Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Working This Style...

Working on a bunch of wood items, this is the style I'm going for right now. Kinda primitive, country with a little shabby. Most of my items will be painted (that's where the shabby comes in). I'm loving everything on this truck!
LOVE!

Monday, December 28, 2015

Martha Stewart Magazine...

Good Things

Winter 2016
I want to share some exciting news with you. Back in July, we were on a road trip headed to Disneyland when I got an Etsy "convo" from an editor of a magazine. She wanted to know if I would like to have my miniature dollhouse pillows featured in the "Good Things" section of their magazine. Now keep in mind, I had Disney on the brain. She mentioned that the photo shoot was August 4th and they would need the items before then. I responded with a happy "yes" and "I will follow up when I return home from vacation". I was NOT thinking Martha, even though there was a "Good Things" reference.

I shared the news with my hubby, who asked me to read the "convo". Now this time, I noticed the subject line, "Martha Stewart Weddings". Oh my, this was the editor of the magazine contacting me for my miniatures to be featured in the "Good Things" section of a Martha Stewart Weddings Magazine! I could feel my heart beginning to beat with excitement! Not only did she want my miniatures, but she purchased a few things. I was so excited!

The section will show how you can use miniatures in your wedding. She thought using my little pillows as a ring carrier in tiny little hands would be a nice way to utilize this idea... (me too!). When we returned home, I packed the items she purchased, along with a few extras and rushed them to New York.

My little hand knitted pillows
Now here's the hard part. A few weeks later, a Weddings Magazine came out. My husband and I were out for an evening when we noticed a bookstore. We rushed inside, scanned the magazine rack for the new "Weddings Magazine".  We sat down on a comfy sofa, page by page we began looking for those little pillows. No pillows, maybe it just didn't happen. To make me feel better, my husband said, "maybe it was too early to get them photo'd and put into the magazine, let's see what happens next issue." I left the bookstore feeling a little disappointed.

A few weeks passed, still no word from "Martha". I wanted to contact the editor, but did not want to seem anxious, so I let a few more weeks pass. "Okay, I'm going to do it!" I sent a nice little "convo" to the editor asking "how did the photo shoot go?".  Two or threes days passed (feeling blah about it), when I got a nice little email from a "Martha Stewart Weddings Fact Checker". Oh my, it is going to happen! There were a few questions about my pillows and a cute little picture…back to being excited!!!!

I was told the items will be in the Winter 2016 "Weddings Magazine". I am most proud of this because my wonderful mother hand knits and sews these little pillows for my shop. Even though they will be listed under fabulouslyflawedminiatures, it is her perfection that makes these little pillows special. Love mom.

Picked up the magazine today, and there were the pillows…feeling happy:).

My little pillows in Martha Stewarts Weddings Magazine, Winter 2016

I love the caption for the pillows

Friday, December 11, 2015

Productive Week...

Ending the week out with this miniature dollhouse shelf unit with a rusted screen door. I am working on a collection of wood pieces for the beginning of the year that I will add to my Etsy shop. I still have a few adjustments to make, but I'm am happy with it. It is painted with Annie Sloan Duck Egg and lightly distressed.

I had a pretty productive week, completing 2 larger shelf units, 3 wall shelves, 1 bench and several "Reclaimed Wood" signs…all mini :). Feeling happy.

Have a wonderful weekend,
Anita

Miniature Dollhouse Vintage Inspired Shelf Unit

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Free Standing Wood Shelf…

Just finished this free stand shelf with baskets today. I think it is multi functional and can be used in the kitchen, dining or bedroom of your mini home (lots of room to add accessories) It is painted with Annie Sloan Old White and delicately distressed. The are two shelf baskets for mini storage and a Reclaimed Wood Sign.
Will have this look in a few colors. Coming soon to fabulouslyflawedminiatures!



Free Standing Shelf with wood sign and baskets

Free Standing wood Shelf with sign and baskets
by
fabulouslyflawedminiatures



Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Reclaimed Wood Signs...

While the glue and paint is drying on the larger projects, I always try to work on a few signs. This time, Miniature Reclaimed Wood Signs, all part of the 2016 wood line I'm working on for the beginning of the year.

Below are a few that made the cut (yep,  had to toss a few). I plan on selling some as is, maybe some with a rusted hanger and I will also include some as a decorative item on a few of the furniture projects I'm working on.


Miniature Dollhouse Reclaimed Wood Signs
by
fabulouslyflawedminiatures

Playing around with difference colors 

Saturday, December 5, 2015

New Work for 2016...

