Sunday, June 21, 2020

More pysanka

The pictures I showed you yesterday didn't give you any idea of how beautiful and intricate Jeanne's work is.

I'm fortunate to have two of Jeanne's work. These are the chicken eggs that I have. They're on upside down pizza props so you can see them.

the front of the right hand side one to show the detail.

From the top
When I worked at Sir George Simpson School, one of the art teachers taught staff a class on making pysanka. That's when I learned that it was too delicate and difficult for me to do.

Some eye candy (not mini) and slippers

My friend Jeanne invited me up to their condo yesterday to see what she has been doing while in isolation. WOW!

She doesn't do  minis but she does do pysanka so she finished these in the past few months. The pictures simply do not do them justice. The largest eggs are ostrich and the next smaller are emu. Truly works of art.

So while everyone else seems to be accomplishing great things, I managed to make one pair of slippers.

Barb S. taught a great workshop on Zoom last Tuesday. After missing a couple meetings because I couldn't get into Zoom on either tablet, finally got into this one using my phone.

Our kits included material for two pair of slippers so you could say this is my practice run.

Here I've cut out the heels and uppers from microsuede.

The sole pattern, ribbon, and fun foam

The sole pattern is glued to the ribbon then cut out.

The cut out pieces are then glued to the foam and those are cut out

Soles finished

The heel pieces are then glued to the soles.
I was sure I had taken a picture when I was adding the uppers but guess I didn't. It's a bit tricky and fiddly but I found that adding one side at a time and letting the glue dry before doing the other side worked for me.

The one on the right is a bit lopsided but all in all I'm happy with how they turned out.

Thanks to Barb for a great workshop!

Thursday, June 18, 2020

A blog (or two) to follow...

My friend, Marilyn D., from New Brunswick, has started a new project on her blog.

I was blessed to meet Marilyn and her husband, Bruce, eleven or twelve years ago when they hosted my friend, Cheryl H. and me at their cottage when we took a trip to P.E.I.

They live in New Brunswick where Marilyn is part of the club with another friend, Marijke,

I've mentioned Marjike's blog before. She does absolutely wonderful flowers, plants, and aging techniques.

Marilyn hasn't been doing miniatures for all that long but she is doing great work.

I'm referring you to her blog because I think her latest project is so wonderful and delightful that I think you will want to follow it. You know how, sometimes, someone starts a project that just "gets you" and you know it will be "the project". I have one of those and I think that this is one of Marilyn's.

Tuesday, June 9, 2020

A fun interview

D. Thomas  Fine Miniatures has been hosting Zoominars with various miniaturists.

This one is with Adam Koch. and I really enjoyed it. (48 minutes)

Adam is a professional set designer from Brooklyn, New York with a passion for miniatures who started the popular Instagram account Dollhouse Therapy
We had a casual chat with Adam and learned more about his work in theatrical stage design, its connection with his interest in miniatures, and got to hear all about his personal 30 day challenge to build an awesome 7-room dollhouse during the 2020 Covid pandemic lockdown.

Sunday, June 7, 2020

Costco box - just a thought...

When I had the thought the other night about the Costco box, it was just that - another possibility. Something that probably could be used during the pandemic.

I am not going to start this now! Just so you know....

 I have thought for probably ten years about doing a  "Secret Garden". With that in mind, I have two paper boxes plus a bit ready to go in it.

Originally,  I bought two 4' x 2' sheets of 1" thick builders foam thinking that it could be carved into stone walls. Now this box may work.

Because I don't do the outsides of buildings well, I was pleased to find (at Dollarama) six peel and stick stonework wall panel sheets (12" x 12") so I think I think about making those work.

On the backburner for now...but still a possibility.

Friday, June 5, 2020

I think this is so cool..- such possibilities. Roombox from Costco box

I was sitting on my couch tonight and looked over at a box that had come from Costco the last time I was there.  The size is perfect! It's 19" wide by 10 3/4" high by 15" deep.

As is, the front could be used as a storefront window. If cut down to the floor, if could be just an open visual to the scene inside.

Cover the walls and floor with matboard and you have a great roombox.

Cover the front and top with plexiglass and this would be finished.

So keep your eyes open when you go to Costco - lots of possibilities there.

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

One more small addition then the MHV roombox was delivered!

Was getting ready to take the roombox over to MHV when I realized it needed two more things: a book and a pair of glasses!

Always love adding a book and a pair of glasses to a scene.

Took it over to MHV yesterday afternoon and got to visit with some friends there.

And they liked the roombox!

Sunday, May 24, 2020

Guest Blogger - IGMA Artisan Sherri MacRaild of Calgary, Alberta

It has been my pleasure and honour to know Sherri for several years now. She is an IGMA Artisan who has been a dealer at the Edmonton Show and Sale during that time. We've been in touch more often now during COVID-19.

We spoke of her most recent creation lately and she gave me permission to post this with her as my guest blogger based on her emails. I hope you enjoy it..

