Friday, May 15, 2015


I am a bad blogger and I apologize for the long silence.  I took a long break after the craft show in March and then decided to turn my creative attention to painting.  I used to paint as a child but am only returning to it now in earnest.

I am still only learning watercolour and find it both frustrating and very rewarding.  The first painting is  part of a building in the main square in Hallstatt, Austria visited many years ago.  

 The two flower paintings are from flowers and blossom picked in my garden this spring.

Painting, for me, is a deeply personal affair and I have to feel emotionally connected to my subject matter.  I have a long long list of places that hold significance for me and reference photos I took over the years to help me remember them.  Hopefully I will be able to paint a good few of these before the summer is over.  At the same time I have an even longer list of flowers and plants that I want to paint.  I think I will be busy!

Friday, February 27, 2015

Local Craft Fair

There is a reason for my long silence.  My mini work was put on hold abruptly just before Christmas.  Firstly I realised I was way behind with my handmade Christmas presents and then right after Christmas a friend asked me to help with a charity craft fair which is taking place next week.  

Because of the tight deadline and the fact that we got a donation of a large number of balls of wool (which had to be knit up!!) I have been working flat out for the last 8 weeks.  Thank Goodness for Pinterest and the inspiration available on the internet.  I am so grateful to the many talented people out there who make their patterns available and share their ideas.  Here is some of what I have made:
Lots of baby items – booties, blankets and comforters
A basket full of little pocket gnomes
And other assorted ‘softies’
Some hats, gloves, knitted necklaces and scarves
Lots of greeting cards of all types
and finally a few little Easter decorations
We are all hoping that the Fair is a success.  I am just looking forward to a rest!

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Mini Winter Display

 A friend introduced me to these sweet little display stands.  I am going to make a set of one for each season.  This is my winter display.  

 The idea is that it is wintery rather than Christmassy. 

 The little deer is vintage and came from America.

The sledge is made from wood and Bristol board which I got from the US.  The visible paint brush strokes on the Bristol board turned out well and look like real wood! 

This is a way of displaying some of my little clothespin dolls which I used to make and sell on Etsy as well as other bits and pieces which do not fit neatly into my miniature world. 

Wishing everyone a very Happy Christmas!

Friday, December 12, 2014

Miniature Christmas Room

I started this Christmas Room last year but got sidetracked with real life and did not manage to finish it until this year.  There are battery operated lights in the tree which look really festive at night.

 Not a great photo, but it gives some idea how this looks as night.  

Sunday, October 19, 2014

The plumbers have left

Here is the completed kitchen including the new kitchen sink unit.  

Originally I considered using a half walnut shell for the sink but it just looked too ‘twig furniture’.  Next I considered a Belfast sink but thought this was not fitting for a fairy woodland cottage  so instead I hollowed out a wooden sink from a solid piece of wood and sunk it into the worktop.  I am pleased with how the bands of grain are running in the sink, it emphasises the rounded shape. 

The handmade tap is again designed to look non-commercial and rather basic.  It is made from a bent nail, some wood scraps and miscellaneous jewellery findings painted in pewter.  

The feet of the unit are the only twiggy part – they are made from small acorn cups. 

I added a little stone hearth in front of the neighbouring stove to catch any stray sparks when it is burning.

Here is some bread the fairy has baked in her new oven!

Altogether I am much happier with the kitchen now and so far I have stuck to my aim of only using my existing materials and not buying anything new.  Not sure how long that will last though!!

Friday, October 10, 2014

The builders are back....

Ivy Lodge has sat untouched for many months.  I had started on a kitchen but something was holding me back from going any further.  I was just not happy with it.  The look was veering into ‘shabby chic’ territory instead of being a woodland home for a fairy.  But I do not want to have a ‘twig furniture' look either! So I got out my tools and started to make changes.

I wanted to remove as much of the painted wood as possible and replace it with bees waxed natural wood.  Unfortunately there are some elements that I cannot change without rebuilding the entire structure so there will be compromises.

I started by covering the white edges of the staircase with real wood veneer to give the staircase a more wooden solid look.   I then added a carved column near the base to give a little feature to the stairs. 

This is mirrored by the same style bannister at the top of the stairs where I built a little balustrade.  There will be no bannisters on the stairs themselves because they would take up too much visual room.  Skirting boards have been added.

I then took off the white border surrounding the sunken bookcase.  I sanded it back to the original wood and embossed it with a scrolling leaf design.  I added a wooden strip to the shelf edging.

The previous kitchen alcove and kitchen was just too angular and modern.  I removed the white painted architrave surrounding the alcove and replaced it with a curved arch of natural wood which I again embossed with a scrolling design similar to that on the bookcase opposite it. 

The original kitchen was just not right.  I was being impatient when I made it and did not attend to those vital details.  It looked too 'built-in' and did not fit my woodland theme.  So I have started again. This time the flickering fire part remains open with a small grate at the front.  The fire’s stone surround is made from air-dried clay.  Above the fire is a little oven (to bake fairy cakes in!!) and then a hob with 'Aga-style' lift up lid. 

I made the hob lid out of a wooden disc with the hinges made from Fimo and wire.  The handle of the lid is made from the coiled wire you get on some earring findings. The hinges on the oven door are made from lead stripping.  There is a flue at the back leading to the chimney outside. (The bottle is made from the tip of a surgical syringe with 'cork' made from a cocktail stick) 

The little flickering fire looks really cosy by night!

The kitchen/sink unit is next to be built beside the oven in the alcove.  The full alcove can be seen in this picture below.  It will be freestanding and on legs to make sure it does not have a ‘built-in’ feeling.  I have various ideas which I will play with over the next week or so. After that the shelves will be filled and more details added.  Then the dresser/hutch will be remodelled.

In the meantime this is how the little fairy tree stump house is looking.