Here is the "S" for my ABChallenge -- a miniature fall-front secretary. Somebody was giving this away at my miniatures group a while back -- "it needs a bit of TLC," she admitted, as the lid was broken where the pin hinges were, but I managed to get enough wood-filler in that I could make it hold together again. It doesn't really want to lie flat when open, but maybe I can either weight it down with something or just leave it closed. Susan D and I had been exchanging e-mails around that time about making miniature books, so I did these blocks --
They are a bit wobbly along the tops and bottoms, but I put the best one in the middle, so that with the doors closed, most of the wobbliness is hidden!
And the rest of my "10th of the month" miniatures update --
A very sweet enameled tea pot that was originally a bracelet charm, but surely is meant to be on a tea tray somewhere!
Someone was giving this away, too, at another minis meeting a few months ago -- I could hardly resist "Railroad Depot Bench," could I!
It went together fairly easily, though the back piece was slightly chipped on one corner -- I wanted it to look old anyway, so that was no problem. The only worrisome moment was when the back piece, which is a very thin piece that you glue the battens on, apparently sucked out all of the moisture from the glue, and because it is so thin it didn't have much surface area along the bottom edge to stick to the cross-piece at the bottom, and promptly warped out to the back so much that I could easily have stuck my finger into the gap. But I found some pieces of scrap wood in the garage that fit almost exactly on either side of the back, and clamped them together and left them to sit overnight, and luckily it was almost as good as new in the morning.
The instructions said that maroon was the traditional color, but I didn't really like the rather orangey look of the one craft paint I found actually called "Maroon," and so I used "Red Barn" instead. I obviously need some practice getting a smooth coat of the clear finish on.
It's now roughed up a bit, with some scratches and wearing-off of paint -- even, I'm sorry to say --
I have also been slowly painting the dollhouse itself. The room on the left is going to be mother's sewing room, and I've removed the wallpaper -- which I liked but was peeling off a little too much -- and painted it with FolkArt's Milk Paint in a really charming "Churned Butter" palest yellow. The library in this picture had just had the first coat of Milk Paint in "Jamestown Blue," which here looks alarmingly seedy but after a second coat is extremely pretty. To be honest, I really hate the copper-colored fireplace hoods, and as I was priming this room -- two coats, to try and cover up that very 70s-looking kelly green -- I thought, "oh, the heck with it" and painted over the hood as well. We'll see. It looks kind of truncated now, but maybe I can disguise that with a mirror or something!
The breakfast room downstairs, after removing the faux wallpaper and sanding off the remnants of glue -- glue stick, I suspect, and not easy to get off, as the paper fuzz was very recalcitrant.
It's funny, in my callow youth I probably wouldn't have given this color a second glance, thinking most neutrals a waste of time, but now I find this one really beautiful -- it's Martha Stewart's "Lake Fog," a sort of beige or sand with a hint of grey in it.
(No, I'm not masking off the woodwork. It's really hard at 1:12 scale, trying to get a piece of masking tape to stick on the edge of a piece of baseboard that's protruding only 3/32 of an inch. I found that it was actually less stressful to just do without, and run a fine brush along the edge very slowly. There certainly are some wobbles, but on the whole it is working pretty well.)