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Sunday, 28 February 2016

Fourth Time Lucky? A Multi-day Assembly Project

Today, I began assembling a flower/plant kit I purchased last year at the Kensington show. The kit is for a St. Johnswort (Hypericum) plant, a plant that is still part of the medicinal plant pharmacopeia of European and European-derived cultures today. It absolutely had to go into my Tudor apothecary garden.

The kit is by Pascale Garnier, who makes truly beautiful flowers, to judge by photos on the net. I purchased it from Art of Mini, a Dutch-German miniature business, for a very high price (I thought!), 14 Euros or around 20 Canadian dollars at the current exchange rate. So I was somewhat disappointed to find the kit consisted of what you see in the photo below:

Which is, of course, sideways and which I can't figure out how to turn! It consists of a plastic bag of tissue paper leaves and 7 thin wires, 4 longer, loose wires, another plastic bag with tiny flower shapes in tissue paper, and a straight pin, along with a foam rectangle and the instructions, in 4 languages. The kit is only for the berries, not the flowers; fortunately, I know there is a tutorial for those on the net.  There were supposed to be 2 sizes of wires, but they were all the same thickness. As it happens, I had the same kind of paper-covered wire in my supplies, in the larger thickness, so I re-cut the stem wires out of that. One wire produced all 7 of the required stems. By the way, this is going to be a multi-day assembly project, so stay tuned!

My thicker wire is the short piece; I will use the thin wires left over to make the stems for the flower heads. So the way you make the berries is as follows: dip the wire end into glue and allow to dry;  now repeat that step. Paint the base green (these berries are about 1 mm in diameter!), and allow to dry. Paint top in shades from coral through red to nearly black, allow to dry. Now gloss varnish these berries and allow to dry. Shape the tissue floral shapes and pierce the centre with a  pin and thread up the stem to just below the berry, and allow to dry. Then cut the berry assembly off about 2 or 3 mm below the leaf, and repeat the process until you have no more thin wire left.

Do you see why this is going to be a multi-day project? I am now officially crazy, according to my family. Oh well, the sacrifices we make for miniatures! Below is a photo of the glue berries on the end of the wires;

They have to dry upside-down to achieve the correct shape. I do have a couple of dozen painted, glossed and supplied with leaves; unfortunately, the paper covering the wire tends to unravel, so the other dozen stems and berries are glued and waiting to dry....

Until tomorrow!


  1. las plantas llevan mucho trabajo para conseguir un aspecto real,estoy segura que con paciencia,conseguirás unas preciosas plantas de Hypericum!!!

  2. Oh Marijke - we always knew you were crazy already - you are a miniaturist, after all. It kind of goes with the territory! - Marilyn D.

  3. What detailed work you have will be a little work of art when completed and the jewel of the Tudor apothecary garden.