Monday, November 20, 2017

Saturday screen test

Last week's miniature inspiration happened early on Wednesday morning, as I lolled in bed with my morning mug of tea and a copy of Wallpaper* magazine, enjoying the down-time before I needed to get ready for work, and spotted this advertisement (with a screen in a design that looked rather familiar):
Magazine advertisement for furniture including a black and white striped screen, with three pieces of black and white striped bunting laid on top, and a utility knife.
And I was out of bed and rummaging in workroom for supplies before I knew it.

On Saturday, feeling all smug-like, I started on cutting out the pieces (stopping, as one does, to Instagram the process)...
Flat lay of a pencil, utility knife, metal ruler and a one-twelfth scale modern miniature tulip chair along with a rectangle of black and white striped wood, plus some offcuts.
(Wheee! Look at me! This is so eas... Oops).

As I finished cutting the second piece I realised that the way the bunting had been printed meant that, no matter which way up I turned the pieces of the screen, the stripes all faced the same way. (The only solution would be to cut across the bunting, but that would make the screen very (very) short).
Two rectangular and one bunting-shaped pieces of plywood printed with black and white stripes,laid out on a cutting mat, along with a metal ruler and a utility knife.
Luckily I'd bought some much-more-expensive-but-still-deeply-discounted rectangular bunting on the same shopping trip. With black (but no white) stripes. 
Rectangular piece of plywood bunting, printed with black stripes, laid out on a cutting mat along with a metal ruler and a utility knife.
So I tried again. The wood on this bunting was thinner, so easier to cut. And this time the concept worked (although, in retrospect the anal-retentive in me would have preferred it if I'd moved the pieces so the stripes matched).
Three rectangular pieces of plywood, printed with black stripes, laid out on a cutting mat along with a roll of black duct tape, a metal ruler and a utility knife.
And then I went downstairs to wash some dishes. Which was when the old subconscious tapped me on the shoulder and reminded me that I had some printed hessian in stash that might just work rather well with this new version of the screen, if I just made the time to add the bias binding I'd planned to the edges of it...
One-twelfth scale modern miniature scene including a plywood screen with black stripes, a hessian rug with a black chevron pattern, a white tulip chair with a black seat and a bronze side table with a potted fern sitting on it.
And so it was that the end result of my miniature crafting adventures turned out quite differently than I'd expected. Again.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

The co-working space

It's been a busy week, so I didn't manage to share my photos of the finished You Are Here: the co-working space you saw being created on Monday.

So welcome (finally!)
One-twelfth scale modern miniature co-working space, showing the lounge, kitchen and entrance spaces.
You Are Here is a new subscription-only co-working space located in the hip neighbourhood of Braddon. With space for twelve of our subscribers to use it at a time, it gives you the opportunity to meet like-minded people without having to deal with a large, noisy overwhelming space.

We encourage collaborations and a sense of community: just inside the entrance is a whiteboard to let you know what's going on,
Entrance to a one-twelfth scale modern miniature co-working space, showing a whiteboard on the wall above a row of drawers. Displayed on the drawers is a yellow typewriter.
and a noticeboard where you can add you business card or details of events the other members might be interested in. There's also storage for your bags while you're using the space.
Entrance to a one-twelfth scale modern miniature co-working space, showing one wall covered in corkboard with cube shelves next to it.
With a choice of spots to work, you'll find something that will suit your work-style. On one side of the space there are tables and seating at various heights for quiet work individually or in groups.
One-twelfth scale modern miniature co-working space, showing two tables (one high, one normal height) lined up and surrounded by seating.
And, as you can see from the top photo, there's a kitchen area and a more relaxed break-out space for for holding meetings, chatting to fellow members, or for when you just need time out.

We offer a range of subscription options, so contact us today for more information, or drop into our launch this Friday from 4 pm.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Space to think creatively

Talk about famous last words...

Saturday morning started as most weekend mornings do around here: with a mug of tea and some reading material to accompany it.

Curiously, the colour-coordinated state of my weekend reading was quite coincidental.
Two magazines (Uppercase and Wallpaper) and a book (Barbara Hanrahan: printmaker) arranged on a bed with white bedding.
But it obviously stuck in my head, because as the usual postcards that come with Uppercase magazine fell out when I opened it, I thought of a Formica table top. (I've used these postcards before and have a stash waiting for the right scenes...)

