Displaying 1 - 10 of 436 entries.

attaching the door

  • Posted on December 11, 2018 at 8:10 am

this probably doesn’t deserve a separate post, since the door is just glued together then glued on the caravan, but my time has been a bit tight lately and it took two days to get it done!

after the paint dried, i glued the details to the door first. it turned out the window frame was slightly too small to match up so i didn’t use it, but there is enough detail on the door that it didn’t matter.
door glued

then glued the door to the caravan.
door attached

i was being lazy and didn’t want to take all the bedding and stuff out of the caravan again so that i could turn it on it’s side, so i ended up having to sit there and hold it in place while the glue set, only a couple of minutes so not too bad. luckily i also like to read, so it wasn’t a problem just sitting there.
the size is perfect. i kind of wish now that i had made the top wood paneling covering extend to the edges,i think it would have looked better, but it’s too late now and it is what it is.

a door for the caravan

  • Posted on December 10, 2018 at 9:05 am

i ordered an 85 mm door for my realpuki caravan a while back, but due to the mail strike here, it just arrived. it was worth the wait though, the detail is fabulous.
they’ll have to stoop a bit to get in, but the size was the right fit for the caravan. and since i am putting it on the back wall, it won’t actually open anyway 🙂
here’s how it came. the details were actually in a square but i took the outside edges off right away. it was nicely packaged and arrived safely in spite of the intricacy
fairy door

here i have separated out the parts i plan to use. the notice for the door is cute, but doesn’t really fit my caravan, so for now at least i’m leaving it to the side.
fairy door parts

and here are the pieces painted and waiting to dry.
fairy door painted
i painted the door itself with a light coat of translucent blue. i brushed it on lightly trying to leave unpainted any part that might have worn off. the ironwork was first painted solid black, then dry-brushed with brown stain to mimic rust. my puki’s really ought to take better care of their caravan! 😉

ageing the wheels

  • Posted on December 9, 2018 at 2:47 pm

finally got a chance to try and fix the wheels on the caravan. several people had suggested just trying to make them look dirtier/more worn to fit the rest of the caravan, so i thought i would try that first. i put the caravan up on a couple of paint jars, so i could access all the edges at once, and then with dark brown stain did a combination of dry brushing, smudging and painting on a very watered down version till i like the effect. i think the wheels fit in better now. what do you think?

front
ageing the wheels

back
ageing the wheels

from a “distance”
ageing the wheels

christmas lights… wow!

  • Posted on December 4, 2018 at 7:43 pm

that is my son’s comment every time he sees lights. since it is december i promised him we would set up the tree, but life intruded and we just haven’t done it yet. as a compromise i decided to add lights to the mini tree and put them out on the table. he seems happy for now.

i had dental surgery today and apparently did some rather odd things while under the sedation, but i’d recovered enough by tonight that meg said she would help me untangle the lights. i was grateful for her help because they were rather a mess. the little tree wasn’t too bad. it was 16 feet long, and while it uncoiled like a spring when we took it off the cardboard, it was at least in more or less a straight line. we wrapped it round the tree, looping around the branches and the length was pretty much perfect!
small tree with lights
the lights can be either white or multicolored and have an option of several different patterns solid, blinking, fade in and out etc. the lights on colored mode are a little pale, but i like the concept.

the larger sting was more of a challenge. it was 33 feet long, which i figure would be about right. but they had wrapped it double around the cone so first we had to untwist the whole length which was springy and kept trying to re-twist. then get it wrapped evenly around the tree without tangling again! the whole thing reminds me why our full-sized trees are pre-lit. these one are going to get stored pre-decorated as well.

finally after much work, and several cup of cocoa on megs part, and ice-cream fudge bars on mine (dental surgery, remember, no hot liquids 🙁 ) we were done and the results were definitely worth it. the string would have been perfect if it just had 3 more lights, but i doubt anyone will notice, other than meg and me.
meg with tree
this tree has lots of different patterns in the lights as well, but they are always colored, since the covers give the color not the leds. as a result they are much brighter.

