Monday, October 16, 2017

Making time for miniatures on Monday

Industrial miniature scene of a large metal clock on a distressed wall behind a desk with various brass items displayed on it.
So that only took four years (and five minutes once I actually started)... *sigh*

In other, more heartening news, look what's finished (if, I now see, a wee bit wonky):
A miniature one-twelfth scale shadow box in the shape of a house displayed behind a tiny dolls house for a dolls house and a Toby dog figurine.

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Saturday, and so many kits

After last night's win, this afternoon I felt the urge to return to The Tub of Undone and see what else I could complete quickly and tick off the list.
Cutting mat with a ruler, tweezers, cutting knife and tube of Weldbond glue arranged on it. To the right is a package of baking paper and to the back is a tub of miniature kits.
The first kit I pulled out was a Punch and Judy theatre by Jewel Lewis, which I got at last year's NZAME convention but didn't seem to blog about. Probably because I didn't actually buy it, but won it from a lucky ticket thingo.

You've seen Jewel's work on the blog before, and I'd obviously just dumped this kit into the tub when I got home, without opening it. Because today when I opened it I found that it included Punch. And Judy. And even Toby:
One-twelfth scale miniature Punch and Judy figures next to a card which reads 'Punch and Judy Toby A gift from Jewel'
(So much detail, as usual for Jewel...)
Close up of a one-twelfth scale Judy puppet.
I actually put this kit back in the tub because I have no need for a Punch and Judy theatre at the moment and figured I might need the components at a later stage. But I was feeling very happy to know about the figures!

Another Jewel Lewis purchase from last year's NZAME Convention that I did blog about is the Very Small Dollshouse.
'Very small dollshouse' in its packaging, on a cutting board with a cutting knife next to it.
Which, as it states on the packaging, is very small.
Pieces of a 'Very small dollshouse' and instruction sheet, arranged on a cutting board.
So small, in fact, that I found that my reading glasses weren't enough for working on it and so I had to go rummage in my embroidery stash and pull out my neck magnifier as well*.
Side of a 'Very small dollshouse' displayed on the tip of a cutting knife, and showing the details of windows, siding and chimney laser-cut into it.
While on the subject of very small houses, I started on Jane Harrop's House shelves kit.
Pieces of a one-twelfth scale house shelves kit and instruction sheet, arranged on a cutting board with a ruler, cutting knife and tweezers.
I'd been putting this off because I thought I could perhaps bash it into a miniature version of IKEA's FLISAT house (which, if you're wondering, is still sitting in my laundry half-built). I decided to just go with the kit instructions.

While waiting for glue on my two tiny houses to dry, I unpacked the Chrysnbon cookware kit I bought at last year's Sydney show and sorted out the contents (sorting and re-bagging them and putting them back in the tub for similar reasons to Punch and Judy kit).
Plastic one-twelfth scale cookware kit pieces, dumped on a cutting board with some still on their sprues.
Another kit sourced from the Sydney show (but the year before's), did actually meet the glue:
Pieces of a one-twelfth scale plastic storage crate, laid out on a cutting board.
And while I was pulling out the Jane Harrop House shelves kit, I spotted this:
Photograph of a one-twelfth industrial trolley kit, with the kit pieces laid out beneath.
Which seems far too clean and tidy for my tastes, but which I plan to grunge up rather a lot. Starting with the wheels:
Wheels from a one-twelfth industrial trolley kit mounted on skewers and painted black and rusty shades.
So in terms of completion, I'm not doing very well (what with waiting for glue and paint to dry), but I feel like I'm definitely making good progress...

(*Getting old sucks)

Friday, October 13, 2017

Finish it off Friday (and I deserve a drink!)

In the spirit of 'done not perfect', look at what I (finally) finished this evening:
Modern one-twelfth scale modern miniature Alvar Aalto Trolley 900 set up for drinks.
There are still a few final touches I need to sort out, but for now I'm just going to bask in the glow of awesomeness I feel in wrestling it to completion.

Thanks Kikka N, I love it!

Monday, October 09, 2017

Monday (and the story of the missing metronome...)

Because I'd bought a Lori Loft to Love online from David Jones, those pesky Google algorithms kept throwing up ads for other Lori items offered by them.

Which (as you do) I basically ignored. Until the morning when my eye caught the prices on the advert. Which were much lower than it had been when I'd last been on their site (and, dammit, when I'd bought my loft...).

