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.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Derelict No More

My little 48th scale house looks much more welcoming now it has it's windows and door installed and the exterior finished off.  The walls are covered in a brick pattern and the roof a tile pattern, both from internet printables.  The quoin stones and windows are those that came with the kit.  Instead of adding the quoin stones to the sides of the house as intended I cut those lengths and instead used them around the front porch which I think is a better finish.

Inside, most of the furniture has been made.  Aside from the pieces from Petite Properties kits you've seen previously all the furniture is balsa wood with accents of "tiny turnings".  The rail along the central gallery is pieces of fan blade strung on a brown ribbon 'handrail'.

This house now just needs the soft furnishings and accessories to finish it off.  It's the accessories (and people) that are proving the hardest part of 48th scale to me.  Lots of people sell house and furniture kits in this scale but no one seems to produce accessories like dishes and pans, animals, flowers, cutlery and so forth.  Some of these things are easy enough to DIY, but how do you create a 48th scale pet cat?  Especially when you have no sculpting ability to begin with.  This lack of ready made 'junk' to fill up the house and give it some life is the one thing about 48th scale that I don't like.

Mind you that hasn't stopped me from planning more 48th scale projects for the future. . . . .

You know I like castles but had to give them up in 12th scale as they are so very large . . . . I just can't help thinking how much less space a 48th scale castle would take up . . . . And I have this small fishtank that I bought cheaply thinking it would make a 12th scale roombox that I now think could hold a 48th scale Japanese tea house and garden . . . . And have you seen Petite Properties new cottage kit?  They call it Pumpkin Cottage.  This a a photo I pinched from their facebook page:
Have you seen a more perfect witch or wizard cottage in 48th scale?  I may just have to buy this when it is released.

I also recently saw this house in 24th scale:

It's a nice plain kit that could be adapted to suit a few different ideas with a decent internal layout.  I first found it on Minimum World's website, but they won't ship it to Australia (but they do ship other 24th scale houses?).  DHE have it, but you know my current opinion of them.  I did put it into my cart on their site to see how much postage would be.  I was expecting maybe $70-$100 but it turned out to be more than double my lowest guess at $156.  So this house is waiting until I find someone else who ships to Oz or until I forget how annoyed I am with DHE and decide to try buying something from them (which no doubt will make me annoyed all over again!).  And in either case not until I've saved a lot of money.  In short I will probably never own this house.

And then of course there are still lots of rooms for the Tower of Magic still to come . . . .

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Done Observing?

The celestial map/globe on the left wall of the Observatory has been transferred to a bigger table which I think makes the left wall look much tidier (despite the fact the table is covered with assorted junk).  With this one change I'm now calling the Observatory finished.

 I'm still not too happy with all the expanse of bare floor - it makes it too easy to notice how badly the seam is joined and how badly the vellum bubbled and buckled when damp things like paint and glue were applied to it.  A rug isn't practical under an open roof and anything thicker than a rug will just get in the way when the astronomer wants to swing his telescopes around.  So it's finished.  For now.  Or maybe . . . .

Anyway, while I procrastinate over the Observatory, I am still working on the 48th scale house I showed you way back when I started the Observatory.

OK, so not much has changed since then.  I have added faux doors to connect the rooms and give the impression of rooms behind the visible part of the house.  Originally, I wanted to put a staircase in the Hall to connect the two levels of the house, but I am toying with the idea of not having stairs and pretending they are in the "back" of the house.  As nothing in this house has co-operated with me yet (did I mention the internal walls were installed backwards?) I think doing stairs would just be asking for (more) trouble.

I've made up the furniture kits that I bought when I bought the house kit but still have a lot of furniture to make from scratch.

I do love the Petite Properties kits though and must confess one of the main reasons I bought this house along with Le Petit Palais was so that I could have an excuse to buy the little X frame chair kit.  Aren't they so cute?  And so tiny.  One of the chairs fits nicely in Harry's hand.

 Outside, I've covered the walls in a brick paper.  To make another confession I've used the paper because I don't think I could make bricks from clay or another way that are small enough for the house.  I now have to paint a large number of very small windows and other details and hopefully this little house will start looking less like a derelict.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Star Tracking

With the Observatory nearing completion, the astronomers have arrived and lost no time getting down to work.

 The first astronomer is made of polymer clay and dressed in pinks and purples.

 He was made using a mould intended for use with porcelain, not polymer clay.  The mould actually worked really well, all his 'details' came out very clearly.  The one problem is that porcelain shrinks when it's fired, clay doesn't.  The result is that polymer clay doll made in the porcelain mould comes out slightly larger than 12th scale ought to be.  As you can see from the above photo he's half a head taller than 6" tall Harry, making him the equivalent of 6 1/2 - 7' tall with a big beefy build.  His size plus his outfit make him look like he should be taming bears in a circus rather than watching stars.

As the first astronomer is too large to fit in the seat of the telescope array, I added a second astronomer.  This fellow is a pre-bought porcelain doll, re-dressed and re-wigged.

The two astronomers also have a young assistant with lap desk and quill pen to write down all the observations dictated to her.

Since the last post, the furniture has moved about (again).  One day I'll put a room together and all the furniture will go in one place and stay there. . . . but I doubt it will be any day soon.  The chest of drawers (by Town Square Miniatures) holds spare telescopes as well as a number of books and papers.

So, does the Observatory look finished yet?  I think it needs something different on the left wall.  A bigger table?  A seat?  And the centre of the floor is too bare.  A rug isn't right, so maybe some sort of tiled medallion?  Or just more junk piled on top of it?