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Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Good Works

Hello dear friends! I hope all of you are well and that those celebrating Mother's Day had a lovely one to remember! Just getting to be the mom of my two amazing kids would have been enough for me, but Natasha (33 in July), and Ande (31 in July), went out of their way to make sure I felt loved and appreciated!

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.



I cast many brackets using the leftover colored resin from the tiny product bottles I was making. This is great because one of these brackets alone costs around $5. If you need a lot of them in a build, molding and casting is the way to go! With a coat of gesso and then paint you'll never know there is colored resin beneath. The detail is amazing!


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!

xo xo,
Jodi

38 comments:

  1. First, I could say that your kids are the best, but I always say my kids are the best 😉. Actually, it’s a matter of perspective. Remembering their mom in such thoughtful ways is very sweet. I can smell those roses right through the internet, they look so fresh, and that 3D printer will be lots of fun.
    And talk about a giveaway, this whole post is full of great ideas and beautiful items for reuse. (Maybe I’ll use my contact paper method to print some linens.) thanks a bunch!

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    1. Thanks Sherrill! Watching videos about the 3D printer have me convinced that I have a big learning curve in front of me. Luckily, I have Russ here with me to help me understand the mechanical side! I am going to have to learn because problems are apparently "just part of the deal".
      I LOVE your ingenious contact paper idea!!! The printer fabric that I buy is awfully thin, and it would be nice to be able to use fabrics that are closer to the real life item you are trying to recreate. I can't wait to see how your towels come out!!!

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  2. ¡Qué cantidad de cosas has hecho! A eso se llama aprovechar muy bien el tiempo y está todo precioso.
    Veo que has tenido un estupendo día de la madre y has recibido un regalo que te va a dar mucho juego.

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    1. Gracias isabel ¡Es un lujo tener tanto tiempo para explorar muchos mini artículos! Esa impresora probablemente será un aprendizaje lento. ¡Jugaré con él los días que me sienta preparado para una buena dosis de frustración!

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  3. Oh Jodi, Your kids are wonderful and no wonder they take it after you. Congratulations for you new 3D printer! What a wonderful thoughtful gift. Can't wait to see what new mind blowing wonders you'll make with it.
    I love everything you show in the photos. Great work, as always!
    Hugs, Drora

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    1. Thanks Drora! I'm so glad you like the accessories for the vanities!
      I had prepared to spend a quiet Mother's Day with Russ and the puppies so it was such a nice surprise the way it all turned out! Learning the printer and the new software that comes with it will be a major challenge! Luckily, Russ has immersed himself in garage projects, too, so I don't have to feel bad about abandoning him to learn a new skill!

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  4. Wow, Jodi, I am So Impressed! (No pun intended!) Lol! I shouldn't be, because you are so adventuresome and fearless in your crafting.... so I should expect it by now... but still, I am bowled over by the number of different "projects" you threw together! The resin molds alone would make me "impressed"! (Okay, pun intended!):) And you charged off into bottle making... and the colors and the baskets, and the printables and the flowers....!!!! I bet the acrylic paint didn't work as a coloring agent because it is a kind of plastic itself... so it might have messed with the chemistry of the resin more than the other colors did. (Just a thought!) I really Love the green basket with the purple ribbon.... yummy colors!!! I can't wait to see these sinks finished... reminds me of your sink-making binge a few years ago... (in a good way!) :) As I said before... WOW! And on top of that you now have a 3-D Printer!!! *Squeal* You are going to be unstoppable!! I can't wait!!! :)

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    1. Thanks Betsy! It feels like summer camp here with so many fun and exciting activities! The acrylic paint was not a good mate to the resin, and made it behave very weirdly! The chalk isn't bad, but I think with clear pigments and mica powders the results will be much better and closer to what I am trying to achieve! Correct chemistry is important!!!
      That printer is super scary, but I am going to pull my big girl panties up tight and see if I can learn. I have the will so I'll find the way!!! It may take me a while, though!!! ;O)

