Wednesday, 30 October 2013

How to Make a 'Break Front' Box for Christmas

The start of the project
These bits of wood don't look very exciting, do they? Over the next few weeks I'll be transforming them into a 'break front' box with a Christmas theme. The finished box with lid will look like a wrapped Christmas present tied with ribbon. But when you lift off the lid, the front will 'break' away and fold down so you can see the scene inside. (That's the theory!)
  We started this project at Minis club this month. The pieces to make the 8 inch square boxes  had been cut out for us and we glued them together with wood glue to make the box with three sides, the arched insert and the lid. One side (the break away side) was left to be dealt with at our next meeting.
  Once the glue had dried and the joints were stable, we painted the box and lid with undercoat.
The box and lid are made, glued and painted
  I decided not to use an archway like this. I want to make my box look like a German Christmas market stall, so cut the insert piece up to make the counter and display area.
   From my 'stash' I took a piece of wallpaper that looks like wood panelling and will use that to paper the interior. I also found a couple of little boxes I covered in the wood effect paper to make display stands.

Using paper that looks like wooden boards
  My Christmas market stall will sell Santa Claus ornaments. I've been collecting them on my travels for several years so it will be great to have a place to display them.
Some of the Santa ornaments for the Christmas market stall
I'm looking forward to doing more work on the box at our next Minis club meeting. I'll keep you posted on how it's progressing.

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

A Dream Cottage in Miniature

Pearl Cottage by Deb's Dream Cottages
Have a close look at this beautiful miniature scene. It's like something out of a fairy tale, isn't it? An historic weatherboard house surrounded by a cottage garden in full bloom. There's even a dovecot.
  I'm sure you'll be as surprised as I was to learn that everything you see is made of fabric, ribbons and threads!
  I'm always on the lookout for unusual miniatures that I can share with you. So when I saw an advertisement in an Australian home decorating magazine for Deb's dream cottages, I was intrigued. I contacted Debbie and asked her if I could write about them here.
  On her website, Deb has a range of cottages to make, all set in pretty landscaped grounds. She sells the patterns which give sketches and measurements with detailed instructions for the techniques and skills you'll use in making the houses and gardens.
   They are such lovely miniatures, certainly that bit different! 

Sunday, 20 October 2013

An Unusual Miniature from USA

An American First Lady miniature 
I was at a charity shop yesterday having a snoop around and came across this cardboard box that looked like a house. It intrigued me, even more so when I opened it.

Inside was this doll depicting Martha Washington, the wife of America's first president. The house portrayed on the box has characteristics of their home, Mount Vernon in Virginia.
  Hallmark Cards in USA produced this little commemorative doll for the Bicentennial celebrations held in 1976, 200 years after the adoption of the Declaration of Independence. Her body, 6 1/2 inches tall, is made of fabric with printed features and her dress is made of cotton and lace.
 I wonder where 'Martha' has been for the last 37 years! She is in perfect condition. I doubt if she has been played with by children. In fact, I doubt if she has been out of her box!

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Hallowe'en in Miniature

Gayle Davey's Haunted House for Hallowe'en
You can really let your imagination run riot at Hallowe'en! Spooky witches, giant spiders, rattling skeletons, crazy cobwebs, black bats and any other creepy thing you can think of!
  Gayle decided to make a haunted house and during October scoured craft shops and dollar stores to find suitably themed items that were small enough to use in this mini project.
  She had a lot of fun and, as you can see, created a house that is certainly spooky!