Thursday, December 29, 2011


I have not welcomed my new followers in a very long time. Please forgive me. I very much appreciate all who take the time to read my blog and post comments. In fact, I think it's about time for another follower give-away. I will post information about it soon.

I hope you all are having a wonderful holiday season!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Paper houses

I found some printable houses on Printed without adjustment they are approximately 1:144 scale. I made a few changes with the extra components and added snow and glitter. The evergreen is curled chenille stem. I think these would make adorable tree ornaments.
I also reduced the houses by 40% to make a village for the boarding house mantle. That was a bit of a pain but it looks great now that I'm finished. I also added snow and glitter to these houses.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Christmas in mini, part two

Here are our real stockings. Hubby and son have snowmen and the girls and I have angels. They are very oversized - about 2 1/2 feet long or so. One year my sisters-in-law and I got together and made stockings for our families. We all did different things but they all turned out really cute. :-)
This is the mini living room with stockings. I used felt to make the actual socks and scrapbook paper for the appliques. I'm having so much fun miniaturizing our special things.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Christmas for the mini family

We have some family decorations that are extra special for one reason or another. I am working to miniaturize them for the mini version of my real house. It's always Christmas in that dollhouse but for some reason I never thought to make minis of some of our things. The boot was my childhood stocking for almost as long as I can remember. My mom found large pressed cardboard Santa boots and we got to choose pictures from old Christmas cards for her to decoupage on to them. Mine has elves, Santas and snowmen. My sister's has pink fur and lots of glittery angels. The older of my two brothers has always been a history buff so his boot has a patriotic theme. My baby brother was too young to choose so his is red with a big Santa on it. They have held up remarkably well. I now use it to hold the pieces for the advent banner hanging above it. My mom and I made the banner for my kids. The very last thing to go on it is baby Jesus on Christmas morning. These days I'm the one putting the pieces on each day, lol.
Here are both items in mini. It's Christmas Eve in the dollhouse so everything but the baby has been put up. (Although after I took the picture I noticed that one of the angels was still in the boot - oh, well.) I also had to draw in the "R" because the pink didn't photograph well. The banner was always hung low when the children were young so that they could reach it. In the dollhouse the children are 5, 3, and 8 months old.

The boot was made of air dry clay. I cut out little graphics printed from a card making program. I was excited to find some vintage style elves very similar to those on the real boot.

Next up will be reproducing our stockings. They are oversized ones that I made. The girls' have angels and stars and the boys' have snowmen and snowflakes. I think I can use scrapbook paper cut-outs on felt stockings to make a pretty good mini version.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Photo booth fun

Tonight was my husband's "Holiday Party." I still call it the Christmas party. Anyway, for the second year they had a photo booth. Here are this year's photos. I love the middle one.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Rudolph just watched the reindeer games

All of the reindeer got a makeover today to match Rudolph a bit better. I like the darker color. I also painted the sleigh runners and trim. Once Red gets those reindeer hitched to the sleigh Santa is ready to go.

The deer came from a variety of sources - one is a child's toy, one a tree ornament, and four are decorative items meant to sit on a table or shelf. Most of them had a glitter or metallic finish and several had some sort of embossed detail. All got a coat of paint, a layer of tan flocking, and a coat of darker brown paint with soft white accents. The embossed parts are much less obvious and the reindeer look more like they are supposed to go together. :-)

Sunday, December 4, 2011

And now for something completely different

In the mini version of my real home, my young daughters share a bedroom. They never have in real life and rather than choose one of their real rooms over the other as inspiration I just made a generic girls' room. Over the years the fabric I used for the bedspreads has faded and I was recently thinking I should at least make mini versions of the real comforters they had at those ages.
To keep things cohesive I used the same ribbon for dust ruffles and pillows for both. My oldest was five in 1993 and she had a Little Mermaid themed room. My middle was three and had a Sesame Street theme. They are now 23 and 21 so I couldn't find photos of their actual comforters online. Instead I used a card program and graphics from online to make approximate representations of theirs. I am quite happy with the results.
Here are the beds in the room complete with toys, books, and various little girl stuff. (Sorry for the blurry photo. It's really hard to get to the third floor of this house. Even my tall son had trouble getting a good picture, lol.)

