About this blog:

Welcome to my blog about my dollhouse and miniatures hobby. Here, you will find information on items I have made, bought, and sold, as well as some resources on where to find some really cool stuff! Feel free to browse around and follow my blog!

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Canterbury Day 3

Here are the pics promised from my previous post. This is what the house looked like before I worked on it today:

Today I added the rest of the roof and put together the tower. I am going to glue it on later tonight and  hopefully add those pictures either later tonight or tomorrow. :) It's coming along real nice.

This kit comes with pieces to make furniture, too. I am not going to use that furniture for this build, but I've punched out all of the pieces and put them in individual little ziploc bags in case I could use them for a later project.

Compared to the Glencroft, this kit is coming together pretty quickly. It is my second Greenleaf build, but it is smaller, with fewer pieces. I have had some issues with some pieces not fitting together perfectly, but I think my plans for finishing will fix those. :)

Stay tuned. :)

(PS: We have 45 followers on Linda's Minis on facebook. We just need 5 more "likes" before I announce the giveaway!)

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Day 2 - Canterbury Build

Today was busy, but I did get some building done. Sorry I have no pics at the moment. I am curled up in bed ready to go asleep soon and didn't get a chance to photograph my progress. I may take some pics before I continue with it tomorrow.

I went to the gym today with my fiance. I felt great after the workout and am taking care to pace myself as it's been longer than I want to admit since I have worked out in a gym regularly. :/

When I got back home, I installed the front porch and added Paperclay to imitate stonework and added most of the roof. There are some slightly wonky pieces and some small gaps but I am going to hide them with molding, flooring and exterior finishing. I have a lot of tricks up my sleeve. ;) It's actually quite pleasing as to how quickly (and easily) this build is going, even as I wallpaper and paint the interior as I go.

Tomorrow, I might hit up the craft store since I need more Paperclay and foam brushes. :)

Hope all of your projects are going well!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

The Canterbury

I got inspired to finally start on my historical society today. I have most of the walls up and the first floor wallpapered.

Apparently, I am not working fast enough for the curator, Stanley Beauregarde. ;) He's impatiently checking his watch.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Reorganizing and Mention Monday

It's a quiet day here. Slept in, made a delicious dinner (marinated chicken in chilli-mint zulu sauce, fried plaintains, and long grain wild rice), installed the AC (it's very humid), and reorganized the craft area.

This shelf area really needed an overhaul. I am very happy with this clearly labeled boxes; makes it a lot easier to find things.

My new toy. :-D I love the heck out of it.

The whole craft area. It's a corner of my living room (my fiance and I live in a small apartment at the moment), but there is plenty of room to make items. Having a small area also forces me to use what I have rather than hoard a bunch of stuff.

Also today, I added one more item to my etsy shop, this cute wall cupboard for a dollhouse kitchen, bathroom, or bedroom. :) Check it out.

Last, it is Monday, which means it's Mention Monday. Here I feature a blogger/website which I enjoy reading that you may also find interesting. Today, I'd like to point you to Dollarstore Crafts. This site includes LOTS of tutorials and if you feel creative and don't want to spend a lot of money, this is a GREAT (free!) resource. I am also a little biased since she mentions a lot of dollhouse crafts!!! (Examples include: micro planters made from wine corks, a calendar, and more!). I hope you find some projects to make!

Saturday, May 26, 2012

New Etsy item and other things...

I *was* going to post yesterday about these cute cupcakes I made. They are now on etsy!

I did a couple other things today, too:

1) I added a couple things to my kitchen to liven it up a bit. It's crowded, but it looks busy and well-used. (Kinda like my real-life kitchen, now that I think about it!).
This shelf unit was the one I picked up for a bargain at Chautauqua Miniatures! It fits *perfectly* in the kitchen above the stove. I've since put brass measuring cups on top of it.

These pillows are from dale's dreams. They make cute summer chair cushions for a kitchen!