So I found myself clicking through. And discovering that the ballet studio was deeply discounted. Enough that I could easily justify yet another miniature edifice to try and find room for.

Soon after it arrived, I pulled the mirror sticker off the back wall and sawed off the barre. And (I'm not sure how) the space decided to become a piano studio with the addition of a bed I picked up half price from the Blue Star Kiwi stall in Wellington last month, an afghan from a 2014 Melbourne trip and the desk from Margell Public School. Plus a rug I picked up back in 2008 (used to cover the holes in the floor where the piano was attached for shipping) and the cushions I bought at the 2016 NZAME convention.
One-twelfth scale modern miniature piano studio with a grand piano in front of a bay window. On the floor are strewn several pages of music.
I contemplated adding a poster from the set I bought last Christmas (which seemed apt, as I'd decided that this was an early Christmas present to myself. Let's not even discuss the fact that I don't do Christmas, shall we?)

But if this was to be a studio for a dedicated piano student, there was something missing: a metronome!

I knew I'd bought a beautiful Alan Waters one many years ago: I just had to find it.

Many miniaturists will understand the frustration of looking for that one tiny thing. I checked Stephen's apartment (the most likely home for it). No luck.

I checked all my other scenes, with the same outcome.

I checked my storage boxes for 'Pastimes and hobbies', and 'Lounge decoration'. Still nothing.

Finally, I tried miniature meditation. You know the one. Sit. Relax. Focus on the object you're looking for...

And it came to me. The metronome was on the shelf of a music room. That I'd made for (and given to) my mum years ago.

So long ago, in fact that it hadn't (as far as my nifty search skills told me) been blogged about. And a search of the envelopes of printed photos from my film camera found nothing either.

I guess I need to make or buy a new one. In the meantime, I still need to decide what year my piano studio is set in. That will inform the choice of desk chair, among other things...

Tuesday, October 03, 2017

Big W, little W. What begins with W?

Wee things in Wellington, that's what!

As is the tradition, my mini friend and I made the pilgrimage to Pete's Emporium to check out what bargains we could find that could be used in miniature.
Stacked-up button containers holding various miniatures.
 (The metal trim is a new addition to their range, which made us quite excited.)
Poster displaying various metal trim pieces, with prices per metre, with lengths of the trims coiled on the table beside it.
While we were in Porirua we checked out what was on exhibition at Pataka Art+Museum, and spotted this Narnia-themed piece, Doorway to Narnia, by Yvette Keene:
Small wooden cupboard decorated with Narnia-themed items, on display in an art gallery.
 In Petone, while visiting the Alfred Memelink Artspace Gallery, I spied this:
Miniature art gallery, with various items displayed for sale and a counter in one corner. On the wall is a sign saying 'the Royal Albatross art gallery'.
 (The Royal Albatross Gallery, an art gallery inside an art gallery. Alas the gallery assistant couldn't tell me anything about its provenance). 
Miniature art gallery, with various pictures displayed on the walls. There is a bench in the middle, with a doll sitting on it looking at the art.
 Down the road, the Petone Settlers (sic) Museum had models aplenty, from those depicting the arrival
Model of long boats arriving at a wharf.
 and life of the first settlers to the region,
Model of settlers chopping down trees in the bush.
 to the area's industrial past: the Gear meatworks
Model of a line of industrial buildings next to a harbour, with the sea and a ship in the background.
and the General Motors plant at Seaview.
Model of the entrance to a factory complex. On the veranda to the left is a sign saying 'General Motors' and a truck is going through the gate.
Model of a factory. In the foreground are lines of cars parked outside it.
 Another model, this one in one-twelfth scale, was of the window of Carey's drapery
Model of a draper's front window with mannequins displaying frocks and hats. Several signs say 'Carey's'.
Model of a draper's front window with mannequins displaying frocks and hats.
Model of a draper's front window with mannequins displaying frocks and hats. Several signs say 'Carey's'.
 Finally, there were these wee houses made from bits and bobs from in and around Shelly Bay, for sale at Whirlwind Design Store in Miramar:
Three small assemblage-art houses on display in front of a picture of a stormy sea.
 (One of them may have followed me home...)

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Steaming ahead on Saturday

Continuing on with Wednesday's approach, I've been spending an hour or so each night since then working on long-neglected mini projects.