And suddenly there I was on Saturday morning (even before I'd made brunch), pulling together the germ of a new scene (flat-lay style): a co-working space, something I've not thought of before.

I used a number of bits and pieces I had banging round in stash, plus some new pieces picked up from here and there:
Flat lay of various items in yellow, black and white, mainly in one-twelfth scale miniature.
I knew I had a couple of dining table kits picked up from JWT, and figured one would be the perfect base for what I'd planned. Except while pulling together the flat lay, I included the stools that came with my Lori Loft to Love. Which meant there had to be some kit-bashing in my future if the table was going to fit the stools.
Pieces for a one-twelfth scale dining table kit, including glue, toothpick and patterned paper for the tabletop, all laid out on a cutting mat.
In the end, I only used five of the pieces included in the kit: and re-cut the legs using the balsa dowel I bought to make the extra tea tins to turn into planters. In retrospect, I'm not actually sure why I used the kit: except perhaps to get it off the list of unused kits. And as a springboard.

While waiting for the glue to dry on my new table, I played with the items from my flat lay: in the build you've seen many times before:
One-twelfth scale modern miniature co-working space with tables, chairs, storage drawers and a divider made of breeze blocks.
(with the added challenge of not turning it into Buzz Bar Cafe mark II...)
One-twelfth scale modern miniature office break-out space in bright colours with a kitchen in the background and seating and coffee tables in the foreground.
 It was about this time that I realised that the scene was actually turning into some sort of poster child for making miniatures from everyday items: the ottoman is from a stash gifted to me by Taph many many moons ago. The rug is an upholstery sample courtesy of Catherine. And the coffee table? A spray paint can lid (Hah! Anyone remember this?)
Aerial view of a one-twelfth scale modern miniature ottoman and coffee table with a laptop and a coffee on it.
But that's not all: in the kitchen area are hexagonal tiles made from reflective safety tape I picked up at Pete's Emporium, and the bowl is from an alarm clock courtesy of Typo's scratch and dent table
One-twelfth scale modern miniature still life with a water jug, bowl and pepper grinder against a wall of hexagonal tiles.
The good news is that the table is complete*:
One-twelfth scale modern miniature high work table with white wooden legs and a yellow printed top. Around it are yellow high stools.
The bad news is that I think I need to add some struts to the bottom. And I've run out of the undercoat I used to paint it with...

(*aka blog ready: you may have noticed that the paper is not actually attached to the top yet!)

Friday, November 10, 2017

Finishing it off Friday

Two glasses of rose, with the bottle they came from (and a cheese board) on a table in front of The Shine Dome.

But with the range of events offered by this year's Design Canberra, don't hold you breath for any minis around here anytime soon, as I'm a wee bit distracted...

Saturday, November 04, 2017

Feeling blue

One-twelfth scale modern miniature scene with several New-Zealand  themed pictures on a wall papered in pasifika paper above a chest of drawers: all in shades of teal and white.
While tidying up my studio (again) this afternoon, I came across a collection of random bits that seemed to work rather well together: a couple of pieces of paper ephemera from the de-accession sale I went to while interning at Te Papa way back in 2010, a sign from an Avant Card I picked up in early 2015 (or prior: I can't find mention of it on my blog), and a wooden cross from my most recent trip to Wellington).

Before I knew it, I'd pulled out a piece of the pasifika-themed scrapbooking paper bought on the same trip, and the Lori's Loft dresser I picked up in February, and had thrown together the scene above.

I'm not sure if I feel the love enough to transform it into something bigger, or just leave it at that. I'll think about it and see how I feel tomorrow...

Monday, October 30, 2017

Weekend woodworking

(and more: in black and white, of course...)

On Sunday afternoon, while dithering about stuffing and sewing closed the black and white cushions I started last weekend, I found myself distracted by that amazingly cheap (and also black and white) wooden bunting I bought in New Zealand.

Which soon lead to this: 
Flat lay on a cutting mat, with black and white striped wood pieces, glue, toothpicks, utility knife, pencil, and gluing jig laid out.
and then this: 
One-twelfth scale modern miniature sideboard with black and white striped front, next to an Eames chair with a black and white spotted cushion on it, on a cutting mat with various full-sized tools laid out on it.
in the 'not perfect but done' basket. 

Which is fine, because the whole point of potentially wasting one of the six bits of wood I bought for a total of 7 cents (which makes them, lets see... just over 1 cent a piece), was to see if my idea was feasible.