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  5. Jodi,que bonito es ser amado por tus hijos,que a pesar de toda esta situación hayan tenido presente el día de la madre y todos los días,a su madre amada! Los regalos maravillosos,las rosas creo que desprenden el aroma hasta mi casa con sólo ver esa belleza y frescura! Y esa impresora 3D!!!!! que envidia (sana) me das,me va a encantar verte experimentar con ella y logras resultados fabulosos,eso seguro!!!
    Los moldes de silicona son geniales y duran tantísimo tiempo,que realmente son un ahorro! En cuanto a la escayola o yeso para hacer las réplicas,te comento que en piezas finas,al igual que a ti,al principio se me rompían,pero luego descubrí el yeso que utilizan los dentistas para hacer sus moldes dentales y es muchísimo más duro,lo compré por internet!
    Y también existe otra pasta muy ligera opaca y flexible que es perfecta para recrear réplicas "difíciles",se extiende con espátula,tarda en secar unas 24 horas,pero tiene un resultado muy definido,las hay de varias marcas,yo utilizo la de la marca Stamperia,se llama "Cream Paste" y se puede colorear con pinturas acrílicas.
    Me encantan como te han quedado las cajas con las toallas,las alfombras,esos delicados cuadros..van a formar un conjunto maravilloso!!
    Y los lavabos son muy bonitos,tan modernos!! Buena idea subir la grifería,se ve mejor y el tapón del desagüe queda genial!!
    Estoy segura que encontrarás la manera de hacer las botellas a tu gusto.
    Mientras,sigue la diversión hasta que no puedas enseñar las escenas terminadas!
    Besos.

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    1. Gracias pilar! ¡Fue un día lleno de sorpresas encantadoras! ¡No hay mejor sensación que ser amado por tus personas favoritas! : O)
      ¡Oh, esa impresora! ¡No me envidies todavía porque tengo un montón de cosas que aprender y espero muchos fracasos antes de ver algún éxito! ¡Los videos y configuraciones complicadas me tienen temblando en mis botas! ¡Pero prometo compartir todo lo que aprendo para que pueda ser menos problemático para usted!
      ¡Me encanta el proceso de moldeo y aprecio todos los consejos sobre productos! Había oído hablar del material del yeso dental de un tipo que conocemos que arroja huellas. ¡Definitivamente voy a tener que probarlo y el otro método también!
      ¡Gracias por todo el aliento con los accesorios! ¡Seguiré intentando con esas botellas hasta que encuentre el método perfecto!
      ¡Lo creas o no, aunque comenzaré otro pequeño proyecto para el cumpleaños del prometido de mi hijo! Nada muy complicado ¡Solo algo para hacerle saber que ella es especial para mí! : O)

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  6. WOW, Jodi, you're truly spoiled rotten by your kids, the roses and the yummy sweets are thoughtful and than the cherry on top of the cake: the 3D printer is, OMG, that's impressive!! I'm pretty sure we will hear more about this in the future ;).
    The results of working with that stuff for making molds are really excellent, thank you for sharing with us how it works. I think I have some stuff in my stash ofwhich I don't know how to work with, so I'll give it a try.....one day (and I now I think I'll already have to try alot during this crisis ;O). One is never too old to learn something new, huh?
    The tutorial of your candle sticks and candles is very inventive and creative, thank you for sharing it once more with us, since I had probIems with blogger (and still have with my readers list) I hadn't seen it before.
    The stylish baskets, towels, mirror, flowers, frames, the wreath and rugs complete your vanity sets in a wonderful way, thank you for sharing the links, printies and how to's.
    I would like to see how your sinks and vanity sets coming together.
    Stay healthy, take care, Jodi!
    Hugs, Ilona

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    1. Thank you Ilona! You are right about being spoiled rotten and I love it!!!
      Not just for me, but I know how wonderful it feels to be generous and I am happy that my kids get to experience that, too! :O)
      As for hearing about that printer... You may hear me screaming in frustration all the way across the world, lol! I really need to go slowly and manage my expectations!!! :O)
      Oh I hope you will have fun with the molding stuff and please share what you do because I know you will help us all learn something amazing!!! I really enjoyed it, even pulling the leftover rubber film out of the bowl (once it was set) was entertaining! We never are too old to learn, we just have to believe we can and be willing to put forth the effort!
      I am glad that you enjoyed the candle tutorial! It is a great alternative for folks (like me) who are a little intimidated with polymer clay. And it's a quick afternoon project that yields nice results! I hope you try it!
      I'm also happy that you like the accessories for the vanities! I hope I can continue to learn and perfect the methods so that what I send out is really the best I can give!

