Sunday, October 31, 2010

Show and Tell

It has been a week since our big Convention (we only have one every two years). I am still absolutely shattered, but it was a great four days! I took the shabby cottage and it survived the trip ok - the only casualty was a beautiful little blue butterfly which blew out of the dollshouse when I was carrying it to the display hall, never to be seen again. I thought I would show you a photo of the little boy's room as it is now.... it's looking a lot more like a real room, with plenty of mess and toys everywhere!

I managed to find time to make the blinds and few more little cushions for this room. I did it the night before leaving for Convention.

I did manage to do a little bit of work on the shabby cottage before I left.....I also had all the displays and stock for my stall to prepare so I was pretty busy in the lead up to Convention. But I managed to find time to add some pretty decals to the toaster in the kitchen.

Now it is time for Show and Tell! I was quite a good girl at Convention and just bought a few little treasures to add to the shabby cottage.

I bought these gorgeous little toys for the little boy's room. The little pedal car and the castle are made by a New Zealand artist called Jewell Lewis. I added them to the shelves in the little boy's room.

I usually buy something from Jewell whenever I see her. Jewell also made the little teddy on the bottom shelf and the old fashioned golly money box that you can see in the photos - I bought them four years ago at a previous Convention. Jewell is so clever and a real character! In the photo above you can also see the little "Hornby" box I made for extra trainset bits and pieces.

I also bought a very pretty cake tin, also made by Jewell, decorated with pretty pansies.

This pretty flower arrangement was made by my friend Elizabeth. Such pretty colours! I bought these two little cushions from a lady visiting from Australia. She had filled them with seed beads, which I think is a fantastic idea. I'll try that for my next cushions because it makes them beautifully floppy and soft! They are trimmed with bunka, which looks great.

I also bought this gorgeous rusty metal bucket, filled with flowers. It is so pretty! I hope it doesn't fade, as I have put it outside the front door of the cottage.

The cute little resin bunnies were meant to be for sale in my shop but they decided to stay at the cottage instead.

While we were at Convention, it was my birthday, and my mother-in-law bought me these beautiful hand-made slippers as a birthday present. Lucky me! She spent the whole four days helping me, along with my lovely friend Ann-Maree, and it made such a difference having some help. I suspect that all three of us went home exhausted! I was so grateful to them both for helping me. Ann-Marree - thank you so much - I know you are lurking out there!

It was really nice to be able to see some other bloggers there. Marion, Mercedes and Frederika were there. I had made them each a little present (but I forgot to take photos), and I was so glad I had made the time to do that!

Finally, here is my most optimistic purchase over the weekend! I wanted a pretty little shabby chic cardigan to put in the white bedroom, but the only miniature knitting for sale was baby clothes, so I bought a pair of knitting needles and some thread and I will have a go at making something myself. AAAAarrrgghhh! It will probably make me pull my hair out but I will do my best! You never know what you can do until you try. Last time I attempted miniature knitting I chose an extremely complicated pattern (I am a great one for leaping in at the deep end), and then cast all my stitches off too soon and the shawl ended up too small to use. I will keep it simple this time and see how it goes.

I am hoping to have a bit more time from now on, as my work hours had dropped back to three days a week. And summer is coming! Yay!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Trying to get done for the show

I have been busy getting ready for our national Convention, which is held only every two years. I am taking the Shabby Cottage for the display area, so I need to get it a little bit more finished. Of course, there will still be a lot of little touches to be added as time goes by, but I didn't want it going to Convention with the little boy's room looking completely empty, so I have been trying to make it look a bit more lived in.

I bought some printable computer fabric (AND I got it here in NZ - I get a bit sick of having to order things in from overseas all the time, so I was delighted to find it in a NZ based online quilting shop. only took two days to arrive!!) I printed some gorgeous Kath Kidson and Greengate patterns and have made some cute little cushions, pillow and blinds for the shabby cottage. I really like the pillows on the little boy's bed! They are so cheerful. I think I will make some blinds to match. I am a huge fan of blinds (that's because I am so crappy at making curtains. I used a cute strawberry print for the blind in the kitchen.

I also used the unprinted edges of the fabric - the bit that was outside the margins - to make some plain white blinds for the bedroom. I had pictured beautiful diaphanous curtains here but the blinds will do for now and I can figure out the curtains later. I also made the little patterned cushion on the bed and the big square lace-edged pillow.

And this little cushion for the living room.

I had to take the shelves out of the little boys room and redo them - they were all wonky and the shelves were sloping and sagging. I pulled it all apart and sanded it back, then reglued it back together with some spacers in between the shelves to try and hold them straight. And at the same time some friends called round, so I was making cappucinos and talking at a million miles an hour, while hoping that it was all straight because the glue was drying. Another coat of white paint, and back in it went. On the shelves you can see all his toys....he even has a tiny rock collection like my "real" boy! And lots of books, but I need to make more - I want to make some old-looking Biggles books, as my own Matthew really likes reading those! That will have to be done after Convention.

This is the table in the boy's room....he loves nature and butterflies and you can see that he has all sorts of things that interest him on his little table.

Thank you all for coming to visit my blog - I love reading your comments! Wish me luck at Convention!!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens

I am so delighted with this beautiful bead curtain!! I have always had a cunning plan to make a bead curtain for this little cottage but of course haven't found the time up until now. Recently, I went to a dollshouse show at my old club, and while I was admiring my friend Lynn's wonderful miniature holiday home (or bach, as we call them here in NZ), I saw that she had a multicoloured bead curtain hanging at the door. There really are no new ideas under the sun!! She told me where she got it, and when I went and had a look, there was one in white and pink. It arrived a couple of days ago and I just love it! It fits in beautifully.

The first picture was taken with the lights on in the living room, so it has a definite pink cast (which I like so I have shown you anyway). The above photo taken from the kitchen shows the colour a bit more realistically. I am so glad I have found this curtain because I am really short of time at present!

I am working on the little boy's room now. I must say, I don't think I have made my job much easier for myself by having a boy's room in a shabby chic cottage.....a little girl's room would have been a darn sight easier! But there you are, this girl loves a challenge!!

I have made some built in shelves, which you can see in the background, and here is a gorgeous little train set I have had stashed away for ages. It wouldn't stay together at all until I glued all the pieces of track to a piece of very thin acetate. I glued the train on the track, and then cut the acetate away so that you couldn't see it. If you look closely you will see I have done a crappy job of the trimming - I'll come back to that job later. The "station" by the track is a lovely little "dollshouse for a dollshouse" made by Twelfth Dimension. I bought it a long time ago and am glad to have found it a good home. The little pull toy dog that you can see in the background was bought at the same time, and is identical to a real one my father bought me when I was three.

I am taking this little cottage to a big dollshouse show in two weeks time so I have a bit of work to do in the next two weeks, that's for sure!!

I haven't been able to get hold of Marta, who won the giveaway, so if any of you can help me make contact with her, that would be wonderful. I had a similar problem with the last giveaway....don't know why!!!