Sunday, December 21, 2008

Christmas Baking

I've spent the last few days baking. No, not Christmas cookies, although I'm wishing I had a few right about now. Rather, I've been mixing, shaping and baking polymer clay into marble mantles, hearths and fireplace surrounds.

This set is for the dining room; I made a nearly identical set for the parlor.

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It's a bit hard to tell from the photo, but this set is pink marble (for the conservatory/music room).

I also made a set of black with veins of gold for the library.

I still need to add a coat of clear lacquer; I photographed them before the lacquer to keep the flash from bouncing off them.

I'm really pleased with how these turned out. One of the things I really love about miniatures as a hobby is that it encourages creative problem solving. I spent a lot of time trying to figure out how to make marble in miniature. I read about some faux painting techniques, but I've never been very good with paint. Also, the results don't seem to have much depth. You can buy marble tiles from miniature shops, but they're expensive and only come in certain dimensions. But with polymer clay, I can create any dimension I want and achieve, through the incorporation of translucent clay, some of the depth that is so characteristic of marble. I also plan to use this technique to create marble decorations, vases, statuettes and furniture tops.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Christmas Present

Okay, so I guess you know you've really gone off the miniatures deep end when you start asking for power tools for Christmas! Check out what my dear husband gave me for Christmas:

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I got it early because he was so excited when he bought it that he couldn't wait until Christmas to give it to me. He does that sometimes. Also, he might have had a hard time hiding it until then; it's not small.

I bought blades for it and have used it a few times to make some uncomplicated cuts. I think I'm going to need a lot of practice with it before I'll be able to make anything intricate.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Kitchen Beginnings

There's not a whole lot to see here right now, but I wanted to assure you that construction on Myrtlewood is still underway! Here you can see the floors I've finished for the kitchen (right) and butler's pantry (left).

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Note the spaces in the kitchen for the stove (left back), what will be a small pantry (right back) and a servant's staircase (right front). Part of the servant's staircase will pull out to give access to the wiring. Maybe. Now that I've already wired that part, I'm thinking about switching up where I put the circuit board. If I change that, I'll have to rerun all the wiring. Sigh.

I've also finished the floor for the dining room.

I'm about 2/3 finished with the floors for the first floor now. I really need to finish them before I start on the walls, but creating them is so tedious, I keep getting distracted by other things! I really will finish them one of these days!

Next time: pictures of my early (miniature building-related) Christmas present from my dear husband. I've been a very good girl this year!