Friday, June 10, 2016

The Artist's Studio 1:12 Scale Build | June Updates

Hello lovelies! As I type this it is 11:45 at night, we just spent an ENTIRE week getting "our new place" ready for us to move in, and we have to be on the road to the coast tomorrow to meet our family at the beach for a week-long getaway!


I haven't had a chance to do *much* work on the artist's studio (TAS for short, because I'm lazy). However, I will show you what I have done since we last caught up! As you can see in the picture above I widened my windows! Since I have two kits- I used the window inserts from both to make up a larger window. All it took was a little bit of work with a jigsaw and instant light!


As I've said before, I love adding more natural light into a build- partially because I am intimidated by adding electrical elements, but also because it gives the build so much more air-y-ness! Over the last couple weeks I also started on the walls.


I used those pesky flooring sheets from Hobby Lobby- I still have no idea how you are SUPPOSED to use these, but I manage to use them a different way every time I get them. I made an oxidation mixture with vinegar and steel wool. Essentially you dissolve some steel wool in a jar of vinegar and it does amazing things to the wood! After a few more touches- whitewash with some chalk paint, a little sanding, some brown paint here and there- I got a pretty authentic looking reclaimed wood finish!


Personally, I love how it's coming along. I imagine a very light and airy cabin by the lake- or maybe up in the mountains. This is all the pictures I have today, but I promise to have more soon!

Okay, a little bit of what I've been up to- like I said earlier, I am moving! Which means I haven't had a place to work for the last couple weeks and it might be driving me a little crazy. The good news is that I have a pretty sweet setup in our new place and I am VERY MUCH looking forward to using it when we get back from the beach! We'll be there a week, and I have to say we REALLY deserve this vacation. And... I need a tan like you wouldn't believe!

Thanks for checking in, I will be in touch soon!
x - Blake

Monday, April 18, 2016

Fairy Garden Challenge | Pt. 1

I want to start this post off by saying up front I have no practice with plants. I wouldn't say I have any green in my thumbs whatsoever so this should be interesting. Pray for the plants. I was recently challenged by HBS to try my hand at a fairy garden! The requirements were simple- incorporate miniatures and incorporate live plants. Again- pray for the plants.


I started my garden by removing the plants from the pots. I have no idea what these plants are, but I did keep the little spikes so I know where to keep them and how often to water them! I gently separated the bunches of plants and made sure to keep as much soil as I could.


Then I prepped my bowl. I found this for $1 at Marshall's on the clearance aisle. Score!


Then I started arranging my plants. I figured it was pretty straight forward. Soil, plants, decorations. I didn't add any means of drainage to this because this will be a temporary fixture. Once the plants grow a bit bigger I'll transplant them. Will they get bigger? Does anyone else know?! We'll see in time, I guess!


More arranging! Then it was time for some miniatures! At first I thought I wanted a place for the fairies to rest. Surely their wings get tired from all that flying around? But wouldn't you want a snack, too?


Since I just happened to finish my morning tea I thought they would admire these little mugs. These are actually made by a local ceramic artist. Her name is Michelle and she is SUPER talented. I took some pottery lessons from her and she is really nice as well!


Then I remembered how much fairies love sweets. Luckily the Sweet Shoppe had some freshly made goodies that I knew the little sprites would enjoy.


These ADORABLE glass cake stands and the glass canister can by found at miniatures.com - I might have bought a boxful so that I can always make a miniature spread of sweets. You just NEVER know when a flock of fairies might stop by. Or a herd of pixies. Gotta stay prepared!


Cakes. Gumdrops. Macarons. I think that'll do for now!


But now I'm torn. I can do the bench OR the sweets, but not both because I don't have enough room in this container. However, I do have more plants...

Looks like I'll have my hands in the dirt again! I'll be back soon with more fairy garden goodness.

X
-Blake

Sunday, April 17, 2016

The Artist's Studio | Dry Fit & Initial Alterations


So this week I finally had some more time to work on the Creatin' Contest 2016 build. I've already decided I want this to be an art studio, but I am not set on any specific details just yet. The kit is super cute right out of the box, but my gut was telling me to make some changes. One of those changes was the front porch.


I don't want to worry with electricity with this build... I actually have never put lighting in a house- to be honest it seems SUPER intimidating. The front porch gets a bit dark depending on where in our apartment I sit the building- so I decided to cut it off. First thing to go was the beam at the peak of the house. Then I cut the roof.


To cut the roof without an electric saw I just used my x-acto knife and a ruler and made LOTS of firm cuts. Firm, but not too hard because I didn't want to risk the blade breaking. Or worse.


Once I got a decent groove made I used it as a guide for my hand saw. Then I used this side of the roof to trace onto the other side so that they are the same length.



This is what I was left with, but the porch is a bit awkward. Plus- it it too big for the base I will be making. Luckily my dad had a jig-saw that I didn't even know about! (Thanks, dad!)


MUCH. EASIER. I think I'll keep this for a while.



After the major changes to the front of the structure were done it was time to move on to the back. Do you remember that triangle piece that was at the top of the front porch? Well, I decided to use it on the back of my building, like in the picture below.


I'm also making a removable piece for the back wall. If you guys haven't noticed I like having full access to the inside of my builds. You never know what you'll want to photograph, you know! After I did all the major alterations to the building that I wanted, it was time to make my base.


My base was actually SUPER easy to make. All I did was take an old canvas apart and cut a piece of pegboard to fit it!


 I used glue and nails to hold it all together and that's it!



I bought a huge pack of these canvases a few years ago on sale and I'm glad to finally use some of them. I've also had the pegboard for years and its just been taking up space in my closet. Now I have more storage AND a nifty base for my build!


Remember that beam at the peak of the house? Well I took the part I cut off and cut it into 4 equal pieces. These pieces are now the supports beneath the house! This added almost two inches beneath the house so I will have plenty of height for the foundation.


I nailed/glued the supports to the base and then nailed/glued the floor of the house to the supports!


The final change I want to make for now is to the porch. Since I am having to work with a small base I had to set the stairs into the porch a little over an inch. You'll see what I mean in a minute...


As for the stairs- I got SUPER lucky. These steps were leftover from another kit. They were EXACTLY twice at tall as I needed and half as wide as I needed. Sound confusing? It did for me, too. To be honest I just went with my gut and it worked out in the end.


Cut 'em in half.


Glue the halves together.


Hold with tape.


And that's it! The stairs fit into the space I cut out earlier and I have a tiny bit of the base shown so I can do something with the landscaping! I'll be back in a few days to share more! I am working on the walls next, followed by the foundation!

X - Blake

P.S. If these pictures look a bit weird its because they are actually stills from the video I am taking of the process. I will eventually post everything to my YouTube channel as well, but I don't have time to edit it all right now. I will have more time in May, once this semester is over!

P.P.S. If you want to join my Mini Mail list, hop on over to theminiaturebazaar.com - there I will be sending out updates at LEAST every other week. These updates include progress on my builds, new lines of miniatures, shop sales, and more!

P.P.P.S. I love you guys and every time I scroll through my blog feed I drool over all the wonderful little worlds you guys are making!

T R A N S L A T E