JDayMinis, My Life, French & Antique Inspiration

Friday, May 22, 2009

New Micro Miniature Project 6, French Country Flower Shop, Vines and Flowers







Such a great time of the year for real gardening and I've been very busy with orders, dancing and life but the other morning I woke up at 5:30 and thought it would be a great time to work on this micro project. I've also been working on it in the evenings sometimes. It has been so much fun to get lost in such a little world again.

I really wanted a vine for the front of the flower shop, creeping up through the stones. Years ago when we were walking along a beach a bunch of trees had eroded from a cliff and their tiny roots were exposed, so I brought a few of the tiny roots home. They worked really well for this, they were flexible and easy to glue. I found some more tinier roots while gardening that I can use for shrubs too. I used some old licopodium cut from the stem for the leaves. I liked the way they were blowned in parts. For the tree on the side of the shop I used dark green sponge foam in tiny shreds for the leaves, hope to do a bit more to it.

Worked on the flowers a bit more adding foam and flocking in various colours. I have made my own tiny pieces of foam. I bought rainbow coloured sponges and put them through my very old electric food grinder (I no longer use it for food, but could because it is no different than washing it with tiny sponges I guess, lol). Natural sponges don't work, they just get stuck in the machine, I always figure things out the hard way. I have also bought the sponges at various times in train shops. I can't resist finding new colours. The flocking I bought at a ceramics store years ago, that was selling out, it was mostly in very bright colours. I mixed the colours in bags and shook them up. Orange, purple and turquoise makes a great teddy flocking colour. I still haven't aged the containers yet.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

New Micro Miniature Project 5, French Country Flower Shop, Flowers











Really been having a great time with this! Added the front windows, used shrink art plastic and added thin strips of veneer, then glued the window to the back side of the front. Then I rolled out thin pieces of paperclay and built up inside around the windows as I did with the outside.

I rolled out a piece of paperclay with a rubber tile textured piece through the pasta machine and added a patio of the tiny tiles to the side door. There is a photo of the rubber lid opener I found years ago at the dollar store and had to buy it because it looked like tiny tiles. Fortunately it was stored with my pasta machine sort of serindipity not having to find it! After the patio dried I stained it and painted it with Mod Podge to make the tiles look shiny. I made window boxes of paperclay and painted them terracotta with watercolours. I cut tiny bids of bunka and a red pompom and glued them on top for the window box flowers.

You can see in one of the photos the three tiered display with large holders for individual flowers that I have seen in many photos of flower shops in France. Rolled out paperclay and cut out the structures and stacked them, then added holders for the flowers. I have some vintage rayon ribbon in a great green that I frayed and painted with a clear acrylic (water effects). When it dried I cut into pieces and glued the green stems into the holders.

A variety of techniques are going to be used for the flowers. One was mixing the clear acrylic with tiny bits of pompom, I will use flocking too and bits of bunka. I also experimented with cutting tiny pieces of dried paperclay and mixing it with the clear acrylic and made flowers that way, I painted them with mauve and blue watercolours and was pleased with the results, watercolour also worked to paint the pompom mixture. I'm looking forward to making more flowers.

I have a familial tremour that is worse with tea and coffee so I've been trying to avoid those while working on this project, LOL. The flowers might end up stuck to the walls.

Friday, May 15, 2009

New Micro Miniature Project 4, French Country Flower Shop, Paperclay






The photo above shows the tiny bit I cut from my sand block to sand the stones and tiles. Then I added gloss to each of the tiles inside the shop with Mod Podge. I rolled the paper clay through my pasta machine to finish the outside of the flower shop, adding small areas as shown. I was so pleased with the cracked natural look that was created by rolling it that I left if for one wall. Then I scratched in a block texture with a tooth pick on the outside before it dried and added more detail with a wet paintbrush after it was a bit drier. I'm really having fun with this project.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

New Micro Miniature Project 3, French Country Flower Shop, Paperclay




I finally was able to work on this project last night. I did a watercolour wash on the tiles, then I hope to put gloss on each of the separate tiles to leave the grout dull and the tiles with a bit of a sheen. Watered down watercolour was used as a wash in a mix of Holbein's Burnt Sienna and Windsor Newton's Indian Blue, these colours don't fade as do some watercolours. A blending brown and blue to make grey rather than using grey seems to add more interest.

