Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Speaking Of The Library.....

The Tiniest Books Ever!

I Left you last week, Dear Readers, having borrowed a chair from the Library in order to serve you tea and cake in the still incomplete Sitting Room. I am glad so many of you came by for a visit! And when I returned to the making of the furniture from these tiny kits, the Library was uppermost on my mind. (The Sitting Room is temporarily on hold while I figure out the upholstery and curtains.) The Library Table needed to have a Lamp added to it, and I was instructed to "find an ivory bead" in the bag of teeny tiny pieces from which these accessories were to be assembled. Alas, there was no Ivory bead! I checked and re-checked and could not find it! So I had to improvise. I pulled out some random beads I have had in a wooden box ever since I was a teenager. I truly don't know where I got them from! There was a slightly lop-sided one that I thought could be made to look like a lamp shade if only viewed from one angle, so I added it to the pin and then the two little copper beads for the stand, and glued it into the hole I drilled in the table top! Yes, they ask you to Drill into the furniture!! Above you can see the table with the new lamp! And while I was at it, I added the green bead to the globe stand. Eventually I will paint a little bit of ocean onto it! But the really fun part was just beginning.... this kit has Books! Yes, it really does! They are just printed paper, and are meant to be folded and glued shut or left open as one pleases. They are ever so tiny!

The instructions do not say to add anything for the "pages" 
but I didn't follow the instructions...
I wanted my books to have some three-dimensionality to them
so I added a tiny piece of cardboard to each book for the "pages"!
The first one is on the table above... can you see the pages?
(Go ahead, poke the pictures to see them larger!)

Here you can see one of the "open" books to the right.... 
but it is still just flat....
It needs pages too....

But before I get to that, I must see how it looks inside the Library...
Sorry about the dark photo.... 
(that little light must not be turned on properly!)
And there are more books to add....

Another flat open face-down book... which needs pages added, 
and another one on the chair....

And now the opened books also have their pages added! 
That table is getting crowded... 
I will have to stack the books somehow, 
or spread them onto other chairs around the house!
And then I had one of Those ideas, Dear Readers, 
the kind that torments you until you give it a try....

I thought the Library Table needed an ink well and a quill pen!
 Can you see I have added a Teeny tiny feather and ink pot?
I made the tiny quill pen 
from a tiny goosedown feather 
that was shed from my coat last winter!
Yes, I saved them! 
It needed some careful trimming... 
and I found the tiniest "pewter" bead in my old bead box....
But can you see it????

Here, I have set it against a dark backdrop.... 
can you see it now? 
Right there in the middle?
Well, never mind if you can't.... 
I will know it is there!

And then I added the "oceans" to the globe....

You will have to understand that it is a very old globe... 
and perhaps their knowledge of the size of the continents was not very exact!

And then we have to see how it all looks inside the Library....

Which is extremely difficult to photograph with enough light and clear focus!

I think I need to add some writing paper to that table.....!
And just How Tiny are those books, you ask?

Well, look! 
Here's the open face-down one...
Can you see it there on my finger?
I am saving it for a chair in the Sitting Room!
 I am sure you will agree, Dear Readers, 
that these must be the Tiniest Books Ever!
Speaking of the Library...... 
My favorite room in the House!

Monday, July 10, 2017

Tea For Two....

Two Too Tiny.....

While Waiting for the matte acrylic varnish to arrive, Dear Readers, I decided to continue assembling the remaining furnishings for this room. In the above picture you can see the mirror already assembled because I forgot to take any progress pictures. It was fairly straight forward gluing layers together and painting with gold acrylic paint. The mirror itself is mylar and does reflect the viewer.... a tiny bit! And while I was at it I added another five or six coats of paint to the Wing-backed easy chairs....

I have lost count of the layers, I think I have done thirteen coats of paint!
I am planning to do the colored layers next... 
as soon as I make up my mind Exactly what color they should be! 
And in order to aid in the decision, 
I thought the rest of the furnishings should be as complete as possible
 so I can get a feel for the look of the room.

Here you can see the mirror and the parlor stove propped in place.
(I will not glue them in until all the pieces are done)
And then I realized that the Library furniture
 (the next room after the Sitting Room) 
would also need to be "varnished" 
and so I might as well have it ready too 
for when the varnish arrived!

This room has a work table, two chairs and a globe on a stand!

Here they are, assembled and not painted.