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  7. Great little projects lovely ideas!
    I also had beautiful roses but I missed the hugs they are not allowed but I have seen them and that is alreally nice...
    Have fun with your new 3D printer let me see what you can make with it!
    groetjes van Marijke

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    1. Thanks Marijke! It is such fun to complete little things to go with the vanities! Especially after all the construction and time it takes to be working on a big project!
      I am so happy for you that you got to see your kids! Just being near them fills the soul up for whatever is coming next! and getting roses, too! How lovely and thoughtful of them!
      I will definitely share the learning experience with the printer and it's software! I hope it will be as easy to learn as TinkerCad was!

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  8. The vanities are looking so fabulous and what a great way to get people giving! Love the colour palette for the accessories too! And a 3D printer?! Now that is so so exciting!! I think that will really change things for you, I don't know how many times I wish I had one just to make something I needed right then. :) Can't wait to see it in action!

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    1. Thanks Kristine! You know me - I love making vanities!!! And I am equal parts excited about the 3D printer and intimidated, too. It's always the anticipation that is scary, so I am sure once it gets here the excitement part will win. Just have to eat the elephant one bite at a time, lol!

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  9. wow, que cantidad de miniaturas bonitas has hecho y que buenos regalos has recibido, disfrútalos!

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    1. Gracias carmen! ¡Está demostrando ser un proyecto paralelo divertido mientras espero los kits de pastel para la panadería!

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  10. I'm SO IMPRESSED by all that you've done Jodi! The molding materials look like a Great Investment and the corbels and the lotion bottles turned out Beautifully, as have your plants, Vanity and your baskets of hand towels which are SUPERB!
    I Congratulate you on having raised wonderfully caring children and of being able to reunite with them again on a VERY SPECIAL MOTHER'S DAY! ❤️
    Blessings be upon your and on each of your family members too!

    elizabeth

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    1. Thank you, Elizabeth! The mold stuff is SO MUCH FUN and I highly recommend giving it a try! With your method of turning anything into incredible stonework, molds and casting material is something you should definitely have in your stash! Let me know if you'd like me to send up some of those architectural castings - I have plenty now to share!!!
      My kids are such wonderful adults and I am proud of them, but what I would not give to have them little again for just a day! I miss their funny little personalities and most of all getting to have them in my lap for snuggles!
      Blessings to you and your family, as well!

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  11. Wow, what a wonderful gift! Your daughter knows you well, I can see you making wonderful things with your new printer, I can´t wait to see 😊. You have been busy too, all those experiments with moulds are fantastic as well as the accessories, all beautifully made and delicate. The vanities are looking goood, keep the fun going! 😊

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    1. Thanks Alex! It's been wonderful to have such a fun variety of things to do lately! Especially because we haven't had the needed amount of family time! The printer is going to be a huge challenge but one which I hope will be worth the time invested to learn!

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  12. You are so busy and you keep pushing us forward to try new things. I am particularly interested in making the little bottles.But baby steps. First I will learn to mix resin to fill my peach jars. The 3-D printer will be awesome. I can image the fun that you will have with it. The sky is the limit.

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    1. Thanks Ann! Best of luck with the resin and jar filling! Once you get going you are going to have so much fun! You know me - I want to try EVERYTHING!!! But time/money/patience/other projects keep my want list on a spoon feeding schedule!!! The printer is going to be such a puzzle to solve!

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  13. I cannot wait to see what you come up with using that printer! And those molds...that's just awesome.

    So glad you had a happy mother's day!

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    1. Thanks Sheila! Me too! I hope the detail is as fine as is reported, I hope my previously created files will work and I hope I have enough brain cells left to learn a new software!!!

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  14. I hope getting to grips with the printer is stress free for you and I can't wait to see the products. Meanwhile lots of other little gems to look at in this post. Interesting stuff for many reasons and well done you for another skill under your belt.... not sure you can put many more there.... so many skills there already. As you say it is always nice to think of your kids getting pleasure from giving and a bonus when you are the recipient of their thought and kindness.

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    1. Thanks Marilyn! I don't think many of them qualify as a "skill", but I do love to try out new things! What is the saying "Jack of all trades but master of none"? Lucky for me, my daughter's fiancé is an electrical engineer, loves to tinker with technology and likes to help us old farts! :O) I have him on speed dial!