I also added a bit of Sap Green to the walkway for a hint of moss and painted inside the water feature with a mix including Cobalt Green mixed in Woodland Scenics "Water Effects". I will keep adding more transparent on top to fill the pond. The walls had a very diluted wash of the brown and blue mix too. I have kept the same mix to finish the outside of the structure too.

The base warped a bit more on the edges after doing the washed but I was able to bend it flat. I hope to work on the windows and then I will add the outside paperclay. I will be adding more paint to the stones as I contine.

I've really been having fun going through some French decorating books, one is called Provencal Living with great pictures for ideas another I bought when I was painting the cabinets in our home's kitchen cabinets with herbs. It is surprising how books that aren't even related can have great ideas. I was also looking online at paintings of scenes in France. We are so lucky having the web for inspiration! Thank you again to all my followers, I really enjoy seeing what everyone else is doing so much, so inspiring!!

Monday, May 11, 2009

New Micro Miniature Project 2, French Country Flower Shop, Paperclay

















The top photo shows the Micro Flower Shop with the paperclay as it looked today, after it had dried for a few days. I did get a slight warping on the base, although I had used gloss, it isn't enough to be a problem. As it was drying I could see this happening so I put weight on both sides of the base that really helped. I used my stapler and scotch tape holder, they had the right amount of weight and were handy. The graph paper is four squares to the inch.

I started with a layer of paperclay that I glued with thick glue to the bottom floor first. I wanted tiles of some sort so I pressed a piece of metal mesh screen on the bottom and pulled it off. It worked quite well because I want it to look old. I brushed it with a bit of watered down glue to even the floor out.

Paperclay was used on the walls and then I gave them a brushed finish to look like old plaster with my paint bruch. The photos don't show the finish well yet but they might show up better when I paint it. Paperclay was then glued to the base and I built up the area in front for a bit of a patio and step. Then I textured all of it with a toothpick to make a stone walk way and flag stone areas, that was fun. I will be smoothing them a little more with water and adding paperclay where it cracked and came away from the front of the shop when I do the outside of the shop.

I wanted the front doors to look like French doors so I cut out a piece of shrink art plastic because it is a nice weight and cut tiny strips of wood veneer with a sticky back I bought year ago. I put the vertical stripes on one side and the horizontal on the other side of the doors, painted it with acrylic and placed it in the door opening. My order for doing things is not always the best, LOL, but I really like to just do it rather than think it through too long. If it doesn't work I can always start again.

Friday, May 8, 2009

New Micro Miniature Project, French Country Flower Shop






Here are some photos of a new micro project I've started. I would like it to be a French Country Flower and Decorating Shop. I once bought quite a few metal etched gates in N scale that would work well in this project. Micro is 1/144 scale or one inch is equal to twelve feet. I used quarter scale graph paper for my design. Each quarter inch is three feet in micro scale so I have worked out my store and grounds, it is really general but is a start and then I can change my ideas once I'm working. Once I had the shop size and design I cut it out of a lignin and acid free board called Linetek Gooo by Bainbridge. and glued it together with a thick glue, The Ultimate glue.

I used paper clay on the front and walk way of my Micro French Chocolat Shop in the previous blog. I want to use paper clay for the landscaping, walls and floor of this project.
All the pieces were brushed inside and out with a incredibly slow drying acrylic gel. It took about two days to dry completely but there was no warping. The gel is used to mix with acrylic paint keep them from drying so quickly. This coating will hopefully stop my walls and grounds from warping when I add the paper clay.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Mico Miniature of a French Chocolate Shop













Here are some photos of my micro scale, (1/144 scale or one twelfth of an inch is equal to one foot) French Chocolate Shop. It measures less than two and one half inches in width and is three and one half inches in length. In 2000 I came home from the movie Chocolat and immediately wanted to make a miniature French Chocolate Shop, a version of the one I had loved in the movie.

Grains of sand were used for the cookies, I turned tiny bits of plastic for all the jars, a watch stem for the stool and other watch parts for the containers. I made everything except the tiny metal bucket in the sink. The front of the shop I made with paper clay and I painted it to look like stone with watercolour paints.

Two of these photos are on my web site, but I wanted to try my new camera and lens for more detail. I could get closer but parts are always out of focus, really must read the manual!!

Thank you so much to all of you who take the time to look and leave a comment, that is so kind of you to take the time to do that, I feel like you are all close friends. This is the best mini community ever!!

I have just added a collage photo, it is old but has a better view of the work table. I found a really great tiny watch part for the rolling pin that I remember being very excited about, lol. If you click on the photo you can see a larger picture.

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