Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Transferring ink-jet printed words and images to wood

I've been trying to work out how to do this for ages. This morning I found a tutorial on it via the Modge Podge Rocks blog. To go to the tutorial click here.

A note of caution - if you try it remember to print the words as a 'mirror image' (ie back-to-front) so that they are correct when they are transferred. Have fun!

An additional note: if you can't get Modge Podge which says on the label it is a 'waterbased sealer, glue and finish for all surfaces' and which I've used for decoupage and to seal and strengthen papers I think you could try anything similar. But maybe try it on a scrap first and see what you think.

Here is a link to another technique you might like to try. It uses waxed paper made for transfering images onto t-shirts.

(Acknowledgement - image sourced from

Monday, March 29, 2010

The mailman's been to my place again... thanks Jody!

Recently I got all pouty about how the availability of mini stuff, especially the often blogged about Michael's hutches, seems so much greater in the US than way down-under here in Australia. Click here to read the original post.

Dear Jody at Peach Blossom Hill took pity on me and kindly offered to send a mini 'care package' of a Michael's hutch and some other goodies - how could I refuse?? After some back and forth chat Ira at Merry Jingle Crafts and I both arranged to do a swap with Jody. This is the wonderful array of goodies that I received from Jody a few days ago...

Not just one hutch but THREE, two Eiffel Tower charms (sooooooo cute!), two lovely pieces of fabric, and two pretty floral printies - thank you Jody!!

Also included in the package was a beautiful hydrangea arrangement handmade by Jody that I purchased from her Etsy store, I'm so pleased with it. You can see one of these hydrangea arrangements on Jody's recent blog post -

The gorgeous little fuzzy peaches and the sofa, as well as other wonderful minis (including beautiful upholstered pieces) and lovely (top quality) fabrics, are also for sale at Jody's Etsy store, click here to visit and see them for yourself.

Bless you for your big, kind heart Jody, you're a very special lady :)

Thank you Ana!

Amazing artist Ana of Arts and Miniatures recently offered a giveaway of the most beautiful little silver filigree jugs and I was one of the lucky recipients. Ana's generosity didn't stop there though, she included a lovely little handworked doily

AND a tiny oval box with a selection of Decopatch papers. I'll post about the box and the papers later when I've had a 'play' but click here to go to the website, it's fascinating stuff!

Thanks again for your generosity Ana :) Click here to visit Ana's blog, there is some truly fabulous art and photography to enjoy there.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Using Photoshop for minis - tutorial

Carol at true2scale, a fulltime graphic designer with a love of miniatures and dollhouses, has published Part 1 of an ongoing tutorial about how to use Photoshop in miniature making. So if you're like me and you don't know your GIMP from your Elements 8, but would like to add some skill with digital graphics to your repertoire, check out Carol's blog. She's planning a 'how-to' that will cover producing a design like the Paris stencil I posted recently. Who wouldn't like to know how to do something like that!!??

While you're there scroll down thru her other posts, I'm in love with the seamstress shop at the bottom of the page :) And don't miss a recent post entitled "A Printie for your Easter Basket" which uses a cookie box design of hers. There's still time to add one (or two) to your dollhouse Easter scene :)

See you in design school! ;)

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Chadina's fun giveaway

Chadina's a new blogger with a big dollhouse she's renovating/adding to, an artists heart, a great sense of humour, a funny looking dog [sorry Buddy!!] and a handsome son Jake, and she's having a fun giveaway at Visionary In Miniature - you'll enjoy a visit to her blog I'm sure so pop on over and get in on the action! :)

Click on her blog name, or here, to go directly there.

(PS I have been known to leave the blog open on my desktop to enjoy the music after I've finished enjoying Chadina's postings...)

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Generous 1:1 blogger Lauri's image

This stencil was created by Lauri at 'Chippys', I found it on the blog "Time-worn Interiors" and I immediately thought it would be a fabulous resource for miniaturists - I'm thinking cushions and chairbacks if printed on fabric (the background has a nice texture), or maybe bags, tin signs, etc if printed on paper and cardstock. The possibilities are limitless really.

Lauri has generously given me permission to post her image here. While that permission didn't come with 'strings attached' as for usage of it I think we should respect that it is her creation and use it only on miniature projects, and perhaps limit it to personal - I suggest it's only fair that if you want to use it on minis that you sell that you should seek permission yourself directly from her. Her email address is available through her blog.

To go to Lauri and Therea's blogs just click on their blog names above :) They are well worth a visit, lots of inspirational ideas :)

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Incredible mini metal creations!

How fabulous are these little creations??!! They are the work of metalsmith, artist and new blogger Catherine at Kilmouski & Me, click here to go to her blog - you will be amazed and delighted!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Glimpses of the cottage downstairs bedroom (1:1)

This room is the most feminine room at the cottage, lots of roses and 'pretty' accessories. The white dressing table was 'rescued' from a barn - and it looked very neglected before it got a coat of paint (no before photo unfortunately).

The desk is actually a sewing machine table, probably from about 1940s although I'm not really sure. The machine didn't work and has been removed. There is a coat of pink paint under the white which will be revealed when I eventually get around to sanding the edges. This photo has been posted before, I forgot to take a new one showing the gorgeous shabby white mirror I bought for this corner - next time :)

This wardrobe is dark oak, it's only got one coat of paint on it at present. I'm thinking about painting it a pastel colour rather than leaving it white, or decorating it with some stencilling perhaps. (Any volunteers to finish painting the ceiling, etc?)

I bought this pretty little vintage evening bag from a charity secondhand store for about $8, and the vintage handkerchiefs from a flea market in Sydney for just a couple of dollars each. I need to find some more to use as doll house linen...

