Saturday, December 31, 2011

20-30% off Sale @ PRD Miniatures

Paris and Lisa Renfroe are kicking off 2012 with a storewide sale up to 30% off until January 10th at I am drooling over the new Cole Entertainment Console from PRD Miniatures. I could design an entire room around that red; the suspended wire in the metal base is simply blowing my mind. The new LCD Flat screen TVs are really cool, and I'm digging these Nested Coffee Tables.

Paris has added a ton of new accessories, picture frames, driftwood sculptures, and more under the Decorative Accents section of his website, that would look great in any room. I think I need one of everything. You can check out all of 100 plus new items on PRD here.

(all image from

Thursday, December 15, 2011

I'm a Giant crazy person

It has been a mad dash to the finish line, but for now, all I can say is PHEW!!!

After more snafus (I'll tell ya later), the Fashion House was in one piece Tuesday night (the 13th) at 11pm. I ransacked all of my minis and started decorating. At 2am, I tore the garage to pieces trying to find my mini rugs (we moved a few months ago and I haven't unpacked everything yet). After 20 minutes of pillaging, I found my rugs in the bottom of the last box. Sigh. After many variations and changes these are the final rooms I came up with. Most of the minis are PRD miniatures or minimodernistas along with accessories I've made and other ebay/dollhouse show items. By 4am I was able to take pictures (I'll post more later) for the challenge and contest. Then I cleaned up the giant mess before the kids woke up at 6:30am. After 2 hours of sleep I packed our bags and the kids and we flew cross country for the holidays. I am still tired. I wish I had more time with the house, but I won't see it for a few weeks. I will post more details when I return, as internet access is limited out here in the sticks.

Emily, thank you for the motivation, but I'm so glad the challenge is over. HBS Miniatures, my contest submission is on its way.

Now to enjoy visiting family for the holidays. I'll post more pictures when I can.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Giant Tears

Since my last update, I finished cutting out the second story walls and floor. It took about a week of nights in the garage after the kids were asleep to paint and add the windows.

Thursday night, I was finally ready to assemble. I glued and clamped up the ground floor. First problem - my sliding doors are 1/8" but the wood from the kit was just shy of 1/4" so the upper track I added to hold the doors in place, snapped off when the doors overlapped to open. I'm going to replace two of the four panels with 3/32" and that should give enough room for everything to move smoothly. The big disaster came the next morning. The glue didn't hold. It cracked when I moved it and one wall fell down and another was disconnected.

I assumed I didn't clamp well enough, so for the second floor, I clamped the heck out of it on Friday night. I used almost every clamp we had. But come Saturday, despite being super clamped, the long wall was only connected to the floor a quarter of the length. After some Giant tears, I read the back of the wood glue bottle, and it recommends 45 degrees or higher. It was definitely closer to 40 degrees in the garage, so I think it was too cold for the glue to set properly. Tonight, I brought both floors inside and am praying the warmer temperature will set the glue properly this time.
At this point I figured I would be a lot further along. I'm not sure I'll finish in time, but I haven't thrown in the towel yet.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

East Bay Mini Meet Up


It's been a while since the last Bay Area meet up, and Doris (minimodernistas) just moved to town, so if you are near Oakland next Sunday, December 11th and want to join us for lunch or coffee email me at modernminifan @ (remove spaces).

Carol, I promise we'll meet up in the East Bay again when you are back.

Email me if you can meet up with us and I'll send you location details.

Gluing away...

The last two walls of the main floor are done. Framing the windows is taking a lot longer than I expected, but it is looking better than I imagined so that's a plus. I still have no idea what I'm going to do for the door, but I have to get building the second floor. I'm worried the plan was too ambitious with the time remaining, but I'm hoping I can pull some late nights to get it finished. Clock is ticking.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Update on the Fashion House

My husband came up with the great suggestion of finishing the walls before I assemble the dollhouse. Paint is finally dry and I'm starting to put in the windows. The windows are much easier to install on a flat surface, and once walls are finished it should be pretty quick to glue the house together.

I bought some styrene strips that I'm cutting to size to make the windows, along with custom cut acrylic window panes from Tap Plastics. I really need to get a glue syringe for the small spaces. It's globbed out a few times and smeared on the "glass" so I'll have to figure out how to clean that up.
My lack of painting skills and color choice has been problematic. I painted all of the interior walls white before deciding on the exterior. I used a textured black paint that looks like concrete for the exterior, but I managed to get several black spots on the white when moving from my painting area to drying area. So I had to sand and repaint most of the white walls. UGH. I hate painting. For the exterior trim, I gave up and used a black marker instead of paint; finally a step where I don't have to wait for paint to dry.

