Friday, April 24, 2009

So proud of my mom!

My mom is one of those people that is not crafty at all. She can sew a bit just to mend or adjust her clothes, but that's it. With her miniature hobby, she buys anything she likes, or relies on me to make it for her.

Today she called me to talk about some miniatures she wanted to buy, and suddenly told me, "I've got something to show you!" And she sent me this pic of this bathrobe:

I told her that I liked it, and asked when did she buy it. And then she said "I didn't buy it, I made it!". She saw a picture of a bathrobe on an online-shop and thought what we do-it-ourselves people tend to think frequently: "I can do that". She used an old towel, and it took her about an hour, with pattern and all. She was so happy with her accomplishment, and she asked if I really believed it was bought. I really did think so.

Parents tend to be proud of their offspring. Today is my moment to be proud of my mom!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

A locket? No, a picture frame!

It's funny how sometimes everyday objects can find their way inside a dollhouse as decorative items.

When I found these book lockets from MousyBrown, I knew I had to have them. I actually used one of them to make a locket; I put a picture of Edgar Allan Poe on one side and a piece of parchment with the phrase "Shall be lifted... Nevermore" on the other. I was considering making a duplicate to sell it, when my mother suggested me to put it inside my dollhouse as picture frame.

Wow! What a neat idea! Actually, if you have watched "Sweeney Todd" by Tim Burton, there are a couple of scenes where Benjamin Barker is looking at a picture frame with this book-shape that has pictures of his wife and baby on it.

So, that's what I did. I removed the bail loop, and I chose a couple of pictures from the movie "Underworld: Rise of the Lycans". Lucian on one side and Sonja on the other. Hey, why are you surprised? I told you the occupant of my dollhouse was a vampire, didn't I?

Monday, April 13, 2009

Hand-made rugs

Although it is nice to have beautiful commercial miniature rugs in your dollhouse, sometimes the ready-made rugs don't fit in your color scheme. And that is a problem when you don't know how to knit or crochet (like in my case).

Always on the search for accessories for my dollhouse, I found littlesassymini's shop. Daisy makes lovely hand-made rugs at an unbeatable price, and she is willing to work with you if you have a special request.

So I contacted her, and she made a fantastic and unusual design for my vampire's dollhouse studio:

As you can see, it looks great with the rest of the decoration.

Daisy was wonderful to work with, sending me pics of different designs so I could choose my favorite, and she made and sent my rug in a record time! Keep her in mind when you have to fill that little piece of floor in your dollhouse...

Friday, April 10, 2009

Waiting for a new miniature book

Following my interest about Sue Heaser books, I just ordered "Doll's House Do It Yourself - Curtains".

Although it comes a little late to help me with my windows, I'm sure it will be an interesting reading, and I'll sure learn a new tricks. My mom wanted me to make some curtains for her, so you never know...

Friday, April 3, 2009

Labels for your jars

It's amazing how a tiny detail such a simply label can improve the appearance of an object.

When I begun to create the magic studio for my vampire dollhouse occupant, I used the famous trick to stain white regular paper with an used tea bag to give a label the feeling of antique parchment. This was the result:

And so this was the appearance of all my glass jars.

But then came Dead Spider. I had followed her work for a long time, since before last Halloween, and I was delighted when she became part of the Etsy's Dark Side Street Team, from which I am a member too. Her labels were fang-tastic! Unfortunately for me, I had no use for them, since I don't have a curiosities cabinet. But then one day she posted in her shop a sheet of miniature labels! I couldn't resist, and wrote to her, asking if it was possible to customize the labels with titles of my choice. She was very accomodating with my request, made them for me and send them.

I was so happy when I opened the mail box today and found an envelope with her name! The labels were delicious, and I couldn't resist to apply a couple of them to my jars to share them here:

Much better now, right?
It's a happy coincidence that we both like to use the same font for the labels!

And to think I still have 18 labels more to play with... I'm going to have so much fun this weekend!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Review - A book you need to have

Since my personal projects seem to be a bit slow these days, I'd like to share a fabulous find that will make the delights of every miniaturist, especially for the ones who love to craft.

I don't even remember how I found this book - I think it was a recommendation by Amazon, after I searched for miniatures. But it's one of those discoveries that simply have to be shared and praised to extenuation.

Sue Heaser is the author, and the book is called "Making Doll's House Miniatures with Polymer Clay".

The title says it all; you'll find a lot of projects to create everyday objects that, no matter what kind of dollhouse you have, will fit into your rooms: clocks, candle holders, plants, flowers, books, even a whole set of china (from plates to a tea set)!. You can find too recipes to make realistic food. It is filled with color pictures and easy to follow instructions, as well as tips to working with clay and lists of materials you can use. Even if you don't craft, you'll be amazed by how beautifully this book has been put together.

Obviously, there are different grades of difficulty in this book. And remember that practice makes perfection. Don't expect to craft a whole dinner in just one hour if you have never touched polymer clay before! Don't get discouraged. Begin with the simple projects and when you are happy with the results, begin to challenge yourself. Also, seek the opinion of someone else when you finish something. We are our worst critics, so it helps to have a friend or a family member to give you some feedback.

This book also gives you the tools to put your brain to work and come up with your own ideas and designs. If you only want to buy one book of miniature crafts, this one is the Oscar winner.

Although it may be difficult to believe, everything in this cover is made out of clay, except the table and the curtains.