Thursday night I started cutting bobbles off a ball of op-shopped novelty yarn which I've had in stash for ages, thinking it would make a good miniature felt ball rug (not that I need one, as I already have two fabulous versions courtesy of Mitchy Moo Miniatures...)
I finished the task on Friday night , after treating myself to some new craft supplies on the way home:
(I 'needed' the silver foil tape, the rest just came along for the ride). By this time I was so sick of the sight of little coloured yarn bobbles that I decided that they could be tucked away for just a wee while longer before I braved the next step.

This morning I was up bright and early, and very pleased when it started raining as it was the perfect excuse for the first craft day I've had in a very long time.

I had plans to continue with the tub of mystery, particularly finishing the final of the four noticeboards I made way back in 2011...
but then I got sidetracked by a box of tiny vintage paper treasure that was included, that almost certainly from my 2011 Inch by Inch challenge.
And before I knew it, I'd decided I wasn't in the mood to make so many decisions and so moved on to using some of the paper pieces from the noticeboard stash to make some simple notebook sets.

Next I decided to us my new foil tape, which I'd bought for the Twinings tea caddy from the 'Trash to Treasure' kit that Chell Oldfield gave me back in 2015 (not actually from the tub, but tucked on top of it, so fair game for finishing off as well).
 That seemed to do the trick, and suddenly I was on a roll.

By the time I was done for the day I'd created four packs of notebooks, framed something I was sure I'd already framed (and so I had, but obviously had nicked the frame for something else at some point), and something I knew I hadn't framed before, but have been dying to. Plus I cut out the last of the books and magazines I glued last week.
And from Chell's 'Trash to Treasure' kit, I'd made a full and a half roll of paper towels (and a roll of toilet paper), the aforementioned tea caddy (I wanted to make the other two as well but didn't have enough dowel in the kit: I'm sure I have some more tucked away around here somewhere...), three bottles (which I had a bit of a bother with painting the lids), a potted plant, a cut 'glass' bottle and two wire baskets, which I couldn't resist painting.
 There's just one problem with this burst of creativity. My dining table now looks like this:
and I have guests arriving for brunch at ten o'clock tomorrow morning.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Softly softly September

Aerial view of a work table showing glue and a toothpick, two piles of miniature book covers and two lots of book covers glued to cardboard inners, clamped and waiting to dry.
It's been a busy month work-wise and so the Lori Loft to Love still sits on my desk in much the state it was in a month ago.

And I'm trying another tack to entice my mini mojo back (again) now that the days are longer.

In doing a deep clean of my studio, I came across a plastic tub that I'd obviously shoved things into ages ago (so long ago, that is, that I forgot it even existed until I pulled it out!). And I've decided to, instead of pressuring myself to make the big scene, just slowly work through all those little boring tasks that will make things done (even if not perfect). And empty the tubs.

So this week I've been making books. Which is slightly ironic since the Lifeline Bookfair was the weekend just gone and I decided not to go as I had more than enough unread books to keep me going for now, not to mention other budgetary priorities...

Saturday, August 12, 2017

This is why sometimes, things just don't happen

Yesterday, on the bus coming home from work, I contemplated if I had the energy to restart my Finish it off Friday challenge this week. And decided that I could start it properly next week and just have fun this week.

But when I got home, I did pull out the wooden bookmarks I bought in January in preparation.
Three laser-cut wooden bookmark-sized black panels with Australian flora designs.
This afternoon I saw them on the work table and idly wondered if perhaps they might work around the edge of the Lori Loft mezzanine level*.
A laser-cut wooden bookmark-sized black panel leaning on the top of a one-twelfth scale doll's house mezzanine wall.
 Having decided that the answer was no, I went in hunt of the miniature hinges I knew I bought at this year's Canberra show to put with the panels ready to go on Friday (if not before).

And then I spotted these windows, which you might remember from my Airbnb apartment back in December, and thought they just might work...
Two one-twelfth scale wooden laser-cut church windows leaning on the top of a modern doll's house mezzanine wall.
 ...except that when I was testing them, I realised they'd probably look better as actual windows (and, at the same time, solve another problem I had with the loft).
Two one-twelfth scale wooden laser-cut church windows attached to the front of a window opening in a modern loft.
Now what was it I was doing again?

On a completely unrelated note, I popped into the Typo factory outlet this morning and picked up a macro lens for a mobile phone from their scratch and dent table. For $1, I thought it was worth the risk that it wouldn't work. But look!
Macro photograph of a one-twelfth scale glass of wine held by several fingers.
(*Seems someone didn't go home last night...)