Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Morning coffee

There's no milk in the house for my morning cup of tea (I used it up in pancakes yesterday morning. Pancakes with caramelised banana. Well worth the sacrifice.)

I'm now tempted to pop into Tosolinis on the way to work for a nice skinny latte. But I don't think Mr Nibbs would appreciate me spending his cat food budget frivolously, do you?

(Good thing they provide us with tea and milk at work...)

Monday, December 27, 2010

Waxing lyrical

I had two lots of visitors yesterday (always a welcome diversion from vacuuming the bed. And the sofa. And the armchairs. And vacuuming under the bed. And the sofa. And the armchairs.)

They (the visitors, not the furniture) all agreed I should rip the remaining Advent Calendar Swap parcels open at once. I was astounded to discover myself saying No. Most odd.

I also discovered myself ending the day with fridge and cupboards much fuller that before my friends arrived, thanks to deliveries of jams and condiments from
Taph and ToF and far more treats than could be eaten by two people at one dinner by Cycling S.

And thus, the true spirit of Boxing Day continues into the new century. Thanks guys!

Sunday, December 26, 2010


Don't ask, OK?


Somehow I appear to have misplaced my camera between 7:45am yesterday morning and the same time this morning.

Which is quite a feat considering I spent most of the day either flat out on the sofa with a book in one hand, wandering round downstairs with a bucket of warm soapy water in one hand and a sponge in the other, or driving to and from the next suburb feeding friends' cats.

There was a spot of study tidying late in the afternoon but that was paper-based so shouldn't explain said disappearance.

I'm quite perplexed. And wondering if it'll turn up in the bathroom cabinet or somewhere just as daft (and no, I wasn't drinking yesterday...)

Which means Day 4 of the Mini Advent Swap will have to be recorded in a sketch:A jar of delicious looking jam and two lovely blue and white striped crocks: one with honey, one empty.

Which reminds me: I'm starving and need to go rustle up some full sized toast...

Saturday, December 25, 2010

A novel concept

A four day weekend, followed almost immediately by a three day weekend. The first proper summer break I've had in three years.

There's only one thing to do: read fiction. Until the wee small hours of the morning, if that's what I feel like doing.


It appears I like pears*

And in package number 3? Apples and pears!(The comment relates to the image on the front of the card: I plan to show them all at the end)
*Sorry, couldn't resist!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Also not a Christmas present...

Back in September I got an email out of the blue from a reader in Finland, wondering if I'd like to do a modern mini Advent Calendar Swap.

It was perfect timing as I'd been wanting to get back into making miniatures after far too long collecting and promoting them.

But, as tends to happen, deadlines slipped. And the advent calendar idea turned into something a little smaller (and a little later).

Today, my parcel from Finland arrived.
It was all terribly exciting. I sorted the packages out and lined them up in numerical order:
It was tempting to rip them all open in one mad frenzy, but I reminded myself that I am a mature and grown up person who can be patient enough to open one package a day, like we agreed.(We'll see how long that lasts...)Day one's package? A supply of refreshments, just in time for Saturday. And, even better, they're cleanskins which is about all my budget stretches to these days.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

What's on my camera?

1. Checking the mail first thing this morning: Cool mail from a friend in Melbourne, part of the creativity challenge we've been doing this year (and which I've been failing miserably at recently...)

Inside was Not a Christmas package.
Kind of like a recent not a Christmas present from The Parental Units:
2. Walking round to visit Ampersand Duck I discovered street art. On my very own garage. Wahey! (And that I appear to have some sort of fruit-like tree up the back: Taph, if you can identify them and you want them they're all yours...)3. More street art, this time spotted at Dickson Library. No wonder my favorite spot for street art in the city has been empty for the past few weeks...(Who was that masked man?)
4. Discovered in the screen door at home. Even the butterflies Chez TSS have to be black and white...

Monday, December 20, 2010

Modern miniatures on Monday

Modern dolls' house miniature bathroom with wooden duck-board bath mat.
As requested, here's the tutorial for the mini duckboard bath mat I made yesterday.

Why not a photo tutorial? Terrible light both last night and this morning. If things go according to plan, you should be able to click on it to see it full sized...
Miniature duckboard bath mat tutorial
(Not sure what a tongue depressor is? It's a giant ice block stick:Woman holding up a tongue depressor.A very cheap and easy to find source of wood for making miniature furniture if you don't have a hobby or miniature shop nearby which stocks bass wood. Or any spare cash.)

While we're on the subject of working with wood, yesterday, while flicking through Home NZ, I came across this picture:White Rietveld side table and chair.and was intrigued to find, tucked in the credits, mention of a book called How to Construct Rietveld Furniture. Which, of course, I immediately looked up for its miniature possibilities.

A quick Google later, I discover someone has beaten me to it:Dolls' house miniature Rietveld furniture.

Read my other modern miniature tutorials:

Paint a vase with nail varnish

Make a floor rug out of a placemat
Turn stickers into modern placemats
Refinish a discount-store side table
Print an iPod, mobile phone or other electronic device
Print on fabric

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Saved by the bell

So there I was this afternoon, bum in the air, head down, scrubbing the bath.

And the doorbell rang.

It was my pal with the sketchbook who was heading past to buy bakery treats for afternoon tea and wondering if I'd like to share. So the bath was gleefully abandoned, the kettle was put on and the Sunday best china was brought out.
We pored over the latest additions, drank tea and devoured raspberry and white chocolate scones. An excellent way to pass a rainy summer Sunday afternoon.

Summer by the sea

Sounds wonderful, doesn't it? I'll be spending my summer in the depths of 2602 with no sea in sight.This beachside bathroom scene was inspired by the recent addition to my collection of a new Avant card, a surprise package in the mail on Friday from Ann at Amazing Miniatures (thanks Ann, I love it!), and an afternoon spent flicking through the latest issue of Home NZ (which is, of course, full of pictures of baches and holiday homes with people lolling round doing nothing much except opening bottles of wine and reading.)I had to make a duckboard bathmat to pull the scene together. It was easy peasy. Anyone want a tutorial?

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Not quite what I'd planned...

Yesterday morning I headed out to (finally) post off some swap parcels to people. And while I was out I decided I may as well head across town to the model shop and pick up some spray paint, which I was out of (why we don't have a model shop on this side of town I'll never understand.)

Since I was in the neighbourhood I popped into ALDI for supplied of chickpeas and lentils for the Christmas period and, while I was there, got a call from Cycling S inviting me round to lunch.

Which was followed by a trip through The Glassworks and markets so she could do a spot of Christmas shopping and a visit to the National Gallery to take advantage of their special offer on Ballet Russes tickets (buy a single ticket and upgrade to a season pass for free: which Cycling S did for me as an early Christmas present)

As I rattled my way through the gallery (the spray cans were still in my bag) I realised the irony of having spray cans with me while
Space Invaders was still on and, in a flash, thought of a fabulous staged photo we could create. I could be pretending to tag the wall and getting caught in the act.

But I chickened out (don't want to be banned from the NGA, even if it is for creating art there) so here's a sketch of it instead: As we headed to the car we discovered someone's beaten us to it, but in real life...Back home again I painted my pieces and set up a scene in readiness for one of them to be dry enough to use.

But this morning I discovered my newly painted Panton chair didn't work as I thought it would. So, using a stand-in chair, here's my Starving Artists' Fund scene: And here's the painted chair:
(Because, really, who uses their REAC Panton chair the colour it is made in?)

And here's what else I painted yesterday:
I love playing with scale...