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Monday, May 31, 2010

SpringFling Garage....Finished!

Late Wednesday evening, I felt like I'd just finished creating the world! ...totally exhilarated and exhausted at the same time ...especially considering that it took a lot longer than six days, more like over a month. So just to recap:
The top shows what the kit looks like with the additional building...and my thought process of turning this into a 20s garage is pictured below it.
Chelle told me, I should have known better since I live on the shores of a lake and should have immediately thought: fish hut/boathouse. But you know how it is when you get an idea in your head. After I started building and looked at it, it just cried out to be a run-down, old-time shack by the water with an attached boathouse.
Weathered wood was created using spackling, wire brushed and stained with an ink/alcohol mixture. After that I did some drybrushing to achieve a really old wood look that's been in the wet a little too long.The building was raised up using foamcore to allow "water" and "waves" to flow underneath the dock and into the boathouse. Both sides of the buildings are foamcore carved into "stone" and "rocks", painted, planted and the remainder covered with beach sand from our lake. The waterside reeds are bristles from a Dollar Store broom.I had more trouble with that darn water! Having added acrylic paint to my resin, I discovered that the two would NOT mix; of course being cheap & not wanting to waste the last of the resin mixture, I spooned it on, only to discover that you can make fantastic looking, flowing waves that way. I just wasn't able to "swish" my resin until it hardened into waves...maybe next time! Surf and wave caps are saran wrap covered in resin.
I worked outside; Easy Cast resin takes a long time to harden and until it does, it becomes tacky all over again in the sun and the heat! At one point, while holding down a portion of the roof, I accidentally set my elbow down & pulled up a portion of the resin....
The roof is corrugated cardboard that was gessoed and painted to resemble an old tin roof. The chimney pipe is the cardboard portion of a heavy duty wire coat hanger, covered with the foil from a coffee can seal. Some of the wire became the sign hanger and the light fixture pipe above the boathouse door.The only things not made by me are the flowers in the window, the barrel and the wooden pail. In the pail are tiny clams that I beachcombed from our
The 3 seagulls are thanks to an idea given to me by Leslie from; the fishing rod is thanks to an idea from Doreen Playter.
The worms in the can, the sign, seagulls and the light fixture incl
lightbulb are fimo clay.
I must have taken a million photos.... It ended up as an all day process: shoot a bunch of photos; download to the laptop; look at them; discover something I didn't like about each one; go back outside & start the process all over again. I wish I had a camera that showed white objects and dark objects equally well in one photo! Of course it didn't help that most of the day was "ueber"bright.
The next issue was the contest entry email with the 3 photos. I held my finger over the send button so often; chickened out, sent it to myself, made sure that everything was OK, put Greenleaf's email address back.....
But you don't want know all that; you want to see the finished Fish Hut, right?

Wish me luck! The Greenleaf contest asked for 3 only! photos and is based on
originality. In addition a 2nd contest from piggybacks onto this one but doesn't close until July 4th. So that'll give me time to finish the insides and then enter again.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

SpringFling Garage....counting down

As my dad used to say: "Morgenstunde hat Gold im Munde" which roughly translated means it's worth getting up early....if only so you can see the world like this:
When I was little, I'd pretend to be the only person around & I'd be off to explore new worlds and frontiers. Now that I'm older...but still not grown up LOL, the only thing I'm off to do is a bit of garden weeding before it gets too warm, then it's back to the "Fish Hut", which is what I've decided it'll be called. Here's a progress report...but no pics yet, sorry: I've opened a can of worms so guess I'll be making a fishing rod next.
My cut off date is Friday. See you then with photos....

Monday, May 24, 2010

SpringFling al

The building is finished....sort of.
I've had to redo the water and in the process hid the lovely colors that you all liked so much. Unfortunately every time I took the house outside to work on it, the epoxy softened; at one point while holding down a portion of the roof, I set my elbow down and loosened a small portion.
It seems that everyone else is building with a secrecy equivalent of MI5 or the CIA. All this has given me a dread of showing any more photos. ....not that I think I stand a chance of winning. I've made this kit just a little too dark and different.
This week I'll finish staging it. This is something that all real estate agents and house sellers know about: staging is that little something that makes a house "pop" and turns it into a saleable one!
Oh...and if you noticed that dinky little chimney pipe sticking up out of the roof... it's been replaced. If you've ever seen any old style pipes, you know they were all small but the one you're seeing really was out of proportion.

