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washtub

  • Posted on October 16, 2018 at 3:56 pm

in my pre-purge days i had amassed quite a collection of sample cups – you know the ones that costco, or the groceries stores used to pass out samples of food items they want you to try? anyway every time i got a sample, if the food in it wasn’t too sticky, once iI ate the food, i would stick it in my purse or pocket instead of the garbage. at home i would wash it out and add it to my ever growing pile. One time i really scored and the lady passing out samples accidently knocked a stack onto the floor while we were there. she explained that she couldn’t use them for food anymore (obviously) and would just have to throw them out, if we had any use for them, we were welcome to them, of course i snagged them all!

anyway i use the for all sorts of things, like mixing paint colors or holding small amounts of glue when crafting. i reuse them as much as possible and then throw them out when they get too covered with stuff or crack, as they eventually do. as i was looking for something to turn into a washtub, my eyes lit on the stack of sample cups and i knew that some of them would be perfect.
stack of cups
this is just a few of the ones i have at the moment. you can see they are all well used.

sprayed with primer
while i was making my washboard i coated the cups with off white primer. i have a good can of spray that will stick pretty much anything – wood, metal, plastic etc. i use that as my base coat so my acrylic paints will stick and not just drip or peel off.

next i sprayed on a coat of stainless silver to get the right base color…. and disaster!
disaster
even though they were both the same kind and brand of paint. the paint peeled and buckled when i put on the first coat. so back to the drawing board.

of course this washtub fits the bigger of my two washboards, so i had to find something else for my realpuki’s anyway. as luck would have it, i was putting in an order for new saw blades at stockade wood supplies, and they had a miniature tub available, and it was smaller than any of the ones i had seen. i thought it might be the perfect size so added it to my order.

wash tub new
turns out it was perfect. since it was already silver i just needed to make it look worn.

washtub painted
washtub painted
to age it, i brushed on random streaks and dabs of black and white and grays. as usual i put a bit of each color on my palette, and used a toothpick to swirl it together in the middle. this gives me black, white, and a near infinite variety of grays. i looked at several pictures of old galvanized tins and buckets from the internet, as i worked, so i could see what i was aiming for, and make sure it looked realistic.
After that paint dried, for the final touch, i added some rusty brown wood stain in the creases, and around the handles -places where rust was most likely to form. the stain is more transparent than the paint, so works better for light rusting than the thicker acrylic would.

washtub done
and ready to go

we interrupt this campfire

  • Posted on October 4, 2018 at 1:57 pm

to bring you a minifee sized desk.

we have so much snow that school was cancelled the last couple of days, and it’s hard to work on the diorama when my son is home. instead i decided on a quick and easy project – redoing a wooden jewelry box i picked up a while back. it is the perfect size for my minifee’s bedroom…
dresser start
but those pineapples have to go!

dresser drawers
pulling off the handles left some largish holes so i covered them with printed cardstock

dresser
glue on some buttons for handles and i’m done!

the original plan was rhinestone buttons for handles, but i didn’t have enough of any of them, and they didn’t go together well enough to mix and match, so used these wooden ones instead. in the end i rather like the more subtle look.

campfire part 3

  • Posted on October 3, 2018 at 10:06 am

next step is adding the fire to the diorama
i wanted to hide all the wiring so i found a panel board at the dollerama for $4.
panel front
it is 12″ x 16″. a little small for photos, but it will fit nicely on a shelf.

panel back
the back is hollow, with more than enough space to hide the wiring and battery

camp fire - hole for wires
after deciding where i wanted the fire to go, i marked the center with an x and then drilled a hole large enough for all the wires to fit through. i didn’t have to drill three holes this time. the top disc will keep the leds from falling through the hole.

diorama grass
then i added the grass. first i traced around the campfire disc. this area will be left glue free. i spread glue all over the top, except for in the circle, and down the sides. then i spread a moss mat (mine was from walmart, because it was cheapest, but michael’s also has some and with a coupon the price isn’t bad.) i boxed the corners by cutting out little squares the width of the sides. this gave nice neat edges all round. As you can see, adding moss is a messy process, so best to have a broom or vacuum on hand! 😊

diorama cut out
i then poked up with a pen through the hole from underneath, to find the center, and carefully cut out the unglued moss. i cut just slightly smaller than the actual circle

diorama campfire in place
lifting the edges i tucked the fire inside the cut out, adding bits of moss to a couple of places where i went too wide

here you can see how i painted the gray/white ash as well

diorama underside
underneath i taped the wires with heavy duty tape.