(Especially as I find I have rather a lot more printed wood pieces than I thought (thanks to the joys of the Typo scratch and dent table...))

Speaking of the Typo scratch and dent table, my stash from there came to the rescue with my next completed project from the weekend:
Underside of a one-twelfth scale industrial-style trolley, showing rusted wheels and undercarriage. In the background on the cutting mat are two more wheels and a pair of (full-sized) tweezers.
 (You first saw it back here, and it's been kitbashed significantly since (with a piece of wood originally seen here back in 2013, from a crate now used to store cleaning supplies in my laundry (minus, of course, the missing panel!), and a number plate courtesy of Kitty and Kat Miniatures).
One-twelfth scale industrial-style trolley with rusted wheels and undercarriage and distressed white top planks.
 Also wood-related this weekend was a talk at the National Gallery on assemblage artist Rosalie Gascoigne, given by her son Martin. You may recall how much I love Rosalie Gascoigne's work, and I was heartened by this image he shared of her in her studio, surrounded by bit of wood that might come in handy sometime soon...
Assemblage artist Rosalie Gascoigne pictured in her studio surrounded by old Schweppes crates and pieces of (often stored in the crates).
Finally, unrelated (except for colour, timing and the fact there's one in an earlier photo in this post), I stuffed and sewed some miniature cushions.
Selection of stuffed one-twelfth scale modern miniature black and white cushions, with a full-sized spool of black thread, a needle and a pair of embroidery scissors next to them.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Tea tins on Tuesday

I know it was quiet around here over the weekend, but I did manage to get some creating done...

A variation of last month's tea caddy: this time with plants growing in them:
One-twelfth scale modern miniature scene of a kitchen bench with two Twinings tea tins with plants growing in them, a tea towel a framed picture of a New Zealand scene displayed.
Some black and white cushions half-made (ready for stuffing this week):
Flat lay of various black and white fabrics, scissors, pen and templates laid out on a cutting mat.
 And some rediscovered plate decals waiting to become plates:
Several sheets of miniature printed plates in an envelope with the instructions 'plates to make' written on it.
(Please don't tell me they've been buried in stash since 2011...)

Friday, October 20, 2017

Well I did finish it. And it is Friday...

Empty wine glass sitting on a cutting mat in front of a selection of bagged kits and a one-twelfth scale miniature wall with a metal clock on it.
I'm acting up this week and next, so this is the only sort off Finish-it-off-Friday action happening around here tonight...

Monday, October 16, 2017

Making time for miniatures on Monday

Industrial miniature scene of a large metal clock on a distressed wall behind a desk with various brass items displayed on it.
So that only took four years (and five minutes once I actually started)... *sigh*

In other, more heartening news, look what's finished (if, I now see, a wee bit wonky):
A miniature one-twelfth scale shadow box in the shape of a house displayed behind a tiny dolls house for a dolls house and a Toby dog figurine.

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Saturday, and so many kits

After last night's win, this afternoon I felt the urge to return to The Tub of Undone and see what else I could complete quickly and tick off the list.
Cutting mat with a ruler, tweezers, cutting knife and tube of Weldbond glue arranged on it. To the right is a package of baking paper and to the back is a tub of miniature kits.
The first kit I pulled out was a Punch and Judy theatre by Jewel Lewis, which I got at last year's NZAME convention but didn't seem to blog about. Probably because I didn't actually buy it, but won it from a lucky ticket thingo.

You've seen Jewel's work on the blog before, and I'd obviously just dumped this kit into the tub when I got home, without opening it. Because today when I opened it I found that it included Punch. And Judy. And even Toby:
One-twelfth scale miniature Punch and Judy figures next to a card which reads 'Punch and Judy Toby A gift from Jewel'
(So much detail, as usual for Jewel...)
Close up of a one-twelfth scale Judy puppet.
I actually put this kit back in the tub because I have no need for a Punch and Judy theatre at the moment and figured I might need the components at a later stage. But I was feeling very happy to know about the figures!

