Friday, February 3, 2017

Chasing the Winter Blues Away

I'm dreaming of.... an early Spring!  

I really love the color combo of white, yellow, and blue.

And I especially love daisies and ladybugs.  Who
can think of a daisy or ladybug and not smile?

I haven't performed a scientific study, but I think it
might be impossible. But if a Happy Hour
cocktail is more to your liking, I have something
for you, too!

Ladybug and Daisy Patio Benches have landed in my
Etsy Shop.  You can check them out here.  

Friday, December 30, 2016

Drawing for Free CIMTA 2017 Miniature Show Tickets!

The Cottage Industry Miniaturists' Trade Association
(CIMTA) Dollhouse Miniature Show is
quickly approaching!  
January 23rd & 24th, 2017
Orleans Hotel & Casino
Las Vegas, NV
For more information, check out the
For a chance to win two 2-day passes, share this post on your blog
and then post a comment on this post.  
Winner will be announced 
Friday, January 6, 2017 at 12:00 p.m. MST

UPDATE:  No winner to announce as there no one entered this
Blog Drawing/Giveaway.   Winners of the
Facebook drawing/giveaway are announced on my facebook page.

Friday, June 3, 2016

Mini Treasures

A few treasures I picked up at the Mini Les Bois Miniature Show last month.  Shown in my unfinished roombox/dollhouse.  ;)

Paper towel holder, wood salt and pepper set 
and fabric message board all made by

My grandson pronounces "doggy" as "goggy".
So the name has stuck.  Goggy it is. 
I couldn't decide the best place for Goggy so
I kept moving him around the dollhouse.  
Grandson had so much fun finding Goggy each
time he came to visit, that a new tradition was born --
I now move Goggy around just to delight Grandson
who, at three years old, is about half-convinced
that Goggy comes to life and moves about on his
own when no one is looking.  :D
A few moments after snapping the above photograph,
Goggy took a spill and his tail broke off.  :(  
I glued it back on and hope that Grandson doesn't 
notice before I get a replacement.  

This room is definitely a work-in-progress.  Notice
there's no wallcovering, and the table in the back
is missing its top.  It's a placeholder until
I get (or make) a fireplace.  Chair and sectional by
Coffee table and lamp by MiniByDesign
and the Red Poppy Painting is by Hazel Rayfield
Even though my dollhouse is nowhere near finished (are they ever??),
it brings me a tremendous amount of joy anyway.  I love sitting in 
the chair nearby and peeking into this tiny world.  :)


Friday, May 27, 2016

Save the Date!

Have you heard the news?  CIMTA 
(Cottage Industry Miniature Trade Association) has added a
 RETAIL show to its 2017 miniature show lineup! 

This is exciting news for collectors and mini-makers alike!!!

Shop for quality miniatures from artisans like:

ULUS miniatures de Jose Maria Bolio (Mexico)
 ...and more (including yours truly)...

CIMTA has over 35 years experience bringing scale model artisans
 and collectors together.  Originally a wholesale show only, the expansion into the
 retail arena offers west coast collectors a chance to shop high-end miniatures without travelling to the east coast!  And there's so much to do in Las Vegas, 
why not plan a vacation around the mini show?!?

Are you excited??  Me too! 

Save the date!  January 23, and 24, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada, USA

***Watch this space for a chance to win TWO free tickets to the show!***  

If you make miniatures and are interested in signing up, check out
 this link for more information.

See ya there!  :)

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Playing Around with White Backgrounds

I struggle to achieve good, quality photographs.  I have a lightbox.  I have the special lights.  I use two photo editing programs (to sraighten an image that is skeepwampus in the photo and to remove dark backgrounds).  And sometimes with all that and when the stars properly align on the first Wednesday of the month following a full moon and I can balance just right standing on my head, I can -- after multiple attempts -- get a photograph I'm happy with.  Or at least can live with.  Until the next said Wednesday rolls around and I can try again.... ;)  It's a very frustrating process.

And so I've been experimenting with Clipping Magic.  It's a program that erases the background from an image, creating the illusion that it's floating in white space.

Before                                         After

The program is relatively easy to use and although it's no longer free, it's still a good value in my book.  Rates start at $3.99 per month for 15 downloads (called "credits") and increase in increments on up to $14.99 per month for 500 downloads.

Here are more dramatic transformations
Before                                            After

Clipping Magic has a step-by-step written tutorial with pictures and there are video tutorials on youtube.  Like this one.

