Friday, December 31, 2010

Rosedale progress

Apologies for the poor quality of my pictures. It seems I just can't take any good ones with it (I am sure it's the user, not the camera!).

I have added strips of mountboard to add height in the attic and then added faschia strips on the exterior to strengthen the added walls and allow something for the roof to butt against. Here is a picture of it so far, without the roof.

This pic is just to show the main bedroom. A shelf unit will fit in that corner where there is no wallpaper (to the left of the pic).

The last pic shows the lounge room. I covered over the transom over the door, as with the transom and door frame, I wouldn't fit cornice, so I will cut off the transom frame from the door frame and then I can have cornice!

And all the best for a fantastic 2011!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas everyone

I hope everyone takes it easy over the Christmas break, and if you are travelling, please take extra care. Christmas isn't an easy time for a lot of people (my father died at Christmas-time 11 years ago) and it's the time we remember those who aren't with us. It's also a time to appreciate those we love.

So have a wonderful Christmas everyone. And eat, drink and be merry!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Sugar plum fairy's cottage

I'd always wanted to do a Sugar plum fairy's cottage out of the Greenleaf Sugarplum kit. But when I received my free kit for this year's creating contest, I decided to make it into the cottage, against my better judgement. In my opinion, the proportions were wrong. I should've gone with my first instinct and made it into a chocolate shop. Given it wasn't working from the start, I never had much motivation to keep going. It isn't finished, and I am a bit disappointed with it, but with a few borrowed minis from my other projects, I managed to fill it enough to enter the contest.

I still want to make the Sugarplum into my real Sugar plum fairy cottage in future. And finish it the way I'd originally intended.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Loving the half scale Greenleaf kits!

So you will all be aware of the numerous projects I've started of late and haven't finished. Well, I am making some more! I've put together my half scale Buttercup and Rosedale.

I thought I'd blog this in case anyone else was interested in how I altered these kits.

Firstly, my Buttercup, which will be a gardener's cottage. I love Greenleaf kits but they always make the attics too small. So I raised the roof. I cut the gable ends off at ceiling height (ie just above the slots on the walls) and glued a strip of 2mm cardboard around to extend the wall height. You will see in my photos the grey cardboard added in. The inside is harder to see as I have painted it already, but you can see the vertical walls below the sloping roof, which is the added in part. Quite simple really, but made the attic much more usable.

Secondly, in my Rosedale, I wanted to make the stairwell open on the second floor into it's own hall rather than into the large room. So I cut the bannister/railing off the lounge room wall flush with the ceiling, put a small piece of scrap ply into the stairwell opening to close it off a bit, and cut the interior wall off the small second floor room. I will hopefully make this clearer as I go along.

I think I will fill in under the stairwell a little in the kitchen, to make space for a fireplace/stove. Here is a pic of under the stairwell.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Picasso gallery in Paris

Karin Corbin has blogged about Picasso art in her home town. My husband and I are also Picasso fans and so visited the gallery when we were in Paris. It was undergoing renovations whilst we were there and so they had erected a giant mirror to hide the renovations. The mirror reflected one half of the building, so it looked like a whole.

It aligned with a false wall on the inside also, so from the inside, it looked like the whole building had been sliced in half by a giant sheet of plaster/glass. It was very clever.

It was also interesting to note that the interior walls were all false and it was obvious that they sat away from the original walls. We guessed they did this to preserve the original building.

French restoration and renovation is light-years ahead of any such practices we have in Australia. Most large public buildings being renovated had large sheets of some sort of mesh over the scaffolding with printed life-size images of the building that was being renovated on it. Very clever.

Friday, September 10, 2010

My favourite...

Thanks Karin for the beautiful picture of the Belle Epoque villa - I love it and look forward to seeing more pictures. I loved the rustic French cottages, especially the stone ones. But my favourite one from our trip to France was this one:

It is not a good photo because we took it from a moving bus! It is in Vannes, which was a very cute seaside town in Brittany. We didn't have time to get off and take proper photos so we had to rely on the camera's sportsmode! We managed to get enough for a rough idea of the front. I will one day make this into a 1:12 mini version with an art nouveau interior.

And Linda, have an amazing time in France and Italy. I look forward to seeing your photos and some tips for travel in Italy!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Yay! Pics uploaded this time!

So here is another shot of the study with the sewing room through the door.

This is the chair I covered. Not sure about the table accessories though. I think I need a pot plant.