Here they are painted and waiting for the varnish!

Here I have added the carpets to both the Sitting Room and the Library.
The clarity of the printed detail in these kits is very good!
I had Hoped, Dear Readers, that the acrylic varnish would arrive on Saturday. 
When it didn't, I went shopping! I found some at Michael's.
And Sunday saw me finally able to continue with the Teeny Tiny Tea Table...

Varnish applied!
So much Fuss for such a Tiny amount of varnish!

But once it was dry, I could add the cushions to the tiny chair....

And the lace "cloth" to the Tea Table!
And would you believe it there is a teapot and two cups!
 Can you even see them?
They are paper and are meant to be flat silhouettes.... 
but I wanted them to have a little bit of three-dimensionality to them....
so I added just a drop of Aleen's Quick Dry Glue 
on each piece and let it dry. 
I built up three layers of "roundness" this way!
And then painted them white as the instructions said.
(I am sure you will notice that the cup handles are "broken"... 
they did not survive the laser cutting process... 
but as far as I am concerned, they are just the "every-day" china!)
And then, Dear Readers, I must have gotten very hungry 
because I forgot to take any pictures of the cake making...

Can you see it on the little tray on the table.....???
(You will have to poke the pictures to see closer!)

Here is a slightly closer view...
 it is really hard to get my camera to focus on the right spot!
(This is the first mini cake baking I have done!)
I am sure it is a vanilla buttercream frosted angelfood cake, 
with a raspberry and mint leaves on top!

Would you care for a cup of tea and a slice of cake....?
Oh, Heavens, I forgot there is only one chair!

But wait, I will borrow one from the Library.....

There you have it, Dear Readers,
 Won't you join me for Tea?
Cake and Tea, In cups that just might be 
Two Too Tiny!

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

More Teeny Tinies....

Not Done....

I had so Hoped I would have a competed set of furniture for the Next Room to show you, Dear Readers, but Alas, I got distracted by small Snags and Big indecisions and have Not completed most of what has been started! The Next room in the Secret Christmas House is the Sitting Room, on the middle floor above the Library, on the smaller side of the House. It is decorated in pale green striped wallpaper, and I had made minimal alterations to the ceiling of this room back in the Winter, only adding a central ceiling medallion painted white. I am trying to stick faithfully to the kits as instructed, but I find myself adding a few details and wanting to change others.

The furnishings for this room consist of an old cast iron parlor stove, 
a round "Tea Table", two wing-back Easy Chairs 
and a single small side chair.

The Wing back chairs were easy to assemble, as was the parlor stove.

There is a printed "fire" glued to the back of the stove.
It looks amazingly realistic!
The Tea Table, on the other hand, 
was Not easy to assemble!

The pieces that you need to separate from the board
 are Teeeeeny-tiny and fragile!
And one leg needs to attach first to the Table top, 
while the other three attach first to the stretcher piece....
with the feet facing in the right direction!
And then you somehow magically make the two halves go together 
with glue involved in the right places and at the right angles....... 
and all the pieces are too small to hold onto without tweezers...!
Whew... did it work?

Heavens, that is Tiny!
After that Dear Readers, the tiny chair is a piece of cake!

And then they need to be painted.... 
dark "wood" color for the table and chair.....

And "cloth" colored for the Wing back chairs!
And this is where I start to get into trouble....
They recommend a pale green cloth color to go with the wallpaper ...
(and the curtains which I have not added either!)
And they say there is only one way to achieve the effect of cloth on these chairs 
and that is many Many MANY coats of paint!

                         I am starting with a white base color and just adding coat after coat.....

 This is seven coats of paint so far..... 
is it starting to look "soft" like cloth?
(Do remember to poke the pictures to enlarge them)
And on top of all those coats of paint, 
I am wanting to make them a darker green color....
rather than the pale green they recommend.

And then they say to varnish all the wood painted pieces 
with a "matte acrylic varnish".... 
(which I don't have in my supplies....)

Before adding the printed "cloth" pieces to these.....
There is a lace cloth for the table and "cushions" for the chair.
I guess I will have to find some acrylic varnish 
in order to finish all these tiny pieces of furniture.

So you can see, Dear Readers, 
I am momentarily snagged  by lack of supplies 
and decisions I still need to make.
The Teeny tiny furniture might not be All Done...
but it is ready and waiting
for many more coats of varnish and paint.
(Just how many is "many Many MANY?)