when i am feeling better, we plan to set the tree up in front of the fire place and try and corral the littles for some christmas pics (if we can get them out from behind the tree where the controls are!)

in the mean time, we’ll leave you with one last picture of our lovely lit trees
reflections

something different

  • Posted on November 30, 2018 at 4:51 pm

i took a break from cleaning and doll stuff to make a batch of ornaments for a charity fundraiser.
fundraiser ornaments
living channel services is a charity started a couple of years ago by a friend to help children in rural rwanda who have severe mental &/or physical handicaps. these children live in the most appalling conditions and have very little hope for the future. we are raising money to help their parents pay for their medical care, fund microfinance cooperatives to help the families get out of poverty, and long term, build dayprogram facilites where the kids can come to get therapy and care while their parents work.

for a couple of upcoming december fundraisers i made these ornaments that we will give for each donation of at least $20. the idea being donors can keep them and hang them up or give them as gifts to family and friends.

we have a tradition in our family that every year we make donations in honor of each family member and then give them a card/ornament that symbolizes the gift. many family members look forward to seeing what they “got” each year and find they are the most meaningful gift they receive.

here’s a close-up of some of the ornaments
fundraiser ornaments
(the pictures are all snapshots of actual kids/families we are helping.)

and the card that goes with it
fundraiser ornaments

if you are interested, follow the link over to the website and check us out 🙂

and so it begins again

  • Posted on November 27, 2018 at 12:11 pm

i finished up the ornaments on my mini tree (see post earlier this month) and in keeping with my resolution to purge i bundled up most of the extra beads and dropped them off at the charity store, yesterday. i was planning to just drop and run, but they had a big sign up front that all their christmas stuff was now out… so i just had to go take a look. on one of the tables was an 15″ tree, one of the ones with perfect scale tiny branches and it was marked at only $2. of course i immediately decided my girls needed a second tree. the 24″ one is a bit big for some of the smaller kids.

once i got home and confirmed that this indeed was a perfect tree, i panicked. i realized that i had just given away all the extra ornaments :doh you see why i so seldom purge?
because who doesn't need two christmas trees?
i found some lovely angel charms on sale for cyber monday and quickly ordered a few. but luckily before i went too crazy reordering ornaments i took a look through the beads and charms that i had decided to keep and found i had a lot more than i thought. enough to pretty much fill the tree, which is what i did this morning.
minit tree ornaments
i have a few spots left for the angel charms when they come, the angel on top desparately needs repainting, and of course i will need to add lights (which i have in my box) and make another tree skirt. but overall i’m happy and my desire to purge is back on track 🙂

and another one done

  • Posted on November 25, 2018 at 7:08 am

got up this morning and finished the pom pom for the last hat. since this one was so bright, meg let me go just a little smaller, so it didn’t overwhelm the hat.
last of the hats done
and a side view
last of the hats done

megs new hats.

  • Posted on November 24, 2018 at 12:10 am

i hat a little bit of yarn left over from my lost and wandering socks. i figured there was just enough to make a couple of hats for the girls. turns out i had enough to make 4 with less than 30cm of yarn left over when i was done! they made cute beanies but meg insisted she want BIG pompoms on them. we went through the stash and she chose 4 colors to coordinate with the hats. while watching tv i managed to make and trim down the first three, and she happily modeled the hats for me as i finished. it was actually the perfect activity to do while huge flakes of snow fell steadily outside.
she picked gold to go with the first of the purplier ones
megs new hats
navy with the other
megs new hats
and purple with the first pinker one
megs new hats
i still have one more pom to make. but i ran out of time.
i think she did a great job of picking colors, but i’m not so sure about the size of the pompoms. i think they look a bit big (in spite of my trimming) but she assures me that they are right on trend, and just what she wanted! she’s going to wear one tomorrow when we go out and wrap the others as gifts for nandi, ember and shaelyn… as soon as i get that last pompom done…

vacation pictures.

