January 30, 2023

Fave January Read: Stephen King's Fairy Tale #fantasy


I like to mention books here occasionally between my mini-making, so I thought I'd share my favorite January read: Stephen King's Fairy Tale. (PS - he also has a new murder mystery, Holly, based on the PI from his Mr. Mercedes trilogy, coming out Sept. 5. There's an excerpt at his website.)

* Amazon - Barnes & Noble - see Goodreads.

I admit having reserved the library book previously, then deciding I wasn't up for a 598-page book. But I saw it again and decided to check it out: glad I did.

This is a fun, imaginative twist on a selection of classic fairy tales we know. Definitely odd in parts, sometimes scary, with some weird monsters but heroic moments. And it has a wonderful German Shepherd, Radar, whom you'll shed a few tears for. Being a longtime GS owner, I just loved the dog in the book and how she's saved. 

Some great monsters and villains here, and some great characters you grow to love. I can't comment much on the surprising or cool parts, as I don't want to give the surprises away. I didn't know anything about the book, so it was fun seeing where it went. Really enjoyed it and not a section of padding that I had to skip over despite the book's massive size. King really is on top of his game.

January 23, 2023

More Mini Collectibles are Coming Out!


Everyone seems to be getting in on the mini-mini trend of collectibles.

The Mini Brands  have come out with Fashion purses and mini food. Besides the Mini Brands Toys, I like the mini Disney and Star Wars figures in the Mini Brands Toys Disney version. I've always loved dolls so the teensy doll figures and princesses are hard to resist. Here's some I put in my mini Haunted Toy Store.

And now....

While I'm not a big Bratz doll fan, I was really surprised to see these mini Mini Bratz dolls at Walmart. (Amazon link.)($10 at Walmart; $7.99 on sale on Amazon at this writing.) I had no idea they were making these! How cute! This Japanese style figure is really cute. 

Then.... I saw an online post about mini Mini Funko Pops (not the mystery figures but tiny versions of the Funko box and figure) coming out soon. 

Haven't collected the full size figures either but I'm sure I'll get a few of the mini ones, too. I wonder who else will be getting on the mini bandwagon? Kind of fun seeing what comes out next.

January 22, 2023

#Fairfield #Dollhouse: Some outside trim, kits, bath done

The tower all trimmed.

 I'm in the process of adding trim (boring stuff) and then have to get the porch railings, posts, etc. installed.  (*Click photos for full size. See past posts in left column archives. Previous post: finishing the attic. * Also sign-up in left column for email headline updates.)

In the meantime, I got a few more things done. 

The attic bathroom: made a faux cabinet for an old metal Cassidy Creations sink; added crystal beads for the hot/cold and used a piece of solder glued on for the faucet. Also made a fake wood tank for the vintage toilet. (I added all the fake walls and door to divide off the boy's bedroom behind it on the left side (not shown.)

Decided to add a partial curtain, which I think makes this little space fit in better. Love the print for the curtain and I think it adds a nice touch of color. I have the same print in a pink and orange I'm going to use on some furniture. Decided to add in the mirror, too (from a Hobby Lobby set.) 

The back roof piece is on now since this photo so you don't see all the top of the wall, which is a shame, but I'll add some art prints above the wall cut-out (entrance to the attic) anyway I think. I also decided to cut the outer edge of the fake brick wall on the left here on a slight diagonal since the roof piece is angled. It didn't look right since it stuck out so much. Luckily I glue things to hold, but at least I can still get them off if needed (without destroying it all). ha!

The tower: (top photo) Added the brackets underneath, the trim on the top sides, and decided to add the gingerbread underneath the top strip. The bracket by the door will be used as a plant hanger. I do have another fuchsia plant to make (if I'm brave enough. ha!) Love them, but they are a difficult plant to make.

I recently got a set of metal weathervanes (vintage set, Karen's Miniatures) from a seller. The round cap was made by cutting off part of a plastic chess piece, painting it (used ivory multi-surface paint as a primer), and drilling a hole on the top. There were several different styles; they're cute but such thin metal and very dainty so they bend too easy.

Kits: In-between, I decided to work on some kits. These are really nice and are coming together pretty well. For a change of pace, I decided to paint the table (Vesper Narrow Table, Small Scale Living from All About Miniatures.) to match the curtain, which turned out pretty cute. Nice kit. Tired of all stained furniture. The MCM chair is also from them. The chair is a bit daintier to build (I broke the chair leg tips and had to reglue) but it'll look fine once painted.

Other kits in progress: vintage sink, baking table, and stove from TMC, Teresa's Miniature Creations (minitmc@comcast.net). (Wish she had a website; she does occasional shows.) Love her kits. I saw these pieces and had to get them! I added the small shelf on the top edge of the table. Beads, handles, burners, etc. on all pieces will be added once I paint them.

The teensy side table is from a couple who also sell small kits among their other items at shows (and I can't think of their name right now.) The small round Dining Table is an older MiniEtchers kit. I think I'm going to paint all these, too. She has some fantastic 1/2" scale kitchen furnishings and some cool Victorian and unique Edwardian furniture. I'll share the furnishings once I get them all painted and decorated.

That's it for the moment! More to come soon. Thanks for stopping by again!

January 16, 2023

#Fairfield Dollhouse: Attic floor completed!


Favorite pic of the week: lamp by the attic window.

It's hard to believe, but this week I finished the attic trim, which means the third floor is done! So now all the floors are done, meaning they are papered and trimmed. After a year, it doesn't seem real! (Check archives in left column for previous posts. Also see end of year recap.) *Click photos for full size.

Fitting the bath pieces. The door at left goes into the boy's bedroom.