So instead of my kit, I'll show you the first photo I've received from my friend Chelle over in England who's busily creating another commissioned local pub Take about creative! Way a go Chelle. Hopefully I'll get more "piccies" as she progresses ...hint hint!

In local news...., we are the proud(!) possessors of our very own internet tower. Out here in the boonies, we have limited choice of internet. It's either dial up (yuk!), satellite or private provider. So for an exorbitant monthly amount we went private last year. This week our provider asked if we'd like free internet service in exchange of allowing a tower to be placed on our property. Need I say how high we jumped at the offer LOL!!

In Canada, May 24th is a long standing holiday that used to celebrate Queen Victoria's birthday. Many years ago when we started distancing ourselves from Great Britain, this traditional May long weekend became colloquially known as May Two-Four. In Ontario a Two-Four is another colloquialism for a beer carton containing 24 bottles.
Our May long weekend has become the first of the summer parties. We finally have warm weather; local beaches are full; local police are busy pouring out any filled beer bottles that they come across...and there are lots (This country is still puritanical enough not to allow drinking off-license) and tonight the skies will be filled with fireworks galore.

Thasssss all folks; have a great week and see you on Friday when I'll show you my staged ...and ready to "sell"...boathouse. BTW that's a dragonfly hovering above Jeff's head.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Freebies. Give-aways & Contests

Cheryl's anniversary give-away

Meli's 300 followers giveaway

Lara's 200 followers give-away

Flora's 100 followers give-away

100 followers give-away

Tuesday, May 18, 2010


We get a lot of birds at the entire flock of blue jays, a very skittish
Baltimore Oriole that I haven't been able to get a photo of, lots of woodpeckers, including this Red Headed Woodpecker but I didn't think I'd ever get a visit from this guy... that's a close-up of a Turkey Vulture. These birds can grow up to 81 cm/32 inches with a wing span of 1.8 meters/6ft. and feed entirely off carrion. So in other words he's here to clean up that dead deer next door and not a minute too soon.
Apparently the Ministry of Natural Resources doesn't bother when the animals are on private property.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Freebies, Give-aways & Contests

Help Anthoula celebrate her 200+ followers & maybe win her give-away. She hasn't said what she's giving away but I'm seeing some really yummy food on her blog.

Where's Grissom when you need him...?

This photo was shot from our side of the fence; can you see that beige lump underneath our neighbor's hedge? It's a dead deer! ...found by a dog being walked off leash along our road three days ago. It must already have been dead for some days. We think it may have been hit by a car and the hedge is as far it got before collapsing.
Today you could hardly go outside without catching a whiff of it. Obviously the Ministry of Natural Resources, who've been called to remove it, are busy with other things.....

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

I won this lovely candelabra from Margaret thanks to a give-away at her blog My Petit Parterre.
I was thrilled to receive it and look, she even added a candle snuffer and extra candles. I think maybe Margaret was worried that it might be slightly large and therefore should used in an outside setting but as far as I'm concerned, it's absolutely perfect for my knights Templar roombox.
It was only her second attempt at mini-soldering. Gee wish all my second attempts turn out so well. Margaret, thank you. It'll have a good home inside the castle.

I've been scouring the internet looking for other suitable furniture. I may be able to get a carved chest kit from Ann High who makes amazing furniture ...all of it carved. I even have someone keeping an eye out for things I want when she goes to Kensington this Sunday. ....I may yet need that day job.
But in the meantime, I'll consider my candelabra as the first bit of furnishing.

