Saturday, October 23, 2010

NAME Day Hutch Part 2 - Finished!

Ok, so I have looked through my swaps/totes stash to find some things to include in my hutch.  One thing I wanted was hutch.  I found one that is made of resin that I got with a wardrobe as an auction item.  I started looking at it and found two bubbles.  This is typical of resin and I knew that I could use spackle as a filler to fix it, but I also knew I didn't have any.  So I tried paint/glue and that worked for the one on the shelf but not the counter of the base. 
This one was really bad.  If I had the spackle, might could have fixed it, but I didn't.  My answer was to cut the hutch and remove the counter and put it back together with a wood one.  I got out my xacto miter and saw and started cutting away.  I had little to no problem cutting above to remove the shelves but cutting this counter from the base was harder as I got off alignment.  After I corrected my sawing direction, I used a metal rasp type file to sand it as smooth and even as I could.  I cut a counter from wood, beveled the edges (like the big one) and glued it all together. I painted the inside shelf area white and the entire outside black.
Here is the finished hutch:
The handles are silver no-hole beads.  Broom to the left is a metal mini I painted.
Tray of donuts by Norma Buck.  Teapot and sugar are metal minis I painted.
Plates are paper I printed and shaped.  Click here to see how I made them?
Here's the full kitchen section:

The chair was from a kit and I painted it black and then added the paper cutouts from the ME notepad.  The table was totefavor I made for the last convention. Fruit bowl by Sharon Anderson or Virigina Forham.  The mouse in the tray is by Leann Parker.  The shelf is from Laura Miller, I painted it and added the cutout.  Plates made same as for the hutch.

In the living area, I added two side tables. The tables were purchased as a kit from Suzanne Andrews.
 The lamp is from ?  More about the sofa can be found on Part 1 of Hutch.
Clock by Rhonda Keef.  I believe it was made using a punch of black fun foam, a clock printied, a jump ring, face filled in with glue or gloss type medium.  The feet and top button are seed beads.  Super cool.

On the top shelf is a bedroom section
Dresser from Merri Allen, the standing mirror by Rebekka Tate and the rest of the items are swaps but I can't figure out by whom.  My database is good, but I needed to include more details to describe than I did on older entries.

The attic section...
I purchased this adorable doll on ebay.  The maker is same as who makes the ME dolls that Suzanne Andrews offers.  She has been sitting on this chest for quite some time waiting for the day to be in a project.  I belive the chest is by Ruth Frank.  I think she is perfect for this hutch.  The house is from Pam Junk I think.  Here's another view.  I just love it and couldn't hide this wonderful front.

Here's another view of this section

This cheval mirror is what I wanted here to go with the doll on the chest, but couldn't find it at first.  I tried to use a resin wardrobe instead, but found the mirror.
Mirror by Nancy White

Here's the entire top of the hutch.
Also when looking at the finished piece I decided to add handles to the doors of the base.
I used a pink seed bead with a yellow no-hole bead center.

Almost hate to show this detail as the pic is so zoomed that the tiny imperfections not seen with the naked eye (or even assisted eye) aren't noticeable.
Digital zoom is great for those tiny things but not for bigger stuff.

There it is finished and I added a notepad sheet as a label on the back.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Making plates