  • Posted on November 20, 2018 at 9:01 am

i’m finally getting around to posting my vacation pictures from the summer. cricket, meg and eilidh went with us to the yukon and alaska for 10 days. we had a wonderful time! the scenery is gorgeous and the weather was nice and cool. we missed the heat wave back home for which we were all thankful. we got back to cooler weather and the next week the yukon got their heat wave, so perfect timing on our part. we did a bit of hiking and a lot of exploring. here are some of my favorite pictures of cricket (wearing her new sweater and hat)

we landed in whitehorse then drove down to skagway
we were driving along through the mountains then suddenly saw sand on the side of the road. when we pulled over there was this amazing stretch of sand dunes which we explored for a couple of hours before driving on.
inland desert
carcross desert yukon is apparently the world’s smallest desert. but cricket thought it was the perfect size.

exploring the beautiful grounds of the cabins where we stayed in skagway, right near the base of the chilkoot trail. we went on a 2 hour hike up the trail, which was fun. my health isn’t good enough to actually hike the whole thing (apparently a 4-6 day hike!)
finding her way
giant fungus
having a rest

we also took the train up the whitehorse pass. part of the historic goldrush trail
on the train
cricket was fascinated and stared out the window the whole way.
on the train

after a couple of days we took the ferry across to haines. we managed to do a couple of hikes there as well
a realfee sized cave
in the woods
abandoned doorway

third try is the charm

  • Posted on November 18, 2018 at 3:13 pm

i have a 24″ mini tree i bought several years ago and have slowly been changing into a prop for my mnf and smaller girls. it is approx 24 inches tall so on the scale of a 7′ tree. i wish i had thought to take a picture of it “before”. it used to have really ugly outsized berries and huge globs of “snow”. i have removed most of that and replaced them with better scale, mostly homemade ornaments. adding a few more each year. unfortunately while i was working on it, i left it on my south facing kitchen windowsill and noticed that this year instead of having a nice green pine, it has faded to more of a blue spruce :(. not sure if it is possible to recolor it? especially since the ornies are wired on and would be hard to remove. if you have any suggestions on how to fix it, please comment below. otherwise my girls will just have a spruce tree. something that is much more common here anyway, so i guess it works?

the tree had a burlap bag around the bottom and i have wanted a tree skirt to cover it since the beginning. i had elaborate plans but never got around to doing it so today was the day!

my first attempt was to make an origami white felt skirt using a pattern i’d saved ages ago. it looked nice flat but didn’t suit my tree, so into the recycle bin it went.

second attempt was to make a lined skirt. this is the fabric i’m using
tree skirt
i spite of careful measuring, the lining made the skirt too stiff, it stuck out and didn’t hit the floor. so attempt two also went into the recycle bin.

this time i decided to make it just a single layer. i cut the appropriate circle, then slit up the back and trimmed the center till it was just wide enough to wrap round the trunk.
tree skirt
already a vast improvement. but of course i couldn’t stop there…

i went through my lace bin and found some red ruffled elastic. i folded over the outside edge about 1/4″ and pinned the elastic to that edge. then top stitched them together. the back slit and center were just turned and stitched. while looking for buttons to do up the back, i spied a bunch of floral shaped mother of pearl buttons and scattered them around the edge to see what they would look like. i liked it, so tacked them down with glue to keep track of where to put them and then sewed each one on by hand. that looked pretty good but it was still a bit sparse, so i tried adding square mop buttons and some assorted red ones. almost there…. it just needed a few green ones for pop. happy with the number and placement i glued and stitched those as well. several hours later this was the result
tree skirt
i think it is kind of fun and quirky. it’s all made from supplies unearthed in my craft purge, and should be plenty big enough to hide the battery pack from my fairy light string that will go on later this week.
tree skirt done

(here is a picture of the tree taken 5 years ago just so you can see the scale)
merry christmas!