This is a little apron hung over a stepladder (see pic below). The apron was found in the scrapbooking section of the craft store and is the perfect scale! It even came with little wooden utensils which I put in the drawers of the little hutch in the kitchen.   
You can kinda see the step stool here. Also note the pans hanging on the wall by the working clock. :)             

2) I finally filled the window box on the front of the house with some plants. It was bugging me that it was empty. As you can see by the pic below, I also added a hanging planter by the door. I've had this in my stash for a very long time, so it's nice to get a chance to display it.

3) Last, I played with my new toy today. It's not mini-related, but it is pretty cool. I finally got an iPad. I've been wanting one for a while, but when I got a chance to play with one recently, I thought about how useful it could be for work and play. If you have a cool app you've discovered, please let me know. I installed Flipboard today and it's great to use to read all of your blogs!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Thrifty Thursday 1

Well, here goes my first Thrifty Thursday post! I hope this becomes a fun resource for upcycling ideas, including some fun ideas I’ve figured out, cool things I’ve read, what friends from the blogosphere have done, and inquiries to you about how everyday household objects might be used for minis.

Thrifty on the web: 
So today, I’d like to mention an amazing miniaturist, Tanya, who lives in Georgia. She posts often on the Greenleaf Forum, Small Stuff and the Miniature Collector’s Club Yahoo! Group. The reason she is being mentioned today is that she has a special knack for turning trash to treasure. Her online photo album, chock full of ideas, can be found here: http://www.picturetrail.com/tanyamc123. She finds some great pieces from the Dollar Tree, or around the house, that make great minis, especially those that may be useful in modern scenes! See for yourself!

This week's thrifty idea: 
Do you have a lot of ribbon, still on the cardboard spools? Ever want to know how to easily store them without shelling out money for a ribbon dispenser?  If you have a large wooden disk (or sturdy base larger than the largest hole in your ribbon spools), some glue (Tacky, wood, whatever you have) and an extra dowel lying around (who doesn't?), you can whip together a quick and easy ribbon holder.

This is a super-easy idea for cleaning up your storage space and a lot easier than fishing around in a drawer for just the right ribbon. I think the neatly stacked ribbon is also pleasant to look at as I have it easily accessible in my craft area. :)

What Would You Do With This?
Alright, guys and gals. We've recently cleaned out our pantry and we found that we had a lot of those Crystal Light drinks. I kept the containers because I thought they might work out well in this hobby. Here's what one looks like: 
Now I am too lazy to get up and measure it at the moment, but I think it's about 6.5 inches tall. Can you think of a mini-related use for this? So far, I've thought: storing or packing delicate minis to send in the mail, storing brushes, strip wood, or other tools...what else? Share your ideas in the comments below!

Blog features

I've been thinking about daily themes for this blog. Since I already have Wordless Wednesday, I wanted to see what I could do for the rest of the week, so this is what I came up with:
Mention Monday (cross-promos; cool stuff from blogland)
Tutorial Tuesday (what I've figure out at the craft desk)
Thrifty Thursday (upcycling I've done, some great examples of other crafter's recycling projects)
Feature Friday (kinda like "Flipped Friday" on smallstuff, but where I get to feature a product in my etsy shop - give some background, etc.)

The weekends I want to leave open for crafting and traveling, and so blogging may be a little miscellaneous, if at all. :)

What do you think? I'll try to come up with something thrifty for today for a later post. I have a few ideas in mind. :)

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

So...what's going on this summer? (Only somewhat mini-related)

Summer 2012 is going to be an interesting (and busy) one...

For my day job, I need to write, write, write and maybe run some experiments. I am going to head into my office when we get back to figure all of that stuff out. I also have to move out of my current office by August.

