June 29, 2023

Half Scale Witch Cottage Fun Stuff: Decor

For fun: a bunch of black cat-themed books.

 While I like how the half Scale Witch Cottage is turning out, building can be a chore. 

Some like to build, I'd rather decorate. ha! 

So it's a nice break to just sit and make some new accessories for the fun of it. A nice, relaxing break. (House: Laser Dollhouse Designs' Jasmine Gothic Victorian CottagePrevious post- plants; some garage sale findsSee first floor. Click photos for full size. Other posts, see left column archives list.)

The books: I have a lot more to make but the set pictured above are all cat themed, mostly with black cats. Perfect for a witch. ha! (Cute cat-themed book cover set from WoWbooknook on Etsy, but has to be shrunk to 1/24.)

Second floor tower room:

One more wall to glue in to the second floor tower room and then the roof goes on, so I had to decide on accessories. It's a small space and won't hold much, so it's perfect for a stargazing room. 

I had a small bench and one of those Victorian-type chairs from another set so I painted both of them black.  I may add another small bench or seat yet along the wall. Also printed out and made a few star and astrology books since this photo was taken that I'll add on the table. 

The centerpiece - it needed a telescope! So had to figure how best to make one. My first try - too big. But the larger one will work in 1" scale if I need one. 

I used a smaller piece of drinking straw on the end, a piece of ink pen cartridge in the center, and the smallest size wood dowel I had at the viewing end to make the smaller telescope. You glue them together staggered. I also cut off a bit more of the straw before I glued them. Painted with multi-surface white acrylic and then gold fabric paint. I glued a mid-sized opalescent rhinestone on the larger end and a tinier white rhinestone on the viewing end. Also put a small piece of string around the viewing end for edging. The stand is a piece of Tiny Turnings and a cross-piece on the bottom made from two cut pieces of strip wood. Pretty pleased how they came out!

Other accessories: 

Decided the witch needed more supplies so made a couple boxes of ingredients to put on a shelf. 

The large Absinthe bottle and other larger size bottles are part of a set of flat acrylic bottle shapes I bought a while back. The smaller containers are kind of interesting. They're actually teardrop-shaped beads. They have a line so I paint the top section gold up to that line for the lid and add a cut-out label. When I found those a while back (garage sale maybe?), I knew they'd make great bottles!

Another ingredients box:

I also made a couple of smaller vintage Halloween card boxes.  All the boxes were made using a piece of larger two-sided corner molding to make the back and the bottom. Then I cut a lower front piece and sides from a piece of strip wood.

Also cut out and framed some signs:

Next, I'll glue the back bedroom wall in, add the border, attach the lights, and paper the roof pieces. I might put some wood strip beams on the inner ceilings for decoration. Also have to make the top "attic" section. Moving along!

shrunk some black cat border strips to put on the second floor wall to break up the purple. Have to see how they look.  (Vintage 1907 patternsLarger images linked here.) 

And more real garden stuff: love the colors of these zinnias!

Thanks for visiting again. More updates coming up soon!

June 25, 2023

Half Scale Witch Cottage: Second Floor Progress


Halloween already on the porch!

So some "small" progress on the Half Scale Witch Cottage. Step by small (sometimes agonizing) step. 👀 ha!

Still a bit of outside trim to do on the first floor exterior. The progress really is step by step as some things just have to be done before others. And a lot of this painting/trimming is really stuff I hate to do. ha!  (House: Laser Dollhouse Designs' Jasmine Gothic Victorian Cottage. Last post- plants; some garage sale finds. See first floor.)

Looking at the pix, I know it seems like I didn't do much. But it took a lot of figuring and planning for this stage. And it's actually coming together better than I thought.

First I decided I had to have a lit pumpkin on the porch! I'll probably change this to a ceramic pumpkin instead of plastic if I have a smaller one (gotta go dig in the pumpkin container!) so the light shows off better. I ran the light up through the floor and the seat of the chair, soldering the wires under the house.

Other things I did:

* Paint/glued in small front roof supports (not shown, next to tower.) Painted small roof. Waiting on some shingle strips.

