Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Shoutout to Ipad bloggers

Ok, so I have been trying out a few apps for blogging using the ipad. If you also blog from your ipad, you may know that Blogger is not going to update their ipad app and it doesn’t work at all now. I have tried a couple of other apps with little success. Anyone have any suggestions for a decent blogging app? I have started thinking that it may be easier to change to another blog format. Thanks for any tips you may have.

Just testing

A new blogging app, but I don’t think I like it. A bit clumsy.

Anyway, will show some photos of the Government House in Hobart, Tasmania, where we had a reception with the Governor during our AMEA convention. She lives here....

Friday, October 27, 2017

Good morning! Or at least it is in Australia! I had the brilliant idea to write this post on our crappy laptop so I didn’t have to wrestle with ipad blogger, but it turns out the space bar doesn’t really work on the laptop. Geez you hit that thing a lot when typing sentences. Moving along, just thought I’d show you a picture of the back of the cushion my friend made. She didn’t like the fabric that came with the kit and after a bit of brain storming, I suggested stitching her initials. Didn’t she make that beautiful too? Sorry for dark photo, it is a very dull rainy morning here.

And also a new project I am working on. This will be a 1:24 kit soon!

  • PS It turns out that blogger is almost as painful on the laptop as on the ipad! Yay!!

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

AMEA Tasmania convention

Hi all. As I had a few people ask about how the convention and workshop went, I thought I’d do a quick post. The convention was fun. It was held over four and a bit days - sales on Friday evening, workshops Saturday, Sunday and Monday, a dinner on Saturday night, a reception at Government House on Monday evening and a mystery bus tour on Tuesday. It was a great group of people, really fun and lively. My workshop was two days and although it was great and my students and I learnt lots, it was quite taxing. I don’t think I would do such a long, intensive workshop again. Here are photos of the 1:24 two sided roombox I taught. Everything is laser cut then painted and aged. 

And here is a photo of the lovely ladies during the workshop! Don’t they look studious? 

We visited the Beaconsfield Mine visitor centre, which was an operating mine until more recent times. It had also collapsed near the end, trapping two miners and killing a third. It was big news here. Anyway, they had lots of interesting displays including this little hospital roombox! Very cute. 

Again have to leave it there as Blogger is about to suck my will to live. I just realised I have a (also infuriating) Lenovo laptop that I might be able to use Blogger on better than the ipad. Hope your week is going well!

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Little bits

Hi all. After a busy year, I have finally had some proper weekend time to get some things done on my mini houses and the real house. First thing I want to show you is a sweet little cushion my friend made me, sitting on the armchair at the back. The doggy looks just like my Tilly dog, although my little girl had black and brown on her head and spots on her back. It is beautifully made and the stitches very fine. I adore it.


Next is the fireplace in the cafe of the Coxwolds store. My husband and I had a week in Tasmania, as I attended the Australian Miniature Enthusiasts’ convention (I actually taught a workshop, which is a whole different story altogether!) and it confirmed something I had been suspecting for a good long while - that the little shop could have been a colonial building in Hobart. So that is where I have decided it will be set. I came home from Tasmania with quite a few goodies and many of them will go in this house.


I wanted a rustic, cosy cafe and decided that the occupant stripped off the old plaster and paint on the chimney breast, exposing the brick underneath. I just used textured brick paper (that World Model stuff) and smudged on bitsbof cream paint. I think it worked ok but is a little patchy. Maybe a bit more paint would be better. I figured it would be mostly covered by a painting, mirror or sign, so will see how it looks with accessories first.

And lastly (and quickly, this is the sitting room of my Coxwolds. Things have kind of just been put here, and I realised I love them. I couldn’t decide on a table/sideboard/cabinet for the space next to the fireplace and just put this half painted wire table because I found it in the stash. I think it might be perfect (when it is finished). You can see a Margaret Crosswell ceramic bust and an Art of Mini hatbox (from a kit) on the fireplace. The table has a Veronique Lux birdcage (which I’ve shown before in my post about awesome stuff my mum and sister got at Kensington fair this year) and a basket from an Etsy seller. Can’t remember her name but she was recently featured in one of the mini magazines. I love it all together.

Augh, I have to finish this post now as Blogger IS SO APPALLING ON THE IPAD AND THEY HAVEN’T UPDATED THEIR APP. Sigh. Hope your weekend was good! (Better than Blogger anyway) 

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Back to Duddingwells

Hello all, happy Friday! I have been sick with a cold this week. I think because I don't get sick very often, I really feel it when I do. Anyway, I haven't got a lot done this week, other than reading! 

