Welcome to my blog

If you enjoy finding a lot of different outlets for your creativity, then we may just be kindred spirits.
This blog is an outlet for my interest in miniatures, crochet, plastic canvas, and many other various arts and crafts.

I also love walking, taking digital photos, and most recently, have rediscovered an old love...bike riding! I purchased an amazing new bike, a comfy Townie by Electra this summer, and have been having a grand time exploring the area as though for the first time. It's like being a kid again!

If you enjoy any of these things too, pour a cup of coffee and tea, sit down, and join me.

Take care!

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Mini Paper Punches

I ordered a lot of paper punches off of  Etsy back when I was working on my Bake Shop, and they arrived from India, finally, lol.
My package from India
 They were nicely packaged in a padded brown envelope. 
A lot of paper punches
 I was so excited to see this, lol.  I removed the bubble wrap and found yet another bag, lol.  I opened that, and sorted through the various punches.  I knew that I'd be getting some doubles but for the price (10 Canadian) but I was thrilled with what I got.
And yet another bag, lol
 Here they are in a pile, finally out of the bag(s).
 Here they are sorted by shape.  As you can see below,  I got 5 different punches, with some repeats.
Paper Punches
There were 10 punches in total, with 1 Daisy punch, 2 Clover punches, 3 Oak leaf punches, 3 regular leaf punches, and 1 Holly leaf punch. 

In the photo below, you can see one of each punch.  I chose one of each color for my set.

Set of miniature craft punches
 I ordered them because I wanted leaf punches for making miniature flowers.  I made mini roses, delphiniums, and petunias for my bake shop patio, and cutting the leaves was a nightmare.  I used a heart shaped punch for the leaves and it just didn't look right.  I can't wait to make more flowers now that I have these lovely leaf punches.
Testing the mini craft punches
 I grabbed a bit of construction paper from my recycling and tested them out; they work great!  Below you can see them displayed on a dollar store 1:12 scale coffee table.
Cut outs made with paper punches
 I went into my craft bin and pulled out all of my miniature craft punches;  with the addition of the 5 new ones, I have quite a lot now.   The two in the center of the pic below (pink scallop edged circle and green plain circle) were bought at the dollar store.  I looked for months and they never have any other shapes in stock, and seldom have these ones, so I was lucky finding these.

I also have these big paper punches, so I have quite enough now.  The big white ones were on sale for 40 or 50 percent off at Michael;s when I bought them, so all in all, I got great deals on my craft punches. 

I can't wait to make more flowers now that I have the leaf punches, but first I need to finish my pet shop.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Dollar Tree Haul

I got lucky today...mini-lucky, that is, lol.
My prescription eyeglasses were (finally) ready today so I went to pick them up.  I could see so much more clearly with my new glasses, but it was an adjustment as I suddenly felt so much taller that I got dizzy trying to walk.  So I decided to go to the Dollar Tree, which was just across the hall from the eyeglass store.  And look what they had in stock!
Dollar Tree Haul!
I bought 4 chairs, two coffee tables, 3 side tables, 2 dressers, 2 chests of drawers, and what I thought were 2 beds but they're either toddler beds or large seats...I put Sadie on one to show scale.

Dollar tree furniture
 The other furniture is the right scale so I guess those beds are for children or toddlers.  I'll have to check.
New crafting glasses and eyeglass necklaces
 I used to have two pairs of glasses, one that I kept in the truck, and one in the house. Both were for distance.  This time I needed to either get bifocals or two separate prescriptions; one for distance and one for reading/crafts.  I wanted to use my old frames so I needed some way to tell the glasses apart so I wouldn't accidentally drive while wearing my reading glasses.  Luckily for me, one of my frames has rhinestones so I designated those the craft glasses.  I found a variety of eyeglass necklaces at the dollar tree and bought a bunch.  I put the ones that match my frames (not in the photo) on my distance glasses, and the purple ones on my craft glasses.  I can swap the other colors out on my distance glasses depending on what I wear.  I thought they were fun.
My craft glasses

 I like the purple necklace on my craft glasses, lol.  The eyeglass necklaces are so convenient.  I love that I can take my glasses off and have them hanging around my neck; that way I don't misplace them all of the time.
 It rained quite heavily today, and just after I took the photos of my haul, my Dad told me to look outside at the rainbow.  I managed to get a photo before it faded.  Then I turned around and looked out the front door and saw this amazing sunset, so I snapped another photo.  After that i went for a walk, but it started to rain again so I cut it short.
Hope you all had a lovely day!

Monday, May 23, 2016

More Mini Cheese Boards, lol

These things are addictive!
Miniature cheese boards in 1:12 scale
  I had to make another cheese board so my smoked Swiss cheese would have somewhere to go. I tried a brown marble this time, and made it curved on one end, with a hole for hanging it up when empty. Considering the cheeses and crackers are stuck on with liquid sculpey, that will never happen.

Miniature cheese board in 1:12 scale

I also made a little bowl of olives, and some olives. I tried black, green, and Kalamata olives.  The bowl was super easy to make; I just rolled a small ball of clay and used a large dotting tool to make the indentation for the inside.
Mini cheese tray with olives
I made some apples...or tried to, lol.  I added them to the big cheese board, along with a slice of smoked Swiss cheese.  Other than that, this board is the same as it was yesterday; I just glued everything in place with liquid Sculpey today.
Mini cheese board
Mini cheese boards with real life hotdog bun
 I misplaced my penny so I put a bun in with the cheeseboards, to show scale. It's quite a small hotdog bun so I took another photo, with my finger, to show scale. 
Mini cheese board with finger to show scale
I had a blast and would love to make even more of these, with some salami next time, lol.
Why are minis soooo very addictive? 