The bookcase I finished and mantle. I need some flowers for the urn, or a topiary. The cute triple picture frame is from Cynthia Howe, but it doesn't stand properly (my fault - made the hinge too short!).

And lastly is a table I made with some accessories. Might need to antique the boxes a bit?? Otherwise a good start!

Saturday, September 4, 2010

More on the French shop

I know I have been pretty quiet of late, but I have been working on my minis. My husband and I had a week of holidays at the snow (there wasn't a lot of snow, but lots of sunshine!) so I took the opportunity to get some mini-ing done. I don't seem to be having much luck with blogger this afternoon - my photos refuse to upload. Will try to upload them later for you to see.

I have made some progress on the French shop. I made some books and filled the bookcase for the salon with them and some figurines I've painted in the past. Also antiqued a bird cage for the table. Also covered a Bespaq chair and sofa but need some cushions now for the sofa.

I have almost finished the study. I am wondering if the floor needs to be paler and maybe dirtier?

The dining room, bathroom, entry and salon are almost done, as is the kitchen, save for a few minor items. I am not sure these will ever be finished - the search for elusive mini homewares is a long and difficult one!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Chantilly stonework

It's been a while and I was procrastinating a bit with the stonework, but it is now done and has some paint on it. Yet to add the verandah and trim, and finish the paperclaying.

Here is an armoire I painted and added fabric inserts to. I think it will have mirror in the centre panel.

And lastly a pic of the staircase - not yet finished. Not exciting, but just so you can see!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Chantilly progress

I am not too far off finishing the shell. I need to do some paper-claying first though before I can add all the trim, and that will be the slow part. I couldn't decide completely what colour to paint all the trim. I knew I wanted it dark. In the end I decided I'd make it look a little like the cottages at Marie Antoinette's village at Versailles and just went with timber.

I meant to take photos before it got too dark, but lost track of time. So apologies for the crappiness of my pics!

The porch roof isn't attached yet. I will remove it to decorate further I think. I just needed it there to get the bay window straight.

I just painted the floors to look like timber, but then I found cute sheets of half scale parquet, which I'd like to use but I'm not sure how well the sheets will join (ie they're too small alone to finish each room). And also, how would I do the stairs to match? I was thinking of maybe covering the stair treads with the parquet sheets and painting all other parts ivory to match the skirting/architrave, or just painting it all ivory, but that may look funny against a timber floor. So maybe I'll tile the salon. Will order the parquet anyways and decide when it arrives I suppose!

Hope everyone has a fantastic weekend. I need to do some sewing tomorrow as a friend had a baby. It's always hard to do something else when you're on a mini roll!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Greenleaf's half scale Chantilly

I have been hanging out for this kit for sooo long. I adore it. And so hence, when it arrived, I couldn't help myself - I had to start putting it together!

It will be French, simple but elegant. I think the exterior trim will be dark brown, the walls will be a beige stucco and there will be a stone base. Many places we saw in France had a hexagonal/honeycomb patterned rocking around the base (or around the walls like in my photo) which I really liked.

The downstairs will have a salon and salle a manger, and the upstairs will have a boudoir and chambre. I am using Bespaq furniture. The half scale furniture available (what little there is) is so varying in scale, you can't mix brands. Such a pain.

As an update on my Gingerbread Cottage, I've hit a snag. I made a small kitchen bench/sink to go in, but forgot to measure the height of the window. The bench is subsequently too tall and can be seen from the outside through the window. I could of course just move it, but I don't like any other options. I may have to ditch it and make a very small sink to fit beside the window. Plus I need more materials.

Friday, May 14, 2010

The project list

I was reading someone's blog the other day, and they'd posted a list of all the projects they wanted to do. It was quite interesting, so thought I'd do the same. These are all my one inch scale wanna-dos:

- French chateau - large, fancy townhouse (a bit like Linda's!), to use up a lot of French ideas I have.
- Small castle - like Rik Pierce's Toadmoor Manor. I already have all the furniture.
- Dura-craft Heritage - I will use some bits from an incomplete Heritage kit to make a Toad Hall gothic English manor house.
- Greenleaf Sugarplum - rustic xmas cottage (pink, white, silver).
- Greenleaf Willowcrest - Very Victorian!
- Greenleaf Beacon Hill - I have always loved it. It will be a vaguely Cinderella themed house in rich pink, green, gold and black.
- Dura-craft Sweetheart - Cottage. No real theme, just a cottage!
- Art Nouveau house - modelled after a gorgeous cottage in France. Pale olive, cream, caramel, black, duck egg blue, those sorts of tones.
- Dutch canal house - scratch built.
- English townhouse - a bit more fantasy style than English though.
- Dura-craft Chelsea - Aqua, white and red summer cottage.
- Greenleaf Brimbles Merchantile - Will become a Martha's Vineyard style cottage in earthy French tones. Timber/black lacquer furniture, etc.

