Saturday, March 21, 2015

Question for Blogger geniuses

Hi again. I am wondering how you blogging folks get your photos to publish with crisp photos. Mine are always blurry. I've tried resizing them before uploading but it doesn't seem to work. Anyone got a trick? Maybe I need to make them smaller still. Would appreciate your tips!

And Janine, yes, real life and hobby time two blur! I am making the kits that I myself want. I work on them one day a week currently, but hope to increase that time mid-year! 

Keep mini-ing everyone!

Nothing finished but some progress at least!

TDo you ever feel like you work and work and work and nothing ever gets finished? I suppose when you have lots of projects on the go at once, and then you keep changing your mind on things, then that's what happens.

So firstly some Mountfield updates. The bathroom isn't far off done. I still want a table or small cabinet for here (a wall that can't be seen in this pic) and some accessories, and contemplating trying to antique the tiles a little, but I think I am reasonably happy with it as it is.

The laundry still needs accessories, including a vintage washing machine. And I haven't quite figured out how I will age the tiles, but I definitely think they're too white.

And this is a clock kit that I made from a Cynthia Howe kit. It was super fine pieces and I actually broke a piece of the decoration, but managed to glue it back on so you can't tell. But it was crazy TINY!!!!

I am still playing with the kitchen a lot, rearranging accessories. Not sure that I am happy with it but I will keep playing!

And on Duddingwell's, I have done most of the paperclaying and started on landscaping. This is a real learning process for me. Not so much techniques, but just having the courage to start something and not worry about how it is going to look. I am trying to push my inner perfectionist aside. I keep telling her that if I don't like it, I will be able to fix it.

There is a little trough on a pile of rocks which I will fill with some water and a plant or two (and maybe fish?). I have since aged the stucco a little, painted the stones and pavers, started with bits of moss and grass and some gravel and dirt as well. I will need to get motivated to make lots of plants though. 

And lastly, some little pictures from the French shop. I have been looking over this with a critical eye of late and thinking about some little changes or additions. Here is a shot from the sewing room:

I used this soft air-dry clay on this house and it has yellowed over time. I do like aspects of it, but some parts, like the exterior, I'm not so sure about. So I am considering a few detail changes, but then I don't want to start from scratch, and I don't think this sort of clay is very changeable. Anyway, keep thinking.... Maybe some vines? Ivy? Cover up half of it with ivy would look good!

And here is a corner of the shop. Just trialling accessories for now. I do love how the red display table turned out, and my home-made boxes underneath. The thread cabinet is a Lisa Engler kit. I might've shown it previously?

Anyway, hope you enjoy your weekend. We have stunning weather, and I am itching to get back to my little houses! After the household chores of course.... Sigh....

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Little French armoire

Hello all. A quick post again on another kit I've designed. This one a French armoire with glass (acrylic) doors. It is not complete. I couldn't get the cutter to cut all the parts correctly, but the major parts worked fine. Another couple of small refinements to the drawings and finding the right wood and it's ready to go!

Here is a photo of the waste from learning how to cut, what materials, cutter speed, etc etc etc. 

And here is a pic of the kit which has finally worked:
On the right side of the photo is a trumeau mirror in two sizes which still needs some tweaking. The smallest is too small and the larger is OK - a relatively large mirror - but the trim needs adjusting.

It's so satisfying to be making significant progress and learning so much from the cutting and designing process. Thanks too for the encouragement and tips from various blog readers. It's really appreciated. Enjoy your week!

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Very first laser cut prototype!

Did I already mention that my husband bought me a cheap laser cutter? Anyways, if I didn't, he did. He managed to get it working and we spent much of Saturday and Sunday cutting stuff (as well as setting some stuff on fire!). We learnt lots though, which is an interesting part of the process. Having learnt a few things, I will now adjust many of my designs accordingly. 

I showed you a prototype of a little stove which was printed out and stuck to cardboard and cut out and stuck together, a little while ago. Well, here is a laser cut version of it:

I wanted to show a photo of the cardboard one next to it, but I can't find it. It lacks the engraving details, but a really good starting point. It is also a little larger than it is supposed to be as we were still figuring out the importing/scale issue. I am aiming to have kits available for purchase by July, at the latest - lots more prototyping, buying materials etc in the meantime though!

Hope you are all well.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Quick post of the French wall panels

Hi all. Just posting to answer a couple of questions I received. The panels are made by Robert Dawson of the Modelroom. I bought them at Kensington DH Fair a few years ago. Here is a close to finished shot of the panels now:

This is the fireplace wall with doors either side. The whole thing will be glazed to antique it and give it a slight sheen - I hope, in order to look like the 300yr old plus panels at places like Versailles. I am yet to marble the fireplace, and will probably marble the skirting to match. 

Thanks for your lovely comments too! Hope your week is going OK.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Happy Australia Day!

Hello everyone from a sunny down under! We have had a lovely and productive Australia Day in the garden as well as cleaning out some hoarded stuff in order to shuffle some other stuff around. But we did have a barbecue lunch of course with snags and home-made tomato sauce, so it was pretty good! Now I am enjoying a particularly nice wine from an Australian winery, McHenry Hoehnen - check it out if you ever get the chance! 

Now, the real reason I am posting. A little update on my French chateau (which still needs a name - I am thinking of le petite monstre!). I am slowly getting the panels for the salon painted, but the paint needs multiple coats on the carved details, so it is slow going.

Here is the back wall with all the panels joined together and undercoated:

Here is the left side wall with the window openings:

The walls will be a couple of centimetres thick to allow for curtains and panels in the window cavities. Also, I want to give the impression of shutters tucked in behind the panels - in some rooms, I hope to have them actually fold out.

Here is the back wall panel painted in the cream topcoat before all the carving is painted:

I will add a thin moulding to match that already on the top of some of the panels (as can be seen in the above photo in the middle) and then add the cornice when the panels have been installed, and maybe a carved ceiling. Soon I will have some gatorfoam to construct other interior walls. Also, my darling husband bought me a belated anniversary present of a laser cutter, so if we can get it working, I will cut out some windows and parquet flooring and this room will really get moving. The rest of the structure has been designed around this room, so I won't be getting anything else done on the house until this room is installed. I suppose I could get going on the exterior, but that hinges on windows being installed. All in good time!

Hope you've all had a great weekend!

Thursday, January 15, 2015

A very beautiful give-away

I was looking around discovering new blogs a couple of days ago and found this very beautiful artist's box full of paints, tape, brushes, a rag, a pencil and other painter's supplies, on Adriana's Bagus blog which she made and is generously giving away. I had to be in the running for this, it is so exquisite. Hop on over to her blog and check it out.