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Sunday, August 5, 2018

Dollhouse Miniature Front Porch pt 11


This week we are going to be adding the “soil” to the planting areas as well as the “grass” to the lawn.

For the soil I went to my standby- coffee grounds. I love the ease of using them, there are always more on hand (at my house at least) and since they would normally either end up in the garbage or the compost they are a free material. They also look great when glued down on our mini projects. If you would like to learn more about the process of using the coffee grounds here is a link to a video I made a while back explaining the process.

For the grass in my lawn this time I decided to try something new, at least new to me. I found a really cool sheet of moss in the floral department of the craft store. I picked the smallest package, the sheet of moss was about the same size as a sheet of normal paper. I really like the more natural feel and look of the moss. This was absolutely the first time I have used a sheet of moss in this way so I have no idea how it will hold up long term but I am in love with it right now.

The biggest thing I learned was to work with as large a piece as you can for any given area and to make sure to pick off the extra layers in the thickest spots.

Because the moss is natural and it has various thicknesses throughout the sheet it automatically makes for a more rolling surface. One of the things I hate about a lot of mini landscaping is that the surfaces are too often perfectly flat. The real world is not perfectly flat it rolls up and down and has holes in it. The moss that I added adds to the realism a bit in that respect. It also has areas that look more green and some that are brown and look dead, again a bit more realistic. 

The biggest drawback I think is the mess that the product creates, it is really messy. I really wish I had worked on this outside, it would have made cleanup a lot easier.

If you don't want to use the moss and would like to use my method of adding the lawn with a terry cloth towel here is a link to video where I show you how to do that. (it is toward the end of the video)

So that is where we will leave the project for this week. I hope you are enjoying the process and picking up a few tips along the way.

As always thank so much for watching my videos and reading the blog.

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Dollhouse Miniature Front Porch pt 10

This week we are working on a couple of small parts of our front porch project.

First we are adding these cute little screw eyes to the wood strip we put in last week that runs around the porch ceiling. These will give us a place to hang things like bird feeders and plants to the porch later. I have been adding something similar to all my dollhouses I construct for years (the ones that have a front porch)

I got the idea from the hooks my dad put on our real house when I was in high school so my mom could hang plants. It worked so well in real life I figured it would work in mini too.

The other things we are doing are placing the walkway up to the step. I wanted to make this look like a sidewalk type walkway but you could use any of the other types of walkways I have done in past projects in place of what I do this time. In fact the egg carton stones would look great here too.

The other thing we did was to base coat the base with a dark brown paint in preparation for our flower beds and lawn areas which we will begin working on in the next video.

Video Problems

I want to address an issue I am having with my computer and let you know that at least some of the videos in the coming weeks may be uploaded in lesser quality. As some of you might know my desktop computer died a while back. My son wasn't able to fix it and has promised he will build me a new computer. He is taking his time to get the best items for the best price he can so it might take a while. In the meantime I am using my (formally) retired laptop for everything. It has many issues including randomly shutting off. It also has a tendency to overheat badly.

Currently, here in Oregon we are experiencing a very hot summer. The software I use to create my videos takes a lot out of my computer and the laptop is struggling.

The video I am posting today I have been trying to finish the last step of the editing process for 3 days. I was finally able to get it finished by getting up at 5AM when the temperature was a lot cooler. Even then my laptop just couldn't handle the work of rendering the video at the normal High Definition quality. When I tried at 480p it was able to get through that (it took 2 tries) without shutting off.

So in future weeks, I will try to make the videos at the higher quality first. BUT if that causes the laptop to shut off I am going to output them at 480p instead. This is not an ideal situation but it is the best I can do for the time being.

What I really want is to be able to give you all high quality videos every week. But I have compromise somewhere, so if I can't do that I will still do my best to get you the videos as often as I can.

Please be patient with the process until I get the new computer. I am doing the best I can right now.

Thank you all for watching the videos and reading the blog posts.