Thursday, July 31, 2014

Lounging in the Living Room

Welcome again to Seneca Cottage, and a special welcome to all of you who have chosen to follow me and written such kind comments.

Last visit, we were in the studio, this time, we can have a chat in the living room. As you can see, this is where the owners relax and entertain themselves.

All cosy on a Summer's evening

It is a large, airy room where there are books to read, chips to munch and games to play on the ancient computer and equally venerable laptop. I made the MacIntosh G3 out of polymer clay, copying my own, a few years ago. How many years ago? Well, if you look carefully at the pic, you will see floppy disks on top of the desk! The G3 MacBook was a makeover of a really cheap ($2.00) resin laptop that I bought at a show. I took a screen-shot of my desktop and then reduced it to fit both screens.

Antique Desk & Vintage Computer 

The kitten likes the comfy Bespaq sofa, although I think that he may have fleas. He is always scratching! 

Good books, comfy chair and snacks

Since it is Summer, the fireplace is sporting a fire-screen, which I made yesterday from a laser-cut kit which I purchased from one of my favourite suppliers of mini-goodies: Dragonfly International. It was such a nice change to spend a little time making a mini for myself, after having spent nearly 3 months designing and teaching workshops :-)

Dollhouse Fire-screen

I am very pleased with how the fire-screen turned out, this time…In a moment of inattention, I lopped off a chimney when cutting out the graphic, the first time I made the kit :-( Even though I tried, I couldn't camouflage the damage I had done, so I said a few rude words and ordered another kit. This time, I paid close attention to what I was doing! I just love the graphic of the row of vintage dollhouses and I think it fits in with the country-cottagey-antiquey feel of the place.

The original plan for the house partitioned off the stairs, which made the upper room really small and pokey. I could have gone the easy route of building a half-wall to surround the stairs, but no, I wanted railings. I had a heck of a time with them :-} I am not good with wood, I am not good with angles, but I am persistent, so eventually (after a lot of mumbling under my breath), I had my railings…

Wretched Railings

This is how the living room looks with the new fire screen. …

I moved the club chair to show the screen better. I will forget to put it back, if I don't do it now, so I think I will close and run downstairs to replace it :-)

Next Time: A peek in the bedroom.

Friday, July 25, 2014

In the (mini) Studio

Hello Everyone,

I really enjoyed our "little" kitchen party last week and I hope you all did too. It was a nice for me to get out of the studio for a while, but all good things must come to an end and I must get back to work, working-up workshops :-} Since I am going to be spending time in my RL studio, I thought you might like to see the studio in Seneca Cottage…

When I was decorating the house, I had no clue as to what this room would be because, being situated above the dining room (see previous post), it is just as narrow and "squidgy" with the added decorating nightmare of a steeply pitched ceiling. I kept the decor as simple as possible, just adding a strip of "border paper" (actually a strip cut from a full scale wallpaper sample that I found in my wonderful wallpaper sample book). I hoped it might become a guest bedroom and tried a bed for size, but it swamped the room, so what to do? Time for a Big Think and a cup of tea…Remembering that I  had some artists' paraphernalia in my collection, it dawned on me that this was a wonderful opportunity to put them on display. A cheap sideboard and stool were made to look suitably grungy, then I added all the artists' materials I had in my stash. I plonked a seriously peculiar-looking carpet on the floor and added an easel displaying a picture of the Lone Cypress, which I painted (in memory of a friend of ours who, before her death, painted the same scene for us in real life scale). An artist's portfolio propped against the wall, plus a few frames and "canvases" were the last things to be added before the mini studio was complete. I don't think the "owners" of Seneca Cottage miss the guest bedroom at all :-)

Back in the big studio, I am really looking forward to taking a break from designing workshops. I have been at it since May! I have nearly finished the samples for the two Gathering workshops and will be sending off the pics and info early next week. I am sorry, I won't be able give you a "sneak peek" of these: the Big Reveal will be on the Canadian Miniatures Gathering website in September. I promise to post a link ;-)

Well, it is back to recreating Venetian carnival masks for me…

Next Time: Relaxing in the living room and taking a nap!

Monday, July 21, 2014

A Piece of Cake

Hello again! I have just popped into the kitchen for a small splash of wine and I am delighted to see how many of my friends and followers have decided to drop in. Thank you all so much, it is lovely to see you :-) If anyone fancies something sweet, there is cake in the dining room…

It is a bit of a squeeze: the room is very narrow. I had a hard time finding furniture for it. At the time, a Canadian company called the Daisy House was producing wonderful kits and their Harvest Table and Harvest Benches just fit without looking too cramped. The benches seat four and the table has enough room for a nice display of "china"…

Glass in hand, I must get back to the studio but, in the meantime, help yourselves to a slice of Jacey Culham's luscious-looking carrot cake :-)

Next Time: A tour upstairs…