Monday, October 29, 2012

October meeting of MESS - lavender tutorial!

Paula's beautiful potted lavender!
We had our first MESS meeting in a few months this afternoon at Mary-Anne's place. Mary-Anne and I shared our Camp Mini Ha Ha projects with Paula and then we worked on making 1/12 scale lavender.

I've been working on this technique for a while, but only recently had all the elements I needed.  If you want to make your own, here's how to do it:

For the foliage, you need something bushy with lots of detail. I saw someone else's suggestion that one use lycopodium, which is also known as ground pine, princess pine and club moss. I couldn't find a Canadian distributor (although it seems easily available in the States, they won't ship it to Canada) so I bought a Christmas tree kit from Silly Sisters in the Netherlands which comes with a bag of the stuff!

I'd love to find an alternative, but this works quite well.

Lavender foliage is a greyed green, so you'll probably have to paint it.  This was very easily done -- much more easily than I thought! I just brushed on a thin, watery mixture and it dried quite quickly.

While your foliage is drying, make the lavender flower clusters.  These are easy!  You'll need thin green wire (paddle wire works, or thin green wrapped florist's wire) in lengths from 1" to 2" or so. You  need lavender coloured material for the blossoms:  you have a number of options here, from Flower Soft (which is acid free) to flocking to no hole beads. We used a mixture of Soft Magic by Carole's Crafts (which is compressed shredded foam material I found in England -- I believe it's pretty much a rip off of Flower Soft) and a darker purple flocking I had found in a dollar store. You can also make your own flocking by shredding fabric until it's the texture you like.

Whatever you use, make sure it's shredded as finely as you need for the scale and in a disposable dish.

Take your length of wire, dip one end in white craft glue and then dip it into the shredded flower material.  I then rolled each flower head so that it was shaped fairly tightly into a small flower cluster, long than it was wide.  If you look at an actual lavender bloom, some have a long flowered area and some are short.

Then combine the two elements. The foliage should go in first, making quite a full base for your blossoms.  The blossoms then emerge, often quite thickly, from the foliage.  (See Paula's planter of lavender at the top -- she got a wonderful fullness of greenery and then added plenty of flowers -- it looks lush and beautiful!)

And here's one last photo -- of Mary Anne's wonderful pugs!  They are so sweet and such a highlight of our meetings :)

Monday, September 17, 2012

Summer over, camp coming up!

Hello, all!

Paula and Mary Ann had a good mini-ing summer with several meetings.  I was busy doing opera :(  Mary Anne and I met two weeks ago and worked on mini books.  We're both looking forward to going to Camp Mini Ha Ha in the Annapolis Valley for the first time next week -- Mary Anne had ALL of her tidbits and gifties done when we last met!  Well done!

We'll all work on the same sort of piece, an inside/outside corner:

We'll learn lots of skills (including making and upholstering the chair) and can style our pieces any way we like!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Shearwater Show report

Paula and I had a great time at the Shearwater Hobby Show last weekend, manning the MESS table and selling our wares! (Above you can see some of Paula's beautiful working parasols and feather fans).

We had great fun meeting so many people in the Maritime miniature scene, including folks from Camp Mini Ha Ha and the lively group in Dartmouth!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

MESS at the Shearwater Nova Scotia Hobby Show

The Miniature Enthusiasts of the South Shore will have a table at the Shearwater Spring Hobby Show this coming weekend.  We all hope to be there, at one time over the weekend or another, and Nina and Mary-Anne will be selling their work.

Pine table by David Mosey, transferware plates decorated by Nina

"The show will be a multi-discipline event featuring model Aircraft, Armor, Ship, Figure, Science Fiction, Automotive subjects, and Model Railway layouts;  Dolls and Dollhouse Miniatures;  Radio Control Ship and Aircraft Models;  a Lego display; Historical Gaming;  a one day Model Contest;  a Trade Fair, and much, much more.  The show will be set up in the Museum’s main hangar spaces, and so will include the opportunity to view the Aircraft collection."

Shearwater Aviation Museum
34 Bonaventure Street, Shearwater, NS  (between Dartmouth and Eastern Passage)

Saturday April 14th 10 am - 4 pm, 2012
Sunday April 15th 10 am - 4 pm, 2012

Admission is $3, $10 for families

You can find more information at the Shearwater Aviation Museum website.

Monday, April 2, 2012

MESS April 2nd

Our first "official" meeting as MESS was a resounding success...we discovered we have a decent library of resources from which to derive inspiration...and to add to that, I have a link to a Google search that will bring up all sorts of printables to make everything from books to advertising boxes to historical maps! Enjoy, and if the link doesn't work, just print "miniature dollhouse printables" into the search engine and get it to show only images...,or.r_gc.r_pw.r_qf.,cf.osb&fp=13f19e453eff052d&biw=1280&bih=832

Monday, March 19, 2012

First meeting of MESS!

The unofficial beverage of MESS
In fine Canadian fashion, the first meeting of MESS, the Miniature Enthusiasts of the South Shore, was held today in a Tim Horton's in Bridgewater, Nova Scotia.  Three founding members attended: Mary-Anne C., Paula H. and Nina S-S.  We have a variety of backgrounds and experiences with minis, but we're all crafty, creative and motivated to learn more.  We're going to meet on the first Monday of each at Mary-Anne's place, and we can't wait to get started!  Check this blog for more information, and if you'd like to join us, drop me (Nina) a line at mco [at]