Isn't it funny what inspires our mini projects? That's one of the many reasons why this hobby never gets boring.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

A little more Christmas

I got everything home from the library yesterday. I loaded it into the car in heavy rain, unloaded it into the house in freezing drizzle, and by last night we got several inches of wet, heavy snow. School was canceled today.

I set up Santa's house in the bay window. I had to put a plexiglass cover on it for the library so it will be cat proofed here at home.
I added a few new things for the library display - Three more reindeer + Rudolph and a large tree. It looks like Red is busy harnessing everyone to the sleigh. Rudy is using skis to deliver the last minute mail.
When I bought Rudolph I also bought the snowman "played" by Burl Ives. He's enjoying his cocoa near the gazebo.
After loading the car yesterday I rewarded myself with a quick trip to my favorite resale shop. I bought several vintage glass ornaments and a "new" Santa for my collection. The second one from the left looks just like one my mom had when I was young so I had to get him. The third Santa from the right was made by my MIL before hubby and I were married. That makes him over 30 years old! I guess he's vintage now, too, lol. The Santa on the far right and the two egg shaped ones were made by my mom. I have other Santas scattered throughout the house but these are the larger ones.

I wrapped some gifts and I'm doing laundry. Now I can enjoy some time online - guilt-free. :-)

It's moving day

Today everything comes home from the library. It's raining this morning and turning to snow this afternoon. Could be an interesting trip. I have to have everything out by tomorrow, though, and I'm working Thursday and Friday and don't want to be exhausted before spending 2 days with 2nd graders, lol. So today's the day. Wish me luck!

Since I had to put a plexi front on Santa's house for the library display, I'm going to display it in the bay window here at home. The cat (and my daughter's cat who will be visiting over the holidays) likes to curl up in the bay to sleep. The interior will be cat proof and I think they will leave the elves and reindeer alone...I hope. :-)

Wishing all of you the best of days!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

We traditionally decorate the house the day after Thanksgiving. We usually have 2 trees. One is upstairs in the master bedroom - that's our "big" tree with all of our family ornaments. We have our Christmas morning gift opening in our room EARLY in the morning. My kids are all young adults but they still get excited about Christmas. :) This is the downstairs tree. (It's the first year in a while that I've been able to put up a full sized one with all the pets.) This tree usually has some sort of theme based on ornaments we already have. I love vintage glass ornaments and I've collected a few vintage ones and more reproduction ones. The tree this year is all of those ornaments. The bottom few are all nonbreakable in case the pets bump them but the rest are glass. The lights are red as are many of the ornaments. I love how it turned out!
A new collection this year is this little Christmas village. My mother-in-law has a beautiful collection of larger buildings that she sets up each year - and everyone in the family has contributed to it at some time or other. I don't have that much space but when I saw a few smaller houses at Goodwill I was excited. All of these have been collected from various thrift stores in the last month or so. A few people and trees came with the first Goodwill purchase and I found a few more people at Walmart and trees at JoAnn's. I think it looks great under the tree. It has the added bonus of keeping the cat out as there's no good place for her to lie down. ;-)

I love Christmas in case you couldn't tell, lol. I look forward to seeing how some of you decorate for the season.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

The transporting has begun

Today I emptied one display case at the library and also brought home the castle. That thing is heavy and something breaks every time it's moved. I'm not sure if it will travel again. But all is put back together and my new goodies have been moved in. I still have the other half of the wall display case, two floor cases, the cabin and the saloon to move back home. I will do that over the next two weeks.

While I was at the library, the head librarian (also named Dina just spelled differently than my Deana) asked me 1. to come back again next year with some new houses/rooms 2. to lead a workshop or program on dollhouses and miniatures in April and 3. to participate in a "meet the artist" program she's starting. I'd have a table set up and work on a project in the lounge area of the library. People could watch and ask questions but I wouldn't be doing any major speaking. Besides all of that, she told me that she gave my contact info to other area libraries in case they would be interested in a display. Wow! I'm going to have to work on better ways to transport these things.

Anyway, this is all very exciting stuff - I have lots to think about and plan. I'm thinking the workshop will be a sort of trash to treasure project since that's one of my personal favorite things to do. What do you all think?

