Wednesday, 24 November 2021

Small Progress Report


I've been working, slowly, on creating some more stock for my Christmas stall. The tiny green Christmas trees are made from chenille sticks and glitter, while the brown and white wooden ones were inspired by a Scandinavian Christmas ornament site. The leaping deer, two different kinds, are inexpensive laser cut ornaments from the $store, painted white, mounted on bases, and then dressed up with micro-glitter in white. Some of these will go into the stall, while others will go into my shop in a box, for whenever we are able to have or visit miniature shows again....

There are also two kinds of tiny laser-cut Christmas trees that I will make up for the stall; I need to experiment with the green glitter I have and see if it is small enough!

It is slow going; I think I am worn out  (more than!) a little by the Covid closures. Our small mini group has missed  two Wednesday meetings due to Real Life, but we were able to get together today. It is so helpful, tired of the restrictions as we are, to be able to meet up in person. We hope to work together again next week.

Thursday, 28 October 2021

Lots of Boxes and Beads!

We were able to get together yesterday afternoon, and I spent it making boxes, and then today I made more boxes. I also picked up some $ store beads that are very attractive for making more Christmas balls from.

My workspace is shrinking! That, I expect, is something most of us who do miniatures are very familiar with, indeed. I was able to access a lot of excellent printies for boxes, thanks to Amberatti.blogspot a number of years ago. They were professionally printed on photo paper, and I really like the effect. Not cut out yet from that sheet are tinsel, angel hair, snow, and lightbulb boxes, so I have a few more (!) boxes to work on over the weekend.

The little market stall now has shelves inside, as well as a counter, cut down from vintage wooden venetian blind slats; they are sort of pre-aged, and I love the golden brown colour, which will work beautifully with my planned colour scheme. More boxes on the shelves, but these need their dividers as well as the decorations to go inside them. At this point, the plan is that this front part of the stall will be removable, held in place with some tiny, powerful rare earth magnets, to allow access to the interior. The roof will also lift off. However, as we all know, plans are known to change....

I hope there will be lights! Once a week I check the Christmas supplies already appearing in our $ stores; the current crop of LED lights run off batteries, but I'm hoping that I can find some tiny lights that operate with coin batteries, as they take up minimal space.

I also plan to (gasp!) glue down all the items "available" in this shop! Those of you who have been visiting the blog for some years will recall that I don't usually glue stuff down. But these bits are so tiny that, should the cat walk by the finished stall, everything is likely to fall off the shelves.


Thursday, 21 October 2021

A Few Things for the Christmas Stall

It's not all that much, but I did make a few little things yesterday afternoon during our mini get-together; a crate of pine cones, and one of moss balls, as well as some tinsel packages. It is slow going; however, the shops here are started to sell Christmas items, which means I have to go into town at least once a week to see what I can use of the new arrivals in making minis. I need to go down the trail behind my house and pick some more alder cones.

Today I picked up another box of laser-cut mini ornaments. I already have one, but there were a lot of small pieces that can be used in miniature, as standing decor items. Also, Louise had pointed out to me a set of three very fine bead chains, that will fit very nicely on a miniature Christmas wreath or garland. A few more cut-outs are waiting to be assembled, as well as some tiny wooden and beaded figurines in the making.

And what is this, you might wonder? I had shown Marilyn a companion piece to the wooden shoe workshop, a candle workshop from the same historical era. The workshops are two of a series in the Dutch magazine, Poppenhuizen en Miniaturen, that ran in 1999. I have only two of these, the klompenmakerij and the candle factory. They were all designed to fit into the same basic room box, just individually designed; the very first one was a school. 

This is a table that held the dipped, paired candles to allow them to harden. It is in a new state, as I would likely age the piece when (or if!) I get an opportunity to build that room box as well. I had another birthday this week, and this is my birthday gift from Marilyn. The rods are removable, and fit across the beams which are also removable. (The candle factory photo in the magazine is very dark and dreary-looking, as it likely would have been.) The tray is also loose. But I MUST finish the many projects I currently have on the go first!

The floor of the market stall has been painted; beige with cream and pale green spatters. The shelves have been cut, and will soon be installed, but I need the Carpenter-in-Chief's assistance with the shelves and screwing the MDF building together. In the meantime, I can make shop stock.


Friday, 15 October 2021

There's a Lot of Stuff to Finish....


The fourth Serendipity rug is finished; I think it has something of a Victorian air, perhaps due to its colours.

Fiddly, but I've been saving a printie of these boxes for years; they are from the December 1996 issue of Nutshell News, and I think I need two more copies. They're fiddly, but if you follow the instructions carefully (!), they go together quite well. I need more small beads for ornaments....

