Archive for the ‘Miniatures’ category

Update on French Knot Rug

February 16, 2012

My big idea today was to get going and finish the three small areas of this piece so I could turn the edges under and complete this rug for my dollhouse. As I’ve mentioned the original artwork that this tiny rug is based on is by Chidi Okoye  The original has sold, but one day I’d like to buy a print of it.

I cannot find my 6-inch embroidery hoop.

Foiled again!!

This is my dining room, which gives you a clue of why I keep getting frustrated by missing supplies. Oh to have a studio with tables and cupboards and light.

Buried on this table are several projects:

– An acrylic painting to be used as a backdrop for the Diary of a Broken Soul Tarot (standing up proudly)
– The Bloomsday Quilt
– 2 redwork embroidery blocks for a red sampler quilt
– A necklace based on the Diary of a Broken Soul Tarot review (waiting for a crucial bead in the mail)
– 2 tree necklaces that I made beads for in the summer, waiting for pendants to be wired together and then strung
– A tin full of beading pliers
– 2 rescued piles of cardstock in blue and cream
– A sewing machine
– A pieced and quilted cover I made for my sewing machine last summer, waiting to be machine quilted
– 2 boxes of sewing thread
– 1 box of sewing patterns
– 1 drawer unit of regular embroidery floss
– 3 hand woven tea towels waiting to be hemmed
– A project of knitted flowers for a felted bag I started 2 years ago
– 2 boxes of small bits of yarn
– Sets of double-pointed knitting needles
– A box of needles, a tray of needles, 2 boxes of pins, erasers, pencil sharpeners
– A glass of pencils and coloured pencils for marking
– A basket of small square samples of Ultrasuede, and cardboard circular templates in many sizes
– 4 pairs of scissors
– Fabric, always fabric
– Books, always, always books

Notice in the background an upholstered chair with sheets over it and a cat sleeping on a blanket. A blanket I put down minutes ago to arise and take this picture. I never had a chance to sit down again. Giving up to feline tenacity, I decided to do a blog post.

If only I could find that hoop……ah it was under the purple sampler quilt which I didn’t realize was on the table.


Miniature Baked Goods in 1:12 Scale

November 21, 2010

I made these in the late 1990s to go with one of my dollhouses, and because of the gingerbread house and Christmas, I thought I’d post a picture of them.

Although I bought the baking tray, the mini chocolate chip cookies were made by me with FIMO. I used leftover cookies to decorate the gingerbread house too. FIMO and gesso make great companions for miniature baking.

I used miniature wood shingles for the base of the house. It’s quite big but the little girl Margaret in my house like sweets. You know how kids are.

Yesterday we put my loom together and this morning I was up at 4:30 a.m. to get things set up for warping. I’ll be doing that today and I only have two 50 g balls of wool so I’m just making a small piece of fabric for a purse and a cosmetic bag for my first project.

About six hours later………..

A few mistakes in both warping and weaving but I’m learning. I’m rather pleased with the plaid effect.

Fabric Postcards and Dollhouse Wallpaper

December 13, 2009

I went to Fabricland today and they have a product that is the equivalent of Timtex called Flexi Firm, so I bought a metre of that on sale for 40% off. I just finished cutting all the 4 x 6-inch bases for my fabric postcards and I was very pleased that I got enough for 50 postcards cut. I have taken a picture of them here with the rubber stamp I bought to create the “Postcard” back.

I also found the last two wallpapers for my second dollhouse on sale for $5 and $7 for a single roll. Here is a picture of them in my swatch book. The paper for the kitchen exactly matches the mock-up of the faux finish I put on part of the floor. It looks vaguely Art Nouveau as well which is good for the abstract art/early 20th century vibe for the decor of this house.

The blue one for the Parlour will go nicely with some Dutch tiles I am planning to decorate the fireplace with. There is also wainscotting in this room which I will probably leave in a light wood finish.

Now that I’ve finished my Christmas gifts I can get going on these two projects.

Cute as a Buttercup

December 11, 2009

This is the third Buttercup Bag I have made for Christmas. This one has a custom Coptic stitch notebook to go with it. I made three of these notebooks with various cards and plan to make nine more to sell after Christmas. Likewise, I will probably sell some Buttercup Bags after I buy a license.

This bag was made for someone who travels a lot and likes to golf and entertain, so it has summery, fun sort of fabrics. I can see her using it on the golf course or while shopping or going to the beach. I like this particular size and find it big enough, quite roomy actually because the pleats allow for some expansion.

I keep some lip balm and breath spray in the pocket of mine, and there’s still room for other stuff in that pocket without straining it.

And this is an update on the abstract French knot rug I am making for my second dollhouse Skye Cottage. I have taken a snap of it in the room it’s going in with the daybed and wooden chair that I am going to paint eventually with decorative motifs. The daybed will be reupholstered and new pillows sewn and painted for the abstract art theme.

I am hoping to get the final wallpaper I need for this house and spend the Christmas holidays wallpapering it finally after ten years.

