Saturday, July 04, 2015

Friday, July 03, 2015

Finish it off Friday: a Facebook page and group you might want to join...

I'm feeling off colour today and have sent much of the morning curled up in bed with a hot water bottle and a cat to keep me warm.

So I've not really been in the mood to whip up and photograph a kit.

What I have done, however, is started working on a Facebook page for my blog, and created a Facebook group for miniature bloggers.
Header for a Facebook miniature bloggers group.

Are you on Facebook? Care to join?

Thursday, July 02, 2015

Ten must-read modern miniature blogs (plus a bonus one)

(In alphabetical order, for fairness)

1. 1:12 modern miniature houses

Marion Russek’s blog only started at the beginning of this year, but doesn’t look it. Her photographs are clear and she provides readers a mix of posts explaining how her design and build process works, showing us her show haul, or how to design 1:12 items for 3D printing. Marion owns the shop Modern Dollhouse on Shapeways).

2. Call of the Small

Call of the Small specialises in taking miniatures out to the rest of the world, in ways most people wouldn’t think of. Her work has been featured in magazines and books, most recently on the cover of the book Horrorstör. She also has access to international gift fairs, where she scopes out the latest items that could be used in miniature for the rest of us to drool over.

3. Kitty and Kat Miniatures

Another blog that started this year, Kat started in the hobby with a Melissa and Doug dollhouse she picked up on special. Her challenge is to turn what was designed as a dolls house for children into one for an adult taste, while at the same time making it toddler safe for her daughter. She shares her trials and tribulations at getting to grips with all the things she needs to learn to make the house match her vision.

4. Mini Modern

Modern MC is one of the original bloggers of modern miniatures, and although posts are a lot more sporadic than they used to be, they are still full of unusual pieces and interesting ideas.

5. Miniatures by Annina

Annina has been busy with a miniature person over the past couple of years, so hasn’t blogged much. But I’ve included her blog on the list because it has a good-sized archive of posts to rummage through while you wait for her return. Annina’s scenes are incredibly detailed and her photography makes them look incredibly lifelike. It’s no surprise that her work has featured in a number of publications including The New York Times and The Independent.

6. MitchyMooMiniatures

Modern dolls' house miniature shed interior, with tools and storage.
UK based, Pepper started blogging in 2011 when she found a dearth of items for her modern-day miniature pub. Since then she’s been generous is sharing how she makes her items, with tutorials ranging from bending metal to making sofas out of kneeling pads, and how to solder. Once she got a laser cutting machine, there was no stopping her. Pepper is wonderfully obsessive and super generous.

7. Modern Mini Houses

This blog is like the archives of the modern mini hobby. Mini Dork keeps track of where to buy modern miniature houses and modern miniatures, plus various competitions and challenges. She also has a knack of knowing when modern miniatures feature in 'the real world' and when new products are released.

One of the earliest of the modern miniature tribe to use Shapeways to print and sell miniatures in 3D, she was recently the person behind this year's Shapeways 3D printed Miniature Houses Contest.

8. My Mini Mod Pod

Mad for Mod’s obsession is mid-century modern (or ‘atomic’), and her blog is mix of tutorials, show reports and behind-the-scenes glimpses of what she’s working on. Often that’s a little something to add to her Etsy store.

9. otterine's miniatures

Brae has an amazing eye for detail which, coupled with her ability to build almost anything, makes this blog a standout. She is well-known to followers of the Greenleaf Spring Fling and HBS Creatin’ Contest as her builds win or place most years. Her strengths include realistic landscaping and creating aged patinas on her pieces.

10. Paper Doll Miniatures

Modern dolls' house miniature bathroom with rain shower, butterfly stool stacked with towels and orchid plant on the sink unit.
Subtitled ‘A modern dollhouse design blog’ Kristine’s blog is like an interiors magazine for the miniature world.  Her fresh, contemporary style informs everything she does, from working on her (very large) dollshouse, which she shares the building of, room by room, on her blog, to her stand-alone scenes. Oh: and she’s an artist as well…

11. Snowfern Clover

Cindy is based in Singapore, from where she entertains us with her adventures at ‘being crappy at following the instructions’ while also being awesome at making miniature food and drinks in scales ranging from 1/3 scale to 1.24 scale. Did I mention she’s funny, too? (And has an Etsy store, of course!)

(Hello lovelies: I didn't want to lift images from your blogs to go with this post without your permission: can you comment if it's OK to use an image, and, if you have a preference, a link to it?)

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Lunch, with a side order of Norwegian Blue*

Pepper's comment, on yesterday's post, that 'The Karma Bank may have something miniature for you this week...' had me hop, skip and jumping across the road to the post office at lunchtime today.

