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Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Mini gift for a new baby

 I love making mini gifts for new babies. After all a baby is a sort of mini human so a mini gift is the right size. Plus  I like to think that it is fun to give something that the parents can keep as a memory for when the baby is no longer a mini.

Here is a simple idea to inspire you. It does not have to be expensive or complex  at all and you can personalise this by using different colors, name of the baby and whatever you like.

What you will need is a dollar shop frame . I was lucky mine came with the  decorative backing with the heart  cut out. But of course you can do that yourself and use some thick card. 

I  used a rubber baby but you can use any baby doll you happen have . Clothes are also optional. A little nappy is very easy : just fold a piece of no fray fabric round the baby. 

My blanket is knitted but you can use a piece of fabric or lace or knit or crochet a simple blanket. Fabric stiffener is used to prepare the blanket. 

Lace or braid is nice to put around the cut out shape but is optional.

Dip your blanket in fabric stiffener. And squeeze out excess.

Wrap your  the board with the heart shape in plastic and  place the blanket on top of the plastic and shape it. Leave to dry.

Remove plastic and glue blanket where you want it to go inside the heart shape. Glue baby and decorations in place. Add the lace bow.

American Miniaturist will publish an article about this project as well. In the article there will be more details about this project, patterns for the hat , blanket and tiny bunnie . So look out for the article as well. Not sure which issue it will be in yet. 

Sunday, March 22, 2015

The ins and outs of mini decoupage.

 Decoupage is a very old craft or should I say, art ? It was used by people who could not afford wallpaper to decorate their walls with cut out pictures. In full scale you see decoupage on tons of things from greetingscards to plates and from tins via boxes to eggs.

Trying decoupage in miniature started with greetings cards for me. If you look at my blog about the Cardmakers Room, you will find a tutorial about making those.

But I went a bit further and started using plates , cups and saucers as well.

If you are new to this , it may look pretty hard but the good news is there are many sizes of plates and cups etc so you can start with the bigger ones  and then scale down so to  say.

What you will need :
Things to decoupage : plates etc
Lots of tiny pictures
Very good pair of small scissors
Mod Podge and a tiny brush
Optional : Mod Podge dimensional.

Plates can be any size you like and it does not matter if they are porcelain or plastic.  I like the Chrysnbon sets of plates, bowls and cups but they are really tiny. So for your first try perhaps a bit too small.

Pictures are very important. The size of the pictures you will need depends on the size of the item you want to work on.  I am showing different sizes here and different sizes of pictures.

A good source of nice pictures are mini printables. They are usually a good size and you can use the whole printie or just a part of it if they are a too big. Pinterest is a great source.  Cut outs from magazines work well too.
I used a printie on the big plate , to show how easy it can be and how good it will look.

The Flower Fairies and  Beatrix Potter pictures  are a bit harder. I looked for pictures of full scale decoupage sheets. Sites that sell them often have small pictures of the sheets  or you can scan a sheet you have at home. All you have to do then is a bit of experimenting on how small you need to print them. No there is no waste for you can use the pics that are too big for something else I am sure. You could also try scanning pictures from the original books but I am not the kind of computer marvel who can resize pictures .

Three sizes of pictures : For really big plates, medium and  the really tiny ones for the Chrysnbon items 

Chrysnbon  dinner plate, breakfast plate and bowl shown next to the tiniest pictures 

The big porcelain plate shown with flower fairy picture and  ruler.

Trying the cut out picture for size.

You can apply the pics with Mod Podge .  Leave to dry.  If you are not happy, soak off the picture in some water and try again. If you are pleased apply a top coat of Mod Podge. I like using Mod  Podge dimensional especially on shining porcelain plates.

 Chrysnbon dinner plate with medium sized Peter Rabbit picture.

Chrysnbon breakfast plate with tiny birdhouse picture

Did you notice I cheated ? The flying bird looked like nothing after I had cut it out, so I added a different bird.

Cutting out the pictures can be frustrating. Forget about cutting things like birds legs or flowerstems. Won't work unless you are a total genius at this. I often look at pics and  try to imagine  what parts I can do without LOL . Take your time and work over a tray or something for the pictures tend to jump away for some reason. I must say that I have had more trouble with them getting lost than with the actual cutting . 

Showing the Peter Rabbit Chrysnbon cup.

Cup shown with tiny pictures.

I am sure you will have fun making your own plates  cups and other decoupaged items.