Here's the house kit photo from the website so you can see the sections I'm talking about:

Second-floor tower room on left side:

We cut holes in the back tower wall piece and the front wall behind it to provide access to the bedroom. Trimmed it with 1/8" thick strips. There's only about a half-inch between the tower piece and the wall so I'll probably add some small wood strips on the outside so it's closed off on the outer roof. 

It just seemed a waste to have that tower space closed in. Why have windows and not use the space? I decided to use the nature print scrapbook paper as it seems to fit in the space. I'll have to glue any furnishings in since the roof will be and the door is glued.

The floor you see is cut from the 9 x 12 star card flooring I ordered from  Melvin's Miniatures  I like it. It's printed well and does not smear if you wipe it! I bought a few other old-fashioned tile patterns that I'll use in the Park Ave. Mansion when I start that. I also used the same floor for the bedroom section behind the wall here.

In case you're wondering... I didn't want to put a full door so this ended up looking pretty cool. I cut part of a plastic gate I had to make a lacy "door." It works perfect when you look through the doorway though you won't see that view once the front tower piece is in except if you peek through the window.

With the roof on, but not glued down:

Of course, I had to paper part of the wall again since I forgot to run the light up the wall! ha! I decided to use the top part of one of those "wrought iron" Christmas lantern lights over the bulb. They come in handy. I used one of those lantern pieces outside the second floor door on the Fairfield (the right side) but attached it to a small wood base there. In the tower, I glued it to the wall as it looks like it's attached to the tree.

Bedroom side of front wall:

View of the bedroom wall and tower door: I may put a small black net curtain just on this large window since it's a bedroom. The one side of the purple wallpaper (scrapbook paper) has to be glued down after I run the light wires to the top and glue them so there'll be some light near the peak. I'm adding a small floor/ceiling piece and maybe a rail so I'll have an "attic"-type storage space. Gotta store those brooms somewhere. ha!

I did put the Gothic Victorian bed together from SDK Miniatures. Nice kit and it goes together well. I painted the insets gold, the same way I did the Gothic bookcase and chairs in the Fairfield dining room. (Love this set!) Figuring out the linen colors yet. 

I'll also be using some of these pieces though the coffee table may go on the lower level.

So far the idea for the second floor is a bedroom plus a small sitting area, a standing lamp, and a writing table and chair with a lamp. I also might add the witch's chest full of spells here (for safekeeping; don't want that discovered!) Will see yet what fits where. The tower room will be a stargazing space, I think.

 In the meantime, I fiddled with some pieces from one of those DIY house kits. Decided to use a small sink cabinet for the first floor and added a strip of wood on the bottom to raise the height a little. It'll work as I want to dirty it up since potion making can be messy! I luckily had a smaller one-handle faucet that fit the sink. I also have a small plant potting table that might fit in, too.

I'll have to see what else I can use. And gasp! Realized a witch should have some frogs and toads so found a couple of those. I might make a mold and see if I can make some more in plaster. I know I had some bigger toads, too... somewhere. The things you stash away until the right project--and then you can't find them. haa!

My reminder list of things I want to make:

* Glowing potion jars; magic pouring tea or coffeepot; eyeball stew
* Glowing cat eyes
* Chest full of spells and manuscripts
* Maybe? Eyeball and other plants
* The first floor plant shelf -  and finish that room divider.
* Add cats and toads

And whatever else I come up with. This is one of those projects where you think of things as you go along. I was measuring and too bad, I have a nice glass case that would be big enough but it's not deep enough for this house. I'll have to keep my eyes open for another one.

So... that's it for now! Thanks for visiting - again! Come back soon to see what else got finished!

June 23, 2023

Miniature Take Your Dog to Work Day

 Photo: Workspace in Fairfield Dollhouse attic. See top tab, My Dollhouses, for other links and photos.

While I'm still working on the Half Scale Witch Cottage, thought I'd share a few photos for some of the more unusual holidays. (Click photos for full size; see other posts in left column archives.)