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  15. You have wonderful children! Enjoy your 3D printer. Hugs.

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    1. Thanks Melli! They are so loving and not shy about showing it!
      I can't wait for the printer to get here!!!

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  16. Lo primero, felicitarte por tan maravillosos regalos de tus hijos.
    Has hecho muchísimas cosas y todas están genial. Para ser tu primera vez con los moldes, han quedado estupendos.
    Me encanta el mueble del lavabo !!

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    1. Gracias eloisa! ¡Ha sido un cambio agradable trabajar en cosas que se terminan rápidamente y hay muchas cosas nuevas que esperar con la impresora! ¡La vida todavía puede ser tan buena en estos tiempos difíciles!

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  17. Hello Jodi,
    I did not know the 3D printer was a table top model - had not seen or googled one. That was a great Mother's Day gift! It was good to see how you did the resin as I have never done that before. It looks easy, but guess that the molds must be bought. Love the basket with towels. Thank you for the printies!
    Mini huggs,
    Conny

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    1. Yes Conny the cost of the printers has come down to reachable levels over the last three years and there are some great table top models to choose from. You must really do your research to find the best model to achieve what you are particularly trying to create. This one only has a 5.5" x 5.5" x 5.5" printing capacity, but the reliability and detail are superb. I am so eager to get started!
      The silicone mold making kit is fun and easy and I would recommend them to every skill level. There are great YouTube videos out there to help your confidence before you begin. Once you've created the molds, casting resin in them is a very similar procedure. Getting the measurements of part a and part b is crucial, as is mixing thoroughly. But with careful attention and patience, it is a fun and worthwhile adventure!

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  18. What a wonderful post! ;O) It's always like a short vacation to drop by and see what you've been doing. And this time there was so much to see in so many different ways. My, have you been busy... and creative... and both courageous and curious to make your own moulds. The results are stunning, how great to make a bigger amount of brackets and bottles by yourself. And although there were some mishaps with coloring the bottles and the broken wreath - but you live, you learn... and by this you get better. The decorations you've made for the vanities are all beautiful and the themes you've chosen are great; I too can't wait to see them finished and decorated.

    And hooray for being such a good Mom... I know you are... otherwise your kids could not have grown into such darlings. ;O) Beautiful roses and I bet the bearies were tasty... and wow, the 3D printer!!! Ha, I'm already looking forward to stunning posts of "Jodi in Wonderland"! Have fun exploring the possibilities of your future miracle worker... and keep on crafting (we don't want the cricut to become jealous... *LOL*)

    Hugs
    Birgit

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    1. Thank you sweet Birgit! If you think this week's recap was exciting, just wait for the next one, lol! I don't want to shock your sensibilities but I am throwing out another curve ball! And as usual there are learning curves in every single thing I try to do, but you've gotta break a few hundred eggs in the pursuit for the perfect omelet! Good thing I've got a lot of chickens! :O)

      Awe shucks about being a good mom. Thank you. Truly, I got so lucky to have been Natasha and Ande's mom. What amazing and loving souls they are! I loved every minute of it and let's not even talk about how devastating it was to adjust to an empty nest!!! Thank God and His wisdom that he had minis just waiting for me in that time to occupy me!

      The bearys were so tasty, and I still feel just a little guilty that I enjoyed biting their soft little heads off so much! Please don't tell Fluby and Rosey - I'd hate for them to be afraid or think less of me!!!

      I think the Cricut is going to enjoy a little break! I may have heard it whisper "Man! Do something else already, will ya?" And "Yesssss!" when the printer was delivered. I had it running constantly for the last couple days and it was a trooper! A little vacation reward is in order! :O)

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  19. You have been very busy again I see and spoiled nicely with gifts, great! You have made beautiful washbasin and the bottles have also worked well. The patio has also become very beautiful, beautiful with all the flowers and climbing plant, lovely

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    1. Thank you Gonda! Russ says I go-go-go because I am afraid of what will catch up with me if I stop! That's just because he enjoys a nice day watching TV on the sofa now and again and my constant tinkering makes him feel guilty. :O)
      I'm glad you like the results of all this activity over the past few weeks! Come back soon and I promise you more!

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