Firstly this week, I'd like to welcome the newest followers to the blog. They are: Sharon Rose, Sandra - Ninha Croche, Ayamontinomaria and pilar garcia. Thank you all for choosing to follow.
I've had a lot of fun this week spending my tax refund. I pre-ordered a pile of upcoming books from the Book Depository, I bought some chic clothes from Ezibuy and most importantly for the sake of this blog, some miniatures related items. Prime among them were some moulds to make 1/12th scale polymer clay dolls from Patricia Rose Studio on ebay.
I have been watching and wishing for the Chelsea and David moulds for months, but patiently waited until now to buy them, not because the moulds themselves are horribly expensive, but the added cost of postage is enough to make your eyeballs spin. Buying them with my refund from the government is like getting them for free because all I did to get the money was spend fifteen minutes filling out my return. Most moulds for polymer clay I have seen have faces and figures that are less than beautiful but the thing I love about the Patricia Rose ones is how stunning the faces are. These people are gorgeous which suits me perfectly: I figure it's easier to take a pretty face and mess it about to be ugly than to make an ugly face pretty. Not only did I buy the Chelsea and David moulds which make dolls that stand just under 6" tall, I also bought the Lacey mould. At 3" tall she'll be perfect for when I start experimenting in 1/24th scale. And because I wasn't really spending my money anyway, I also got the Katie mould. She stands 5 1/2" tall, has a different face and figure to the Chelsea mould and has pointy elf/fairy ears. It will be another few weeks before they arrive in the mail, but I can't wait to start playing with them.
With this in mind, I decided that I am going to try and get the castle finished to the point of being ready to populate by the time the moulds arrive. That way I can start (attempting) to create my own dolls with the moulds to live in the castle straight away. My push to get the castle finished didn't start out too well however. One thing that needs doing is to add fires to all the fireplaces. I had enough "ingredients" to do the kitchen fires last week, but needed more to do the others. A trip to the craft store proved fruitless, the ##@@*&*^ place didn't have anything that was on my shopping list, so I either wait for them to get their act together (which will probably take a long, long time) or I scour the internet for what I need, either way it'll be a while before I can do the fires.
So, unable to do what I wanted and somewhat peeved about it (I mean basic black seed beads, isn't that something you'd keep on hand if you ran a craft shop?) I fiddled about with what I did have. I started in the bedroom. I decided to replace the table on the far side of the bed. The one that was there was an Angela Downton made one and thus absolutely gorgeous, but behind the bed it was hard to see and it's beauty was hidden. So I'll save that table for somewhere more prominent and instead made a quick table the same size from balsa wood with a bit of fancy trim around the edge. A quick rummage through my collection of accessories provided a mirror, some purfume bottles, a wooden box and a candlestick to sit on the table. More accessories filled up the small shelves on the near side of the bed.
The next thing the room needed was some rugs for the floor. After a little debate on what would work best, I pulled out the knitting yarn left over from the rugs I made for Highcroft last year and made some faux rag rugs. The rugs for Highcroft were all circular with the yarn spiralling from the centre. This time I made rectangular rugs by simply cutting lengths of yarn and glueing them onto a piece of fabric in straight rows. I think I like this effect better than the spiral rugs so I made another rug the same way for the Centre Room.
Finally in the bedroom and also throughout the castle, I hung some tapistries. The tapistires were printed on fabric and most had some decorative ribbon glued around the edges with loops of ribbon at the top to create hangers. The loops were fed through skewers painted gold and decorative metal beads were glued onto the ends of the skewer.
At this point I think the bedroom is pretty much finished - it just needs a fire in the fireplace. I don't think there'll even be room for a person to pose in this room, unless they climb into bed. In other words, if you can see anything you think is missing or wrong with the bedroom, now would be a good time to tell me about it.
Next door in the Centre Room I rearranged the furniture by moving the table back. I think the arrangement looks better now but I think perhaps I need to find a smaller chest/coffer/other piece of furniture to sit along the right wall. Once I finish off the candleabra sitting on the chest, this is another room that is pretty close to complete. Another rug at the back of the room and a cushion for the X frame chair perhaps?
Moving along to the Library, I have finally fixed up the slightly dodgy paintwork on the top of the back wall. The books and papers on the desk have been arranged messily but I still need some sort of table lamp to finish it off. I tried various feature ornaments to display on the three empty sections of shelf. I don't really like what I've got there now, but its the best that I have. I may have to try making something to fit here, but at the moment have no idea as to what.
Downstairs the biggest task left to go is the lighting. I want a big, ornate chandiler to hang from the ceiling in the entry hall but haven't figured out how to make it yet. Yet again, if there were a craft shop in town that actually had stock on it's shelves, I would probably have found some findings that I could adapt and incorporate into a chandelier. I also need seven wall mounted candle scones for the Entry and Dining halls and I did make some, but they're not right for the castle, so I have to go back to the drawing board.
So, will I finish the castle in the next two to three weeks? Possibly, if I am lucky enough to find what I need and if I totally ignore the Witch Shop which is pretty much what happened this week. I did make one piece of furniture for the shop though; a small shelving unit that stands by the front door and outside in the garden I added a flowering vine growing up the back wall between the door and the window.
A Randomly Selected Newspaper Headline:
The following is a randomly selected newspaper headline from many years ago:
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I have also added a separate page to the blog for the Tower of Magic with a brief summary of all the rooms of the ToM in the one spot. The link is just below this and above the main body of the blog, or you can just click here.