Today is national Take Your Dog to Work Day, and if you work at home, your dog is there, of course. The 29th is also Work From Home Day. See calendar for other dates.

Funny that I never put a dog in all the miniature stores I've done, but I do put them in all my dollhouses, so I'll share those instead.

Another "work", crafting space in the attic of my Country Victorian house, with a companion. See video on website Miniatures page.(Scroll down past blog link there.)

Dog toy also in the Country Victorian house.

Another dog in my larger yellow Victorian dollhouse. (Video also on the miniatures website page. Scroll down past blog link there.)

Dog in my vintage doll Christmas room.

And of course! A corgi for my Tudor Tea Shoppe honoring the Queen!

Speaking of dogs....  Well, if you want to sit and work with a laptop in this room, good luck finding somewhere to sit! haa! My
Dogcatcher's House has about 100 dogs. The fun was the theme and  finding all of them!

That's it for now. I know there 's more but it's finding the photos. ha!  I should have some new updates soon. I'm working on several things in the second floor of the Witch Cottage. Tricky stuff like papering the top tower....

Thanks again for visiting. Come back soon for new updates!

June 16, 2023

Miniature Witch Cottage & Garage Sale Finds

 What are those?? Keep reading!

It's finally church rummage and yard sale time! It's always fun to look as you never know what you'll find and you can usually get some pretty good deals! So had to share some of my latest finds.

The best find is after all these years of doing dollhouses we finally got a scroll saw at a church sale, which makes cutting out doors and windows sooo much easier; see top photo of door openings on the Half Scale Witch Cottage. I'll share more on that later when I make progress on it. (See last post - plants and older posts in left column archives. Click photos for full size.)

Door openings cut out on front wall and on back of tower wall panel on second floor.

 Mr. Dollhouse Contractor used to cut the holes with a jigsaw, which is more shaky and you got wobbly cuts. Always worked around it, but this is so much better. It's also great because it's easy enough that I'll be able to do my own cutting, which will be really nice when I want it done right away and don't want to wait. ha! The great thing is that the saw blade is like new and... you won't believe we got it for only... $5!

You'll appreciate this too - I also found  the cutest small garbage can - tiny, with the pedal and a lift out bucket! Now I don't have to keep getting up to throw stuff out.

The other finds were some inexpensive dollhouse pieces for 50 cents each. The blue couch is a Mattel Littles metal couch which is half scale; the plastic couch will probably fit somewhere too once I cover it in fabric. The table/bench will work in half scale also and is hand-painted. Someone even signed the back. No, doesn't look like anyone I know. Also got another crate of flowers and a metal wheelbarrow.

Here's another pretty unique find I came across at a yard sale: so... what are these?

Once I saw these strange little statues, I knew I had to get them, especially the ones with the faces. Nothing says creepy like statues with faces. ha!

Did you guess?

Actually it's some kind of dragon, medieval or Mayan? chess set. What I liked besides the unique carvings is that they were smaller, so they'll be perfect house and yard accents for my witch houses!

The box they came in is really cool-looking too. 

The neat thing is that dragon - lion? head drawer pull/knob on the front of the box. 

I am thinking (gasp!) of taking it off to use on a dollhouse wall (wouldn't that look neat?) but I think I have to take half of the drawer apart to get it off. So, I'll leave it... for now. I only paid $7  for the purpose of using the statues for dollhouses so I won't feel real bad if I take it apart and then have to re-glue it with a different knob. ha!😏 I have been thinking of making a small antique, brocante-type shop on the bottom floor of the Park Ave. Mansion when I get to that project, so I really like the idea of using this head on a wall.... I know.. and I know you understand. ha! But I buy stuff like this to take it apart or re-use it so no guilt, ha!

Going to a couple other church sales next week so we'll see if I find anything else. And I'll be working on the second floor of the Witch Cottage. Lots of steps to do there but I've pretty much figured out the layout and have the flooring cut. The black/white star print floor I bought will look pretty cool. I think the second-floor tower will be a neat little space, too. Since it has windows, it would be a shame to leave it unused and closed up. It's a tiny room but perfect for stargazing, I figure. (Photo of house from website.)