I am really excited to be working on a bunch of wood projects for the beginning of the year. I will have wall shelves, benches, cupboards, pie safes and dressing tables. Most of the pieces are painted with Annie Sloan Chalk paints in wonderful colors. Some of the shelves will have wall paper or paneling backing. They all will have slight variations. I am most excited about my new vintage style wood signs.
It took a minute to figure out how to make them, but now that I have the hang of it, I am sure there will be lots of signs.

Here's a peek:


There will variations of all the wood work items I am creating…so excited!

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

More Cricut Testing with Deep Cut Housing and Blade...

I received my deep cut housing and blade, as well as the 24 inch mat. I mostly work with Basswood 1/16 thickness and I want so badly for this machine to cut this type of wood. It did a fairly good job with the standard blade, but I had to run an Xacto knife through the wood after the cut to get the shapes to release.
Today I installed the deep cut housing and blade, put my wood strip on the mat and ran the machine. The machine cut the wood fine. Initially there was a problem, as my settings were incorrect. The machine did stop. I am not sure if it stopped because of the incorrect setting (the blade was slightly cutting the mat) or because Cricut was uploading updates. (more about the software in a few).

Below you will see how I set up the wood and mat, as well as the final cuts. I'm super happy with this machine and I can visualize tons of ideas using it. So far it is working great for the simple shapes I need for my projects. I am not sure how the motor will stand up to time, but I think it is worth the risk.

Thinks to know before you buy: 

  • If you are creating your own designs, it is better to do them in Illustrator and export them to the Cricut Design Space software. Learning the Cricut software is fairly simple (there are tons of youtube tutorials)
  • Cricut Design Space software cannot be installed on your computer. You must have internet access to operate the software. You can only make your cuts from their software program. (That means, no internet access, no cuts)
  • You will need additional accessories for cutting wood. Deep cut housing/blades and longer mats.
  • I am cutting this type of wood at my own risk. Before purchasing the machine, I did tons of research and could not find any sites, blogs, craft people cutting this type of wood with this machine. The Cricut company does not have this type of wood on their cutting list.
Update: December 3, 2015
I ran a few more cuts this morning. I have concluded that if you are using basswood, there will always be a need to run an Xacto knife through your cuts. I'm afraid of over burdening the Circuit motor, so I did not use the highest setting. I'm okay with that, as my cuts are precise and match up beautifully.

Here are photos of my test using the deep cut housing and blade:
Cricut Deep Cut Housing and Blade(additional purchase)

24 inch long Cutting Mat(additional purchase)

1/16 Basswood on cutting mat (machine loaded)

A Cricut Mistake (The machine stopped after this cut, I changed the setting and it worked fine)

The final cuts (I may have placed my shapes a little too close)

Almost all of the shape released like this one. (I did use my Xacto to clean up a few areas)

The final cuts…(if I don't blow the motor out, I think I may be in LOVE!)

Monday, November 30, 2015

Cricut Explore Air Testing...

I've been testing cuts on the new Cricut Explore Air I purchased this weekend. I mainly purchased the machine so that I can easily cut basic shapes for the wood work that I do. I thought it would allow for more precise cuts, less sanding and I can create several items at one time. So far I am super impressed with the results I have gotten from this cutter.

Today I ran a few test on Balsa and Bass wood. I like the results. Keep in mind that I am using the standard blade that came with the machine. I have ordered the deep cut housing and blades, so I am assuming I will get even better results once I have installed the "correct" blade.

Results based on this test: The Cricut Explore Air does a great job making precise cuts to simple shapes. Using the standard blade, a deep pressure setting and running the machine around each shape 5 times still did not produce cuts that went through the 1/16 thick wood, but with a little help from a sharp Xacto knife the shapes easily released.

Next Test - Deep Housing unit with Deep Cut Blade

Testing Photos...
Balsawood, Deep Pressure Setting with 5 runs using the standard blade.


Balsawood purchased from
Michaels
After the Cricut Cut. The little dots are from rods that hold the material in place. I tried to move them, but
it seems as though they are glued in position (can lightly sand, as they are not deep)
The cut did not go through the back of the wood, keep in mind that I am using the standard blade and housing.
I will test again once I receive the deep cut housing and blade. 

After I ran a sharp Xacto knife through the cuts, the shapes popped right out. 
Close up of the Balsa cuts using the Cricut Explore Air (standard blade) with the help of a super
sharp Xacto knife. 
…………………………………………………………………………………………………………

This is when I started getting really excited. The Basswood cuts are GREAT! Again, this is using the standard blade.

Basswood, Deep Pressure Setting with 5 runs using the standard blade.

Basswood purchased from Michaels

I used painters tape at the ends to avoid the wood from moving while cutting…just in case. 

