Friday, 28 July 2017

Sneaky Little Me....Working Away....

Recall me mentioning the dollhouse I'm working on for my little ones school? I've made some progress! It's the Ikea Flisat dollhouse.  At $40 its an economical build to end up giving away, not to mention that its solid wood and easy to construct.  I'm hoping all this work will fetch a good price at the silent auction.

I primed and painted the walls, along with staining the floors, prior to assembling the house.  The stained floors are just the wood floors provided, nothing special added.  I stained them a medium walnut to disguise the rather large grain of the wood.  I'm pretty sure it only bothers me!  Despite sanding the wood, it was a struggle to get good stain coverage.  I assume the wood is treated with something.....not stain friendly!!!!  5 coats of stain and sanding in between later, it looks great.

I papered some of the walls.  The "brick" is scrapbook paper from Michael's and the blue paper is normally rather expensive craft paper that somehow found its way to Dollarama, and I paid $2 for 2 very large sheets of it.

The bathroom is awaiting a vanity and sink from China (eBay).  I had the tub and toilet in my stash, but I need to paint the toilet seat and gold accents, along with the tub taps.  The accessories here will all be white and modern.

Maybe even some mini macrame plant hangers for the corner! Depends on how crazy I plan to get.

The bedroom is still in the development stage.  I'm going with the mattress on top of a wood pallet base with simple wood floating bedside table.  The table is a keeper, but gussied up and the ottoman will be recovered.  The dresser that's there is a placeholder for now.  Not certain what I'm putting there!

There was supposed to be a dividing wall on the ground floor.  I removed it.  I prefer the open concept and it makes for easier play for little hands.  That hunk of half painted wood is a wall mounted cabinet that the TV will go on top of.  I'm covering the wood with aluminum sheeting.  I've also designed a new sofa for the space (the one you see is just a placeholder).  It's going to be grey velvet!  It will be slightly deeper then usual scale to allow for dolls of various sizes to sit comfortably.  And one of those napkin rings will become the coffee table, but I need the new couch in there to decide!

The left side of the ground floor will be an L-shaped kitchen I ordered on eBay, along with some tables and chairs.  I want to get it in so I can start the decorating.  I'm checking my mailbox everyday.

And these are some of the fabrics that I will be using! And no, I haven't gotten to purchasing my new sewing machine, so all that bedding will have to wait!

And then I'm stitching away when I can find a few minutes.  I have some pillows in the works and I'm slowly completing that rug of mine.  Nothing is more boring then stitching in a white background!

Saturday, 8 July 2017

Happy Weekend!

I hope the weather is good wherever you are and you get outside to enjoy the weekend!!

......and check out your local nurseries and greenhouses, its the season for fake grass!!

Sunday, 25 June 2017



In the fall I went to the Brampton Miniature show, where mini makers sell their old stock and some people off load their collection as they get out of the game.

At a table, by the door was an older lady who was selling off her excess minis.  I bought the Realife Miniatures piano kit from her too!  In a zip-lock baggie marked $5 was a table kit.  I was intrigued and she believed all the pieces were there plus extra legs.  What could I loose at that price!

The table kit was made by Harold Watson in 1989 for a miniature gathering.  I cannot begin to tell you how beautifully cut and prepared each piece of the table was made.  Everything fits together perfectly, which left me in awe.  Zero fit issues.  

My issue? This was clearly made for a workshop, so the instructions, while complete and accurate, needed "interpretation."  Let's just say I spent many evenings (months apart I might add) staring at it and trying to figure how the table would look and how the pieces fit together.  Mentally modeling....made easier with wine.  Hehehe.  Finally, it clicked and it made sense.  I glued it with high quality multi surface glue.  To ensure that when I glued the top to the base, and that I wouldn't glue it so I couldn't open it (major &*%&#*& panic attack as I glued it), I put wax paper slips of paper to ensure the glue at worst would adhere to the paper and not to the non-moving parts.  And it worked!! Table opens and closes to fit the leaf in like a charm.

Here is my Instagram post to see how it actually opens and closes.  It's pretty neat!

These are the instructions that guided me.  This was all that came in the baggie with the parts.  The drawings are to scale, so you can at least lay the pieces on the paper to see how they fit.