Another Jewel Lewis purchase from last year's NZAME Convention that I did blog about is the Very Small Dollshouse.
'Very small dollshouse' in its packaging, on a cutting board with a cutting knife next to it.
Which, as it states on the packaging, is very small.
Pieces of a 'Very small dollshouse' and instruction sheet, arranged on a cutting board.
So small, in fact, that I found that my reading glasses weren't enough for working on it and so I had to go rummage in my embroidery stash and pull out my neck magnifier as well*.
Side of a 'Very small dollshouse' displayed on the tip of a cutting knife, and showing the details of windows, siding and chimney laser-cut into it.
While on the subject of very small houses, I started on Jane Harrop's House shelves kit.
Pieces of a one-twelfth scale house shelves kit and instruction sheet, arranged on a cutting board with a ruler, cutting knife and tweezers.
I'd been putting this off because I thought I could perhaps bash it into a miniature version of IKEA's FLISAT house (which, if you're wondering, is still sitting in my laundry half-built). I decided to just go with the kit instructions.

While waiting for glue on my two tiny houses to dry, I unpacked the Chrysnbon cookware kit I bought at last year's Sydney show and sorted out the contents (sorting and re-bagging them and putting them back in the tub for similar reasons to Punch and Judy kit).
Plastic one-twelfth scale cookware kit pieces, dumped on a cutting board with some still on their sprues.
Another kit sourced from the Sydney show (but the year before's), did actually meet the glue:
Pieces of a one-twelfth scale plastic storage crate, laid out on a cutting board.
And while I was pulling out the Jane Harrop House shelves kit, I spotted this:
Photograph of a one-twelfth industrial trolley kit, with the kit pieces laid out beneath.
Which seems far too clean and tidy for my tastes, but which I plan to grunge up rather a lot. Starting with the wheels:
Wheels from a one-twelfth industrial trolley kit mounted on skewers and painted black and rusty shades.
So in terms of completion, I'm not doing very well (what with waiting for glue and paint to dry), but I feel like I'm definitely making good progress...

(*Getting old sucks)

Friday, October 13, 2017

Finish it off Friday (and I deserve a drink!)

In the spirit of 'done not perfect', look at what I (finally) finished this evening:
Modern one-twelfth scale modern miniature Alvar Aalto Trolley 900 set up for drinks.
There are still a few final touches I need to sort out, but for now I'm just going to bask in the glow of awesomeness I feel in wrestling it to completion.

Thanks Kikka N, I love it!

Monday, October 09, 2017

Monday (and the story of the missing metronome...)

Because I'd bought a Lori Loft to Love online from David Jones, those pesky Google algorithms kept throwing up ads for other Lori items offered by them.

Which (as you do) I basically ignored. Until the morning when my eye caught the prices on the advert. Which were much lower than it had been when I'd last been on their site (and, dammit, when I'd bought my loft...).

So I found myself clicking through. And discovering that the ballet studio was deeply discounted. Enough that I could easily justify yet another miniature edifice to try and find room for.

Soon after it arrived, I pulled the mirror sticker off the back wall and sawed off the barre. And (I'm not sure how) the space decided to become a piano studio with the addition of a bed I picked up half price from the Blue Star Kiwi stall in Wellington last month, an afghan from a 2014 Melbourne trip and the desk from Margell Public School. Plus a rug I picked up back in 2008 (used to cover the holes in the floor where the piano was attached for shipping) and the cushions I bought at the 2016 NZAME convention.
One-twelfth scale modern miniature piano studio with a grand piano in front of a bay window. On the floor are strewn several pages of music.
I contemplated adding a poster from the set I bought last Christmas (which seemed apt, as I'd decided that this was an early Christmas present to myself. Let's not even discuss the fact that I don't do Christmas, shall we?)

But if this was to be a studio for a dedicated piano student, there was something missing: a metronome!

I knew I'd bought a beautiful Alan Waters one many years ago: I just had to find it.

Many miniaturists will understand the frustration of looking for that one tiny thing. I checked Stephen's apartment (the most likely home for it). No luck.

I checked all my other scenes, with the same outcome.

I checked my storage boxes for 'Pastimes and hobbies', and 'Lounge decoration'. Still nothing.

Finally, I tried miniature meditation. You know the one. Sit. Relax. Focus on the object you're looking for...

And it came to me. The metronome was on the shelf of a music room. That I'd made for (and given to) my mum years ago.

So long ago, in fact that it hadn't (as far as my nifty search skills told me) been blogged about. And a search of the envelopes of printed photos from my film camera found nothing either.

I guess I need to make or buy a new one. In the meantime, I still need to decide what year my piano studio is set in. That will inform the choice of desk chair, among other things...