Saturday, 23 June 2012

I'm going to build this dollhouse!

What do you think? I like it because it looks so dainty!  I also like it because it has that "Victorian" look. I was able to buy this kit at 50% off, and I didn't have to pay for shipping! Therefore it only cost me $20.

It came to me by way of my friend Pat, who bought a case lot of dollhouse and miniature items from a woman named Amber who had posted an ad on kijiji. See the post "I can build a Dollhouse Super quick" for more details. This case lot came with quite a lot of dollhouse kits so Pat decided to sell them off at 50% off and gave her friends first dibs on looking them over and deciding what they wanted to buy. She did this with a bunch of dollhouse furniture too so I got a bargain on a bunch of things.

Since I am extremely broke right now, Pat simply set my things aside for me and I'll pay her when I go back to work in a couple of months.

This dollhouse will take a lot of work to build! And I might wait until we are living in a bigger place. Right now I simply take over part of our tiny kitchen table for my projects, but for a dollhouse kit you need to be able to leave it over night when you glue the walls and floors together and hold them together with clamps. Still, even though I won't be able to get started on this project for awhile, I have already started planning what I'm going to put in each room. The planning phase is always so much fun!

Friday, 15 June 2012

This would make a really fun vacation....

I've read a couple of British Dollhouse and Miniature magazines on my tablet lately and boy, is the hobby ever popular across the pond! Recently I've been fantasizing about going to visit England solely for the purpose of visiting miniatures shops and fairs. That would be dreamy....However I do have a practical side. I want to take Mark with me to the UK and something tells me he wouldn't be thrilled to spend the whole time visiting dollhouse and miniature shops. Maybe he could spend time visiting the castles and museums and we could meet up at the end of the day? :P Last week my friend Susie and I were having a skype date and saying that we would both like to do more traveling and we'd go anywhere. There is no where we're not interested in going. However, we both agreed that travel dreams to drop down to the bottom of the priority list when more prosaic concerns demand attention. For me this includes saving up to buy a house, starting a family, ect.
I think dreams are important though. I love this quote from "Through the Looking Glass" by Lewis Carol:
"Alice laughed. "There's no use trying," she said: "one can't believe impossible things."
"I daresay you haven't had much practice," said the Queen. "When I was your age, I always did it for half-an-hour a day. Why, sometimes I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast."
Where would we be if we didn't dare to believe the impossible and dream lofty dreams? Life would be boring.
My approach to life is to attend to practical details while dreaming fabulous dreams. I encourage you to do the same!

Thursday, 14 June 2012

Father's Day Card

Finally got this completed and mailed off to Dad yesterday. When he gets it I will finally give my blog address to him and mum. Although...I realized yesterday I will have to become evermore stealthy as time goes on. Since many people who follow my blog are friends and family and I will continue giving homemade cards, gift baskets and eventually miniature scenes (mini kitchen, garden or sewing scenes for example) I'll just have to wait until people receive their gifts before posting pics on the blog.
I have already confided to some of you that Someday....(cue the music) tee hee. See, I can amuse myself with just a virtual audience, or in all honesty, no audience. But I digress. When I become a mom I would like to run a small business creating gift baskets for special occasions. If you look at the second post you'll see an example of what such a basket would look like. And since I'm now into making my own cards, I could do that as well, selling them separately or as part of a gift basket, or perhaps both. I would keep the business small and local. I don't want to get into shipping homemade cosmetics. I would need at least one other person to help out. I'd probably recruit another mom.

I chose to include a printie of the cover of one of Dad's favorite books, a mini shirt and tie which a ordered from an online miniature store, and two printies of vintage Irish children, since my Dad's Irish Heritage is very important to him. I found myself fussing over the details (my crafts basket ate my fine tipped pen that I wanted to use for the inside of the card!) but tried to relax and get it in the mail, which I eventually did.

Post encouraging comments if you think this is a good idea!

Saturday, 9 June 2012

How to make dollarstore acrylic paint look better and last longer

The following advice was relayed to me by a woman at the mini group who by the sounds of it has been a serious artist for years. She told us that you can buy something called "Flow extender" at your local paint supply store, mix a couple of drops in with your acrylic paint, and it will go on more smoothly.

Also, she introduced us to something called the wet pallet. The wet pallet consists of a sheet of paper that is like watercolor paper, a piece of foam, and a plastic case. You wet the paper, and then you can deposit dollops of paint on the paper, and when you're done, put the wet pallet in the freezer (I can picture Mark discovering it next to a roast saying "What is she up to NOW?" and then take it out again when you're ready to resume work on your project. That way you don't waste paint.
This strikes me as especially usefully when you are mixing colors. Marg (I think that was her name) said she even uses it for glue!

In unrelated news, I just got off the phone with my dad, who said he would help me with the last phase of my Grandpa's 97th Birthday gift, which involves measuring and sawing chipboard, a task which intimidates me a wee bit. For more details, consult the previous post Ongoing Projects. He reminded me that we will be down in Calgary in just 3 weeks! We will be attending my sister in law's wedding, then I will be going to Vancouver with my parents and brother to spend a couple of days with my Grandpa, then I will meet up with Mark and two friends to spend three weeks on Galliano. Eeep! This Crafty girl better get moving, she has some crafty projects to finish, not to mention other more mundane projects :P

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

I can assemble and decorate a dollhouse kit super quick!

Nah! Just joshin'. Actually this cute little dollhouse came to me thanks to the generosity of my friend Pat who I met at the miniaturist Club. Us cool people call it the mini club. That's what I will be calling it from now on :P I'll try to explain how Pat came into possession of many dollhouses as succinctly as possibly, the story does have some twists and turns.

A while back a woman posted an ad on kijiji that she had a lot of dollhouse and miniature items for sale. I didn't check this out because I couldn't afford to buy anything. When I went to the first mini meeting Pat told the group about going out to the woman's house in Springhills (I'm not even exactly sure where that is, a small town near Edmonton) and seeing an incredible amount of dollhouse furniture, accessories, completed dollhouses, and unfinished dollhouse kits. Apparently this woman, whose name is Amber, has a husband who had bought all of this stuff sight unseen. The details are still vague. We don't know if it was bought from a storage facility, estate sale or what.

Any woman who is seriously is love with dollhouses and miniatures would have been in heaven if her husband had done such a thing. But Amber was just overwhelmed, unsure of what to charge, and eventually got tired of people constantly coming over to her home to pick through the huge amount of things that she had. So Pat decided to make her an offer her a set price for what remained (still a considerable amount of stuff, even though many people from the mini group had gone and bought as much as they could afford).

Pat can now keep what she wants, set aside items for friends so they can buy items directly from her, and rent two tables at the club's annual show and sale to sell off the rest of the stuff. She has decided to find loving homes for the assembled and decorated dollhouses. I am a grateful recipient of such a dollhouse.

I would have chosen a different color scheme for the exterior, but on the whole I am very pleased with my very first dollhouse. It will be fairly easy to furnish.

We originally thought this was a Greenleaf Dollhouse, but upon closer inspection, I've concluded it's actually produced by the Company Real Good Toys. Real Good Toys Kits are quite expensive because they're very high quality dollhouses. They have a line of houses called Lilyput. These houses are smaller, the doors don't open, but they're awfully cute and I'm happy to own one!


The inside of the dollhouse, partially furnished. It's very well done. I'm really happy to have a dollhouse I didn't have to wallpaper myself! Yes, they have special wallpapers for dollhouses, and you have to measure it carefully and apply it before you assemble it yourself. Making dollhouses and miniatures is NOT for sissies.

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