Friday, November 18, 2011

A Tudor swap with friends

The online group I belong to, Small World, has a swap every month or so for most of the year. The last swap had a Tudor theme. Look at all the beautiful things I now have to display in my castle. I think I'm going to have to start that castle expansion project soon.
I made mandolins and "pewter" goblets for everyone.

Just a quick post - I'm heading off to sub at the elementary school for the afternoon. Hope you're all having a wonderful day!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Sometimes life is complicated

I am anxious to get back to blogging regularly. When I was almost all healed from my fall I got sick so I've been mostly out of commission this week. Next week will be filled with family and Thanksgiving preparations but I will get back to mini-making soon! I also have to move all of the houses and rooms back home from the library so it will be a little crazier than normal around here. I am taking time to check out your blogs. Please don't give up on me!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Life's a bit crazy

I'm sorry I haven't blogged this week. I'm working as a substitute teacher now and I had jury duty last week. To top off the week, I tripped rather spectacularly in a parking lot and had a face to concrete collision yesterday. I will have more to share soon, I promise.

I do want to tell you that the librarians tell me that my mini display is the most popular display they've ever had. That's cool!

Wishing you all a wonderful week!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

A visit to Wanda's kitchen

Well, I think we've discovered Wanda's vice - she appears to love hats. (The two new ones on the hutch came from the Round Robin swap box but I think they were made by Sandy Copeland. She also made the other two.)
Wanda has been stocking up on potions. She now has a good selection of ingredients on her top shelf. Maybe she can figure out how to get back to her usual color instead of the green, lol. She now has a friendly spider, too. He's been happily spinning webs all over the kitchen. He even made a "lovely" curtain for the window.
Wanda got a new mama cat after one of my thrift store visits. The kitten is on the windowsill.

Not much mini-ing to report

But I do have photos of my daughter's new cat, Blue. Isn't he a handsome cat? He's also a busy one. My daughter lives in a small studio apartment and I had to go help her "cat proof" by hanging plants and moving trash cans, etc.
I also bought him a nylon "cat cube" which has been a hit with Blue, as you can see. :)

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Santa's new gazebo

In the round robin swap I do with friends I found a silver colored metal gazebo. I painted it green, added snow, icicles, Christmas decorations and a tree and now it's ready for Santa's yard. The Santa house is going to the children's section of the library tomorrow and the gazebo is a nice addition. It was also a nice quick project for the day.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Little Mop Dog

I found instructions for this little mop dog in an old NAME magazine. It's supposed to be made with cotton welting but I had polyester cord on hand. She turned out really cute.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

How could I forget this?

Before I got my Easy Cutter I used my miter box and saw all the time. These look just like my real ones - and are a lot easier to make than a mini Easy Cutter, lol.

Monday, October 17, 2011

It's beginning to look a lot like...Thanksgiving

I've posted photos of the cornucopia room I made for myself but this one was made for my mother-in-law. I also made one for my mom but forgot to take pictures before I gave it to her. For both of theirs I found cornucopias with an extended front. That enabled me to put chairs at the table which I didn't have room to do in mine. Dinner is a traditional Thanksgiving meal - turkey with stuffing, sweet potatoes, tossed salad, mashed potatoes, jello, pumpkin pie, green beans and cranberry sauce.
I didn't make the rug or the jello (jello by Gaye of My Small Obsession) and the photo over the buffet was taken by my friend, Tina.

The turkey and pie serving dishes are jewelry findings. The sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes and green beans are in buttons that look like bowls. The salad bowl is cut from a water bottle lid. I made the bowl for the stuffing from polymer clay.

Both moms were very happy with their little rooms. I love being able to share minis. :)

Oh, and I stopped by the library today. The miniature display is very popular. Even the librarians all have their favorites. :)

Have a wonderful week everyone!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Still not finished

I added another dollhouse to the top of the cabinet and there's a kit on the floor next to it. Leaning up against the wood bin is a steel yardstick. I had a gray yardstick printie that I glued onto a flat strip of metal hubby saved for me. I've got no idea what it came from but it worked perfectly.
I made 2 years worth of American Miniaturist magazines and filled the shelf. Now it looks more like my real book shelf. :) I also made a spool holder filled with mini spools of thread over the sewing machine.

