Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Kit Sets or Build from Scratch?

A house built from a kit set
Here's a question for you. Do you like to make kit set dolls houses and furniture or do you build from scratch?
  People at our miniatures club were divided fairly evenly on this issue. Some who are proficient in the use of power tools, bandsaws etc like to build from scratch, using patterns they've found in magazines or books, or even designing their own. Some of our members create kit sets for mini furniture for us to make at club day workshops..
  Others, and I'm firmly in this group, would rather buy kit set houses or furniture and make them up. Although we may 'kit bash' them to put our own particular stamp on the project.
  For me, if I can't make an item with a craft knife out of matboard or foamcore, I'm prepared to buy a kit. I value my fingers too much to use saws and sanders!
  So, what do you do?

Saturday, 7 September 2013

How to Make a Leather Shopping Bag in 1:12 Scale

A little leather shopping bag
I thought I'd tell you about our workshop at miniatures club today. We made shopping bags out of very fine leather. The pattern we used was from Dolls House World magazine, Issue 161.

Starting the workshop - note the essential cup of coffee!
Our tutor, Joan, had adapted the pattern slightly, so the indented edges were not so deep. She brought along fine leather in several colours for us to choose from, and silver and gold jump rings for the handles and clasps. I used a piece of beautifully soft, extra fine leather from an old glove. 
   I traced the pattern onto the back of the leather with a sharp pencil and cut it out with very sharp, small scissors. I cut the thin shoulder straps and piece for the fastening with a craft knife against a steel ruler to keep these thin pieces as straight as I could. 
  Then all of us in the group seemed to ignore the instructions and attack the making of the bag in different ways! 
  I stuck silver jump rings onto the four points first. 

Gluing the jump rings on
  And then I folded up the sides and glued them so the curved edges made the gussets on each side of the bag.

Making the bag shape
Chris did hers a different way, gluing on the handles while everything was flat, which was probably more sensible!

 Then I attached the handles, then unattached them and reattached them because I'd stuck them from front to back instead of both ends of one strap on one side and the other strap on the other side - am I making sense here?!

This is how they turned out

We were pleased with them. Now I need to make some Fimo groceries to put in my bag.