Of course, I didn't watch the video tutorial before jumping right in -- that would've been too easy  ;).  So I just dove in and clicked around.  :)  One of the tools I found useful (which is not mentioned in the above tutorial) is the scalpel tool.  The scalpel tool became my new best friend for getting the background out of the small crevices in the above luggage photo.  

 Let's try another keychain:

As you can see, the results of your edits are shown in real time.  Once you're happy with the "after", you click the blue download button at the top of the screen.  Or, if want more edits, there are more options on the menu along the bottom.

When you click the download button you get this screen:
Follow the instructions to download to finished photo to your computer and voila!  You're done!  I created my new blog header using some of these images.  Whatdyathink?  :)

Until next time, happy mini-making, fellow miniacs.  :)

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

My First 3D Printed Miniatures

When I first heard of 3D printed miniatures, or 3D printed anything
for that matter, I was immediately intrigued with the possibilities --
even if I didn't fully understand the science behind it.

I've read about the process with fascination; watched videos with almost
disbelief as a 3-dimensional object is 'printed' right before my eyes. 

And finally, I took the plunge.  A few weeks ago I ordered my first 
3D printed miniatures from Shapeways.  If you're unfamiliar with
Shapeways, they are a 3D printing service that allows designers
to upload their 3D designs to their own storefront.  Once an order
is placed, Shapeways handles the actual printing and shipping of
the products.  How cool is that?!?

 3d printed dollhouse miniatures
My order arrived today and I am thrilled with my purchases!
Everything is perfectly to scale and I can't wait to put them
into a scene.  
The laundry basket is designed by Modern Dollhouse.

My only surprise is that they have a texture to them which I wasn't
expecting with the "White Strong & Flexible Polished" option.  
They are also available in various colors which I may try out with my next order!

Until next time, happy mini-making!

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Mini Les Bois Dollhouse Miniature Show, April 2015

1/12th Scale Travel Agency Roombox in a Suitcase
Travel Agency Roombox by Deb Matunas
One of the highlights of attending a dollhouse miniature show is seeing the wide range of roomboxes, vignettes, and yes, sometimes even full dollhouses, on display.
Oftentimes the displays are made by members of the miniature club that sponsored
the event.  Such is the case with the above roombox.  Deb Matunas creates very high quality, incredibly detailed, miniature scenes and the above box is no exception.  
I especially **love** that a decorator suitcase is used as the "box".  And once again, a few sets of my luggage have found a beautiful forever home.  Well done!

Of course, in addition to the display eye candy, there's also some shopping to do!
1/12th Scale rocking chair, Vegetable shortening, peanut butter, basket, coffee mug, shipping boxes
Items that insisted on coming home with me ;)
 These lovely miniatures were too adorable to resist!  The rocking chair, I'm told, is
made by the company that was the pre-cursor to Bespaq.  Bespaq, of course, is
synonymous with superior quality in the dollhouse miniature world.

I wish I knew the maker of this beautifully crafted woven basket.  It is about 1 1/4" wide and is very well made.  I love woven baskets!  In real size, in mini size... I love them all!  This one will probably be filled with miniature fruit and adorn my dollhouse kitchen.  Or, perhaps filled with "mail" and placed on a shelf next to a desk.  Hmmm....  so many possibilities!

1:12 Peanut Butter, Crisco, and Coffee Mug
 The jar of peanut butter and can of Crisco Vegetable Shortening are made by Cindi's Mini's.  The color of the peanut butter is PERFECT!  Looks good enough to eat!
I'll put the #1 Grandpa coffee mug in the planned-but-not-yet-created dollhouse den, right next to the laptop and sports and car racing magazines.  :)

1/12th Scale FedEx box, USPS Priority box, Amazon box
1:12 Miniature Shipping Boxes, Ream of Paper
And now, the office supplies!  I nearly flipped a wig when I saw these miniature shipping boxes and ream of printer paper!  To call them perfect would be an understatement.  The flattened boxes actually unfold to become real, to-scale shipping boxes.  The USPS box even has printing on the inside of the 'cardboard' -- just like the real thing!!!  My imagination is running amok with all the possible uses for these boxes....  Now I just need to create some tiny shipping labels.....  ;)

For more information about the Mini Les Bois Dollhouse Miniature Club and annual Dollhouse Miniature Show, check out their Facebook Page