woensdag 18 juli 2018

A 'how-to-do' on making baskets

I still don't know what will be sold in the open place/market stall of the Italian diorama, but I do know I want there to be lots of baskets in all different shapes and sizes.
They won't be fancy wicker baskets (though I want to learn to make those some day), but the simple, natural looking ones you see in (miniature) Italian nativity villages :)

There are so many tutorials to be found, that I have the feeling that I only discovered the tip of the iceberg :) And what I didn't know is how many different techniques there are. I want to try as many as possible for this Italian shop ^^

I remembered making this basket a little over 3 years ago, when I'd just started making miniatures. The method was a very simple one, just some paper and string, but the result very nice, I think. I might do some of those for this project as well. The tutorial can be found here.

I started this time with this helpful tutorial by El Rincón de Manora. Very easy, with great results. 
To make taller baskets I used Prym glass-headed pins, 0.80 x 48mm, my father once gave my. To get the weaving straight up, I'd put something of the same size in the middle (in this case a cork).


I used embroidery thread with this basket.

This one had no bottom, and I used some
distress ink to colour it. Least favourite so
far but maybe I can make it better (a)

I drybrushed a bit of brown acrylic paint
and that blended nicely with the matt
varnish I used right after.

After making those baskets I tried a different technique using embroidery thread. I like the look of that one, though I won't be making a lot of those because they are just a bit to neat for the Italian scene in my humble opinion :)
To make this little brown basket also was more time-consuming, compared to the others, and it took more than 6 mt of thread.


But working on that brown basket I got inspired to use the same method and make this lilac shopping.beach bag :)

Last monday we had our monthly crafting club. I'd soaked the jute twine (I think that's what it's called?) in a cup of coffee for about ten minutes, early that morning, and I really like how that turned out. Love the colour itself and the way the twine looks a bit more coarse.

I've made another round, tall basket with that twine, because somehow I've lost the other one I'd made.

I had struggled with the way to made a rectangular basket, because you need to work with an odd number of pins. Then I found this tutorial - wich is helpful anyway but - that explained how you could work with an even number of pins by using a double thread.
I added a bottom to the rectangular form later which I made by weaving a flat little mat with the coffee coloured twine. I attachted braided twine around the bottom edges and two handles.
This is my favourite so far, not so neat for the glue part, but that's okay, I'll be making better ones ^^

For more tutorials and example of baskets you're welcome to take a look at my Pinterest board.

Somewhere along the way I've also found a site with lots of tutorials. I saved to list but forgot to save the link to the website itself. So not my list, and if you know where it's from, I would be grateful if you'd let me know!

Bead Baskets - from Specks and Keepings
Easter Basket - from Mouse market
Accessories Basket for Kitchen or Bath - from  Miniaturas y Casas de Munecas
Baby Basket - from About.com
Baskets from Needlepoint Canvas - Photobucket album
Baskets from Needlepoint Canvas - from Casey's Minis
Basketry Techniques by Jicolin (French) includes laundry basket
Bushel Basket from Cardstock - from 1 Inch Miniatures
Easter Basket - from Joanne's Minis
Garden Basket - from 1 Inch Minis
Gift Baskets - from Danielle Muller
Gumball Machine Baskets - by Miss Kris
Faux Woven Pet Basket - by Deb Roberts
Hanging Basket - from Doll House Escapes
Miniature Baskets - CDHM tutorial by Yvonne Moxon
Not so Easy Baskets - from Casey's Minis
Paper Baskets - by Kris
Pastry basket - from About.com
Petit Panier - from Bricolages de Paques
Picnic basket - from The Spruce
Pine Needle Group - various basketry instructions in RL size
Sewing Basket - by 1 Inch Minis by Kris.
Straw Basket - from Lastanza di Giuggiola (Italian)
Wooden Handle for Basket - 1-Inch Minis
Woven Basket by Flor (Spanish)
Woven Shopping Bag from Marga (Spanish)
Wire Basket - from Minis Sole 

dinsdag 3 juli 2018

Plant hanger giveaway!

I've made new plant hangers I have yet to share with you. Since it's still a populair item in my Etsy shop, I keep making them, though I make sure that every one is different in design and/or colour ;)
This time I tried a design with two colours and made two versions of it.



