Once I saw a picture of a lady in a magazine, who was making a mini vase out of clay. She had a large bump of clay on the rotation wheel and on top of it she had this little vase 'growing'. Couldn't you do something just like that: take a large bump of fimo and let your little doll grow out of it? It's worth a try, I think.
Marjon de Haas
Roomboxes: There are several different size wooden roomboxes, but if you are going to make them yourself, I wouldn't be held to a standard size. I would make them the size that I needed for the project. The rooms in your house are not all the same size, so roomboxes shouldn't be either. If you make a project that requires little space, it would look out of place in a standard sized roombox. On the other hand, if you have a large, or very busy project, I have found that a little larger space so it is not quite as crowded looks nicer. I think that itis strictly up to the individual.
Foamcore Roomboxes: The May 2000 issue of DM has an excellent how-to by Frank Lerner. He makes it very easy. Or you could do like I do and just wing it. Make it any size you want it to be. How big is the largest item going in, going to be? Go on from there. Whatever looks right is what I use. Also check out Joann Swanson's Wizard room in the October 2000 issue of DM. She uses foamcore for the walls, floors-everything.
Pam in St. Louie
my first kit is a country store. I know nothing except I was trying to save money for stuff for my store so I scribed the floor to make it look like a real wood floor. Then I stained it and varnished it. It came out great. Then I scribed the ceiling to look like tong and grove with ceiling beams. The bottom floor looks like 2X6 wood decked plank floor. I put tiny hole for nails. Wish I would have used some of your ideas and made it look like real nails but I just put tiny hole where the nails went and stained it. It has thousands of holes so the "real nails" would have taken me forever. I really love the way it says "this kit takes 3 to 4 hours to put together." My next step is wiring. I am so afraid to start that project.
Mini potpourri: Courdee sent me a tip about making mini potpourri. So today when I was cleaning out the cupboard where I keep all my spices and herbs I thought this was the right time to try it. I had great fun, crushing up some dried flowers and a way past its selling date heather plant. I ended up with a blue-ish and a pinkish mix to which I added some crushed up bayleaves, heads of cloves, crushed cinnamon sticks etc. To round it off I added a drop of lavender oil to both mixes and put them in airtight boxes to mature a little as for full scale potpourri. I will add some thyme leaves and things from the garden that are drying in the microwave right now. I think it will be very nice. The only thing is.........you can make 12th scale potpourri but it you can't make 12th scale quantities. I think I will end up with lots of mini Christmas gifts
OPEN POTPOURRI TUSSYMUSSY: Cut lace designs as above. Glue potpourri in center, leaving lacy edge visible. These look great glued on tree tips, especially with fine thread or ribbon streamers hanging down from back. Again, one teeny bloom looks good.
Wanna in El Paso
Soapy Water: I have been experimenting and trying to make something that looks like soapy water. I think I have found something that would be nice for you to try at home. You need two kinds of glue. I used water based PVA also called wood glue. ( I had tundra brand from Ikea) and clear all purpose hobby glue. The stuff I used contains acetone and ethanol. The best thing to do is , get some old bottle caps from your collection and use them for experimenting. Use two thirds of clear glue (pour it in the bottle top) and add one third of pva glue. Give it a good stir with a toothpick or similar. At first it will look like a white blob but soon you will find it gets clearer again and you will see air bubbles too. Now stop stirring and put your container in a warm place. Sunny windowsills are great for this or a windowsill over a radiator. Leave overnight. But be sure to the have a look every now and then to see what happens, it is great fun. If things go well there will be lots of bubbles etc. You will find the whole thing shrinks quite a bit while drying but you can extra layers on top if you like. If you want to put fabric pieces , dishes or sponges in , do so in the top layer or they will be invisible under the soapy surface. It takes a long time to dry out completely. ( up to a week) and it can still shrink a little even after that. But you can still add more layers if you want to. Have fun with the soapy water for the dishes and the washing
Flaws: I know every flaw in my dollhouse and nobody has ever spotted them. If you want to see if a flaw is obvious, take a photo. That's how I find out what looks bad and what doesn't. I don't know why a photo works better than seeing it in person but for me it does.
16th Scale: My next project is to re-create the home of my childhood, complete with my Renwal furniture saved from my childhood. It's 16th scale, and I've found that it works perfectly well with some judicial 12 scale added. The older dollhouses, of which mine is, had lower ceilings, 9 ft instead of 10 ft, and the 16th scale actually looks better IMHO. I was planning to get a photopoint site, but now I'm dithering, not because of cost, but I don't like the changes they've made. I sort of like webshots, but I really need one that idjuts like me can use!!!!
Sharon in Watsonville CA
Moving a dollhouse: I moved my collection of room boxes and dollhouses about two years ago. We had the grandsons do the miniature moving in a rent-a-truck. The only damage I had was a nick in the stairwell when they carried the biggest piece down to my new studio/workroom All of the rooms that have glued downed furniture were stuffed with tissue paper. I put little boxes or paper around each light fixture. Because they would swingI didn't want the wires to break. The buildings with loose furniture were handled differently. All the furniture was wrapped in tissue, boxed and labeled for after the move. I used heavy duty plastic storage boxes from Target. Those boxes are now used for other storage purposes The roomboxes were wrapped in bubblewrap and brown paper and labeled. I removed all of the lead-ins and transformers and packed those in one carton. All of my fine porcelain and glass and other really really good stuff were individually wrapped in pieces of bubble wrap, put in plastic containers and labeled. Everything was found safe after the move and all was easily identified. It took DAYS to pack, but worth it
Roberta in Wisconsin
Needlework Shop Names:
Needlework Shop Name:: "Just Needlin' and my Quilt shop "Under the Covers". I think I found the names in astitchery magazine or something.