I am trying to get rid of some builds from my craft room, which means finishing some things off. The landscaping of the Duddingwells had stalled because I was too lazy to finish it, and I buggered up the wiring inside, which buggered up a wall finish, so I have been trying to figure out how to cover it up. So it has just sat with nothing being done. The last few weeks I have been working on it little by little. I have just about finished the wisteria. I made a wire stem and branches, put some paperclay over it and painted it. Then I tried making the flowers with floral foam, but it was too fine and the racemes were too small. So it sat unfinished too. Then I got out the paperclay and built up racemes, painted them then glued on chunky purple floral foam. Once dry, I brushed on some lighter purple paint and then some white near the top of the racemes. Here are some photos, if you can see.

In this photo, the painted racemes are on the left half (albeit not quite finished):

Here are the painted ones closer up:

And here the unpainted ones:

It might look better in real life! Anyway, I am happy with them. I have also added some leaves, but not a lot. Usually wisteria flowers well before leaves appear. I will show some more photos soon, when I have done a little more. 

Just before I go, sending good non-hurricane thoughts to all those in Hurricane Irma's reaches. I hope you stay safe and dry. Goodbye everyone!

Friday, September 1, 2017

Mountfield shower finished

Or at least it was until I pulled the shower door handle off. Never mind. I can reattach it. When I find it.

So I made the shower screen pretty simply. I cut a piece of acrylic to fit the opening, made a cardboard frame to sit on top, with about 4mm additional strip on one side to act as the hinge. I glued the hinge to the inside of the opening and painted it gold, so you can't really see it's there and it was done. Somehow the acrylic got a bit scratched up though, and not sure how. Never mind, you can't really tell. Now I just need a bath robe hanging off the door and I think this is done.

How much do I love that wicker laundry hamper?? So cool.

Did I mention I couldn't get a light fitting into the bath enclosure? The roof is glued on and the angle prevents me getting my hand in there with any sort of drilling device. Hence for now it is lightless in there. Still, I am happy. Have a great weekend everyone!

Monday, July 10, 2017

Lidi's beautiful basket

Hi all. My week got off to a great start as my beautiful Lidi Stroud/Basketcase Miniatures  picnic basket arrived today. If you don't follow Lidi's blog, a) you should, and b) she had a give-away of this little basket and I WON!!! It arrived today and was promptly sat in it's future home, my French shop kitchen. It needs some styling (well, more so the kitchen accessories) to make it look like they are just about to pack the basket for a picnic, but even so it looks so stunning. Thank you Lidi, it is truly amazing and I feel very lucky. Thank you! (Sorry, photos taken at night so they're a bit terrible. Will style this up and take some more photos!)

Monday, July 3, 2017

Did a little painting

Hello everyone. A quick post to show you the cabinet I've been working on for my 1:12 doll shop. It is one of those unfinished wood ones I bought from an online UK shop (there is a whole set and I have bought quite a few). I had base painted it nearly 2 months ago, the started the painted curtains about 1 month ago, and finally finished them off last night with the dots and lacy edge. I should've made them shorter, as much of the design gets hidden, but the toys I've displayed are just props right now anyway. I will paint something across the lower front too, and maybe even add a glass shelf inside for smaller items. Then the painting would be more visible.

I hope you are all well and having warmer weather than us (-5.4 deg Saturday night, coldest in 38 years and completely destroyed half the plants in my garden). Happy mini-ing!

Saturday, June 17, 2017

I'm feeling a bit spoilt plus Mountfield progress

Hello all. It has been quite a nice sunny (but cool) day and one of the few days I've been able to take the time to work on my minis for a couple of months. I took the opportunity to get a few things done and take some photos. I really want to get my Mountfield off to its new home so I finished off a good bit of the bathroom. All that needs doing is 1) gluing the toothbrush holder to the wall (which broke so I superglued the parts together) and 2) making the shower screen door. I want to add a robe to the back of the door one day, but other than that, it's done! No light going into the bath enclosure as I couldn't get a drill to angle into the space. And I probably should paint the ceiling light shade to match the wall lights. Here are photos:

When this gets to its new home, I will take better photos so you can see the details. 

