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Sunday, January 27, 2013

Dollhouse Miniature Waffles

This week we will be concluding our series of breakfast foods for the dollhouse. Don't worry we will cover more breakfast items in the future I just want to move on for a while and do some other things. I think I have given you plenty of choices for now as far as breakfast items go.

We are once again using the mixture of equal parts translucent clay and white clay that mixed up a while back. I told you I use this mixture in a lot of foods. I am taking the easy way out as far as forming the waffles in that I am using the metal mini waffle maker that I purchased. I really recommend going this route for these. It takes a lot of the guess work out of the process and saves you a lot of work. If you don't want to buy one of these or can't get one then you can spend some time to carve out the first waffle bake it off and then use it to make a mold using the some Amazing Mold Putty (or a similar product) Also check for items around the house and everywhere else that look like either a waffle or the grid of a waffle maker. I know I have seen buttons in the past with that type of design on them.

As with most bread type products we will give the waffles a baked look with layers of artist chalks. Start with a light golden yellow and work up to some light touches of brown for accent. Remember you can always add more color but it is next to impossible to remove it once it is there.

If you want to add some butter to your waffles I recommend using a combination of pale yellow clay and some TLS for that. I didn't choose to do that on mine but there is no reason you have to skip it.

For my syrup I used some Amber Gallery Glass this time. It is a simple way to replicate the syrup and I always have it on hand. 


Sunday, January 20, 2013

Dollhouse Miniature Cinnamon Rolls

This week I decided to show you how to make cinnamon rolls in miniature. This is a super easy project to make and would be really easy to make in any scale you desire. My best advice for changing scale is to work with the doll of the correct scale next to you. Compare the cinnamon roll you are making with the size of the doll's hand. This for me works better than measuring and is certainly easier.

For the filling I use a mixture of TLS (Translucent Liquid Sculpey) and chalk (in a cinnamon color) try not to mix the chalk into the TLS to thoroughly you want to see some of variation of color and texture in the filling. I did end up using a mix of 2 colors of chalk because the red-brown one was too red and the brown was too brown. Experiment with the chalk you have to get the correct color.

Always have some wet wipes on hand when you are working with chalks and white clay. The smallest bit of chalk in the wrong place can ruin a big chunk of clay. It always amazes me how far the chalk can spread when I work with it. Better to be prepared with the wet wipe and not need them than to make a mess and have to discard your hard work and expensive clay.

I know on some tutorials I have seen in the past a brown color clay was used as the filling and rolled up with the white color. The problem with this method is the filling layer is just too thick. Think about how the real cinnamon roll looks. Even better, have a cinnamon roll in front of you when you make this. There really is nothing like having a real life model to help you get the details right. Besides, you can reward yourself when you are done with the cinnamon roll. LOL

One of the little details that many people miss on this type of project is to use a sharp point (I used my dental pick) to gently pull the layers apart after the rolls are cut. This allows them to get a bit of space and goes a long way to making them look more real.

For the icing on the rolls I used some scribbles fabric paint, I like this product for a lot of uses. You might have to add more than one layer, remember to build the layers slowly and allow the product to dry between layers. Also it is really important to check the flow of the paint on your work tile (or other surface) don't go directly to your project. If there is an air bubble in the bottle you could get a big mess.

The fabric paints do mix well too so you can mix just the right color to get the icing color you want. 


Sunday, January 13, 2013

Hot Cocoa and Coffee for the Dollhouse

This week I admit I waited until the last minute to make my video. Normally I record my videos early in the week to upload on Sunday. This time I have been so busy that it was way too easy to procrastinate on video making. Hopefully I still was able to make an informative video for you to enjoy.

I find that to make beverages of any kind I usually use some kind of paint. If the beverage is clear then I usually use some kind of glass paint and if it is opaque I use a craft paint. There are a couple of secrets to success in making beverages this way. By far the most important to pick the right color. If you are in doubt do a sample and compare it to the real thing. It is much better to make a mistake on a work tile than in a container that you now need to clean out in order to use a better color. The second rule is to work in thin layers. The thinner you layer your paint the less of a divot will for in the top. I was trying to hurry on the video so I actually used thicker layers than I normally would have. You can see the divot at the top of the cups. It is easy to fix, just add tiny drops of paint (with a toothpick) to fill in until it dries level. When you are using craft paint you will need to add a coat of clear (satin finish) coat to the top, craft paint dries matte and you do need some shine.

