Sunday, December 8, 2019

Time to Get Real

I love Christmas. Today I will decorate the tree. Most people I know already have their trees up, but for me this is the weekend. When I was working, this was the last weekend of the semester when I was furiously grading final college essays and assigning final grades, which was done electrically and so stressful. I couldn't even think of Christmas--shopping, baking, or decorating--until I had my school work done.

With all that there is to do in the real world to prepare for the holidays, I find myself easily distracted by the minis. I really had intended to just put a few decorations on the Pink House. It has a pink tree and a pink poinsettia and that is the extent of its holiday cheer. I was going to make a Christmas tree for the upstairs den, but got frustrated. Then I decided on a tree for the Bellingham. The Pink House didn't need a second tree.

I didn't do a very elegant job with the tree; it has blinking lights ordered from in England. A bit too flashy for me, but they will do.

Next I wanted to make some packages for the little pink tree and found a tutorial on how to make tiny bows, which I thought I'd share my version with you.

 Securing a sewing needle in one of my spongy sanding blocks, I was ready to begin. It's about 5/8 " tall, which determines the size of the loops of the bow.

Using 1/8" ribbon, I began threading it on the needle, one loop at a time, working back and forth.

I measured the length of each loop against the needle to get consistent sizes.

In between each layer, I added a dab of white glue to hold in-between  the loops to hold them in place. The original tutorial suggested that fabric glue might saturate the fabric ribbon too much, so I used just enough tacky glue to hold the ribbon in place, pushing down with each loop to apply enough pressure to make the glue take hold. 

Once I had enough loops, I finished with a final dab of glue and let the bow rest to allow the glue to set. Once the glue had dried, I removed the bow from the sanding block and from the needle. I cut the ribbon just long enough to fold it over using tweezers to make the top button loop.

I posted the tutorial on Face Book group Dollhouse Miniatures Tutorials and DYI, and some followers made the bows; many finding the center button too difficult. One lady who thought that making the tiny center loop was so difficult--and it is--cleverly substituted a tiny jewel, making the bow elegant and pretty.

 I experimented with the packages; first using foam board that I can never cut even, so I cut balsa wood blocks for smoother edges.

While I made the packages for my mini tree, I gave them to Lily, who has already decorated her house.

With a bow making technique under control, I decided to decorate the fireplaces in the Bellingham, doin the bedroom fireplace.

I finally found wire based pine boughs that I could bend and shape. From my stash I was able to decorate the garland. I especially like the blue beads because they came from my mother's sewing stash so many years ago. My mom would have loved the dollhouses. The deer is one that I embossed. Using a toothpick and wood in my stash, I made a modern looking statue. The angel is a tree decoration. 

I made more bows for the stair banister, which was hard to photograph. In fact the photos of the Bellingham are all rough because there is so little space between the back of the house and the wall--just enough to work in-- so the lighting is poor.

I am wanting to learn how to use polymer clay to make foods, but for now I've collected some commercially made food stuffs. While my houses may not have people in them, they alway have a cat and the cats always do what cats do: think about jumping on the table. This guy is not different.

I began ordering candies from Etsy then realized that I have a well stocked general store in the bedroom, so I purchased some candies, saving me the expense of buying jars. I had already purchased the polymer rods to cut candies, which I'll save for another day. I did buy the ribbon candy, a childhood favorite just because it is so colorful.

Packages are beginning to arrive. No porch pirates here. I printed and folded the box. It was my practice box made from computer paper, but it works.

The Bellingham is the Texas Farmhouse, so the succulent collection is on the second floor balcony will winter there because of the mild climate they--hopefully--won't freeze. 

As you can see the Bellingham isn't finished. I really am procrastinating the roofing job. 

There's more that I could do to decorate the Bellingham, but I have to get back to reality. I go downstairs to get something and don't come back for hours because I'm so easily distracted. with the minis.

I have decided that making really good and authentic Christmas decorations for the houses must be a summer project. I've go plenty in my stash to work on them over the summer. Now it is time to get real.

Finally, the San Franciscan has been delivered to its new home. I was never so glad to get it on its way. There is still a lot of work to be done, but daughter Jennifer will have all the fun. I had to make so many modifications that hopefully will be covered when Jen gets to work on it. 

She is a very busy mother of three girls. The two older ones are in 4-H and she is the leader. They keep very busy with their projects. They all do leather work, including mom who is very talented. The two older girls have their horses that they show and Elinore and little Lily show their rabbits. I really am wondering if Jen will have time to work on her house. I hope so. 

I hope to  have one more post before Christmas, so today I will wish you a joyous season of holiday preparation an hope to see your mini holiday displays and your real ones, too. 

Joy and Peace

Thanks so much for visiting. 

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