And I need to finish the roof but am a bit stumped on that. You can see I gave it a flat roof, which I will paint to sort of match the roof tiles, but I don't know how to finish off the top edges where the tiles meet the flat bit. Would you put straight strips of flashing/lead? I was going to stick on overlapped tiles, like the corners, but not sure about that. Any hints would be greatly appreciated.

And now, the reason I feel spoilt is my sister and mum went to Kensington Dollshouse Fair last month and came home with many amazing things. Too many I think! I took some quick photos so you can see:

Cute little Veronique Lux toys! I wanted one of her monkeys as our little girl had a toy monkey, which now sits on our bed, and I just wanted one in mini too.

Plus a birdcage! The additional bird and Francine Coyon fishing creel were gifts from my sister.

A Jane Harrop 1:24 bathroom. It looks adorable.

Beautiful Glasscraft cranberry glass:

Alison Davies chairs (there is an additional one I didn't photograph) and sofa:

Kitchen utensils from the Little Dollhouse Company: (that bottle brush is my favourite!!)

And these Robert Dawson Modelroom dormer windows (there are four). Tossing up using these for my chateau, but more likely they will go on my future scratch built Beacon Hill (I actually purchased these and just got mum and sister to collect them). I would need an additional one of I used them for my chateau.

Did you all get some mini work done? I hope you found the time and inclination. Starting is the hardest part isn't it?? Enjoy the rest of your weekend. Xxx

Saturday, May 27, 2017

More Mountfield changes!

Hello all on a bleary cold Victorian autumn day. Thought I'd show an update photo of the arch installed in the Mountfield bathroom, although it needs a little puttying and painting. Unfortunately the card bent a little where the arch meets the wall, but not much I can do about that. Sorry it's so dark. It's a very dreary day here.

Also thinking I'll change the loungeroom wallpaper. What do you think? It's warmer and more old-timey, and more along the lines of what I think should be there. 

Here you can also see my carnival glass pieces and a new cabinet I purchased for here (it looks quite orange doesn't it?).

I am also thinking of changing the wallpaper in the front bedroom. These stripes are the wrong colour - imagine them in green. The alternative is the same wallpaper as currently there (Itsy Bitsy Mini) but in the green.

I really need to stop making changes to this house so I can move it out to start on other projects. To be honest, I'd like to start from scratch and make an English Edwardian townhouse in a Sid Cooke Highgate and do the Mountfield in 1940s style, but too late for that at this stage. Plus I can't afford the Highgate. Hope you are having a great weekend everyone. 

Monday, May 8, 2017

Sydney Miniatures Fair

Hi all. It's been a very busy month getting ready for the Sydney Miniatures Fair and I haven't done anything much other than preparing for the show - which, for the record, was a success!

And my purchases:
Margaret Croswell's beautiful porcelain:

Some 3D printed carnival glass and radio from Minis by Twinmum and a crocheted tea cosy by Gwen from Ballarat:

And some mini knitting by Lynda'z Handiworx I think it is (lost her card in the post-show mess):

The pink thing is a hot water bottle cover in case you couldn't quite tell. I also picked up some furniture which I'll post on a day when I am thinking a little clearer! Hope you are all well and that the week is kind to you. Xx

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

ACTME Miniatures Fair, Canberra

Hi all. Weekend just gone, my mum and I made the drive over the hills to Canberra for the annual miniatures fair. We had a lovely (but short) weekend and caught up with some lovely people there. A big shout out to the great members of the ACT Miniatures Enthusiasts group who were very friendly and helpful and enthusiastic.

I was on a very limited budget, but did come home with some goodies. A ceramic doggy very much like my little Tilly dog. Not really a dollhouse acquisition (no dog is that shiny!! Especially ours who loved mud) but sometimes you just have to put these things into your mini house just because you have to. And a kitty as a gift for a friend (I thought it would be cute on the mantle). A beautiful quilted cushion made by the very talented Dawn (I think she only sells at shows) and a hat that Dawn was selling for a friend which only cost me 50 cents! The hat *may* go in a 1:24 house (it's a little large) and the cushion will go in my (future) mens store.

Some books from Michelle's Miniatures: Shipwrecks and nudie postcards for the mens store mentioned above, and notebooks maybe for my French shop and my Coxwolds.

And lastly, some silk threads for tassels and mini cotton reels (I am hoping to dye the cream thread), as well as some cashmere thread to try mini knitting or crochet one day. I was pretty happy about these threads as I have wanted some for ages and it's really expensive online, but I want more colours. Need to keep looking at the shows!