Needlework Shop Name: How bout "We're in Stitches" or "The Stitch Witch" (with logo),The Knotty Shop," (would work for thread knots).
Lynette in WNC
Needlework Shop Name: "Needleworks", with the letter l being a picture of a real needle that is threaded and having the thread draping over the rest of the word.
Gale S Kerkoski
Needlework Shop Name: "STITCH WITCH" and have little mini "stitch witches" hanging all over the place.
DrBob...Delray Beach, FL.
Naming a Shop: The Needle's Eye. Their logo was a needle with a long thread under the name. Or check shop names listed in any needlework magazine. I named mine Tiny Stitches. Rhonda.
Ruth, Grass Valley, CA
Toyshop Names: Toys for Tots.
Ruth Morey, Corpus Christi on Padre Island
Plastic thingys from pill bottles: They make great canned goods etc., I carefully cut the bottom out of one and then made a circle of paper, cut a pie wedge from it and glued it into a flat type cone....I then took a piece of thicker cardboard and cut a small circle just slightly bigger than the plastic thingy (you could use a button). Both of these I painted black and added a little"rust" to them; then glued one to the top and one to the bottom ..before I glued the cardboard circle to the bottom I pushed a tiny piece of yellow tissue up into the plastic thingy...ta..da ..a little lantern for my cigar box fishing shack. Because I have different sizes I glued three together to make a pot belly stove for that same fishing shack. One size looks to me like those crocks grandma used to make pickles etc. in. Make friends with your local pharmacist!
Ruth in sunny Green Valley.painted black....they make great nursery plant and shrub cans. There are a few that can be used for kitchen canisters as they are already colored and have a finished lip, and there is one that is shaped just like a back yard planter. And of course you have the added benefit of collecting the glassy silica beads inside which can be used for all sort of things, including drying miniature wildflowers.
Carol WagnerJoshua Tree Calif.
Glass Fishing Floats: I have some old life-scale net floats, and they're irregular blown globes with lots of bubbles trapped in the fairly thick glass, hollow, one red, one yellow, one coke-bottle green, and various sizes from about 3 inches to 5 inches diameter. Each has a tiny pinhole somewhere that seems to be where the globe was separated from the blowing apparatus, like the pontil on glassware and vases.
Painting Small Items: To who ever wanted to hold down dishes to paint them -- use rubber cement. Put a little dab on the back of the dish and put it on card stock/index card. It will take a few minutes to set up. Go drink a cup of tea. Come back and they are set and ready to work on. Just peel them off when you are done painting.
FIREFLIES: I have simulated fireflies mechanically with fiber optics and electronically with bulbs AND with fiber optics. Frankly, I liked the mechanical system best. Here goes. I built an opaque drum (cylinder) out of aluminum (shiny side in) and powered it to be turned by a 4 RPM appliance motor. ATTENTION EVERYBODY!! Rescue timer motors from all and any abandoned laundry machines! These are the geared can motors that advance your timer switches. Hidden, they run on 110Volt (USA) and can be used for ceiling fans, electric model trains, revolving Christmas trees, and lightening bugs among other mini projects.
The drum is turned by the timer motor at one end and has a 6 watt clear light bulb inserted from other end. Rig a fire proof light block to keep most light inside except for flash slits to be covered shortly.
I softened thin brass tubing by heating to cherry red on the stove then quenching in cold water. Insert fiber optic strands into the brass tubeand guide from where you want your "bugs" to flash (pointing toward viewers) and the other end secured to point directly at the outside of the drum. Now for the magic. Cut a long thin slit in the drum exactly where the ends of fibers are pointing at it. Mark where first then take your drum out and lay it over a work surface to cut the slit. Ideally, The light should suddenly "Flash" directly into the fiber optic tube then the slit should turn away at a very slight angle so that the amount of light kind of "fades" just like the butt on a real fire fly. Several different slits to different fibers or several different fiber tubes at the same slit along differing parts of the revolution give you multiples. Three seems to be about the maximum number of fire flies in a single setting. Four or more tends to over do it (IMHO).
For reasonable brevity, I haven't pointed out all the little details but hope this will get you started. If you have specific questions or need for more explicit explanation, feel free to e-mail direct.
Mel K in LasVegas
dh smasher: Maybe you and any other dh smashers should make yourselves a DAMMIT doll. Here's the URL for the directions: THE DAMMIT DOLL: http://huskins.com/strega/dammit.html Lots cheaper than stomping your dh kits. LOL!
MicroMark's Smoke Generator: Here's the link, in case someone might be interested. The stack is removable.
Removing acrylic paint from jeans: I have had success removing acrylic paint with methylated spirits on a cotton wool ball, just dab it on, leave to soften and it comes out pretty well. Once washed it should be removed. The stuff I removed was acrylic house paint from Dulux for real houses, I would assume it would work on other acrylic paints too. (Might help to test on an inconspicuous area first!!)
Beads: Mill Hill Beads Online Store http://www.millhillbeads.com/
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