Since I'd love to know which plant hangers you all like I've decided to a little giveaway. Also, I'd been so busy last month with old and new projects that I totally miss the one year celebration of opening my Etsy shop :') 

So, I'll draw a name from the proverbal hat in about ... lets say a week ... from those of you who'll leave me a comment on this blog or on my FB about the planthangers I've made so far.
Not just calling a number you like, but why you like some more than others ;)
Beads or no beads? Do you prefer natural colours or colourful hangers? Designs with one or more colours or maybe certain knots that are used? :)
Give me some useful feedback and I'll make you an 1/12th plant hanger according to your preferences.

zaterdag 16 juni 2018

Starting a new (group) project

When we were about to finish our first group project, we'd talked about what we wanted to do next. Deciding on something all four of us like is obviously less easy than with just two persons, so we've agreed on doing an outdoor scene again, but each of us has chosen a different theme for it.
Jolinda is going something Greek, with lots of steps and pottery and the characteristic blue colours. You might want to follow her project on her own blog as well :)
Wil, as a big reggae fan, want to to a Jamaican beach scene, with a little shop with surfboards or something. Het theme is the reason I'd made her that Jamacain drum for her birthday swap.
Monique hasn't decided on a definite theme, but wants to make a garden on a flat surface, that she will be able to draw it up to a dollhouse.

I liked Jolinda's idea very much, but I alway felt more for Italian scenery, and so that's what I've chosen :) My inspiration has come from photo's like the next ones, I've found on Pinterest.


Of course it wouldn't be very convenient to make the framework during one of our monthly meetings, so that's something we'll work on in our own home and during our own time ;)
I had this cardboard doll house on a shelf, only gathering dust because the scale is not one I'd prefer, so that's what I'd use.


I cut pieces away and added others, which I all taped together. The idea is (the exterior of) a little Italian bistro with a room/house above. A staircase going to a small gallery and maybe a roof garden terrace a the right, above an semi open space where I might make a little shop/market with Italian food. The focus will be on the outdoors though. On the tables with Italian food and the many, many plants and flowers and greenery, on the mountain top, the terrace, on the gallegy, in lots of planters and outside the bistro.
Oh my ;)


I glued strips of tin foil to the card board, using the same technique I've done earlier on the tree house (a)


Then I covered the tin foil with paper machè like Sharon Ojala's tutorial shows. 


Next I sat down, and took time to think about the front of the bistro and made a 'wall' from cardboard to see how that would fit.


After that I started painting everything. I mixed grey structure paint and bird sand with a variety of orange, yellow and white acrylic paint for the bistro/house side. Started dry brushing after the first layer had dried, mixing more white paint for every new layer. I like the effect it got from the extra structure due to the bird sand.

On the mountain side I mixed the grey structure paint and bird sand with brown acrylic paint, and added darker brown when I started dry brushing.

Of course I haven't forgotten about the cottage. As soon as the framework is done, and I can more easily continue with making smaller items during the monthly meeting, I'll put the mountain aside to focus on the cottage again ;)

woensdag 13 juni 2018

A Nyabinghi drum

Monday our crafting club gathered together. We all seemed a bit excited about starting with a new project, but first our attention went to Wil who's got a birthday coming up (today, actually ^^).
Since we'd had just discussed the idea of doing birthday swaps last week and the other three'll have our birthdays still coming up later this year, we'd decided to start right away :)

Since I know Will loves reggae and Jamaica, I had chosen to make this Nyabinghi drum;

Photo from the internet.

I painted a wine cork with Gesso (primer).

Using masking tape to hopefully get straight lines.

Which worked better than I hoped.

I like the structure of the cork coming through.

I used a piece of very thin leather as drum head.

Which I carefully aged while it was pinned in place before
I glued it to the cork.

Juvie, our little house-elf, got curious when
 she saw those bright colours and
wanted to try drumming.

Floral wire and silver beads were used
for the final touches.

I think Wil liked it as much as Juvie did :)

The mosaic table was a gift from Jolinda and
Monique got Will the other things shown.

Before finally starting crafting, we ate some fruit cake ('vlaai') that Monique served us. So all in all I think we've started a nice new tradition ;)

zondag 10 juni 2018

A plate rack for an English tea set

Since I'll be meeting the mini craft club tomorrow, I'm busy preparing for the next project. I'll tell you all about it after tomorrow :)
Due to that project though, and my visit to England, I haven't done much work on the Hogsmeade cottage. Working on the walls, ceiling and floor of the living room isn't something I can do in just a few hours or even days, but I still wanted to feel like I did something for the cottage.

I decided to make a (plate) rack for the tea set I bought at Studley Grange, the craft village in Swindon. Having googled for images I started without a tutorial - oh boy - and only a vague idea ^^

It seemed to be going well ...

... but the plate would keep falling unfortunately :')

So I adapted the part I've done and created another design :)

So, not the nodel I was going for at the start but at least it's
a one of a kind, I guess?

And I accidentally made it just wide
enough (a)

I've used a walnut stain for this rack ...

... because I want a bit of a mismatch
regarding the (wood colours of the) furniture.

Not sure if it'll end up in the kitchen or
in the living room. We'll see ;)