What to finish this table with?  Well, it was beautiful wood, but the table top pieces were cut from different pieces, so the grains did not all match up.  I selected the least matchy piece to be the leaf.  But, even then it didn't quite look right.  Instead of a natural finish I went with dark walnut.  I used Watco Danish Oil as a finish.  Unlike many oils, this does not sit on top of the wood, but rather, it sinks in (most oils are for food prep, so it doesn't sink in).  Danish Oil gives you great coverage and you can use a clear coat on top, or not.  I'm debating because I'm concerned with adding too much moisture to this thin delicate wood and risking warping.  No warping noted with the oil!

So there you have it!  I finished a project.  Only 3 Home Depot hunting trips and multiple trips to other hardware stores looking to find someone that had Danish Oil in stock.  But today I found it and I have a new table!

I think soldering a bed kit (I also got from the same lady) will be next in the the kit completion game.

Saturday, 24 June 2017

Hello Summer!

Hello Summer! In my mind I had posted quite a bit, but translating my thoughts to the written words is another issue.  If only the Blogger app reliably worked and the PicMonkey app let me watermark my pictures on my phone...then you'd hear more from me!

I'm still pondering my new build project.  And by ponder I mean, its in a box in a cupboard and I keep saving Instagram images for inspiration.  Hehehe....guess I better get moving on that!

What I have started in the Ikea Flisat dollhouse.  It's going to be for Miss Kitty's school's silent auction.  I've primed it and stained the floors.  Now its a matter of going through all my paint in the basement and deciding on what colours it will be.  It won't a traditional build with traditional finishes.  Much more modern a la @whimsy_woods or @minihome_co or @onebrownbear on Instagram.  It's what the mommy's of today want...a dollhouse that fits their decor.  So, since its a fundraiser piece, I will go with what will generate the most interest (and actually cost less then a traditional build).  So, its off to eBay for some of the furniture and the rest of the decor I will make.

Oh, and as I started to go on a bedding (sewing) Ikea Sy sewing machine died!! Many words were said that cannot be typed here as it malfunctioned as I sewed comforters. I would sew the same side twice just to get it to finish all the stitches.  It's a mechanical issue and when a $70 machine malfunctions, its hard to pay double that to fix it.  I've got my eye on a Brother machine at Costco!!

Mini mini mini time!!

But in the mean time, between Miss Kitty's school and gardening (and sitting outside at night and enjoying the weather).....there's always time to mini!!!

Keli's gorgeous notebook!!

Found some lovely green Rye pottery at an antique market a few weeks ago! 

At that same market I found some new beads (the red and yellow vases).  I also realized I hadn't made a new piece of furniture recently as I pulled out that dresser.

The other evening while I was sitting around stitching and my neck got sore, I went rooting through my minis and put together a kitchen scene.  The sink unit was a vintage piece I found at the Brampton show last fall.

That cast iron pan looks like a well seasoned pan, right? Wellllllll that's because I never cleaned the dirt out of it from the lot it came with at an antique show.  I feel kinda gross about it, but it looks like a convincing dirty pan (because it is!) it will stay....and now you will think I'm a mini slob.

I got a shout out in the Artisans In Miniature Emagzine (Issue 62) for my Janet Granger contest entry! I stitched her tiger rug.

And while on my vacation in May to Jamaica, I used my airplane time wisely and began stitching another rug by Janet Granger, call "Hannah".  Which I did not finish on the beach like I had planned! I quite like the pattern.

And then I started the "Tabriz" (allegedly "small" - I'd hate to see the large one, but I never read the dimensions on these things when I buy them). It's been slower to stitch because of the number of colour changes and frankly, I get bored! 

So my evenings have been filled with work, stitching, painting a dollhouse and hand stitching the pillows/comforters from the sewing machine disaster.  I look forward to showing you next time my progress on the charity build!

Monday, 22 May 2017

OMEGA 2017 Show

Just 2 short weeks ago I attended the Ontario Miniature Enthusiasts of the Guelph Area (OMEGA) annual show.  Since this was my second OMEGA show, I came prepared....and then threw the game plan to the wind when I got all mini-riled up.  Sigh

I started at Small Scale Showcase, run by the wonder Carol Couperthwaite.  Always nice to see familiar faces!  I purchased a Mini Fanaberia blender (hehe!!!).  The wooden utensils, salt and pepper and cutting board came from a Ukrainian artist she just started carrying.  Amazing work! I wanted the salad bowl the artist made, but the woman ahead of me grabbed it.  Grrr!