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

A glimpse of the cottage upstairs bedroom renovation (1:1)

The wood lining is more of a golden/honey colour than this photo shows, I don't know why it looks so pink in the photo. As you can see the wood has become water stained when we had problems with rain getting in around the window, and we had the same problem with the ceiling when the roof leaked. You can also see that I've started to fill some of the holes and other imperfections in the wood (the white patches). They're hardly noticeable when the wood is in it's natural state but look awful once the paint goes on. There were a lot of them and this took a really long time!! All of the walls, and the ceiling, are lined with these wooden planks. They have been left in their 'rough sawn' state but they have been sealed and painted. Because there was a lot of water staining in various places on other walls as well as the ceiling a special sealer was need to stop it 'bleeding' through the paint. The first product I bought which promised to do just that was a waste of time and money - after 3 coats of it stains were still 'bleeding' - as you can imagine I was NOT happy! "Resene" pigmented sealer did the job with just one coat, I think it's my favourite renovating product now :) I should have bought it in the first place because I love Resene paint products and rarely use anything else.

This end of the room now looks like this (the dark wood on the right is a vintage oak wardrobe,I haven't decided yet whether to leave it like it is or paint it).

As you can see the theme for this room is beach/nautical, this tin 'sign' is the colour theme inspiration

I really like this one too

It's time to trim the trees to reclaim the view of the ocean I think! What looks like a 'door to nowhere' is exactly that - but it's the only way to get furniture in and out of the room.

I'm happy with the way the room is turning out but there is still quite a bit of work to be done, we won't be back in New Zealand until the end of the year so it makes for a rather 'long-term' project. The advantage is that it gives a lot of time to look for the right linen for the bed, and fabric for the window coverings. At the moment I'm favouring roman blinds but finding the right fabric will be a challenge I think.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Giveaway on a new blog (now closed)

Ana at 'A Journey Through Arts and Miniatures' is soon to a give away these wonderful silver filigree jugs to celebrate approaching 50 Followers. Ana is an artist whose handpainted miniatures are truly amazing. Pop over and have a look! Click on her blog name or here.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

You'll need to be QUICK to get in on this!! (swap now closed)

Caterina is organising an Easter themed swap.

Visit her blog (click on her name above to go directly there - Google will translate if necessary) for full details but the basic info is that Caterina will organise the swap partners, the swap item will be JUST ONE EASTER THEMED MINI, (Caterina's suggestions include: Easter basket, box of chocolates, chickens, bunny, flowers - anything with an Easter/spring theme - made of whatever material you choose).

You need to 'register your interest' on her blog VERY VERY QUICKLY because she wants to make the draw of swap partners on 8 March. Also your mini should be ready to send to your swap partner by 20 March.

(Regrettably I'm not able to participate in this swap myself, I don't have anything suitable in my 'stash' and with the pressure of the beginning of the university year on my back don't feel able to commit to preparing anything in time. However, I think it's a great idea and really hope that some of you may be able to join in the FUN!!)

The Giveaway winners are drawn!

My 'assistant', birthday boy Max, contemplates the entries...

It's hard to choose just one, Grandma...

But eventually he did... "What does it say Grandma?"

It says "El costurero de manoli" Max!

Max's friend Cara wanted to be in on the draw too so we have TWO giveaway draw winners!!!

It's Paky!

Max says CONGRATULATIONS Manoli and Paky!!

Manoli at El costurero de manoli has a lovely blog, she is a multi-talented crafter and artist. A couple of recent posts feature some of her flower painting projects. In her introduction Manoli says that she hopes to make new friends through her blog, I encouage you to visit her.

Paky at Paquicheli's blog is a popular and passionate miniaturist known to many of us. There's always something fun going on over at her blog.

(click on their blog names to go directly there)

Congratulations again to Manoli and Paky. I will contact each of them and then decide on what the two little gifts will be - in the meantime this remains a 'mystery' giveaway :)

Thanks to everyone for your interest in this little bit of 'giveaway' fun, and especially to Max and Cara (and 'official' photographer for the occasion, Max's mummy) for their help :)

Friday, March 5, 2010

Welcome and Giveaway Draw Countdown

A sincere welcome to

Nat @ Love 'n Light
dana mocan @
Nuria, Rossana y Norma @ Casitamini
Margaret @ My Petite Partere
Shellagh @ Ticking & Toile
Sonya @ cannellaemelograno
Brenda @ Cozy Little House
angeles @ El Rincon De Baldu
(blog names are 'hot links' to the blogs - click to check them out if you don't already know them, or it's been a while since you visited)

and Cindy and mimusdoll - there are no blogs showing on your profiles. If you do have blogs or websites please leave a note here so that we can come visit you :)

Thanks for stopping by!

Less than 24 hours to go to the 100 Followers celebratory giveaway draw!! (See post below for details.)

Monday, March 1, 2010

When I grow up I wanna go live in America!

The green eyed monster has risen in me again! Every now and then American miniaturists are blogging about 'this and that' they bought for a pittance at 'Michaels' - usually things like cute as a button hutches and so on - well now Brenda over at Cozy Little House has found gorgeous minis at her Garden Centre of all places!! Is there no end to where you can find cute stuff over there in the good ol' US of A??? *pouts*

All the litte things she bought for her conservatory (a wonderful mini in itself!) are just great, but the birdcage 'takes the cake'! Click here to see the full post.

Now I'm off to sit in the 'naughty corner' and repeat 100 times "I must not be jealous of the good fortune of others." ;)

Photo copied and posted here with Brenda's permission.