Monday, June 26, 2017

Truly Tiny....

It's All Relative.....

Life has been extremely busy recently, Dear Readers, between the visit of my Wonderful Mom and a new computer system at work coinciding with the end of the school year rush... leaving no time at All for minis! And because my house is quite small and rather full of dollhouses and partly finished projects, there was a fair amount of "shifting around" of piles of things.... the Castle Great Hall Ceiling had to return to the Castle Hall even though it is Not Yet Done..., The Cloud Palace had to move into the sunny window.... and "temporary homes" had to be found for the partly assembled Gypsy Wagon.... and The Park could not even come out of "Hibernation" until after all the visiting was done. Last weekend was the first time in Ages that I felt I could really dive back into my mini projects. And Perhaps it is because the Solstice had just passed and I realized we were already heading Towards Christmas, I decided to just have a look at all the furnishing kits for The Secret Christmas House.... just to find out how difficult and complicated they would be. Let me tell you, these kits by Robin Betterley are very well made and not too challenging to assemble! I started with the little Girl's Bedroom furnishings. They go in the smaller of the two attic rooms. Above you can see the dresser assembled and ready to paint.

But I quickly ran into a small problem.
My kit came with two dressers 
rather than one dresser and two side tables!
This room also has a small chair and a bed.

Here I have begun the mattress part of the bed. 
It is a block of wood covered with a layer of felt and a small linen sheet.

Here the corners have been trimmed.

And the Quilt is being added.
All the cloth pieces are printed in beautiful detail on cotton
And the "brass" head and foot for the bed assembled.

And of course, we have to see how they fit inside the attic room....
Even though the Dresser still needs to be painted, they look pretty cute!

And the pillow for the bed too!

Of course, once I was started, there was no stopping!
The chair needed the paint and the printed "cushions" added.

The dresser needed painting....

And the printed decorations glued on.

They look pretty cute so far!
But I had to decide about the bedside tables.... 
they are really necessary for the decor, 
and I didn't want to wait for replacement kits to be sent.
So I decided to "improvise" and make my own!

Alas, they are so much cruder than the kit pieces!
But I have no laser cutter, 
and I figured they would be tucked into the room
 and hardly anyone would ever notice
 how chunky and lopsided the bases are!

Especially once the printed details and all the decorations were added!
Oh, you want to see the decorations too....?
Well, I am only too happy to tell you I had to get out the Glitter!

There is a tiny Tree that stands on one of the bedside tables...
I apologize for the blurry pictures... 
it is really hard to get the camera to focus on the tiny pieces!

There are two tiny glitter houses and a church on top of the dresser.....!

There is a lace shawl draped on the chair....

And the other bedside table has a brass candlestick
 decorated with Christmas ivy....
And although it is difficult to see,
 I dipped the candle top in glitter...
and in the right light it "glows"!
But the best part, Dear Readers, is the Truly Tiny doll!

She is dressed in a pink gown
 (made from painted toilet tissue!) 
and she sits propped on the pillow of the bed!

Her name is "Clarice", 
and I simply cannot promise that
 I will Not tell you her stories...!
She is Truly the tiniest doll of my acquaintance!
Just How tiny you ask?
Well, here are the furnishings inside the incomplete Nursery of the Tree House.....
(again, I apologize for the blurry pictures...)
The Tree House is approximately 1:48 or quarter scale.

And just as I was taking the pictures, Salome showed up!
She was Very interested to see so many furnishings 
that seem to be just her size!

And almost right on her heels was Anna Maria!
She was wondering What all the noise 
in the long silent Nursery was about.....!
(Alas, it was neither the Family come home, 
nor the workmen to complete the room....!)
But I am sure you really want to know 
whether all those pieces of furniture 
can possibly fit into that tiny attic room....?
 Yes, they can!
It is a tight fit.... but they do...
even with a little room to spare!
(And I have some ideas about that!)

So you can see, Dear Readers, 
How Tiny it is 
is Truly all Relative!
And speaking of Relatives, 
I had a wonderful visit with my Mother 
and Sister and Nieces and
 Great-nieces and Great-Nephew.
It was a busy and boisterous and memorable
 time together with much coming and going!
And now that the dust is settling....
I have all those Teeny Tiny kits waiting....
And a Truly Tiny Doll....!