Have worked on this project on and off for years….started with the tub and then got stalled with what to use for the bears I wanted.   Bought a bunch of jointed bears but they would not comply with the positions needed in this very small container.   The tub is in 1/12” scale and is supposed to be a wash-day tub.   

Here is the story that goes with it……

                “It  is in the year 1798 and the British navy has been fighting the French under Napoleon.   Our story starts when a ship in the British navy  has a run-in with the French and British ship is sunk in the action.   Even the life boats are destroyed.   All that is left is the cook’s giant fish-holding tub.  Only 4 crew survive the battle and they have to pile into that tub at the last moment.    But it smells very badly!   The captain usually goes down with the ship but he knows that the lieutenant  (left-tenant as it is pronounced by the British)  is an idiot who was able to be placed in his position only because his uncle is in the House of Lords).  Thus the Captain felt it was his duty to save what was left of his crew.   I mean, the lieutenant has been looking at that compass for an hour now and still has no clue where they are!   The captain is forced to scan the horizon with his spyglass, looking for anything that will help them out of their predicament.   No smiles there.   But the sailor with the hat is smiling a lot because he is the one holding the only life preserver.   Yesssss!  The other sailor was on the gun crew and didn’t have time to grab his regular hat before abandoning the sinking ship.    So he is still wearing the bandana meant to hold back his fur while he was re-loading Cannon #3.”

I managed to put the captain into the ‘tub’ as the first bear to go in, although he squirmed a lot before finally settling down.   The lieutenant was even harder to get into the tub.   He kept insisting that I show ‘his good side’ before he would consent to be glued down.  How vain can you get?! Then the other 2 sailors rebelled saying that they wouldn’t go into that evil-smelling tub unless they were able to have their daily rum ration.  They had the nerve to demand the ‘emergency’ barrel of the stuff (plus the drinking cup, mind you!).   That meant a lot of research on my part, all the while muttering about stubborn sailors specifically….and males in general.   Found out that there was indeed an emergency barrel which, to my surprise, was sideways rather than straight up and down and it comes with a funnel.   Hmmm, learn something new every day!   These self-same sailors then threatened mutiny unless I made sure there was an anchor in the tub.   What?!  An anchor??  I finally figured out that they were thinking they might float by an island (on which there might be much more rum than was being rationed out in the tub…and even girls!).   They wanted to make sure the tub stayed in place while they swam to shore for ‘just a short visit’, the rascals!  

You have heard how a project can take on a life of its own….well, this one did, and in spades!   I am exhausted after keeping up with the crew’s demands on the HMS Fishtub.

Personally, I think it's one of the absolutely best things I have ever seen of Sherri's work. The painting on the tub alone is just superb. And her story and research make it even better.

MHV roombox finished!

I probably should have looked through all my flowers (have about 50) but instead I went with the arrangement with the gladiolas and painted the vase gold.

Added a couple of napkins and I'm declaring it finished.

I still can't get very good pictures once the glass case is on but since the wallpaper and picture are part of the case, this really is the only way to show it.

Friday, May 22, 2020

More work on the MHV roombox

Years ago, I bought this great little teapot kit from Another World Miniatures in Saskatoon. (They're a dealer on online shows these days.) 

In two shoeboxes of beads, there was only one that fit! This is a special bead that Sunni brought me from one of her trips. I glued everything together then put the end of the stem into a piece of foam to take the picture.

This is where it got VERY messy. I thought I would put a bit of Gorilla gel glue in the hole of the bead to stabilize the pin. OOPS! Way too much - which was good in a weird sort of way - because there was too much for it to set on my hands immediately so I was able to separate the bead and all fingers and thumbs that had been "almost" glued together.  Fortunately, I had a bottle of acetone nail polish remover on hand and was able to clean up this mess.

I clipped off the bottom of the pin then put a clump of Gorilla Gel in the base, put it together and let it set.

Here I've put the teapot upside down in a clothespin so I can put the miniature moveable glue on the base.

HINT: Clothespins can be used to hold things in place for various reasons..

I'm really running low on Chrysnbon dishes and unfortunately the few I have left are ones that I had tried to trim with my gold Pilot pen years ago. I had tried removing that with nail polish remover and that did not work. (Hence the nail polisher remover on my table.)

So then I went to my Costco dollhouse and found the dishes and silverware that I would need for MHV.

And the china would have been right...except I had no idea what I had used to paint couldn't paint a matching dessert plate.

So back to the wrong saucer...

Now I've finished the cups, saucers, and dessert plates with the Krylon gold pen:

I wet the end of a Q-tip to hole the cup in place so I could paint it.

 Now here are all the pieces done in gold...

 Those things are great.

Now I have to think about what flowers will go in there.

So it's coming together.

Will take another look tomorrow....

Record albums and records

Our friend, Jillian, has been making record albums lately (in miniature, of course) so I thought it wouldn't hurt to re-visit my blog on making LP records.

Here's one of the albums I made at that time.

Jillian has (1) more patience that I and (2) still has her collection of vinyl so she photographed the fronts and backs of her albums to make the album covers.