As for this hobby, I hope to get a lot of work done. I have the historical society to build (small house, though, so it should be quick - maybe). I also want to make significant progress with my etsy shops (both Linda's Minis and Peacecrafted Products, the latter which still needs product). Hopefully there will be multiple giveaways, maybe a swap (who's interested?), and some other fun promotions. :)

In the kitchen, I finally have a pressure canner (or I will when I pick up the one I ordered) and I want to preserve lots of goodies from the farmer's market. I also want to cook and bake healthier food and eat less takeout. I do love Pinterest, since I have found some wonderful recipes there.

I am also joining a gym. No excuses.

And of course there's travel. My research site in NH will probably be visited the most, but I hope to get out to some new undiscovered places too. :)

Oh yeah, and I should probably start planning my wedding... ;) We haven't picked a date yet, but I want to make our special day super-special. :)

Now that I've written this, I realize now how much I want to do this summer! At least I know it won't be boring! I am excited for it!

What are your plans for this summer (or winter, if you're down under)?


How to finish the historical society...

No, I haven't even begun building the historical society just yet, but I have been thinking about how to finish the exterior. Since I picked up the little Canterbury kit, I have been drawn to stone. I think it this would suit this particular house the best. And since I am basing it in a small Pennsylvania town, I took some pictures of some lovely houses here in southeastern PA for some ideas. I will share them with you, in case you need some inspiration! :)

PS: We have 38 likes on Linda's Minis facebook page! 12 more, and I will have a Facebook giveaway!!! Like the page to be included!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Road Trip Day 3: Western PA

I didn’t get time to post about yesterday’s trip. So here we go. Yesterday, we visited Volant Miniature Shop in Volant, PA and Lynlott Miniatures in Pittsburgh (Aspinwall), PA.

I really enjoyed Volant Miniatures. Anita is the proprietor and she specializes in making custom domes of special occasions for customers. Her work is amazing! And it’s such a great gift idea, even for those who are not necessarily miniature collectors or dollhouse enthusiasts. The shop is small, but definitely a must-see. She has miniatures grouped by subject and there are a lot of modern items! I especially loved the music-related items and the sports memorabilia! Lots of realism and detail in many of the items, including a beautiful English saddle and a tiny working spring clothespin. Anita is super friendly and a joy to talk with. She also introduced us to a wonderful site called Green Renaissance, which while not miniatures-related is a great source of inspiration.

Here’s what I got:

We then drove down to Aspinwall, a neighborhood of Pittsburgh. Lynlott Miniatures is on a block of some lovely shops.

This shop is packed with miniatures and there was something to see on every shelf and in every nook. There was more great modern stuff and lots of artisan-made items. There were a lot of great dollhouses here too, some definitely custom built. I also recommend this shop for those toting along little ones as the front of the store has lots of kid friendly games, dollhouses and plush toys. There really is something for everyone here!

Here’s my haul from this shop:

Lynlott was the last shop we had visited on this trip, unless we run into another one on the way home. ;) We ended up staying in the Greensburg area and are now visiting my parents for the next several days in Central PA. :) I shared gifts with them and showed them my haul, which they enjoyed. I now have several projects to work on, some of which will go in the etsy shop, and others which will go into the historical society!

If you’ve been reading along, I thank you for joining me and hopefully this will inspire others to not only go on a fun road trip, but also support local brick and mortar shops. I found that the folks who own these shops are hard-working, enthusiastic and very knowledgeable people!

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Road Trip Day 2: Chautauqua, NY

Hi everyone! Happy Mother's Day!

So, we left the Buffalo area this morning and drove down to Chautauqua to visit our next stop, Chautauqua Miniatures. What a GREAT place! It was recommended highly by other members of the Greenleaf forum so I knew I was in for a treat. The owners have actually two shops in one: the miniatures store and the Two Chixx Gift Shoppe! The latter has decor, antiques, scarves, lotion, etc. Lots of cute and fun things!

If you go to the website above, please know that what is on the website is only a fraction of what is in the shop. Both shops are in one 5000 sq. ft. two-story barn. There is so much to look at here, so if you stop in sometime, do give yourself plenty of time to look around and take it all in!

