A Randomly Selected Newspaper Headline:

The following is a randomly selected newspaper headline from many years ago:

Welcome to my blog. Please feel free to leave a comment. I assure you I always read and appreciate everything you have to say. Unfortunately, thanks to Blogger being, well . . . Blogger, I can not respond to comments nor leave any on your blogs. They simply disappear into the ether. Occasionally I will remember to respond in the next blog post I put up, but usually these good intentions slip my mind. So if you want to ask a question or get a response to any comments you may have please leave an email address or other contact method in your comment and I will get back to you.

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.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Is it a Sorceress' Chamber??

No matter what I tried, the first way I had the furniture arranged was the only way the room really worked.  If only the boxes I'm using to make the roomboxes were just an inch wider I'm sure I'd like the layout better, not to mention be able to lay it out better.

As you can see after I stopped moving furniture from pillar to post and back again I finished off a lot of the previously undone bits of the room.    The legs of the chinoserie cabinet have been painted, cushions and pillows added to the bed and bench seat along with miscellaneous trim and of course a few vases of flowers.

The other new addition this week has been a resident for the room.  Sadly, the photos I tried to take of her didn't come out (it's winter down here in Tasmania and good light is very difficult to get at the moment) so you'll have to wait 'till later to see her clearly.  She's a Heidi Ott lady doll whom I dressed in a simple off-white pleated nightgown and wigged with a copper blond viscose wigging.  She's standing by the window/door that opens onto the faux balcony and brushing her hair.

I'm not sure whether to call this room part of the Tower of Magic or not, I mean, there's nothing exactly "magic" about it is there?  I could easily be a "real" bedroom from any time from the 1700s up to today.  All in all I'm still not really sure about anything to do with this room.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Getting Better . . . . ?

I'm still not entirely convinced that the best use for this room is the bedroom I envisaged, but I've kept working as though that's what it will be and I am starting to like it a little better.

Mostly, this is because I've moved the doors.  Instead of sitting flat on the back wall, they now sit diagonally across the back corners.  This means that the doors are further apart and don't crowd the bed between them as they would have done before.  The room could still stand to be at least a couple of inches wider but sadly these boxes only come in the one size.

Even if this room doesn't turn out to be the Sorceress' Chamber it was supposed to be, the bed will still need a room to live in somewhere and so will need auxiliary furniture to go with it.  So the first piece of satellite furniture is the dressing table.  It started out a standard cheap piece with a icky "mahogany" (i.e. bright red and nothing like natural wood) stain.  It was painted a shade of ivory and loaded with accessories.  In the centre of the table is a tray overloaded with a tangled mess of jewellery.  This is surrounded by crystal bead perfume jars, a polymer clay vase filled with dried flowers and a purchased brush set.

With such a grand looking bed, it didn't seem right to let the cat sleep on the bed, so I made a little canopied cat basket out of matching fabrics.

The final piece of furniture for the room with this chinoserie style cabinet.  It's another of those "I started it years ago but then decided not to use it and never finished it" pieces.  It's basically just a box made from balsa wood and wrapped in a print out of a chinoserie style scene.  The legs still need to be painted . . . gold?  or maybe black or ivory . . . .?

Put all these together (add the bench seat and washstand I forgot to mention earlier) and this is the result.  It's . . . OK, but I still don't really know if I like it.  It will look better when the bed has pillows/cushions and a headboard.

Perhaps the cabinet should be replaced by some kind of folding dressing screen?  As the bed is slightly left of centre to give enough width to accommodate the dressing table on the right, anything on the left wall has to be quite narrow.

And the washstand right next to the dressing table . . . wouldn't they look better opposite each other rather than next to each other?  But then what goes where the washstand is now?  So as always I'm sitting around rearranging furniture like crazy . . . until either I go crazy or I find what I actually like.  (You know which will come first don't you!)

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Return to the Tower of Magic . . . Maybe Not

With Le Palais finished, it was my intention to start on a new room for the Tower of Magic.  In fact start it is just what I did.  Whether it will be part of the ToM when it's finished . . . that remains to be seen.

This room was supposed to be the "Sorceress' Chamber" another bedroom to make up for the rather disappointing "Master's Chamber", this time done for a lady to occupy and hopefully more successful in the end.  I assembled the box for the room, papered the floor in a rich chocolate brown parquet paper and papered the walls with a blue wallpaper.  For those of you who recognise the wallpaper, yes it is a DHE paper, but no I haven't revised my opinion of DHE; I bought this paper years ago (back when DHE were reliable and communicative and a whole heap of other things they no longer are like a recommended place to buy miniatures).  As the paper isn't tall enough to cover the whole wall, I still need to add some trim around the top and bottom of the walls.  The two holes in the back wall are for doors, one to connect to the imaginary stairs that link the rooms of the ToM and one opening onto a faux balcony with a sea view.

The odd collection of balsa wood and cardboard in this photo is a bed I started to make a couple of years ago for Preston House before deciding it wasn't right for the room.  It was perfect for what I wanted for the Sorceress' Chamber though so I finally finished putting it together and draped it in fabric to create this:

There's just one problem.  Put the bed in the room between to the two doors where it is meant to go and . . . . . .