Hope you are all well. I need to head off and do some work now!

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Mountfield and French chateau progress

Well, here in Oz, another weekend is almost over. Where does it go?? I spent a good part of this afternoon scraping off the wall tiles in the old Mountfield bathroom which wasn't a huge drama, but one of those jobs I am just too lazy to bother with! In case you were wondering how I did it, I just tore off what I could of the tiles (paper with a shiny plastic coated surface), using a craft knife to get under the edges, then wiping a damp cloth over the paper residue. When it got damp enough, it just kind of rubbed off (using the cloth and finger nails). The floor tiles were another matter. They stayed where they were and I put the floor boards over the top. Problem 1: the floor boards were a different colour to the original ones in the other rooms (but I stained them all anyway, but even with the stain, the new boards are a slightly different colour); and 2) I stupidly put the floor boards running in the opposite direction to the rest of the house. Never mind. With a rug, I am not sure it is something you will notice.

This room doesn't really have a use yet. I am not much into kids' rooms but I do have a few little boys toys that I could've used here had I thought to put a boys wallpaper in there, rather than flowers. I have a little cot from my very first dollhouse, made from a kit, and it is white and blue, hence could've put that in there. So I am thinking either a child's room with the cot repainted, or a sewing/other room, similar to my music room I had at the back where the new bathroom was relocated to. (And yes the ceiling has scabby marks I need to fill and paint)

I have also been doing some work on the French chateau, mainly the salon, entry and courtyard which are all on the ground floor, and some exterior work. Here you can see the entry with stairs my husband helped build. This room will have a door on the right side, leading to the salon and I was going to have a matching door at the back leading under the stairs. My thoughts were that this would be visually very busy, as the two doors would be very close together and ornate. So I could put a niche on the stair wall (but they're not entirely my thing) or a smaller, plainer door (utilitarian). If I do a door, it could open and reveal a secret passage, or even a secret world! It's only a small space though - about 12cm wide and 10cm deep. What are your thoughts? Any crazy, whacky ideas??

Hope your weekend has been a good one. Xx

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Mountfield bathroom update

Hi all. Happy Sunday! I did get some done on this project a couple of weeks ago but have not progressed since then. You may recall I was waiting on white tiles. When they arrived, I realised I needed cream tiles. Sigh. Fortunately I had *just* enough in my leftovers (from the kitchen) to finish the borders same as the original bathroom. Some of the fittings and accessories are glued in now, and a new hole drilled for the light. Still a few things to be done as you can see. I was going to use a different top edging tile. There was one with the set that had a scalloped edge, but it had white on the negative side of the scallop. Given the patterned border tile is cream not white, I thought this was odd. And disappointing. I wasn't going to attempt to cut the white bits off the scalloped tile, so just went with the thin one instead.

It may not have been wise, but I carried the tile across the front of the bath. I think I will add a border to fill in the gap along the top egde of the bath so it doesn't look so odd. But I am tired and today I have run out of steam!

Although it is harder to fit in all the things I want to fit in, I like the bathroom here better than at front of the house.

And before I leave you be, I want to thank everyone who left a kind comment to my previous post. It is nice to have the support and words of advice, and to know that I am not alone is reassuring. It is hard to find the right words sometimes! Take care everyone!

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Nothing to do with miniatures - read at own risk!

I have had an awful 6 months, dealing with the loss of my little princess Tilly. It follows about 6 years of being bored and miserable in my employment. Also, I am really bad at sleeping. This morning I took a walk as soon as I woke up as a pamphlet about sleep habits says it's really useful for getting into good sleep patterns and reducing depression. I have known for years about blue light and orange light and patterns due to seeing a sleep specialist but I guess I just get lazy. I wonder "why bother?". Then today I said mean things about an overweight woman I saw with a respirator. I was sitting here, enjoying a Friday afternoon vodka (apple! Mmmm!) when I realised that part of the self-hate, misery thing is probably partially due to my judgement of others and myself. I know how hard it is to lose weight. I am not fat, but I have a higher body fat percentage than I'd like. I have made the new year's resolution for the last few years to not judge people, and I largely kept that up, but I didn't make a resolution this year. I think I need to commit to that again this year - to not judge others and also not judge myself. I don't know that lady's circumstances. I know life can be really hard. I know that bad things happen to good people, and good things happen to bad people. I don't even know what triggered this thought process. All I know is that I need to change my thoughts and be happier. Anyone got something they'd like to say? Any resolutions you'd like to try out, even though we're in February?

