Ande came by for a hug (the first one I've gotten from him since social distancing started) and brought these beautiful roses, gourmet cinnamon bears from Tacoma Brothers (a wonderful local grocery store), and let me keep my grandpuppy Rosie overnight.
My daughter Natasha, who is known to spoil me rotten, got me a 3D printer! The learning curve is going to require a lot of trial and patience, but I am so excited to get started actually printing my own miniature designs in the future! What thoughtful people my incredible kids have become! There is no gift greater than that!
When I last posted about the vanities, I had found a silicone mold making kit in my "someday" stash. I had a lot of fun working with the stuff and got great results with almost everything I tried!
The process is simple enough: Mix equal parts of an "A" and "B" liquid substance, place your model into a container, pour the combined mixture over the piece you want to mold (pot life 50 mins). and wait about 4 hours to demold. I used a couple Unique and Falcon Miniatures pieces that I had to experiment with.
The mold will end up the size and shape of the container you used to hold the model, so it is good to have one close in size to the item you are molding. It is recommended that you fill the silicone about 1/2" above the piece you are molding so that it is strong enough to handle many future casts. I used cheap dollar store plastic storage tubs as my model holder and they were wonderful! I need a little practice on my level filling skills, but it was easy enough to clean up the opening with my Xacto knife after the mold had cured.
Speaking of product bottles, I made a mold for those, as well. The mold has 5 bottles in three sizes.
I experimented with different mediums to color the resin including alcohol ink, chalk and paint as I have always done. But just to broaden my horizons, I'll be ordering a set of mica powders to try the next time I do resin work. The chalk was pretty good, but the paint and alcohol ink were difficult to get the exact color I was after. In order to achieve lavender I had to mix red and blue inks. If I'd had a purple it would have been easier to achieve, The mottled ones below were a combo of chalk with a little white acrylic paint mixed in. It took a lot longer to cure and not all of the bubbles came out. If you're going for a scrubbing body wash or a bubble bath this can work in your favor!
One mold did not work well at all. In fact, I broke the model piece just trying to remove it from the mold. This type of intricate and thin model may require a mold release agent, which I did not try this time. I think I can still use the mold, however, if it is in a setting where I want the detail to look as though it is old and has seen many layers of paint over the years.
These are what I ended up with the first time through with the bottle mold and colored resin. Not perfect, but not bad. I have some ideas to try out which I believe will perfect the method, and I will keep you posted! I found and ordered better bottle tops from Bindle's, too, so that should help the overall appearance to be more authentic. I need to improve the scale of the labels, too. Maybe use slide decals instead.
While I had the resin out, I took the opportunity to use the excess resin in an Architectural Flourishes mold I picked up from AlphaStamps a while back. These came out beautifully, and it makes me want to do a small project just to use them!
Now let's get to the other accessories for the vanity sets. You remember the candles and pillars (tutorial here)...
I also made baskets based on Casey's Very Easy Basket Tutorial, only adding some 1/16" silk ribbon to the top and bottom and painting in coordinating colors.
And filled them with towels I made up and printed on fabric. Here are the towels and rugs for you to use if you like.
Then I was on to the arrangements for the vases that will sit on the vanity countertops. I made eucalyptus branches from an SDK kit and lavender based on the We Love Miniatures tutorial on YouTube. I had enough left over to make up some heart shaped grapevine wreath hangings, too.
Next I made some framed art with the eucalyptus and lavender theme using free art found on the internet. I used the Cricut to make matting and back covers, then painted 1-3/16" x 1-7/16" frames in coordinating colors. Here's the art if you'd like it, too.
In looking at the vessel sink height, I decided to raise up the faucet unit by adding a booster piece beneath. Now the faucets are at a much better height to function. I finally added the mirror material too!
The sink itself is a bisque bowl painted and then given a gloss coat. For the illusion of the drain, I use a flat washer topped with a round nail head stud. This is supposed to look like the more modern 'push to toggle open and closed' type of drain plug.
Now it's back to work on the product bottles to see if I can make them better. I'll be back soon with the perfected vanity and accessories for the giveaway! In the meantime, I encourage you to see what ways you can help those in your communities. Food banks are great, making masks is great, or even bringing a batch of homemade cookies down to your local fire station. It'll make a difference, I promise! And it'll make you feel so good!