diorama
then i glued the firewood in place. the wood pile and caravan are just set on top.

almost done. i still need to add the battery. but i don’t have the right battery in the house and we are in the middle of a snow storm so it may take a day or two to go get one.

camp fire part 1

  • Posted on October 1, 2018 at 8:05 am

i’m ready to start making the camp fire now. i’m going to use an evans design led fire size 3mm. a 1.8mm would probably have been big enough, but i already had the 3mm and am trying to use what i have in hand before buying new.

the other things i need so far are a 3 inch diameter, flat, wood disk from michaels, and some small rocks from the gravel pad outside, (i picked out ones i liked for color shape and size and washed them to get rid of any bugs or dirt). also acrylic paint in black, dark brown, rust and white, and glue suitable for gluing rocks to wood, i used e6000.

camp fire
first i painted the top of the wood disk solid black for the charcoal, then while still wet swirled and blended in some dark brown and rusty brown to get the look of dirt around the edge. my realpukis are safety conscious 🙂

camp fire
i drilled a set of three holes in the center to thread my leds through. i should have done that before painting since i had to repaint around the holes with my black paint. when it dried again i arranged the rocks till i liked the look and then glued them down with e6000 glue. i let that set a bit and then painted the inner surface of the rocks to make them look soot covered.

camp fire leds back
finally i threaded the leds through the holes and taped them down in the back with a bit of tape. i just used regular tape since it doesn’t have to hold for long.

next step will be building the fire itself, but first i have to dry my “logs” in the oven. i took pruned, dead branches that have been sitting in my burn pile all summer (we have had a fire ban most of the summer so they never got burned). it is pouring rain so they are all wet, and i assume have bugs. i am going to bake them at 200F for 2-4 hours to make sure any bugs are good and dead! i’ll check them every 15 min or so to make sure they don’t catch fire. i wouldn’t mind if they got a bit scorched, but i would rather not burn my house down! 😉

littlefee craft table

  • Posted on September 28, 2018 at 12:13 pm

i’m still working on both the craft clean-up and my realpuki caravan, but the next bits aren’t at the point where i can put up pictures or posts yet. so here is another quick and easy littlefee/yosd sized prop.

littlefee craft table
i have a bunch of these little shelving units, in various sizes and configurations. they were actually gift boxes that held wooden brain teasers. i have bought several over the years. the brain teasers themselves become stocking stuffers for various family members, or go in to shoe boxes for operation christmas child (they make great gifts for boys 10-14.) i had planned to use them in my pukifee bedroom, but ended up with way more than i needed, so what to do with the extras? these 3 turned out to be exactly the same height and are going to get re-purposed as a craft table. the top is a pine board from michaels. the width was perfect and it just needed to be shortened slightly.

littlefee craft table
here is how i plan to set it up. at first i was just going to place them together so that the pieces could be used elsewhere if needed. but they separated too easily, so i glued them together with white glue instead (fast tack to be exact)

littlefee craft table
checking to make sure the table top fits. after i trimmed it i sanded all the edges and rounded them slightly.

littlefee craft table
waiting for the glue to set.

littlefee craft table
and all finished!
because the bottom was pre-stained and the top unstained, it was going to be almost impossible to match the colors, so i didn’t even try. instead i stained the top with ‘beach glass” water color paint. i really like the contrast.

tin boxes larger…

  • Posted on September 26, 2018 at 4:49 pm

i liked how the little tin boxes came out so well, that i decided to make some bigger ones for my littlefee-minifee sized dolls

'tin' boxes larger
this time instead of 15mm (9/16″) cubes, i started with 25mm (1″) cubes

'tin' boxes larger
i picked coordinating tiles to make patterned lids instead of plain.

they were nice, but at this scale there wasn’t quite enough detail to be realistic. so after thinking a bit, i got some fine cord from my embroidery thread bin, estimated how much i would need by wrapping loosely around one cube 6 times, and then painted it silver.

tins with lids
here you can see it drying on my handy dandy silicone sheet. this lets the paint be all the way around and it still doesn’t stick. the extra paint just washes off my sheet later.

tins with lids
i then carefully glued it around the top. since the labels were coated with modgepodge already i just applied another thin layer and then stuck the cord in place. it worked perfectly, the cord stuck and no worries about extra glue showing. now my tins look like they have lids 🙂

tins in scale
and just to show the scale. here they are stacked on eilidh’s desk.

