I’ve been a little coy about a project I’ve been working on for nearly a year. My daughter became manager of a new fabric department at Montavilla Sewing Center. Some time ago, I had purchased the Real Good Toys general store. Well, the general store looked a lot like my daughter’s store, so I decided a mash up was in order. I kept it quiet so I could make it a birthday gift. Kristin had Saturday off, so we presented it then. She was all giddy.
In our city, the colorful fall leaves are losing their vibrance. The days are shorter and darker. I don’t despair, rather, I welcome the holidays. First, our family gathers for Thanksgiving with it’s delicious food and camaraderie.
When I moved north, I learned the importance of decorating with candles and lights to brighten the days of winter. I also learned the importance of filling the house with the warmth and spices of holiday baking. Of course this is also important in my miniature world.
When American Miniaturist called for Christmas tutorials for their December issue (their 200th!) I gladly contributed. I submitted a tutorial for making classic metal cookie cutters and gingerbread men.
I received the preview copy of that December issue, and it is impressive. There are so many beautiful articles and tutorials. If you already subscribe, you will find my tutorial on page 6. If you don’t subscribe, you might want to, or at least order this issue to see the holiday extravaganza. Here’s a peek at my tutorial.
End of an Era
When I joined the Eugene Miniatures Club, I rashly stated “I’m not going to let miniatures take over my life.” One member in particular looked over at me with a twinkle in her eye and a knowing smile.
It was Joyce, who joined the club in the late 1980s when the meetings were all business; Roberts Rules of Order, electing officers, etc. They soon made her president and she replaced the business with projects; a new one each month.
We lost Joyce last month. She was 91 years old and always had a calm grace and dedication to helping others. But she also had priorities. When she closed out her home and moved to senior living, in place of extra bathroom towels, she stored her tiny silks, plaids and prints, and every color of delicate ribbon for doll making. In the kitchen where other residents kept glassware, she had small glass domes for completed and future miniature projects.
She let miniatures take over her life and even became an IGMA Fellow. I’ll never measure up to the level Joyce achieved, but I know she approved as I let miniatures take over my life. I will always remember her knowing smile and when I want to take it up a notch, I will ask myself, “how would Joyce do it?”
My four “fluorescent light” fixtures are ready to suspend from the shop ceiling. There is one problem; there is no ceiling in this shop. The shop has four fixed walls and a removable plexiglass cover. I will make the light fixtures look like they hang from the ceiling.
I made a center “ceiling joist” to support “rafters” of 1/4″ polystyrene square tubes. The joist will have notches to support the rafters and keep the spacing. The wires for the lights will run through the hollow rafters.
Not so fast! We can’t go shopping until we have a shop to go to. A few years ago I bought a shop from Real Good Toys. I didn’t know what I would do with it, but I liked that it was basically a room box.
The first step is to do a dry fit. I like it, except the door is kind of clunky. I’ll replace it with the ones I built.
I just love the feedback I receive from my blog and Instagram visitors. I’ve learned from you and feel good when you say you have learned from me. And sometimes, you just make me smile.
One of those smile moments was when Deborah replied to my post on collaboration. I loved her comment, “Tutti is so stinking cute.” She also asked if the puppy was hard to make. With all the talent that miniaturists possess, I believe that there is nothing that you all can’t do. But I can go a step further with Deborah’s question. When I finished the puppy, I had collaborated with my Fruity Girl groupies to think of a name, but in the request, I also gave a brief How To. So, join the “Fruity Girls and Me” for a short tutorial.