Mini Cheese Board with Crackers and Cheese

I worked hard all weekend and made more crackers and some cheese to go with my cheese boards.
1:12 scale miniature cheese board with crackers and cheese
Doesn't it look yummy?  I had to stop and eat cheese after seeing the photos, lol.  In person, the cheddar just looks like little tiny specs to me, but once the picture is enlarged like this, it looks good enough to eat.  My crackers are a little too thick, but still make me want to eat them, lol.  That's so bad; talk about food obsessed, lol, that polymer clay food makes me hungry.

1:12 scale mini cheese boards with cheese and crackers (polymer clay)
I made 3 trays in total, soda crackers, ritz crackers, and 4 different kinds of cheese.  The swiss cheese was still in the oven when I took these photos.  I mad eso many crackers that I had to find printable cracker boxes online so I could store the extras.  I even made little bags out of waxed paper to fit inside the boxes.

Mini Cheese Boards

Mini Cheese board with cheddar
Mini cheese boards
I had a blast making these. 
Thanks for visiting!

Mini Friends and Mini Cheese Board

I have a mini friend in town who was a facebook friend only, until we decided to meet up in person.  Her name is Alicia and she's great; funny and kind and a pro at making minis.
Mini Visit with New Friend
Before we settled on a time, Alicia suggested that I watch a new tutorial series on Joanne's minis.
The series in in 4 parts and the link takes you to the first, a marble cheese board.  The second part is about how to make crackers, the third is cheeses, and the fourth is fruit.
 Alicia had already made the cheeseboard and cheeses, etc., and suggested I give it a go.  She even brought her own supplies, and gave me some pre-marbled clay to try.
Mini marble cheese boards
In the photo above, the small rectangular board was made with the clay Alicia gave me.  The big rectangular board is made with my own clay (I had to try it myself), and the rounded tray is made with a mixture of both clays.  I used my doll clay (Living doll) for my crackers (and tinted them with chalk pastels).

It was so nice to meet in person and we spent hours making minis, talking, and laughing.
Alicia had already done the cheese boards so she made pies for her Mom's mini bakery.
Alicia's pies
Unfortunately the pie crust on one broke when she tried to take it out.  She didn't want to bother with checking the convection oven's temperature even though I told her the temp was wonky and couldn't be trusted (I always test it with an oven thermometer so I can find the right temp to bring it up to where it needs to be).  She bakes in her oven, but I'm living at my parents right now and don't want to use their oven.  I know polymer clay is supposed to be safe but I don't want to take a chance.  Plus neither the bird nor I can stand fumes (it could kill her, and make me sick) so I use my convection oven in the basement, with the window opens.  It all worked out in the end though.
Mini Cheese Boards with Crackers
Here's Sadie, posing with the cheese boards.  She probably thinks she's getting a cheese shop next, lol, but I really just use her to make sure I'm making things t o scale, as best as I can, anyway.

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Mini Cat Climbing Tree with Scratch Post and Bowl

I made this cute little cat tree, from my Pet Shop kit from China.
Miniature cat tree with scratching post and toy, 1:24 scale
Isn't it cute?  All of the wood pieces, the legs, bead, and green felt were provided in the kit, along with instructions.

Instructions for mini cat tree
 I don't know if you can tell, but the wood pieces for this item are nice and sturdy; great quality.
Wood parts for mini cat tree
 I glued the pieces together with Alene's Tacky Glue, Quick Grab.
Assembling mini cat tree
The scratch posts are tiny lengths of toothpick or skewer-type wood, wrapped with unraveled rafia type paper.
Making the scratch posts
 The base was just a piece of felt but I found it wasn't sturdy enough that way so I added a piece of cereal box cardboard onto the back.
The base

 After the parts have been glued and allowed to dry, they were glued together.
Pieces of mini cat tree ready for assembly
 I also made a simple pet dish, using a length of corrugated cardboard glued around a cut out circle of cardboard.  The instructions said to use a circle of paper but I wanted it sturdier.
Simple cardboard pet dish
 The cat toy is just a bead glued to a bit of the rafia paper, which I rolled in my fingers to make thinner.
Finished cat tree
Here it is; the glue is still wet in this picture.  I think a mini cat would like this, don't you?

Friday, May 20, 2016

Mini Hassock for Pet Shop DIY kit

I've been going through mini making withdrawal so I decided I'd better continue on with my mini DIY Pet Shop kit from China.  I'm already on Bag number 3; the last bag (see contents below).

Bag 3 of Pet Shop DIY kit
 Here's a close up of the contents:  various bits of fabric, thread, wood pieces, lights, wiring, beads, ribbon, and round metal things (can't think what they're called).  Also cut wood pieces to make a cat scratching post stand, and two round wooden pieces to make what they call a sofa but what we would call a hassock or ottoman.
Bag 3 contents
 The instructions say to start with the "sofa" (aka hassock or foot stool) so that is what I did.  I pulled out the two round wood pieces, some corrugated cardboard from Bag 2, the piece of red felt, and the 3 black beads and put them aside.
 Next I measured the corrugated cardboard and cut it according to directions.

 Then I rolled the cardboard around  the edge of one round piece of wood, and glued it in place.  I left some room for the cardboard to overlap a bit, glued it, and put a clip on it until it dried.
 The next step said to glue the second round wood piece on top, so I did that.  It's starting to take shape and looks very cute.
 Then I cut out a paper circle to match the wood circle, traced it onto the red felt, and cut that out.  I also cut a long strip of red felt to glue along the side of the hassock.
 After the felt was glued in place firmly, I tipped the hassock over and added black beads for the feet.
Adding bead feet to the hassock
 And here it is; a simple but cute hassock.
Completed mini hassock