Two walls done. Several more to go. These two won't connect, but I propped the walls up to feel a bigger sense of accomplishment. I knew this was going to take some time, but waiting for paint to dry has been slooooooooooow.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Dylan House & Furniture + Free Shipping on sale at Fab

Hey hey, brinca dāda is on The Emerson sold out but the Dylan House is selling for $164 with free shipping to the US and includes the furniture.

"brinca dāda’s Dylan House is inspired by the minimalist masterpieces of Paul Rudolph and Tadao Ando—it has a concrete-and-glass feel combined with the breezy openness of a beachfront home. It features floor-to-ceiling windows and five living spaces on three levels: a living room/dining room, kitchen, bedroom, bathroom and even a roof patio. But what’s a house like this without the proper decor? We’re throwing in a free set of 23 pieces of ultra modern matching Dylan furniture—a $15 value—as well as free shipping!

Assembly required. Only non-toxic and lead-free wood stains and paints used. Suggested for children ages 3+. Furniture set includes dining set, bedroom set, living room set, kitchen appliances, bathtub, commode and a patio set. Additional furniture sold separately."

All details from

Makeshift tools of the trade

We don't have a table saw or jig saw, so my husband has helped me set up makeshift jigs for our router to cut windows and trim wood. I've made a few mistakes, but I have to keep reminding myself, "it's just a dollhouse". For now its working out, but I am realizing how having the right tools makes all the difference.

I picked up this metal gluing jig from Earth and Tree Miniatures, and it has been really useful. I'm making the staircase out of one inch acrylic bar. At this rate it's going to be the best part of the house. For now I'm calling it the Fashion House. More to report after paint dries.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Thumbs up for Dylan House by brinca dada

My Realitty loaned me her Dylan House by brinca dada after the Good Sam Show (so yes these photos are a month old, par for the course). I had a really limited time slot to work with; I spent one evening in my garage unpacking and digging through miniatures to use in the house. The next day I had an hour and half while the kids were sleeping before we had to be at a party. I balanced a stool, boxes of furniture, accessories, tape, camera on top and carried everything from my garage, across the street to the marsh wetlands in front of our house on the bay. It was easily 150 yards. Bad idea to do it by myself. My arms were about to fall off and I was freaked out I was going to trip and drop everything. By the time I carried it out there, I had 20 minutes to set everything up and take photos before I had pack it up and hike back. I got a lot of odd looks from people biking and walking by, and a bark attack by a dog that didn't like seeing the walking boxes. Oh and the WIND! I almost got my socks knocked off. I gave up on adding more accessories, because they kept blowing over. I was a sweaty mess by the time I made it home, but I think the pictures were worth it. Come inside and take a look.

The living room set, couch, chair, coffee table and side table are from Maryann Roy. Pillows and room divider from minimodernistas. Low modern dresser from ebay. Rug is fabric sample My Realitty. Accessories from PRD Miniatures and Good Sam Show purchases.

I made a false wall for the back of house to "wallpaper" all of the rooms, as the back is entirely open for access. The kitchen counter is two wood samples from My Reallity on top of cardboard with a tinfoil sink, very low tech, but I was short on time. Table is IKEA. Tulip chairs are Modern MC. Lamp and red plate on wall are My Realitty. Stove, pots, pans, side table are Mighty World, I can't believe I finally got use out of my Philippe the Chef set.

I was also surprised that the Kaleidoscope House bathroom set fits great in the 3/4" scale. Shelf and planter boxes are from minimodernistas (one I filled with plants from craft store). Ceiling light is scrap from Tap Plastics. Wallpaper is room divider from Maryann Roy. Can't remember where I got the plant. Coffee mug is from mini2b, I meant to put it on a side table, but ran out of time.

Mirrored bedroom set of bed, dresser, side table, lamp and blue bead accessory are Maryann Roy. White chair, wood side table, and bench are Paul MacAlister. Triple silver lamp and framed shells are minimodernistas. Silver room divider/headboard from Modern MC from Tap Plastics. Rug is another fabric sample from My Realitty. Coffee mug from mini2B. Accessories are PRD Miniatures, AG Minis.

Overall, I love this house even though its smaller than my preferred scale. My kids were enamored as well. We may be getting one for them for the holidays. Thanks so much My Realitty for the loaner. It was fun ride. I think the house will have another adventure before it returns to you. ;)