The Dutch door is now glued into the back wall of the wooden shoe workshop; although it won't really show, I needed to fix it securely in order to prevent it swinging open (and breaking off) if the workshop is ever displayed. (I'm feeling a "bit" worried that there will ever be shows again.)

And a few "fancy" tree ornaments, which I hope to display on a hanging rack on the inside of the door to the Christmas market stall. I have still to design a sensible rack, and many more ornaments need to be made. I wonder where I can find bags of mixed beads? This may be a chance to roam around a few second-hand shops, although I am worried about getting Covid; I'm due for a booster, but they are currently only giving booster to seniors in nursing home settings, and to people with underlying conditions. And winter is coming....

Monday, 11 October 2021

The Christmas Market Stall Has Doors

The doors are Faux, as access will have to be through the front opening and the roof, which has to be removable.

Inside and out. Today meant a lot of waiting for both paint and glue to dry, so this is about all the progress there is.

The wooden shoe factory is in the process of having the door framed in on the back, and a stoop installed there. Again, waiting for glue to dry....


Saturday, 9 October 2021

Christmas Market Stall, Continued

This is the front portion of the Christmas market stall I began a couple of weeks ago. I got caught up in Real Life things, and haven't had much of a chance to work further on it.

The stall will sell Christmas decorations, of all kinds, many for dressing Christmas trees. The colour scheme is cream and pale green, with (hopefully!) gold accents. Today I cut out and decoupaged some of the "paintings" on the front of the stall; the printies came from the January 2012 issue of Dolls House Nederland. The take-off for the design of the stall came from my memories of old carousels, which are always beautifully pastel in colour and very vividly accented. The space between the two round appliques are going to have the shop name, once I think of the perfect one....

There is almost another Serendipity rug finished, this one in reds and greys, accented with black. A few other items for the Christmas stall are in various stages of work, and I hope to get some of these ready to show on the blog; we are once again in our area in a Covid lock-down, which is sitting badly with a lot of people (all those, like me, fully vaccinated!), who are not even allowed to have family to share our Canadian Thanksgiving dinner on Monday. My family lives too far away to visit, but there are a lot of unhappy New Brunswickers around right now. The news this morning, in the paper, is that we are likely looking at another Red Level, i.e. complete lock-down, very soon unless the numbers of Covid cases go down drastically.

The supermarkets are reporting that the sale of small turkeys is very high, while the larger turkeys are not being sold. The carpenter-in-chief and I are sharing a chicken....


Sunday, 26 September 2021

Christmas Market Stall Is Begun

 Our small FAME mini group is going to do a group project over the next few weeks, as each of us is going to create a Christmas Market Stall, in time to display for the upcoming holiday season. Marilyn cut out the carcass of the stalls for us, and it will be interesting to see what interpretations we come up with.

Colour scheme is cream on the inside, and for the shelves, with a pale green for the outside, the same colour used some years ago for my Christmas room box. I've been checking out ideas on the internet, and have come up with a sketch for my stall. The roof will be either corrugated or shingled, with snow on it, of course. There are going to be Christmas lights around the roof line, as well as an evergreen swag. The stall is intended to have a fabric awning, and a faux "metal" roll-up front opening. Across the front will be a natural wood shelf, for display and commerce. The door into the stall will be suggested, i.e. it will not actually open. There will be a sidewalk with a couple of extra display surfaces, and snow and icicles, of course!

I've been collecting items for the stall for some years now, and this rather poor photo shows a bunch of them. Some are components to make things, but there are two wooden bow-type wooden decorations as well as a very tiny shaved wooden tree, which I bought in The Netherlands years ago for this stall, at the Arnhem show. It takes me time to actually make things, sometimes....

A number of these items will require painting, as the current paint job is a bit slapdash. There are several sets of ornaments, purchased and gifts, that require display boxes. I saved foil wrappers from Christmas chocolates, years ago, which will be rolled and packaged as gift wrap for sale.

This stall sells Christmas decor items, and I had made some floral and candle arrangements for the stall last year. I need to decide how wide and tall my shelves will be, hence everything being pulled out. Now I get to go back through my large collection of magazines, and make some of the perfect items to go into the shop that I've been considering for years.

 We hope to get together to work on them this coming week, but may have to do it by Skype rather than in person, as Covid is rearing its ugly head again in our area. We're back to limited gatherings and masks being required indoors.

This should be another fun project, small enough to require only a reasonable amount of time -- I hope!