After the Cricut Explore cuts…just PERFECT, less dots too! 



Back side of Basswood after cutting with standard blade. Used my sharp Xacto knife, gently following the
cuts. The shapes popped out. 
Super clean shapes.

Close up….SUPER HAPPY MINIATURE ARTIST!

Sunday, November 29, 2015

My New Machine...

I've been thinking hard about what tools I could use to help with my wooden projects. There are a few things I put on my Christmas list; a scroll saw and a belt sander. But, I really want something that would easily cut simple shapes like squares, rectangles and circles in various sizes.

I started thinking of ways I could make wooden cuts more precise and it dawned on me…a die cutting machine! For the last few days, including a 6 hour drive to Los Angeles and a 6 hours drive back to the Bay Area, I researched, watched videos, visited forums, compared machines until I couldn't any more.

By the time we arrived home, I decided on a machine called the Silver Bullet. It is super awesome, but at a price of 1300.00 for the smaller machine and accessories, it's a little steep.

I started wavering back and fourth on my decision. Although the Silver Bullet is the "king" of die cutters, I probably would not use it to its max and I still want the sand belt (not sure if I will need the scroll saw if I get the cutter).

I kept going back to the less expensive Cricut Explore Air. There are tons of wonderful reviews, it's one thousand dollars cheaper, I can purchase it locally (no shipping fees), and it would serve the purpose of what I need a cutter for. I quickly talked myself out of the Silver Bullet, headed to Michaels, purchased the Cricut Explore Air and within 1 hour, I was cutting Basswood. I am ecstatic!

Regarding the basswood, the machine (using the normal blade) did not cut all the way through 1/16 basswood, but I ran an Xacto knife through the cuts and the shapes came out with no problem.

There is a "deep cutting" blade and housing that I just ordered. Once I receive these items, I will test again to see if the cuts go through the 1/16 basswood. I am still happy that I can create my designs, import them into the Cricut software and have precise cuts.

I can imagine many uses for this machine using different types of materials and intricate cuts for my mini creations. I am super excited about this purchase!

*Once I receive the correct deep cutting housing unit, I will update this page.


Cricut Explore Air

Basswood cuts using the Cricut Explore Air using the normal blade. Had to run the Xacto knife through the cut.
Waiting for the Deep Cut Housing and Blade to test again.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Wonderful Wall Shelves...

Just completed this set of nine miniature dollhouse wall shelves. They are painted with wonderful colors and slightly distressed with a rusted rod and hanging towel. The towels can easily be removed (not glued, unless requested).
I have them all listed in Etsy…now I must go clean my "real" house!
Have a great weekend.
Anita

New Wall Shelves in wonderful distressed colors.
Wall Shelf with hanging towel.

Close up of hanging towel

Shelf without the towel can be used all over your mini home.


Thursday, November 19, 2015

A Simple Towel Tutorial…

How to Make a Miniature Dollhouse Towel out of Fabric

While my towels are drying in the sun. I thought it would I would make a simple tutorial on how I make them. I'm sure the pros have already figured this out, but for the newbies starting out in miniature making, these are fun to make.

Here's are the final results:
Completed Towel Made from Cotton Fabric
(Close up)
A nice addition to a wall shelve
Used towel hanging on shelf



Here's what you need:
Cotton or Linen Fabric
Craft Glue
Scissors
Straight Pens
A Styrofoam board
Strong Hold Hair Spray


Cotton and Linen work well for this project
Strong Hold Hair Spray














Steps:
Cut your fabric in a rectangle that measures 1inch x 2inches.
Tip: Sometimes the sides will fray, it's okay to cut the width a little wider and size it after fraying.

Cut rectangle 1inch x 2 inches
Grab a piece of the fabric thread at one end and pull, keep grabbing threads until you achieve the amount of fraying you want. Repeat this step at the other end.
Fray both ends
Pre-fold the sides, add a little glue to seal and fold again, so the towels are nice and neat.
Glue sides and turn over
This is what your towel should look like once you have completed the above steps…pretty easy, right?
Completed towel
 Here's the towel nicely folded. A stack would look great in your mini kitchen or bath.
Nicely folded and ready for the shelve or linen closet.

A handful of towels almost ready for the shelves.
You can make your towels look like they have been used too. (A tip from the LibertyBiberty blog). Wet your towel, lay it down on styrofoam and pin the creases. Spray with super hold hair spray and let it dry.
Water bath, pinned and hairspray to keep shape.
 Remember that handful, here they are drying in the sun.
Drying in the sun.
This is the final result.
Enjoy :)
The finished "used" towel hanging on a shelf.