I did these things yesterday afternoon before leaving with a group of friends for an Extraordinary Women's conference. There were some amazing speakers and musicians. I got to hear Jeremy Camp perform live for the first time. I had a wonderfully uplifting time with friends.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Detail work

My homemade ceiling light is clunky but it works. I used a battery powered tea light and replaced the plastic candle flame with a clear Christmas ornament globe. Since the switch is on the bottom of the tea light I had to suspend it low enough to be able to reach the switch. The chains worked well. The top of the left hand cabinet displays a tiny dollhouse complete with landscaping.
I made a tomato pin cushion and used craft foam to make more blocks of "polymer clay." I filled a small clear box with unopened blocks of clay and a second is filled with scraps. I also added an iron and ironing board to the room. The basket on top of the shelf is filled with multi colored cording for rugs. There are more books on the shelf, too.
Take-out coffee and a chocolate bar - now we're really ready for a marathon mini session.

Now if I could get those tea light manufacturers to put the switch on the side instead of the bottom...

Here's what everyone made...

These things were made by Brenda. The travel trailer kit is amazing!
These were made by Gaye (My Small Obsession.) Do you suppose Michael's would honor the tiny little coupon? I love the polymer clay on the tile.
Rosie even included a chocolate bar for sustenance during those marathon mini sessions. The craft knife has a tiny little blade. It's perfect.
This is what I made. The Dremel tool is modeled after mine.

I wanted to be sure to give credit for the amazing things I used in the craft room. The next swap we are doing has a Tudor theme. The castle will benefit from that one. :)

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The promised photos

The sewing machine was made from bits of wood, jump rings, beads, and thin metal sheeting. The shelf was made from parts of two hutches. I made the chairs and worktables. I love the fabric I used for the chairs and curtains.
This is the whole room.
There are two mini projects in progress, lots of paint bottles in the cabinet, a bin of wood scraps. The cabinet under the window holds polymer clay. The windowsill holds a plant and a jar of buttons.
The cabinet on this side has bolts of fabric, embroidery and knitting supplies, mini magazines and books, pens and a pad of paper. The sewing machine is threaded and ready.

Photos coming soon!

Good morning!

My Small World friends and I just completed a "Miniaturist's Craft Room" swap. I got some great things and have already started working on a room box. Photos will be coming soon, I promise.

I hope you are all having a wonderful week!

Friday, October 7, 2011

I'm famous! well, sort of...

The Carnegie Public Library of Steuben County has a brief bio and some photos on their blog. The display seems to be popular with library patrons according to the librarians. I stopped in today to return and get books (the car was too full yesterday, lol) and all seems to be going well. Half way home yesterday I remembered that I'd forgotten to check the two roomboxes that hubby just sat on the shelves. Good thing I checked today. Ruth, in the aquarium garden, had fallen back in her chair and her niece was flat on her face. Everyone is better now. ;-)

I hope you all have a fabulous weekend!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

It took two vehicles to get it there....

...but the library display is set up. This case is next to the front desk and you have to pass it to get to the books. The magazine in the front left of the case is an American Miniaturist article featuring some of my "unusual container" projects. The Potting Shed is a garden center in a watering can. Next is De's Diner in a vintage tin bread box. The argyle box is a vintage hat box - it holds Zegelien's store for ladies set in the 1940s. The vanity case holds a bride's bedroom on her wedding day.
Banner announcing National Dollhouse and Miniatures Month, the pioneer log cabin, and A Rose Among Thorns western saloon.
The castle is sitting on a low bookcase but it has a plexiglass front so is safe from little hands. The castle is the only thing that required repair work. One of the turrets broke off and the front door came loose. Nothing I couldn't repair with my emergency kit.
The big wall display case is filled with a few houses and several rooms. I took the very first house I ever did, 2 half scale houses and a quarter scale Victorian. The general store and NYC loft apartment are on the top right shelf.
This side has the back porch, beach cottage and several rooms. I took 2 trash to treasure type rooms with lists of miscellaneous items I used for sort of an interactive activity.

The librarians were very excited and both adults and children were stopping to look. I think it will be worth all the work. It's definitely exciting to see everything displayed like this.

The newspaper write up

This is mostly a listing of what I brought for the display. Dina took photos of the final displays today and is going to submit a photo and short biography to the newspaper. Click on the photo to make it larger.