Decided I needed some plates to finish up my NAME Day hutch.  I checked my swaps/totes stash and I didn't have any in the right colors.  So I went to my computer were I have stored some pics of plates.  I got them from websites selling dishes.  Several years ago I made 2 china shops so had a ton of them already.  That shop was 1/144th, but I am going to make them in 1/48th scale today.
I picked out the ones I liked and inserted them as picture in MS Word.  Once in word, I resized them by formating the pic (on right click menu).  Then I used the Size tab and changed the Height.  (Make sure the "lock aspect ratio" box is checked.)
Since I am making 1/48th scale plates they ended up being 0.2" to equal apx 9" plate in real life.  Sometimes the pics were a tad larger so if that is the case, then I might resize to 0.21" or 0.22" and can make them smaller as well.  I have found that it doesn't matter the size of the orginal pic as long as you take into account whether the pic has a lot of space around the plate in the actual pic.  So if the plate and pic have the same edge then use the 0.2" for the 9" plate.  Otherwise adjust for the excess space in the pic.  (Cropping in MS Word doesn't help as the orginal size of pic is retained.  It must be the actual pic is cropped if clearing the excess around a plate.)
Next I copied this pic (several different ones actually) until I had some to fit my space plus some extra.
I didn't leave a line between rows, but if I were to print again, I would.
I printed on HP matte photo paper.  I use an HP printer and I choose the settings to match the paper.  I also set this to Best printing.  (I believe the best quality a printer will give is a combo of same mfg of printer, paper and ink and Consumer Reports articles I have read back this up.)
So here is what the plates looked like after printing.
A word about punches....
Ok, so to cut a 3/16" hole that would equal a 9" real life plate I looked through my punches to see what I had.  I didn't think I had a punch the right size, but when I checked this one, I saw I might.  This is a Creative Memories punch, my mom picked up for me at a yard sale, but can likely be found on ebay... look for snowflake.
At first glance this punch is not 1/48th scale, but looking at the individual punched parts, well we have some different size circles.  This is going to work.  I did get out my ruler to determine which one would match to my needs and it was the largest circle in the very middle.
When I cut the plates from the paper I choose to cut them in a strip which can be seen inserted in the punch.  I needed to do that for two reasons.  First I printed my plates too close together, but secondly, as the punch is going to punch more than what I need so having that narrow strip gave me something to hold on to and it allowed me to avoid the other punched parts.
I turn the punch upside down so I can line up the printed plate with the hole I want to use.  Then very carefully I squeeze and punch.  sometimes I had to adjust the plate to the hole to line it up several times. When just inserting the strip the plate might look to be lined up but it isn't once the punch starts to come together.  That's why it is a good idea to have more than needed because it can happen that the punch doesn't line up even with the patience of slowly squeezing and shifting.

Now I have the plates punched.  But they are flat so here is how I make them 3D.

I use a double ball stylus (larger end) or the end of paint brush (another alternative is a used up ball point pen - with no ink) to shape the plate.  It also burnishes the paper and makes it shiny even though it was matte.
I used the punch to punch the actual shape it was intended and then lined up the plate over a smaller hole.  This part isn't critical as can shape the plate on a soft surface such as a mouse pad or even several layers of fabric, but I choose to use the punch part as  template.
The larger end of the stylus was used to shape and burnish the plate down into the hole of the punched area.  I did try several differnet holes and depending on the actual printed plate as to which was the best.
I used the same photo paper to punch out the full punched shape, but I could have used a thin card (like a business card or index card).  I have done this before and layered two cards together to give more depth.
In photo I hope you can see that the plates are all shaped and now glossy.

I also tried just to see what I could do to make a bowl.  I think would have had better results if I had a few thickness of the punch that I used a template.  I won't use this in this project but might later.  I think if I do, I will use wax paper (or other non-stick type surface) and glue the plate/bowl to the wax paper with paint.  Once dry it should give a ring/foot that some bowls have.  I haven't tired this yet, but what I was thinking might work. The key is to not use too much paint or even glue if it would show to be an actual part of the bowl.  Might need a touch of glue in the center and then dip the bowl in paint to help hold it up right.  Anyway just musing on what might work.

When I made my china shop plates in 1/144th, I did this exact same process I just used a much smaller punch (1/16" and 1/8".  Using this CM punch I could choose the right size.  At the time,  I didn't have different sizes so just used the soft pad.  After I did the shaping I flipped it over on a hard surface and did some shaping on the back as well.  
Oval platters can be done this way as well.  I have cut them by hand, but I am on the look out for some oval punches or punch parts to have in my tools.

Friday, October 8, 2010

NAME day hutch project Part1

So NAME decided to have a National NAME day.  It is a hutch that can be made in various scales. 