The floor in this room was gessoed, sponged and stencilled ten years ago, so it’s ready to be finished hopefully in the next few weeks.

Another update showing some of the notebooks I have been making. I can’t show them full frontal until the people who are getting them recieve their gifts. I love the stitching on these, I hand-dye my linen thread and it gives such lovely gradations when sewn.

Kandinsky Would Be Pleased

November 15, 2009

I used the red channel in Photoshop to print a cartoon of this design for tracing. I darkened some of the lines with a black Micron pen and also added a few extra lines here and there to delineate major colour gradations.

Then I traced it with an HB pencil and my lightbox. That lightbox is the best $50 I’ve ever spent. In an ideal world I would have bought one with a huge surface area but even this little box is a huge help to me.


This is now ready to stitch. I think I’ll probably start with the smaller elements, particularly the “spears” of black/brown and the spears of colour near the middle left.


Miniature Projects

November 13, 2009

Ah, the adventure of printing miniature quilts. This pink and green one was a graphic I made nine years ago that has sentimental value. The blue and white one is a sample of a miniature I’m making for someone else.


Here is the progress on the French knot rug I am doing in 1:12 scale for Skye Cottage, one of my dollhouses.


I liked this technique so much that I started looking for inspiration in my art books and then online for doing up another one. There isn’t much around concerning abstract art, and it takes a really good artist to pull it off. I was fortunate enough to find one, so I wrote to her explaining what I wanted to interpret her art for and she has given me permission to use her art as the basis for this project.

Her name is Angela Porter and she is from Wales. I found her page at DeviantART under the name “Artwyrd” and my jaw just dropped with delight, she does some wonderful work. She also has a web site and does textile art and jewellery as well as artwork in pencil, pen and ink, pastels, oils, and watercolour.

This is Angela’s original art Kandinsky Inspired 3 and my circular version, that I adapted after spending some time fiddling in Photoshop. I have also shown a small mock-up of the rug in paper in the hallway of the dollhouse. I just LOVE this piece of art. I will go away for a few days and come back to and it always fascinates me. Many thanks Angela for understanding what I wanted to do and how inspiring I find your work. Not all artists are like that in my experience.



There will be stairs behind this and I’m considering painting them with some kind of Kandinsky-inspired pattern myself. I’m just waiting for my art book on Kandinsky to arrive and then I’ll consider the possibilities. I will be painting furniture for this and another house and I’d always planned to paint these stairs with artwork, but again, Angela’s work has inspired me to stretch my creativity a bit further.

The dollhouse is my second one and was one I won in a raffle from miniaturists Judy and Jim Henry here in Ontario almost 11 years ago. Jim built and painted the exterior himself, and then I was to do the decorating. I’m glad I didn’t get it finished ten years ago as my new idea is to turn it into a celebration of abstract art, because Frances, the doll who lives there, is an artist. Her little girl is only six but she’s really interested in architecture, so I’m doing houses on a petit point rug and printed quilt, and perhaps I’ll frame some architectural prints for her walls. In short, this house will reflect my own interests and passions!

Since I’m in my Fauvist period (grin), I imagine this little dollhouse will turn into something rather magical at some point, which would suit me as a tribute to Judy and Jim who were responsible for the house, and were very inspiring to me as creative people themselves.

I’m slightly distracted by ideas and projects lately, but that’s really the way I like it since I’m a creative person. Creativity brings such vibrancy and interest to life.

Update: I just got back from Michael’s and bought 27 new skeins of floss to add to what I have here for the colour blending in this piece. I made tons of notes and colour code references on my reference sheet and then bought what I needed. I feel rich with colour now!


Printed Dollhouse Quilt

October 27, 2009

In an effort to kick-start myself and get some old miniature projects done I joined a couple of lists, so bit by bit I hope to finish some of this stuff. I haven’t really worked much on my dollhouses since the shop I went to closed ten years ago.

I spent months catching up on old quilting projects during the spring and summer and that worked fine, so I hope I can do the same with my four dollhouses.

I found an online tutorial for printing your own tiny prints for dollhouse dresses so I thought I’d take a pattern from my Electric Quilt 4 software (that I am currently working on in real life) and attempt to print a quilt for my main dollhouse. I changed the shading somewhat and got rid of the border as I wanted this to look like an old scrap quilt. It measures 5 x 6.875 in 1:12 scale, which translates to 60 x 82.5 inches full size, so it’s a lap quilt or topper size.

The fabric was pre-treated with Bubble Jet Set 2000, dried, ironed to freezer paper, and I also tape it down to a piece of cardstock around the perimeter, otherwise it won’t go through my HP printer. Those stupid rollers of theirs catch everything but when I tape the fabric to cardstock it will at least run through.

I’m going to back it with a pale small-scale print and it should be quite drapable. The pink and green tones should go nicely with a crocheted throw I had someone make me years ago that is cream with tiny pink and green flowers on the border.

I’ll post a picture of them together when I’m done sewing this together.