I had to really focus on what I was looking for here...stuff for the historical society, beds to dress, etc., and I definitely came away with some great finds! One awesome part of the shop were the clearance items. I found some great pieces there! They also had a section of back issues of Nutshell News, American Miniaturist and other dollhouse mags. I have some reading material for the trip now! ;)

Anyway, here's what you've likely been waiting for - the pics!
On the left is a resin figure who would make a wonderful curator of my local historical shop. Also for the shop is the barrister book case to hold reference materials and some local artifacts. Below that is a wine bottle for the Glencroft kitchen, and on top of the book case is a cute basket perfect for a number of applications.

I added another HoM kit to my collection! Also a book on wine and a wicker frame which matches some other pieces I have.

This is a cross-stick kit for "Chautauqua Lake." It was a unique piece local to the area (yay! souvenir!) and was a bargain at 3 dollars.

These are some of the clearance pieces. The cabinet was very detailed and would go well in several possible places including the Glencroft kitchen. It was $4.00. The bed was only $8.00. I want to dress it up and add a mattress.

Lots of reading material and useful projects!

They threw in this pen. :) Jay bought a few items too (Mother's Day gifts!) and gave me his pen. I think one might go in a giveaway box. :)

I did very well at Chautauqua Miniatures and am close to getting all the pieces for my historical society! I can't wait to start building now!          
So we are in our hotel down in PA and will be visiting Volant Miniatures and Lynlott Miniatures tomorrow. :-D Stay tuned for more!

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Road Trip Day 1: Western NY

Hi all! It's been an awesome day, and a long one too! We drove from Albany to Buffalo and stopped not terribly far from Rochester on the way. I took lots and lots of pictures which I am going to upload to Flickr and/or facebook at some point, but I will share some here, too. At least the mini-related ones!

Today's journey took us to two shops: Lilliput Miniatures in Fairport, NY and Niagara Hobby and Craft Mart in Cheektowaga, NY.

Lilliput Miniatures (web)

This shop is run by a really friendly guy and his family. Tom is the name of the owner (I think) and he chatted with us while we shopped around. He does a lot of custom work on dollhouses that folks bring in, which are shown throughout the shop. He carries mostly Real Good Toys houses, and there were a few others I didn't recognize, all seemed to be made with the cabinet grade 3/8" plywood. One in particular was a HUGE house that someone started to build with Houseworks Plans and that he plans to sell for about 80 bucks. If I had the space and the time, I think that would have come home with me...

As for accessories, he really does have a little bit of everything, including some items I hadn't seen before. I picked up a number of items, some for the historical society, and others for grab bags and some other projects. ;)

Here's what I bought:

Niagara Hobby and Craft (web)
We had plenty of time, we discovered, left in the day, even after checking in to our hotel, to visit the Niagara Hobby and Craft Mart in Cheektowaga. So we did! :-)

Now, if you're looking for a HUGE selection of dollhouses and accessories, you might be a little disappointed here. However, this place has an amazing railroad selection - all different scales, with several in-store train displays - as well as a respectable dollhouse department (for a shop that carries a wide variety of crafts!). Their prices were pretty reasonable, too.

Here's what I got:

That trunk is part of the Lincoln Line of furniture, which I would like to collect as someday I'd like to build the Lincoln Springfield Home from RGT. :) For now, I think it will go in the historical society. That little white thing is a stepladder (so cute!) and of course another kit from the Daisy House. I love their kits - they are relatively easy to assemble and look great when finished.

Also, at Niagara Hobby I found flyers for some upcoming events that may be of interest:
42nd Annual Toy Show - Oct 28, 2012 at the Hearthstone Manor, 333 Dick Rd, Depew, NY (Sponsored by Motoring in Miniature Association, Ltd)
The 31st Annual Greater Buffalo Train and Toy Show - Nov 17 and 18, 2012 at the Event Center on the Fairgounds in Hamburg, NY (Sponsored by the Western NY Railway Historical Society)


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