In the video I promised a story of a mistake I made a few years ago. I have been making mini beverages the way I show in this video for many years but I had watched a Youtube video on making hot cocoa using polymer clay. I thought it was good idea and shortly after watching that video I got a custom order for some hot cocoa in 1/6th scale. (Barbie size) The lady that ordered it was going to ship me her mugs that she had custom made for her scene. They were beautiful when they came and a joy to work with. Since I had watched this video on a new way to make the cocoa I decided to try it out on a different set of 1/6th scale mugs that I had on hand. I was so glad that I tried it on my own mugs because as the clay baked it split of my mugs all the way up the side. If I had done that to customer's mug it would have been a big problem. So the moral of this is, when you find a new technique for doing something try the process out before you commit to using an expensive mini! 


Wednesday, January 9, 2013

My Esty Shop

I am so excited to tell you all about my new Esty shop! I made the
account on there a long time ago and never got around to opening the
shop. I decided it was high time I got my act together and opened the
shop. In the future I am hoping to add a link to the Esty shop on my blog. 

I've been trying to do that for a while now and I can't get it to work. Hopefully
that is a temporary situation.

So I think I should tell you a little about my passions and why I am
selling the items I am in the shop. First off you will be able to find
some of my mini work. I have more items that I want to add but I still
need to take pictures. When I make a video a lot of times I make up
several of whatever item is the star of the video, so I  will be
listing any extras of those items. I also have a number of things that
I normally have on hand for sale (both online and at the local show)
and those will be finding their way to the Esty shop as I get photos
taken. I have my DVDs listed too, and I am in the planning stages of
at least a few more of those too.

In addition to my passion for minis one of  my other loves is sewing.
I starting sewing my own clothing at age 8 and have never stopped. I
can’t imagine how many miles of fabric I have sewn over my lifetime. I
love to sew everything and I have some sewn items I want to make up
and add over time.

Another of my loves are American Girl dolls, I was really never into
dolls when I was little but I have fallen in love with the 18 dolls.
When my daughter was a little girl I made just about everything she
wore and for every outfit her dolls had a matching outfit. My daughter
no longer wants or needs me to design cool clothes  for her but I love
to design clothing for dolls. You will find a variety of clothing for
this size doll with more to come. I am going to add some fun
accessories for the dolls soon too. I have to admit I love the AG
dolls almost as much as my dollhouse. They are a so much fun to work
with because of all the detail you can add.

Who knows what else I may add in the future.  Over my life I have
tried and loved so many crafts and what I love to do is always
changing so I am hoping the shop will reflect that. In the meantime if
there are things you would like to see me add be sure to let me know.

So please pop over to Esty and have a look. If you have some
suggestions or comments I would love to hear them.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

1/48th Scale Chocolate and Caramel Apples

If you have watched my videos and read this blog you probably know that I much prefer to stick with 1/12th scale in my miniatures. This week I am making one of my few treks into the world of 1/48th scale miniatures. You might know this scale as ¼” scale. This simply means that 1 inch equals 4 feet (or 48 inches) in real life.

I decided that it would be a fun challenge to make some chocolate covered (and a few caramel covered) apples in this tiny scale. I hope you have some fun with this project, be sure to let me know how you did with them.

Now to a few cautions, remember this scale is really tiny. This can be both a good thing and a bad thing. On the plus side you don't need quite as much detail as in my more comfortable 1/12th scale. On the other side of this these items are really small and our fingers seem huge so using a pair of tweezers and needle nose pliers is really helpful as are some magnifying glasses of some kind.

To glue the beads (apples) the wire (sticks) I found that a new glue I am working with was fantastic. It is “G-S Hypo Cement” I found it at a local craft store. This glue had two real advantages for me one being the precision applicator that is part of the tube. That was great for getting the glue exactly where I needed it. Secondly it doesn't stick fingers together, I had first tried some super glue and had to have my son get my fingers apart earlier. Now while the gluing of the fingers is good for some comic relief it is also painful, annoying, wastes time and it somewhat embarrassing also. So if you work on tiny things often I highly recommend trying to find this glue.

Another problem I had was the apples bouncing away when I cut the stems down to size. I ended up cutting them inside a plastic tub to keep them together, I would think doing the cutting inside a large zip lock bag might also work, I spent way too much time on my knees under my table looking for apples that had run off before I got the tub to hold them.