Freebies, Give-aways & Contests

Yup another one! Only it's not one but three and you get to choose which you'd like best. I guarantee it's a tough decision!
It's being held at The Dangerous Mezzo's blog.
I "found" Nina's blog during a google search for images of furniture and castles to use in my castle roombox. She does some lovely work!

Freebies, Give-aways & Contests

Sonya of cannella e melograno (cinnamon and pomegranate) is having a give-away. So if you're into sewing....

Monday, May 10, 2010

SpringFling Garage....Day 6

I'm really pleased with how the water & the waves look but the spray hitting the dock supports flattened out when I wasn't looking. I may go over it again. Only this time, I'll try pouring a thin layer of resin onto the saran wrap & position it after it's hard.
I added some plants & grasses.

....onward and upward! The roof gets started tomorrow.

Friday, May 7, 2010

SpringFling Garage....Day 4 & 5

When I was doing the faux painting technique workshop in Ottawa, the lady working next to me kept worryng that we were wasting so much paint and the rest of us would tell her that it was only paint from the Dollar Store. I guess we all have fears about trying something new in case we waste material or money!
I've been putting off carving case I couldn't make any that looked realistic but the amount of builders foam that I used on either side of my Bait N Tackle shop & adjoining boathouse really wasn't a lot....worth maybe 75cents, if that.
What you're seeing is the first attempt & I'm quite pleased with it. The right side needs some more contrasting washes and both sides need scenic scatter along each side of the buildings.

I also need to buy some glue that won't "eat" the foam; not all glues are created equal. LOL
It seems wood glue does not hold the foam together & I've sort of patched pieces to fit around the side of the dock. I also need to hide the pink foam at the back. That's the nice thing about photos; they always show you your mistakes...whether you want to see them or not.
As you can see I've built a "concrete foundation" under both buildings, otherwise the boathouse doors would have dragged in the water.

I'm off to spend the weekend with my mom. Monday, I'll start on the roof. I also need to create an ocean with whitecaps splashing in front. That's something else I've never tried before...
To paraphrase the Star Trek series:
"Go boldly where you've never gone before ...and to hell with the cost!"

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Sumaiya Mehreen has The Mini Food Blog where she showcases miniature food; if you make it, she'll share it.
At the moment she hosting a Birthday Bash contest; you can even vote for your favorite. I'm kind of partial to entry #15:

but if we go by cake alone then Linda Cummings should win!
Why don't you go over & vote for your favorite....

Monday, May 3, 2010

Are you over endowed with WIPs (WorkInProgress)....? Have you asked yourself why?

Maybe you're like me:
I have until the end of May to finish the Bait N Tackle shop so I can enter the Greenleaf Spring fling.
I have an old wooden bread box that I want to complete over the summer. I have more furniture than it could ever hold; I've bought all the lighting supplies and I've commissioned a doll for this project.
Every other month, there's a swap that I have to make themed items for.

Now you'd think that that'd be enough to keep me busy, wouldn't you? But oh no.... my brain is going into overload thinking about the hows & whats of that castle workshop coming up in September.

I've already changed my mind about what to do with it if when I complete it.
Here's just a few ideas: Rapunzel, Rumpelstiltskin, wizard's chamber, Renaissance banquet ....and now my latest idea, a Knights Templar castle.
I've always been fascinated with the whole idea of this religious order of fighting knights; the order was founded on Christmas Day 1119 and betrayed & disbanded on a Friday the 13th, 1312. It's still the reason why we consider Friday the 13th unlucky...700 years later! Like many other people I was intrigued with the Da Vinci Code...which was loosely based on Templar mythology. Who knows; I have until late September to change my mind.

But in the meanwhile, I spent most of Sunday afternoon doing research....on the kind of window I want to use. Found it too! If you live in the UK, you'll recognize it from the All Saints Church kit. You can buy the windows in three sizes.
I'm looking for carved furniture although it'll have to be in kit form unless I want to look for a day job... Today I got a gazillion books out of the library on the Templars, Rosslyn Chapel, etc.
Hmmm wonder how hard it would be to carve chairs .....maybe I should carve a few pillars. Now where did I put that book on the Rosslyn Chapel.....