Here's the bath niche unfinished and a view of both attic spaces. I added the false wall and door on the left side which goes to the boy's bedroom. I had to cut angled pieces of mat board which were glued together in a double layer and then papered. I love that mustard yellow paper. Not sure where I got it but it has typed words on it so I'll have to add a small typewriter table for the writer, of course! I'm finishing up the bath pieces to put in there, so that's coming up.

 * Added: As someone asked: the brick is textured paper from  Starboc2 on Etsy. She's in Greece, but has nice products and fast shipping. Used the brick paper on the Van Buren house  interior and exterior also. See finished exterior. 

The right side attic space. Lucky I had enough wood floor pieces left to fit here. Thought it would be fun to add a crate with an uncovered lamp. And what is that peeking out? 

A visitor: A ghost mouse! haa!

For fun, here's the attic with stuff in it, which I took out for now and will change around yet. I'm thinking of putting my extra art on the walls for storage.

I'm not entirely done as I'm still adding edge trim and a few pieces I missed, plus I have to (yes, still) put in the spiral stairs, but the house is really almost finished. Working on the foundation now and have a great idea for front lattice. (More on that later.)

The roof tower section is trimmed. I'll show that once I get my latest find for the tower tip in the mail. 

Other updates:

Side of the house with the stained glass windows, window boxes, and the angled pieces above the lower windows covered with corrugated cardboard.

It's hard to show the colors but the flowers (soft plastic) are nice shades of rose. 

Next up is to decorate all the rooms, which is the fun part. I have to say I don't like all the trimming but I do like coming up with ideas on different ways to do things. I still have some furniture pieces to make too and probably some flowers.

The bare wall was bugging me so I added some art in the second floor bathroom. Yeah, that was fun trying to reach in there. ha! I got it in with tweezers and a glue dot on back which I hope stays on. 😃 I also added that post on the end of the stairs with a "fancy" bead top. I have to trim the top of the walls on both sides and add some artwork.

Girl's bedroom:

I like how the wood grate looks in the fireplace. Here's the Tootsietoy bed I decided to paint brown, with linen colors to go with the maroon wallpaper. I like how the larger bead caps worked for ceiling lights with a gold filigree medallion. I've done more feminine girl's rooms before but I really liked this wallpaper/scrapbook paper and think it turned out well with the brick.

I'll save the finished boy's room photos and show them next time with the finished girl's room. Plus I have to fill both attic spaces.

Then it's on to hanging art, furniture kits, decorating.... and after that?

Well, I may work on a couple smaller projects before I tackle the next big house. Sometimes you have to take a break between large projects. 

The good thing is between this I finished making my items for the annual Half Scale Group swap and mailed them. Can't share what I made yet. Now just have to wait until March for the return box. Always fun to see what other people have made.

So.... stay tuned for more decorating updates.... Thanks for visiting! 

January 05, 2023

New Year, New #dollhouse project... almost

What is this, you ask?

 Well, just got my belated birthday-Christmas gift. (*click photos for full size.)

A new 1/24, half-scale house. First fully-laser-cut house kit I've gotten and I have to say the details are really nice.

The doors and windows even have the inner and outer trim so I don't have to add it. Handy. Nice that we don't have to cut moldings. May have to do some taping when I paint/stain, though.

The fencing and detail on the staircase rails is really nice, too. I like that. The only downside I see, so far, are the poor directions sheets. Very small gray-tone photos.  I'll check around and see if anyone did any YouTube videos... that would be helpful, too. ** ADDED: Just found out: they have a color PDF page of directions on their website. Much better! They have a few videos, too, but not of this house.


Have you guessed yet what house it is?

It's the 1/24, half-scale Park Avenue Mansion from LaserDollhouseDesigns. (And no, I didn't pay that; got a deal on Ebay. 😏 ) 

Cool house, huh? I've been wanting something different and wanted to do a taller vs. wider house. I have an idea of doing a kind of rooming house. One level will have the wealthier tenant with the fancy sitting room. I have a 1/24 Marcia Backstrom resin doll kit that I've been saving to do. We'll see what I come up with. I've been saving photos for inspiration, too, and I'd like to use some ideas from the Brooke Tucker Golden Christmas book.


Now, it'll be a while before I get to this as the Fairfield is still-not-done. Oh, it's getting close. Half the roof is on (see below); stained glass windows and flower boxes are in. (Love how these turned out! Closer pix will be coming.) Luckily I found a close-enough match in paint color for the roof. I'd used Americana Rookwood Red on the windows and found the Apple Barrel Spiced Berry Satin, which is a multi-surface paint and has a slight sheen to it. It's only slightly different in tone so I went over the parts I had already painted and like the finish. 

I've got lots of trimming yet, like on the roof sides and tower, which I hate doing. ha! But I have a "cute" small gingerbread piece that should add a nice touch to the tower front. I also have the strips for the tower top to add that are painted the reddish-orange. Still trying to figure what to use on the tower tip; maybe a glittery ball, some kind of ornament... I'll know it when I see it.

Right now I'm figuring out an attic bathroom nook. Luckily I had these pieces. Not sure but I think the toilet is an old Tootsietoy or painted vintage piece. Had a better idea so it won't take up too much of the attic. I found it looks and fits better in the little space behind the attic wall next to the bedroom door I added, which I hadn't really planned on. I'll show the "ugly" stages shortly in an upcoming post if you need an idea. I'll share some other progress, too, as I'm pretty happy with how things are looking.

That's it for the moment. Stay tuned for more photos.  ** You can subscribe to email headline updates in the box in the left column. I've also added the blog to my website miniatures page. That page includes a growing list of half scale dollhouse supplies sources if you are interested.

Thanks for stopping by!

January 01, 2023

Happy New Year!


Hope 2023 is far better than this past year.

May you have lots of good mini days and plenty of projects to keep you busy! I'll have much to do,  so stay tuned for more updates!