And indeed she was correct:
Dining table with a bowl of soup, a plate of pesto toast, a glass of water and a postal package on it.
Oddly, enough, the minute I opened the package, I completely lost interest in my lunch, which sat there growing cold.
Dining table with a bowl of soup, a plate of pesto toast, a glass of water, bubble wrap and a selection of modern dolls' house miniatures next to a card on which is written 'Happy receive-a-present Day.'
Because the real noms were laid out on the table above my boring old lunch from the freezer...
A card on which is written 'Happy receive-a-present Day', surrounded by five modern dolls' house miniature items: a hand-woven bedspread, three white pottery vases and a birdcage.
complete with my very own Norwegian Blue! Thank you thank you thank you!
Modern dolls' house miniature bird cage, with a blue parrot on its side on the floor of it.
(*Just in case)

Monday, June 29, 2015

#Frugal15: Fabulous friends

This week's grocery budget was higher for three reasons: I decided to buy Mr Nibbs some steak worth $3,50 (I figure the occasional addition of this to his diet saves me on vet visits to clean his teeth). I'd run out of dishwashing liquid and sponges (one of the unfortunate side effects of cooking at home a lot more is there are also a lot more dishes that need doing). And I discovered crumpets (not on the shopping list, but a freezer staple which I stock up on when they're cheap) on half-price special.
Mosaic of images showing a selection of groceries and three meals: apple hotcakes with yoghurt dressing, pasta, spinach, pesto and tomato salad, and mexican chilli corn pie.
The week's menu included mushroom soup (served to a dinner guest with garlic bread made from rolls out of the freezer); a spinach, red capsicum, feta and spinach frittata; penne, pesto and tomato salad; mexican chili corn pie (a favourite: which produced three extra servings that went into the freezer) and tuna, corn, red capsicum and feta pizza.

There were no muffins this week, mainly because the freezer still has a good supply of a couple of flavours.

What there was this week, was the Karma Bank paying out in the form of a lot of unexpected spoiling by friends. I was shouted coffee (twice). Brunch (once). Lunch (twice). Dinner (to celebrate M's birthday and my success at the ANCA sPIN exhibition opening). And three friends who came to my place for meals brought goodies to share.
Mosaic of images showing various cafe and restaurant meals.
I never expect my friends to pay for me, but I'm always very appreciative when they do.

Speaking of The Karma Bank paying out, I received a phone call from out of the blue last night with the offer of a few days' work this week. By my reckoning that should pay the rent for another couple of weeks...

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Frugal and free: and then there were two...

The Belconnen Arts Centre's mid-winter market was on today, and I'd promised a friend I'd pop in to visit her and her stall.

And what did I find right next door to her stall, but Hillgrove Pottery: the people that I bought my tiny house from last year.

Having decided that I could completely justify a $2 spend for another, I was delighted when the owners decided that they would give it to me instead!
Woman holding up a tiny pottery house.
 So now there are two...
Two tiny pottery houses on display next to a giant wooden button.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Finish it off Friday: a (w)hole lot of fun

This week I pulled the 'pidgeon' hole unit kit out of my box of unmade kits to work on.
Modern dolls' house miniature laser-cut 'pidgeon' hole kit in packaging.
Components of a  modern dolls' house miniature laser-cut 'pidgeon' hole kit laid out on a work table.
  Because I needed to do a 'quick and dirty' build so I could have it finished to take photos before I lost the light, I decided to do a little experiment. I figured since the kit only cost $4 in the first place, I could afford to potentially mess it up completely...

Could I cover it with printed paper using my Xyron sticker machine? There was only one way to find out.
Pile of scrapbooking paper pads on the floor.
 But first, my lovely assistant and I had to decide which way round I was going to make it.
Dry-built modern dolls' house miniature laser-cut 'pidgeon' hole kit  with dolls' house doll for scale.
Dry-built modern dolls' house miniature laser-cut 'pidgeon' hole kit  with dolls' house doll for scale.
 (That's massively tall, so horizontal it is.)
Components of a  modern dolls' house miniature laser-cut 'pidgeon' hole kit laid out on a piece of scrapbooking paper showing a vintage map of France.
 I decided on a paper that would work with the burned edges of the wood bits
Pieces of scrapbooking paper showing a vintage map of France laid out on a cutting matt with a metal ruler, a knife and a sticker machine.
 and began cutting and stickering. (So far, so good.)
Dry-built modern dolls' house miniature laser-cut 'pidgeon' hole kit  covered in vintage map paper.
 And we have success!*
Modern dolls' house miniature pigeon hole bookcase, covered in paper printed with a vintage map of France. Displayed on it are various French-themed items.
 This is a technique I definitely want to use again in the future...
Close-up of one end of a modern dolls' house miniature pigeon hole bookcase, covered in paper printed with a vintage map of France. Displayed on it are a model Arc de triomphe, cushions with french writing on them and a chicken ornament.
(*Actually, it's only blog finished. I couldn't be bothered faffing around gluing it together then waiting for the glue to dry so the end and top bits are just balanced there...)