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Monday, 21 September 2015

Sad News

My brother-in-law became very ill over the weekend, and we lost him this morning. As the funeral is in Montreal on Saturday, I will have to miss Camp MiniHaHa. Fortunately, good friends will take my donations to camp, and bring the project components back for me, as well as giving a ride to a lady who usually travels with me, from Halifax airport.

There will be no postings, likely, for a week or so; when we get back, I will post photos of my gift exchange items. And when my friends get back, will let you know what they did at camp.

Friday, 18 September 2015

Lectern and Medieval Book and Pamphlet

It's dark, and the flash was not quite as good as I had hoped. Anyways, I made up a lectern stand, and found a kit I had forgotten about, for an illuminated medieval book and pamphlet. The book is open on the stand, while the pamphlet is on the little fretwork stand, now sitting on top of the book truck.
The stand and small bookshelf are painted and stained, and I used a metallic gel pen to draw a design on the print holder.

One of the sets of books I was given is a set of 10 non-printed books, with the most gorgeous gold spine titles and decorations. They should look good in the vignette. Another gift set is the series of Harry Potter novels; for now, they will go into the vignette, but they may move to the nursery shop when I get it finished.

No minis tomorrow, as I have other things that need doing all day. I hope to get back to minis on Sunday.

Thursday, 17 September 2015

....Still More Books and a Bookstand

I put together a few more books yesterday evening, modern books with mat board "insides" and a few thicker balsa wood (with painted edges) books, as well as some pocket books. More book covers await assembly, along with the mat board and balsa I am using for their faux pages.

This delicate little bookstand is a kit from Art of Mini, and was a gift from Dollshouse and Miniature Scene magazine a year or so ago. It was a bit fiddly to put together, as the wood is very thin indeed. I ended up using FabriTac, an instant glue my seamstress daughter uses, as wood glue just wouldn't work. The piece was laser cut, so will get a coat of painted "stain" once everything is dry. Another UFO done, it will hopefully display an open book with wonderful illustrations - I just have to either make or acquire it! The stand did come with a Victorian cookbook printie, and while I probably will make it, it really isn't the sort of thing my Steampunk antiquarian bookseller would display; a set of Leonardo da Vinci machine drawings would be much more in "period".

Wednesday, 16 September 2015

Books, Books, and Still More Books

Yeah, today I went back to minis and here are just some of the books required for my Camp MiniHaHa vignette this year. I do hope there will be lots of books in the tidbits to help me fill the shelves in my antique book, print and map shoppe. And just to fill shelves up, I also made some faux books, which will go on bottom shelves, at least until I can make "real" books to fill things up.

This morning I made over 40 balsa books with painted page edges; some gold, some red, and some white. Then I did a bunch of mat board books; these are more modern, and may eventually move into a nursery shop I need to finish up. The thing is that I need books with spine titles, as they are mostly packed onto shelves, and a lot of the nice printies available free on the internet have no titles....

I have at least another 75 or so covers ready to glue onto "pages", plus a book stand to finish. I may do the latter tonight; tomorrow is my volunteer work day, which means no minis, as there won't be time.

Guess I'll make up some more mat board books until I get tired of gluey fingers.

Not all the books are homemade; I was given some books by friends, and they will also go into the vignette. Most of this lot, however, was made by me. I think I must be crazy!

Sunday, 13 September 2015

Short Interlude from Miniatures

It's been busy  here lately with developing and then making my tidbit and exchange gift items for CMHH this year, photos of which I'll post just before I leave for camp. I'm especially pleased with the gift exchange items, as they came out exactly as I hoped they would. For the next couple of days, I have to finish a pair of small quilting projects (put aside as mini ideas came bubbling out of my subconscious), as our guild meetings are starting up again on Tuesday. Once those are done, it will be back to minis, as I would like to get as much as possible done before I head off for Camp MiniHaHa on Sept. 23.

One of the projects I'd like to tackle ahead of time, is creating a bay display window for the altered books vignette we'll be making, which will require some research on the internet - or is that wasting time, as I'm likely to get distracted by other things I'll come across? If anyone can direct me to a good bay window tutorial, you may just save me hours of looking....

There are about a hundred book covers waiting to be made into books. I get a little too much "help" from the cat, who insists on lying down right on top of whatever I'm trying to do; glue sticks, tiny book covers and their insides and cat fur just don't mix. She is on my lap right now, and objects every time my typing hands touch an ear tip.

Back soon!

Saturday, 5 September 2015

Panelled Wall

Thanks to a dadasdollhouse tutorial, I was able to produce pretty good wall panelling from cardboard packaging. I caught the recycling just before the truck picked it up! The tutorial panelling was painted white and then antiqued, but I wanted darker Victorian colours and chose to go with a warm brown colour.

The first paint coat was terra cotta brushed on, then dark burnt umber dry-brushed on followed by a sponging with a coarser sea sponge, in the same shade. Following that, I used a small sea sponge and antique gold; once that was dry, I brushed all over with a watered-down brown iron oxide wash to tone everything down. The last coat was satin varnish.

The colour I was aiming at was close to the cherry stain I used on the book cart; I think it came very close. This method of creating panelling for a vignette that won't be much played with once it is done, is really inexpensive (except in terms of time!), and quite effective. Dadasdollhouse has a lot of really good furnishing tutorials, all made with recycled cardboard packaging. The instructions are provided in both the original Italian and an English translation. I will likely use this method again and again, and will be going back to try some of the other tutorials she provides. There is even an upright piano, complete with candelabras either side of the keyboard, made from recycled cardboard packaging!

I am still making books.....

Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Finished a U.F.O. and Auditioning Walls and Floors

The steam punk items are increasing: the piles of lumber in the foreground are two bookcases, which I will put together once I have the insert for the Steam Punk vignette made. Although there is 8 1/2" of clearance (24 cm) in the plan, I am concerned that if I build them now, they may have to be taken apart to fit!

For the wallpaper, I've chosen an antiqued script letter. This will appear above wall panelling, and should be quite effective. The flooring will be the brown and tan harlequin print; nice and dull in colour, but with a somewhat lively pattern. It was also in the back of my mind that paper won't add any appreciable thickness to the floor.

A post or so back, I mentioned a kit for a book and magazine rack, made of mahogany, created by Cheryl Kerfoot (well-known Canadian miniaturist). The kit went together like a dream, no problems whatsoever; it still needs to be varnished, though. The 4 magazines and 5 books were part of the kit. This should look good somewhere in the vignette. My hope is to make a bay window, in order to give me a bit of display space, for items like this. And bonus, I finished a UFO (Unfinished Object).

In my stash I have another small bookshelf, with a tilted shelf. I hope to find space for it in the vignette as well. And I do have some books made, but I have to make many, many more....

However, for the next few days, I have to work on items for the tidbits and gift exchange for Camp MiniHaHa in 3 weeks. The tidbits should be done tonight; that just leaves the gift exchange, for which I have an idea, just need to make a prototype to see if it is do-able.