Then I popped over to see Liz at Grandpa's Doll House.  I got the amazing REAC George Nelson marshmallow couch.  It doesn't look terribly comfy, but its very stylish.  I grabbed a few other little bits, including Heidi Ott hats, veggies and jewelry findings.

At an estate table, I dug through some bins to find some fine, thin English leather, vintage wall paper, mother or pearl and a tiny wreath!

My punch quest continues, but I found a tiny leaf punch!  This means that I can hydrangea it up!! Patti T's Eclectic Petites doesn't have a website though.

Merriam's Miniatures (no website) had amazing rock bottom priced kits. $1.50 for each hygrangea kit.  It's not worth my while to punch....but, I don't like the leaves, so I'm adding to that.  And the welcome mat just had to come home with me!

Nancy at Sweet Somethings Miniatures makes amazing clay drinks (among other things, like goodie platters, veggies, etc.).  Check out some of the amazing furniture on her website.  

And no show can be complete without purchasing something from Lutie Anne Presley.  This little bench/stool is beautifully turned and finished.  I think I might order her harvest table in yellow now that I think about it.  She didn't have it at the show, but I keep coming back to that colour!  Her works are also available via Small Scale Showcase.

If you ever have the opportunity to purchase a kit made by Kim Stewart, I highly recommend it.  I previously completed her beach chair, and it was beautifully designed, fit together perfectly and was sturdy.  I will try (torture) to make the tiny pin cushion and the lovely wicker tray!

Do you do the "final lap" of a show?  Had I not, I would have missed Gunther's Miniatures beautiful wood pieces at The Dollhouse Shoppe table.  Gunther's Miniatures were a recent add to their store, handmade pieces using beautiful wood.  My picture does not do it justice!

So that was my haul!! Some of these kits will keep me busy during the summer.

I will be more involved with Miss Kitty's school going forward, so it will leave less time to mini (noooooo!!!!).  But I will squeeze it all in somehow.  I am currently planning her birthday, and like any crazy craft loving mother, I am crafting decor and games.  And I have only burned myself twice with the hot glue gun, fun times!! 

What else.....well, I'm stitching away at another Janet Granger rug.  We had a vacation to Jamaica recently and I stitched on the airplane.  My intentions to stitch on the beach did not materialize as soon as I found the bar and the lounge chair.  But, I did get lots of teeny tiny shells.

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

Mini Love

I bought a lightbox because it is kinda many party ideas!!  I was staring at the box, tucked in beside my mini projects, and I decided to combine the two.  Seems like a natural progression to me.

I made the two side tables and the coffee tables. Actually, I made them in late 2016, but they remained in a baggie on my work table for several months.  I just got around to making and gluing the legs on.

The tables are birch stained in a medium walnut.  The legs are made from brass rod.  The TOUGHEST part of the whole tables project was drilling millimeter by millimeter the holes for the legs.  You don't want to poke through the top side!

And I went to the OMEGA miniature show recently....and I cleaned up.  Zero self restraint.  Sigh.  I will post those pics soon!


  • Anglepoise lamp by David Provan - won via Pepper's giveaway...thank you!!
  • Ash tray - Atomic Miniature
  • Pineapple Drink - Something Sweet Miniatures
  • Sofa - vintage

Sunday, 7 May 2017

Mini Magic

Just playing around with my minis....nothing more fun!

The terrarium is filled with greenery and echeveria from Keli.  Also inside is moss, rocks and sticks.  With spring upon us, I felt I needed a terrarium.

The cherry pie and pot came from Grandpas Doll House.  The baking suppies came from Paper Minis.

My table scape! The eucalyptus branches are from a kit.  I painted the grey art (right).  The finger is an Ikea gift tag sticker.  The two pieces of framed fine art were lapel pins in a former life.  The crystal skull came from The Royal Ontario Museum gift shop.

Blue pottery delights! The chair is Chrysnbon.  Wall art is Emily Carr made and framed by Harvey Tremeer.

Anna Maria inspired this setting with lots of the fun bits and bobs she sent me.  Those heart pillows...swoon!  I grabbed the Nintendo figures at Walmart.

And she continued to inspire me.  Her 2017 mini calendar needed a place of honor....

I'm in love with the backpack.  A recent purchase.  It's made from real suede by Canadian Jo-Ann Shaw (who also makes lots of beautiful items...including pottery!)