Blogger advice

Hi all. Thankyou to those lovely bloggers who responded with some advice. Karin found these instructions, fortunately:

Worked perfectly! The issue was, on my ipad, the pencil icon was hidden from view as the web page is wider than my ipad screen - it is on the far right. So if you are having problems too, try scrolling sideways in case your icons are hidden.

Also, there is an orange button at the bottom right of the page (the home page where you make all your changes, have your blog list etc) to provide feedback. I know it probably doesn't get read but do it anyway. I have. And they did change a lot of the annoying Pinterest features they introduced last year after receiving feedback, so maybe they do listen. Who knows???

Enjoy your day everyone!

Monday, February 6, 2017

Another tiresome Blogger question

Hi all. I am wondering how you add a new blog to your reading list. Does anyone know? There doesn't appear to be any way of doing this and a google search resulted in instructions for the old format. Of course. Sigh.

I am in a yahoo group and someone asked about whether people still read blogs and they seem to be less popular than they were. I answered that I think the constant updates and format changes frustrated people, given the changes often made things more difficult to operate. I am HATING the new blogger account page. Anyway, that's my 2c! Hope someone can shed some light for me!

Have a great day!

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Mountfield update

Hi all. Happy Australia Day for those in Oz who celebrate it. I have been trying to get a little work done. The husband is sleeping. I got about as much tiling done as I could. Now I need to wait for some plain white tiles to arrive. I will tile this room much the same as the original bathroom, but I have made the tiles 1 tile shorter. In hindsight, this may not have been a good idea as the plain wallpaper (which I will paint over) may be too short, leaving a gap between it and tiles. We will see how we go. If all else fails, I can rip out the wallpaper and replace with some longer pieces. 

Not sure about my yellow base tile. I would've used dark green but you can't get matching ones. So I thought I'd try yellow.

Sorry for the dark and dull photos. Afternoon light.

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Mountfield renovations continued

So I went ahead yesterday and stuck in walls for an enclosed shower and a little arch over the tub. Ignore the fact that the arch is very wonky. I will recut it later, after the tiles are glued in. The end wall of the shower is also not glued so I can tile inside the shower. Although now I don't think I'll have enough tiles. Anyway, I think I like it. As pointed out by Karin, there was a lack of height and focal points. I am a little worried that the shower/tub wall will overpower the left wall, but I think by the time the mirror is stuck to the wall with the shelf and other items, it will help balance it out. And Elizabeth's idea of a light in the tub enclosure is a good one too, especially as you'll get a view of it through the open doors from the front of the house (apologies to those who don't like their bathroom fixtures in full view of open doors!).

FYI I purchased the wicker laundry basket from Wicker Miniatures on Etsy:

Really awesome stuff! And as for the Coxwolds, I sliced through the wallpaper on the shop wall and pulled that warped wall out. My husband helped me cut and glue some thin MDF to it and we weighted it down, so now it's flat and stuck back in the shop! Fortunately, as the wallpaper has a busy stripe pattern, the (rough) cut through the paper won't be very noticable once it's properly glued back down.

Happy mini-ing! I am off to paint the real life house....

PS I think I'll be sad to see the wallpaper in this room disappear. Perhaps I will purchase some more for a future project.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Mountfield renovations

I decided finally to bite the bullet and start the Mountfield bathroom relocation. It has so far been pretty quick and painless, although whatever glue I used to stick the bathroom sink and toilet down with was dynamite to remove. I haven't removed the wallpaper in the new bathroom as most of it will have tile covering it and whatever isn't covered will just be painted or repapered.

I can't decide on layout as it is a large and sort of awkward shape. I want to build the bath into an alcove and have an enclosed shower, like this from a vintage apartment above a shop I visited a few years ago:

 So this layout would work best (shower at front right) but it makes the toilet/sink space a bit squishy:

These ones not so good:

What are your thoughts? Would like some opinions please.

No real progress on the Coxwolds as I am still waiting on an order for architrave and skirting which I placed in November....

I have made a wall cabinet for the shop, but my foamcore wall (wallpapered on the right) has warped, so I need to somehow straighten it. And that is all the wallpaper I have so can't replace the wall.

Enjoy your weekend everyone.