Sunday, June 7, 2009

Globe Makeover


I've been having a lot of fun lately taking inexpensive, mass-produced miniatures and remaking them into miniatures with a more unique look. Here's a globe I finished recently.
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Here's the gobe I started out with - I bought it for US$6-7 on eBay.

Now, to me, this piece looked much too modern for Myrtlewood, so I had to "antique" it a bit.

First, I carefully took everything apart and stripped the finish off the wood. Then I restained all the wood and applied a satin finish. This by itself greatly changed the look of the piece.

I replaced the gold bead feet with mini casters. I absolutely love these little casters! They made their first appearance on my cellarette, and will probably find their way onto several pieces in the future. If you want the piece to roll, be careful to apply all the casters facing the same way. While they actually roll (which I love!), mine at least do not swivel, so they must all face the same direction.

Then I got creative and decided to redo the globe itself. To maintain accuracy, I can't have a modern-day globe in an 1880s library! First I searched out antique globe gores on the internet, resized them on my computer, printed them, cut them out, and carefully glued them over the top of the globe. The result was too horrible to photograph. The paper would not lay flat against the globe, and the more I fiddled with it, the lumpier it got!

I finally chucked the whole thing and started over with a 1 1/4" wood ball, which fortuitously was just the right size. I drew on all the continents by hand and then painted them. This was a laborious process that I do not care to repeat, but I think the end result looks nice, and I'm glad I did it. To me, the globe looks a lot more Victorian, and isn't too recognizable as the modern piece I started with. What do you think?


15 comments:

Eliza said...

Lovely! I cannot believe how different it looks. The gold findings are a nice touch. Can't wait to see more!

Mary said...

The antiqued globe fits right into that library! I like how you repainted the continents to fit the period.

MiniKat said...

I love it! I shudder to think of the time it took to do the painting yourself. But the result is so worth it!

MiniMadWoman said...

It's absolutely wonderful! I love the mini-casters . . . they're so cute! I can't believe what you did with that globe! It's incredible and fits so much better into the library!

Well done!!

Sans said...

Belle, your effort is astounding! To be able to paint that small?? A world map too! You know what that means right? You will be painting your own ceramics in no time! I was just wondering if you paste paper over the old globe because I know how difficult it is to glue something over a ball. It is amazing work! Did you take longer than 7-8 hours just for the painting? Those casters wow!! Where did you get them from?? I always have a million questions after reading your post..lol

Pubdoll said...

Wow! This is astonishing work! I'm impressed by your painting (and geography)skills, and the end resultat looks fantastic!

Josje Veenenbos, said...

What do I think? I think it's fantastic! Those little casters are great, they fit so well with the globe. I too have used them on library furniture, it seems to fit so well in there.

Texas Belle said...

Thanks so much, everyone! As an incurable perfectionist, I have a tendency to focus on all the flaws in my work, so it's really encouraging to read your kind words.

Sans, it took me about 4-5 hours to roughly sketch everything in pencil, custom mix the colors, paint the continents and re-outline everything again in pencil. I could probably do it again in about 3 hours, and I might some day, as I'm always redoing things to try to make them perfect.

BTW, I bought the casters at www.miniatures.com. They're by Houseworks. I love them so much, I'm really trying to resist putting them on everything!

Ara said...

Fantastic!! I love the new look! And the muted tones that you painted helped quite a bit! The gold peices on the tilted axis were the perfect final touch I think! -ara

Tallulah~Belle said...

Wow.....I couldn't even imagine thinking about hand painting a globe like that...it is really amazing.

Eliza said...

Hi!
I just tagged you.
I've come back to this post a few times just because I can't get over the transformation. I love that globe!

Amanda S. said...

WOW! This looks wonderful. I guess I shouldn't be surprised you handpainted the entire globe. Someone wrote about your geography skills and that brought back memories of Global Pursuit, which you always managed to kick my butt in. (But I guess that's not really on topic.) Great job, as usual.

MiniMadWoman said...

Hi Belle! Haven't seen you around in a while . . . hope you're just busy with life!

I've left an award for you on my blog! Please visit when you have a chance and pick it up.

Take care,
Teresa

Sabiha Barkey said...

What do I think????

WOOOOOOOOW! Amazing!!! I love it....what can I say more?

George the Miniguy said...

Miss Belle, I wanted you to know I just have "tagged" you for the pick six. I find your blog an interesting read. I'm SO impressed by your work. It's beautiful.

I also wrote a little about your blog on my blog today and included a link to your's in the process. The pick six idea is for you to mention my blog in your blog, and then to pick six other blogs you like along with six things you like. I cheated and included the link to your site as well. Hope you don't mind.

...and the globe is (like all 13 others have said) a real work of art! Congrats.
George