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 ;)

zondag 3 juni 2018

Crafting together - May

May 7th our little crafting club met again. It would be the last afternoon we'd worked on those roomboxes together, so I had been making leaves and flowers all weekend in advance :) About time, right? ;)

Glueing the tiny leaves on the branches
worked beter with the roombox on it's side :)

Made lots of flowers; cut them, painted them,
did some shading, etc etc

While with the crafting club I glued all the
flowers I'd made to the branches and the
result was better than I had expected it to be ;)

The next day I decided to make a little sloped
roof on top of the roombox ...

... and do bricks on the outside as well.

Then I got busy with my volunteerwork and went on holiday so nothing happend to the roombox for days. But this (last) friday I gathered the brick and all other suplies to finally finish the job :)
I finished both sidewalls and decided on a slate-shingled roof using textured cardboard. About to start painting egg cartons I remembered the tiles I'd made for the quill shop but didn't use. I'd always loved the colours, so I was glad I could use them now :)

I added some moss, made sure everything inside the box had been secured and put the front back in place.

And it's done, and I'm very pleased about that, and about the result of this project. First time I've really finished a scene/roombox and that feels good :)

We've already talked about the projects we want to do next, and like some I've already got an idea an started today with the base. But I'll tell you more about it next week :P

zaterdag 2 juni 2018

Last day in the Cotswolds - more shopping and sightseeing

On our last full day we went to St Margarets Retail Park in Swindon first, where my friend went to Dunelm for some nice bedding, and I strolled through the Poundstrecher and Pets at Home and - last but not least ^^ -Hobby Craft.

They claim to be "the only place to find all your craft materials, art supplies, and craft workshops under one roof." So yeah ... that's where I've spend my very last pounds ;)

The rest of the afternoon we did some sightseeing. We drove from Swindon through Cirencester (one of the most substantial cities of Roman-era Britain) and Malmesbury (England's oldest borough, close to the Cotswolds atop an old Iron Age hill fort ).
At Biddingstone we made our first stop.

Fine houses flank the north side of The Green at Biddingstone.

Biddestone was the filming location for the
TV film Agatha Raisin and the Quiche
of Death (2014). Maybe I should read/watch
it. Sounds like fun :)

We had lunch in the secret garden at the back of the
White Horse.

After lunch we headed  to Castle Combe.

"The houses in Castle Combe are made of stone – and there
is a lovely charm about the way they have been built.
The village houses have thick walls, and the roofs
are made of stone tiles."

"Castle Combe was the location for the
Steven Spielberg movie “War Horse”
. Most
recently it was used in a series of Downton Abbey."

"The beautiful Parish Church of St Andrew
is a  is over six hundred years old." 

At the centre of the village is a 14th-century market cross.
This is where the market is held. Photo credit. 

"Next to the cross is one of Castle Combe's two village pumps.
Small stone steps near the cross were for horse riders to mount
and dismount. From the centre of the village there are three
roads radiating out. One goes up the hill to the car park;
a second road goes towards the river – and the
third goes to the Manor House Hotel."

"There is no castle in Castle Combe, however
this picturesque village, with its Cotswold-type
cottages, is known to be the prettiest village
in England."

We pursued our way and passed - the funny sounding - Tiddleywick, as well as Avebury, one of the best known prehistoric sites in Britain, which contains the largest megalithic stone circle in the world. And before we went back I finally say one of the famous White Horses!

"The Uffington White Horse is a highly stylised prehistoric hill
figure, 110 m long, formed from deep trenches filled with
crushed white chalk. It is by far the oldest of the white horse
figures in Britain and is of an entirely different design from
the others inspired by it." Photo credits.

View from one of the car parks at the Ridgeway.

I think it's obvious that I had a wonderful time in this beautiful part of England! And of course it was a bonus that the wheather has been great, the compagny lovely, and that I got to visit 'Hogwarts' again.
Everything was also very inspirational for the building of my Hogsmeade cottage, especially since I've brought home so many miniatures :)