Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Side Tracked...

Well I'm sorry to report that I haven't worked on The Three Little Pigs: Revenge at all since my last post. I am so close to loading everything in, but I got totally side tracked!

Usually when I post photos they consist of progress on the current project I'm working on or things I learn to make along the way. Sometimes I post product reviews, and sometimes I post about a new project that's entered the queue. Rarely do I post about new minis on their own, but that is only because up until now I usually make my own or purchase mass produced minis. I often bash them a bit to make them unique, but usually since they are part of the current build there's no need for a post all their own.

Until Now...

Before I get to the good stuff, I'll share a little background...

Brae posts beautiful photos of her new minis and her projects. She has often shared tips on how she sets up her mini photo shoots, using props and lighting and scenery - they are really extraordinary. I enjoy those posts so much! So I thought, now that I am beginning to purchase artisan made minis (and not only for current projects but just because they are wonderful), I should have some quick set up items on hand to use as backdrops for the photos! Then I can share, too!

I picked out a couple scrapbook papers and pasted them to some 8.5 x 11 mat board. I sandwiched them between waxed paper, stacking heavy books on top of them overnight to keep them from curling. Once they were ready I added a piece of baseboard to each panel.

 For the first flooring sheet I pasted a leftover strip of Houseworks wood flooring to mat board and weighted that overnight as well. Then I sanded, varnished, sanded and varnished for a natural walnut look. I like the dark wood and tropical blue together!

For the second floor, I wanted something a little deeper for bigger items. I have some wood veneer sheets leftover in the pack that I purchased last fall for Alki Point. I selected a light one with a good wood pattern. I cut it into strips about 1" wide, then glued them on to a piece of scrap wood. I clamped and let dry overnight, then used wood filler to help disguise any of the larger spaces between the boards. I sanded, added pilot holes for straight pin nails, nailed them in, then set to work with color washes to make the floor look like reclaimed barn wood. Once I was happy with the finishing, I sealed it with a good coat of matte Mod Podge. I love the effect!

Now that I had the backdrops, I needed a prop to set things on. I just love to make mini kits, and I just happened to have the sideboard kit from The Daisy House stashed away for an occasion just as this!

I also happened to need to try out the new FolkArt chalk paints and waxes I picked up! I love it when opportunity knocks! Especially when it's a mini one!

FolkArt Chalk Paint Colors
It took a couple days of sanding, gluing, drying etc. to get the kit done before I could start painting. I started off with a coat of the FolkArt chalk paint called Sheepskin. It goes on pretty thick and you need to leave it to dry for at least two hours before you can sand it, so this also took some time. After the second coat was dried and sanded, I painted over the top in black - also two coats drying and sanding. Then using a light touch, you just sand away the black to create "wear" spots, exposing the sheepskin color underneath.
FolkArt Wax comes in clear, white and antiquing (brown)

I then used the FolkArt White Wax. For this process, you brush it on, wipe away a bit, then leave to dry overnight. Then you come back and buff it with a lint free cloth. The more you buff, the shinier the piece will become. After my white wax dried, I went over it with the FolkArt Antiquing Wax. It is brown in color, and leaves a nice dark finish with wonderful contrast in the cracks and crevices. I love how the finished sideboard looks against each of the backgrounds!

I am planning to use this process, but with different colors, on all of the furniture I make for The Beachside Bungalow. Very exciting!!! You can find some helpful How To videos for these products on YouTube!

Now that I have a background and a finished prop, I can share my new found treasures and links to where I purchased them! Many of them I only found out about because other wonderful mini bloggers shared, too! Thank you all so much!

First, I have never really been a doll person. I liked them, but never coveted a special one for my own. Gertrude, whom I purchased nearly a year ago, was a different story. I just had to rescue that poor lady! You can read about her here.
But when I came across the ball jointed dolls from OOAKhandmade on Etsy, I just had to have one - well not JUST. I waited 2-1/2 years for one! That is because to me they are expensive! Unless you happen to win one of the bidding wars on eBay. Then you can get them for about $100 less. But with the eBay auctions, you take what you get. When you order one, you get to pick all sorts of features, and the doll is made especially for you. One of the things I liked most about her dolls is that they are fully posable, and completely anatomically correct! Yes, she makes male dolls, too! Maybe someday...

Meet Kairi (feminine name for The Sea). She stands 5-1/2", has medium brown hair and blue eyes.

She is fully anatomically correct, although I have taken the liberty to respectfully protect her privacy here. But trust me - she definitely has a ba~dunk~a~dunk!

She'll eventually reside in 549 Tide Pool Cove, though it is now only the Beachside Bungalow kit.

She arrived from Poland naked, in her own special cotton sack, inside a personalized wooden box. She has an extra set of hands, and feet with built in high heel shoes. The certificate of authenticity is signed, and her serial number displayed.

She was weary after such a long journey, so the first thing I showed her was her new wardrobe. It is filled with clothing, shoes, purses and unmentionables from Paolae Sara Miniature, OOAKhandmade, and Jings Creations, all on Etsy.

She was over the moon! I had so much more for her, but I'll need to move the pole up higher in her wardrobe in order for them to hang properly. I plan to finish her bedroom set using the chalk and wax paints. Luckily, she loves the beach, and contemporary/casual with a touch of shabby is her thing!

She also received some very special gifts from MiniFromItaly, also on Etsy. The work on these items is absolutely amazing!

Bra and Panties in a gift box

Sunflower Purse and Wallet, Belt and stellar Sandals

Gertrude was so excited to meet her! Another girl to talk to! They hit it off right away! I'm so glad because they're going to have to be roomies at Alki Point until Kairi's house is finished! Lucky for them Starbucks is right next door! They are still open in spite of ongoing construction...

Enoch, as curious as ever, had to get a look at the new girl. He is extremely shy, and will most likely watch for several weeks before he lets Kairi see him. Probably a good idea - not everyone believes they exist, so it's quite a shock when they see him.

The next work surge is due to hit any day now, so mini-ing time will be precious few until I'm all through it again. Then it's back to work on the Creatin' Contest build. All the while the deadline looms closer still...

Enjoy the distant but familiar smell of wood stove smoke, the refreshing chill of cold bed sheets, and the leaves crunching under your feet!


P.S! I cannot believe that I forgot to mention The Pillows from Brae's Etsy shop, and The Hamper from Anita's Etsy shop. I highly recommend both!!!


  1. Hello Jodi,
    What a fun post. The table you put together and finished is superb. You did a wonderful job...in the picture it looks like a real life table. Good for you getting that lovely doll. She is beautifully carved and I do really like her outfit. Great purchases and great work!
    Big hug

    1. Thanks Giac! The sideboard was a fun project from start to finish! I can't wait to do more! The doll is really very nicely done! I am so grateful to have been able to have her!

  2. Love the finishes on the table! I'm going to have to try those paints. They turned out gorgeous. And the little dolls are so sweet together.

    1. You will love the chalk paint, Sheila! I got mine when Joanne's had their 20% the whole cart sale! I only got 4 colors, but had to get all 3 waxes to experiment with! It's like art class in school, only you get more than an hour to finish everything!

  3. Marvelous! Your quick-shoot scenes look fabulous! :D (and, thanks for the plug and the compliments!)

    1. Thank you, and you are most deservedly welcome! I can't believe I forgot to mention the awesome pineapple pillows from your shop! I LOVE them!!!

  4. Your backgrounds look great! One day I'll get around to making some.

    1. Thanks, Cyd! It sounds like with all you've been doing this summer you don't have much spare time! I hope you are able to get back to mini stuff soon!