That's a lot, isn't it??? I will be busy for ever!

I also have some shops on the list, including a doll shop (in a Houseworks shop), a chocolaterie (actually two of those!), perfumerie and an Easter shop (this is well on it's way, I am just being lazy!).

I hope everyone is having a fantastic weekend. It is my 6-month wedding anniversary today! Yay for us!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Which bed?

Or rather, which finish? I need some advice please! I can't decide whether I like the bed for my Gingerbread cottage plain timber or with fabric panels. Please ignore the roughness of my sanding - it isn't finished. Also, I won't neaten it up if I put fabric panels on it.

Also, here's a pic of some seating for the cottage. I have yet to add piping/cord trim to neaten them up a bit, and can't decide whether the timber should have a sheen or be matte.

I am still working on the house itself, but need some of the styrene stone sheeting, as I am not good at the paperclay stone thing!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Award and cool website

Is it just me, or is making up a heading the worst part of blogging??

Anyways, thank you to Jaime at JLilRoomer for the lovely award. I now need to give it to five other blogs. I've done some blog-surfing tonight - gotta love Friday nights, lots of time to spend doing nothing! So I thought I'd pass this on to some of the awesome blogs I found tonight:

ShinyNewThing (sorry I don't know your real name) from A Greenleaf Fairfield for Miss Lydia Pickett

Ingrid from mijn droomwereldje

Sylvia (I think!) from Miniaturas Natasylvia

Margaret from My Petit Parterre

Carol from True2Scale

All these ladies do some seriously gorgeous work. Go over and check them out if you haven't already.

And as for the cool website, if you're looking for something that's not quite mini-ing, or maybe if you have some kids you need to entertain, check out this site. It's awesome! I haven't made anything from there yet, but a few people from work have.

Have a great weekend!!

Friday, April 9, 2010

On to next project

Although I have not finished the French shop. A few stumbling blocks there!

I loved the gingerbread house that Teresa Layman did and more so her mini gingerbread houses that she was teaching at the Philadelphia Miniaturia I think. Very sweet. I decided that the Duracraft Lafayette was crying out to be a gingerbread cottage. So I have commenced down that road!

I hadn't intended for it to be too Christmasy but then I scrounged out some metal minis I'd painted a couple of years ago and so will put them into the cottage. These are dollhouse-size ornaments so a maximum of about an inch high.

I am still waiting on some furniture and will need to order more, but unfortunately I only get paid so much!! Also the wood trim that is supposed to go around the windows is too wide, so I need to trim some of it down. That is a real pain. Never mind, I don't need much of it. Hopefully there may be more progress pics soon!

Monday, March 1, 2010

The lovely Daisy from Antique Daisy has given me this award:

Thanks Daisy! I am pleased that you enjoy my blog so much that you gave me this award! Now I need to give it to 6 other bloggers:

Julie at Diary of an Edwardian Dollshouse, because I love this shop and have found her diary very inspiring and useful.
Karin at Karin Corbin Miniatures because she not only makes gorgeous minis, she is full of fantastic tips, encouragement and patience, of which I am very jealous!
Nell at Miniature Miniatures, for same reasons as Karin - she is true inspiration.
Joanna at Joanna Thomas Art Dolls because her dolls are what little (and big!) girls dream of.
Gina at More Minis, because her blog is very comprehensive and provides awesome advice for building various kits.
And lastly, to Mariella at Muffa Miniatures. Her crochet darlings are so tiny and detailed. She is very talented.

Monday, January 11, 2010

French shop under way!

I did some work on my little shop over the weekend and here are some part-way-there shots. You'll see the chains of the lights dangling all over the place - I haven't fixed them to the ceiling yet!

The back room is accessable - the wall pops out!

I think it will be a gourmet foods shop. I hope to buy some Lisa's Little Things kits some time to go in it.

Lastly, here is a pic of my half scale chateau that I did for the 2009 contest. It's not great by any stretch of the imagination. Perhaps one day I will have the patience to finish it off properly. It is loosely based on Lea Frisoni's, which is the subject of her DIY book.