It just does not look good.  Or appealing.  Or anything like it did in my head.  In fact it's pretty terrible.  So maybe this room won't be a Sorceress' Chamber after all.  Perhaps I'll save the bed for a later time and make this room something else instead.  Perhaps a sitting room of some kind?  Perhaps not even a room in the ToM but an independent roombox.  Now that the doors I ordered for this room have arrived, I'll put them in and then sit back and think about how best to proceed with the room.  In the meantime, feel free to offer any suggestions . . . .

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Le Palais

I'm sure Blogger has a secret agenda to drive the world totally crazy.  How else can you possibly explain all it's wacky faults?  It's been many months since I could reply to or leave a comment, Blogger just seems to eat them no matter what I try.  To everyone who is kind enough to leave a comment on my blog, yes I do read them and I would respond to you if only I could.  I'll start this week by addressing a few recent comments:

Vivian Fox : The rugs come from all over the place.  Every time I see a rug (or wallpaper, etc)  I like I save it and have managed to build up a collection.  There are lots of printables sites, a good place to look for rugs is through a link on the Treefeathers site.  Scroll down to the "other resources" section at the bottom and there is a link to an actual rug store that apparently is happy to let you copy their images of the rugs for sale.

Daydreamer : Half canopy is exactly what I had in mind, see below for how it turned out!

De : 48th scale has been a challenge in some ways, but other things I've found to be easier.  I think the best thing about it is that how else would I have room to make a seventeen room house?  I think when I want to make a "big" property in future I'll use this smaller scale so I'll effectively have more space to play with.

Le Palais (I'm dropping the "Petit" part of the name as in no scale does seventeen rooms really qualify as petite!) is now finished.  Normally I would add "people" to a house, but given the fact no one seems to make a 48th scale people mould and my abilities to create people freehand is . . . let's be polite and go with "limited", I don't think any people I could make for this house would be up to the same standard as the house and furniture and thus possibly ruin the overall effect.  So although furnished, the house will remain vacant.

 I say it's finished, but the pink bedroom in the attic could use more personality couldn't it?  All the rooms in Le Palais have less "junk" than I would normally add simply because finding things small enough to work in this scale is so hard.

The desk in the attic hall has been filled with "books" that are made of EVA foam cut into tiny pieces.  I wish the foam came in less fluorescent colours then the books might look more like books.

In the nursery, the crib has moved into the middle of the floor which makes the room look a lot less empty without having to add more furniture.  It's hard to see in this photo but the crib now has pillows piled into it.  These had to be silk to match the canopy, but I found that silk just disintegrated when I tried to sew it in this scale (not surprising as the same thing happens in the comparatively large 24th scale too).  So these are pieces of EVA foam wrapped in silk which is glued in place.

In the green bedroom, I made that canopy for over the bed.  It is a piece of wire bend into a horseshoe shape and the top of the arch then folded over ninety degrees.  This was then covered in in more of the greenish silk used on the bed.  As the fabric has different colours for it's warp and weft, just fraying the edge created the contrasting fringing.

The lilac salon is still a bit of a nothing room really, but that doesn't stop it from looking fabulous.  I cut down the length of the chaise so it could sit against the wall and added some flowers to the room.  the tall plant on the side is made of dried flowers while the arrangement on the central table is green moss topped with bits of flower soft in a gold bead vase.

The hall has similar flowers to the salon but this time the greenery under the flower soft is part of a plastic fish tank plant.  Yes, the moss works better.

The yellow bedroom has had flowers and pillows added.

The furniture has been rearranged in the dressing room for the final time (well, maybe).  The dressing table has been decorated with perfume bottles made of the smallest beads I could find that are still a little too large and another vase of flowers.

The library table has been stained to match the wood look of the sofa.

I needed red flowers for the dining room table centrepiece, but didn't have any red flowersoft.  So these flowers are made from bits of fuzz trimmed off a red pipe cleaner with touches of yellow flowersoft.

In the entrance hall what else but more flowers?

 Not only flowers for the drawing room but also a pair of flowering plants in tall bead pots.  The clock on the mantle is one of two I bought before starting the house at the local doll, bear and miniature fair.

Want to guess what I've added to the music room?  Yep, flowers again.  The paper piano is now black to match the chaise and fireplace.

Finally, a room without flowers!  The scullery has some washing hung up to dry on cotton thread lines.  Yes, the lines are very crooked, but the room is about 4cm wide and it took half an hour to manage to get both ends on the walls at the same time!  As far as I'm concerned in this case crooked is good enough.

The dresser in the kitchen is filled with white plates made of EVA foam using a small hole punch.

On the range are saucepans made of gold beads with gold wire handles.  The handles are there, they just don't show up in photos.  Slivers of orange EVA foam create the effect of carrots and small beads in a purple and white make turnips with bits of fuzz trimmed off a pipe cleaner used as the leafy bits on both.  On the other table are a range of coloured cakes again made with EVA foam and a hole punch.

The sewing room has been loaded up with scraps of fabric and sewing needles cut from fine wire.

And finally the servants bedroom has had pillows added to the beds and a picture hung on the wall.

Next week I'll be returning to the Tower of Magic with a new roombox . . . . . .