So... that's it for now! Thanks for visiting and come back soon for more updates!


June 11, 2023

Miniature Witch Dollhouse Green Thumb

Time for some fun stuff!

(*See last post: lighting. Click photos for full size; see other posts in left column archives.)

Decided to take a break from all that building, painting, and trimming, (ugh!) to make some spooky plants! (House is the Laser Dollhouse Designs' Jasmine Gothic Victorian Cottage. Photo of kit from website.)


Well, not real spooky but more on the "magical botanical" end since this is a cottage for a witch who makes potions. 

You remember the potion shelf I made previously? See below. (Victorian Gothic shelf kit from SDK Miniatures.)

New: I had this other large shelving unit and thought it would be another bookshelf at some point, though I really didn't want to make so many books! So this works - figured it would be a good addition for the plants and poisonous materials storage. So the witch has large boxes of poisonous items like mandrake, hemlock, etc. Then there are the various pots and dishes of plant starters in case she has to pick something for a special potion. I like how this came out as I wanted it to be slightly different than the other shelves.

A secret: I cheated on the boxes! ha! I made fronts and sides, then covered them with scrapbook paper and poison labels. I cheated on the wood plant crates, too. They don't have backs since no one will see that. Some of the jars are beads and pot-shaped beads.

Another idea is I saw a photo of some real-life hanging boxes and thought it would be perfect to make a mini set of boxes to put on the wall with plants growing. Handy to have them right there for use, I figured. All the plants are just bits and pieces of the assorted plastic plants I have saved up.  

Ok, here's a fun guessing game. What kinds of flowers are these???

This is part of a group of unusual "punny" plants that I got a long time ago in a swap with the Half Scale group that could fit in this project. Some I already used in front of the haunted house I leave set up.  (You can see a few of the plants a little in this photo. Look for the odd plants in front of the house with purple trim.)

I haven't found all of the above plants yet, but I did find these below. Can you guess what kinds of flowers these are? The two in the center top row below are regular plants.

And here's an idea I hadn't thought of: I think I'll make a set of risers to go in front of the windows in the tower on the first floor as I wasn't sure what to put there but that makes more sense to put a bunch of plants in that spot. Of course, I made a small circular riser a looooong time ago that I didn't use, but not sure where it is.... ha!

Here's an interesting set from that group too. Can you guess what the plants are?

The crow is fun; not sure who made it. A perfect totem/mannikin for this house! Maybe a place to rest her witch hats!

Next is the potion making work table and deciding what to put on it. Also have to finish that center wood wall divider. So, moving on!

* Thanks again for visiting! Come back soon for more updates!

June 08, 2023

Lighting the Half Scale Miniature Witch Cottage


The ceiling/second floor is on now so it now looks like a little square box. ha! Some gaps to cover but not too bad. I'll have to add some ceiling trim, too. I hate all that painting and trimming!

Also had some more progress! Got some lights in the first floor... (See last post: exterior) Click photos for full size; see post archives in left column) * Next: Miniature Green Thumb: Plants

Here are the lights I added. The top left light is from a set of medieval-looking tubes I bought in a package from Hobby Lobby. I used the larger bell cap with the keys attached for the larger light. More magical keys if the witch needs them. ha!

  I wish the color would come out right in the photos. The ceiling really looks neat - a spring green color.  It's hard to get a photo for the color to look right. Here's the paint though computer tones may vary.

Here's the octopus I used on the side wall with a painted metal tube for the bulb.

Still some trim to add to the porch yet and small railing strips. I'm working on the larger botanical shelf at the moment and some small poison plant boxes for a wall. Hope to show that soon.

In the meantime, some more real plants.  Did four containers of morning glories this year and they're really coming up! Moved them  over to the trellises. Just hope our resident bunnies (we keep seeing babies!) leave them alone. haaaa! Can't wait to see when they all bloom! The sunflowers are doing pretty good, too.

So, a "little" update! Thanks again for visiting. Come back soon for new posts!