littlefee study desk

  • Posted on September 25, 2018 at 2:54 pm

switching to a different size this time…

as i went through some of my drawers i found several odds and ends that i thought might eventually be made into tables. it was time to decide which ones would actually work, and which pieces were the wrong scale for any of my dolls and could be given away.

table parts
these pieces looked like they had the potential to become part of a study center for my littlefee sized dolls.

did i mention that once i get my craft rooms cleaned out, my dh is going to help me build an msd-sized house for my dolls? i’m thinking this one, i just need to clear out enough room to set it up before we build it. i am also planning to con him into making a photo box/room box that i can set up differently depending on what photo i want to take. either way the furniture will be put to good use.

table legs shortened
the spindles needed to be shortened to make the right length table legs, so i carefully cut the tenons off. that made them the perfect length and also gave more surface area at the top to glue, and the bottom for sturdiness.

table glue drying
the spindles were glued to the bottom of the table and also to the corner of the edging. once the glue set up a bit, i carefully turned the table over and adjusted the legs to make sure they were straight and all resting on the floor without wobbling. the glue bottle worked as a weight to hold them in place while the glue finished drying. the chair was from the dollar store (according to the price sticker still on the back 😉 ) and really only needed a good sanding to work. i wish i’d grabbed a couple of them, but i’ve had this one for several years and can’t get any more. i don’t know why i only chose to get one in the first place?

table stain
first i stained all the pieces with a reddish brown. it goes on pretty solid then is wiped off with a damp cloth to lighten up and let the wood grain show through. after it dried i rubbed on a very light coat of barn wood grey to get a more aged look to it. you can see the original color on the left, the final color on the right. i still need to seal it with a light coat of matte varnish. a child’s desk/chair, in my experience at least, is seldom clean and shiny!

table and chair finished
and the finished project.

writing a paper
eilidh immediately tried it out to write her english paper.

more finishing touches, tins and bottles

  • Posted on September 24, 2018 at 8:29 am

another quick project. i had some small wooden cubes and left over square doweling and decided to make some “tins”.

more finishing touches
i cut the dowel just a smidge longer than my labels, painted them all silver, then glued on labels. 4 sides and the top sides for the cubes, 4 sides for the rectangles, plain squares on all the bottoms and also the tops of the rectangles to make them smooth. the one turquoise rectangle got patterned top and bottom instead, just cause i had leftover tile that matched.

more finishing touches
once the glued dried i first set the paper with modgepodge, then painted all the plain paper silver again. voila – tins! the extras will go in the kitchen of the house i am planning next.

more finishing touches
here they are on the shelve with some tiny bottles i picked up a few years back, and found again while cleaning 🙂 they are all stuck on with fabric basting glue. hopefully that will hold, but be removable later if i find something else i’d rather use. we shall have to see if it works….

awn again off again

  • Posted on September 23, 2018 at 1:25 pm

i know that’s a bad pun, but i couldn’t resist 🙂
i thought  you said you were cleaning?
if you look way back to the original awning it was cute, but the colors were just too pale for my refurbished caravan.

awning repainted
so i painted it with more of my metallic blue/teal mix then aged it with copper and brown to get the rust back. it is a much better color now. i like how the original colors show through as just a subtle striped effect

awning on
i like the way it looks, but unfortunately it blocks too much of the light, making the interior too hard to see. since i really like all the details on the inside and want them more visible, the awning is off again. i may try it on the back side, or just use it for a completely different, and as yet unplanned project, maybe a little shop? 🙂

bench cushion

  • Posted on September 22, 2018 at 11:11 am

i decided my bench needs a bit of cushioning for travelling over rough bumpy roads.

bench pillow 1
i’m making glued ones since i wanted something fairly thin and flat. first i cut cardstock and trimmed till just a tiny bit smaller than the bench to allow room for the fabric to fold over. then cut pieces of flannel the exact size and glued them on.

bench pillow centered
the fabric is pieces of silk dupioni i cut for bed pillows and didn’t use. luckily they were perfect size for this size. all three are iridescent with a different weft and warp. i placed the cardboard/flannel combo on top but didn’t glue it.

bench pillow bottom
i glued the first edge and folded it over, then glued the long ends and folded them over as well tucking the corners in slightly so they don’t show

bench pillows top
and finished!… took me less than 15 min start to finish. most of that time was making sure the cardstock was a perfect fit. it took longer to do this blog post than it did to make the pillows!

now i just have to decide which one to use, though i may just tuck the spares away and change them up depending on what clothes the ‘pukis wear.
which color do you like best on this?

bench pillow red blue
red/blue
bench pillow purple red
purple/red
bench pillow gold pink
gold/pink