.

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Great update - mostly family visits BUT an update on the Christmas Shop

What an incredible three days I've had!

Christmas Eve was spent at Shirley and Grahame's with Grahame's daughter, Kate (who is 6 months pregnant); her SO, Nic;  his grandson, Graham, his wife, Nikita,  and their child, Story; and Nikita's mother, Shannon.

Story is 3 years old and at that incredible age of wonder where the Christmas tree lights draw you in. It was a lovely evening but I have to admit that Story made it just SO special!

Christmas Day was spent with Mom, DD Leanne and her husband, Robert; DS Shirley and DBIL Grahame.  Spend a wonderful time unwrapping presents then ate the most incredible dinner cooked by Leanne: beef tenderloin roast, baked potatoes, two salads; roast vegetables and onions....and cheesecake for dessert.

On Boxing Day, many of my family met at my place: Mom, DD Leanne, DS Shirley and DBIL Grahame; DS Marie and DBIL, Robert; their DD Stephanie, DS David, DDIL Laura and their precious GD Elizabeth Marie.

How fortunate we are to spend this time together.

DS Marie gave me a beautiful piece of spun glass for Christmas.... but the loveliest thing she gave me was on top of the gift! A beautiful piece that I have added to the top of the Christmas Shop.

It is just so perfect!!

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Just out of curiosity, I wanted to see how much this particular vignette cost:

Okay, the container was free - from Bev at our Christmas party.

The floor was a scrap of foam core and a small piece of carpet....maybe 25 cents?

The chair was part of a set I bought at the MEE garage sale - maybe $3.50?

The rolls of  wrapping paper in a container: container is a lid from spray margarine and the papers are printies from Jennifer.

Plate in the box on the left: $2.00

table base: 50 cents

table: $4.00

bows: 50 cents

tape dispenser: $1.00

scissors: 75 cents

can of Pepsi: 50 cents

bowl of chips: bowl 15 cents, chips free

pen: free

cards: free - Jim's printis

tree: 50 cents

gifts: $3.00

cat: $4.00

TOTAL: $20.65

plus maybe $1.00 for printing

Not too bad!

Labour: Just fun - won't count that!

Vignette finished!

I was in such a hurry to finish the vignette that a lot of pictures (steps) are missing. Sorry about that!

I cut a back wall for the vignette from some mottled cream matboard that Sandra gave away at club. This book is one of two that I have that is a great size and weight to hold things in place while glue dries.

Once this was dry, I cut the side wall panels and installed them. (The walls are just below the holes for the handles which have been removed for ease.)

From the paper cut from the front of the bag, I cut a table runner and glued in on the table.

Then added two candlesticks from my stash and a bowl made from the suction hooks  I got from  Dollarama.

 The afghan is by my friend Rosalle who sells at our show each year. I picked up the chair at one of our shows. I think it's by one of the Spruce Grove ladies.

The beveled mirror is from my stash and the poinsettia was one of the pieces that I got at our Christmas party.

Painted the original drawer pulls with silver nail polish and put them back on the table.

Here's where I really fell down in taking pictures. Sorry again.

First I cut a matboard ceiling to rest on the inner walls of the room. Then I found the centre of the board by drawing two diagonal lines from opposite corners so they intersected in the very middle of the board. I used a push pin to put a hole there.

Using an LED kit by Evan Designs (from Grandpa's Dollhouse), I fed the LED wires through the bell (from my Christmas stash) then through the ceiling. Here they're glued in place and I'm waiting for the glue to dry. Then I attached the wires to the battery.

Once this was in place, the open top of the bag had all the extra wiring, the battery and the switch visible.

So in order to hide the wiring and to make the vignette look like an actual gift bag, I harkened back to something that I remember doing in elementary school. Pictures here are an 'after-the-fact' just to demonstrate.

I cut some red tissue paper into about 2" squares.

Taking one square of tissue paper at a time, I put the end of a paintbrush in the middle of the square and scrunged the sides up, dipped the end in glue and
glued it to the matboard at about 1/2" intervals.

I glued the tree, some gifts, the table, chair and mirror in the bag, put the tissue covered ceiling in place and, voila, finished.

I hate taking pictures with reflective surfaces and mirrors! Sorry it's not very clear.

None of the wiring is visible although you can just barely see the switch in the upper right hand corner.

Just as I was leaving the condo, I realized that I had not re-attached the handles so I did that and delivered it to Leslie.

Monday, December 21, 2015

Leslie's vignette

Shoot! This is much smaller than I had envisioned. Think it will work but....we'll see.

Sunday night.

I painted the base of the tree with red nail polish, replaced the huge garland with some silver garland that I had made years ago from (strangely enough) a silver expandable bag that I cut apart. Then I added some candy canes that I made by cutting some big ones in my stash smaller. The rest of the ornaments were beads that I added by dipping them in glue and putting them in the tree with a toothpick, angling them so the holes wouldn't show.

I measured  the base of the bag, cut a piece of matboard and covered it with a piece of carpet.

I first cut a piece of matboard that fit below the handle holes of the front of the bag, then measured 1/2" in from the edges. I also cut a piece of heavy clear plastic about 1/4" smaller. Then I cut out the front of the bag.

Actually that was backwards....I should have cut the bag first - then cut the matboard. Would have been easier than cutting the front of the bag from the inside.

Anyway, it did work. Then I ran a half inch line of glue around the edge of the cut, added the plastic, then added the matboard. Put this section face down and weighted it with a book until the glue dried.

This may/or may not work. Had this Christmas ornament mirror in my stash.
 Painted it with silver nail polish to match everything else. Still needs a few touch-ups...and am not sure if I'll actually use it as it's quite large.

This was the only thing that I found that was small enough in size and depth to work. (From Dollarama)

 Pulled of the wooden drawer handles:
 Coloured it with black marker.
 While that was drying, added the carpeted floor to the bag.
 Painted the table with gloss varnish.
 Sanded it with a piece of brown paper bag.
 Then gave it another coat of varnish.
Tested putting the Christmas tree in the bag.
Used a binder clip to ensure the glue was adhering.
Still have a lot of things to do - especially the walls of the vignette - but it's coming along.