I relied on this site to make mine. It has the artwork for the fronts and backs of albums for probably a couple thousand records. I resized them and made 48 album covers at that time.

If anyone would like a .pdf of these covers email me and will be happy to send them to you.

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Uh-oh...not as well organized as I thought Also can someone help me?

Went looking for a few things tonight and simply could not find them.

Needing a binder clip to save the business cards on my desk, I looked on the pegboard where they have been kept, sorted by size, in ziploc bags since we moved here in 2003. Not there! Finally found them in a plastic box on a shelf.

Guess they got moved during the last reorganization/cleanup.

Then I decide to find a floral arrangement for the MHV project. Those are in with the Secret Garden project so I look on the bottom shelves of my 8' shelving unit that my Dad had made. Looked through every box there (found some kits I had forgotten about) but, again, nothing.

Aha! Remembered I had put all the Secret  Garden boxes (all 3 of them) on the top shelf of one of the closets.

In my searches, I also discovered one 4 drawer plastic unit where I had moved all my Christmas trees, gifts, etc., for Christmas scenes.

So much for reoganizing.

Wish it could all be blamed on that though. Yesterday, I cleaned off the coffee table in the living room and put everything mini-related in my workroom including my Krylon gold leafing pen . Looked for it tonight so I could trim the cups, saucers and plates for the MHV project and can't find it anywhere.

I'm frustrated.

Well, I'm sitting on the couch just before bedtime and thinking, where could it be? I keep a mug on the coffee table filled with pens, pencils, X-Acto knives and nail files - just the usual.
Take a look and, sonofagun, there is my Krylon gold leafing pen.


Until about two months ago,, when someone posted a comment on the blog, I would get an email showing the comment so I could reply. That isn't happening anymore. Does anyone know how I can fix it so I get comments by email again?

Thursday, May 14, 2020

Off topic - The Snack Fairies Came! and a small mention of minis...

My dear friend Cheryl H. came from Nova Scotia to Edmonton seven months ago to be with her daughter for the birth of her youngest granddaughter who was facing major health problems at birth. So we only managed to see each other once since Cheryl arrived. And, of course, COVID has since put the kibosh on our getting together.

But her daughter, Heather, recently started a "Snack ninja" group on FB. Although I don't live in the area it covers, Cheryl was kind enough to add Barb R. and me to their delivery list. SO this afternoon, Cheryl and three of her granddaughters (Hannah, Hallie and Keira) - the Snack Angels - dropped off two incredible baskets of snacks for us.

My snack basket
We did social distance! - just to be clear.

I have enough snacks to last me for quite some time and am so appreciative of their visit. It's been quite awhile since I've seen the girls so that part was wonderful too.

Cheryl and I have known each other for about 15 years and first met in person almost 13 years ago. She has been an associate member of M.E.E. for several years now and we've been lucky that she has been able to be visiting her daughters/grandchildren most years at the time of our Show and Sale.

Pre-COVID, Cheryl and Keira had made plans to come over to see my minis so I had a small box on my worktable containing a few things to give to Keira. At the last minute, I remembered them so I ran upstairs and took them down to her. If I had had more time, I would have added more things but I will just start another collection for her.

The MHV Roombox:
When I took a closer look at what I had done so far, I realized that as much as I loved the display case with the ship in it, it just didn't work. Too large for the room/space. Have to find something else. Thinking on it....

I've been working on a teapot (really cool), want to prepare 2 cups and saucers, spoons, small plates, and some flowers on the coffee table.

Hope to have it ready for delivery by next Tuesday.

EXCEPT my DDIL, Julie, sent me four books today so that may delays things. LOL.

Sunday, May 10, 2020

Almost finished!

I've been trying to get the room finished that I will be donating to Mission Hill Village, the building next door where Mom lived. The Social committee there will do what they choose with it....but I expect that it will be one of the raffle prizes at their annual bazaar.

You saw the picture I framed the other day...I really liked it but it turned out to be WAY too big for this room.

So I had to rethink it....

This is a part of the front of a card that my DS Carol sent me Christmas before last. I saved it because I knew the gold frame would work somewhere.

And so it a frame for a picture of a garden I found on the internet!

The biggest problem I had was the back wall. It was mirrored so I had cut a piece of matboard to fit it then wallpapered that with a piece from my stash. At first, it looked great....then it just warped...and curled..and was a general mess.

But I had glued/used double-sided carpet tape SO much that I couldn't remove it to start over...
SO had to approach it from a different angle!

I took a 12" strip of cove molding, stained it, and glued it, and held it in place. Then I took a piece of 12" strip of baseboard, stained it and held it in place also. That worked..

 Then I put my Miniature Movable Glue on all the pieces of furniture, rug and painting.

So here it is...
 Left side...
 Right side...
 Left corner....

The antimacassars (doilies) on the couch and chairs are by Rosalle Pinske.

Once I add a teapot and teacups and some flowers to the coffee table, this will be finished.