One group I am was doing 1/4" which of course is my preferred scale, but I am not enthused with the kit that is going to come with it.  (Also at first I didn't realize there would be more than a hutch so thought the price was high, but really not.)  The NAME online region talked about it and pointed me in the direction to the kit makers if you didn't want to cut one out yourself.  I went the kit route and ordered my kit.
NAME day arrived and I wasn't ready.  I had been finishing up my RA Trunk and I wanted to get it done before I moved on.  So I glued everything down, set aside to dry, then I had to clear off my desk a bit.
Finally, I started the hutch kit.  Meanwhile I was on chat with the QC online group.  But found it difficult to focus on both, so I soon was more involved in my hutch.
I had ordered a 1" scale hutch after seeing some of the proto-types that others had done.  One in particular was shown at NAME convention in July with a ME theme and it had 1/4" scale in it.  Oh boy did that spark an interest for me. I have some ME swaps just itching to be used.  This would be just the thing maybe to get them in a project instead of languishing in the ME theme swap box.
In deciding what color I wanted to paint it I went between red, yellow and black.  I began building this kit and I thought and thought about this theme. 
First I was supposed to put the base together, but darnit some of the pieces don't fit right.  Mmm... what are my options? 1. I could stop and just not finish this. 2. I could cut off the excess or 3. I could go with it and just hide it.  I went with #3 because I knew the base was going to get baseboard trim.  I figured I could hide it and I did.
Next part was building the doors and at first I was laying them out wrong and I thought oh no not again, but turns out was my mistake and had them laid out wrong.  Pieces fit together just fine.  Although I did have to sand a bit at one side to even out - square up the frame.  But nothing some sandpaper won't fix.
Got the base together and decided on black as my main color.  I even determined I wanted to use white inside the upper portion.
I assembled the back and painted it white, then added the shelves.  At this point I choose to devaite from the instructions and put my shelves 2" apart (that's 8 feet for 1/4" scale).  this left one set of shelves as leftover.
Finished building the hutch and got to the crown molding.  Oh really, I can't believe my bad luck with this kit.
The crown molding had one piece cut wrong.  Not me laying it out wrong it was cut wrong and no extra in the kit.  %*&#$!
I looked in my supplies and yes I have a stick of crown molding.  not the same so I had to cut the three pieces.  Now if I hadn't had the extra available, I would have been really unhappy so if there is a lesson to learn here is that it is doesn't hurt to save those scraps or have a extra on hand for whatever.
But I did get it all put together and painted.  That was Saturday night and even went shopping with DH so he could work on my car.  yeah!

Then I decided I wanted to see what ME graphics I had to use to decorate this.  I purchased some notepads years back and I looked at them and bingo this one is it.
This has the black and white that I was looking for and I am totally a sucker for pink. 
So Sunday morning I go to my computer and I scan this notepad (and others for another time).  I had already tested the lovely lace at the top on my hutch and that was going to work out swell.
I used the notepad to make parts so I could print what I needed.  I did resize and make a longer piece of lace in MS Word, by copying and pasting on top of antoher to block off the end.  I just aligned the top pic in word to line up with the first pic.  Then I cropped the sides and copied a bunch of those to print out.
Then I cut them out and glued them on the hutch.
As I was building the base, I decided to paint the inset of the doors white to highlight the grooved wood.  As I was looking at that notepad, I thought ME style and decided that would include something on these doors and the middle of the notepad had that darling girl watering her flowers.  So I cut that out and glued it on the doors.  Yes, it was tedious to cut out these things, but for miniatures it was worth it.  I used some small scissors to do this.  I find it is important the tips work so beware.  Some tips don't and aren't going to work for this type of triming.

close up of the doors
Oh wait... I don't have pink and green themed ME items in my swaps.  Mmm... what to do.... Well, what else do I have?  I searched my swap boxes and started pulling out some swaps I could use.  ( I love, love, love shopping in my swap boxes - which is why I do swaps.)  I found a few things and I started placing them in the hutch. 
Oh no, I can't see the top shelf items with the lace hanging down.  Ok, what to do?  For me that meant taking the top part of the hutch apart.  I took off the sides first.  Then I carefully worked on the shelves.  I broke one of them so I was thankful for the extra I had. But if I hadn't I might could have glued the broken shelf back together and used it.  But I also had on hand some wood I could cut that would have worked.  (Save those scraps!)
I had to sand and scrape to remove the excess glue and paint layer where the shelf was originally but I got it done and then glued the shelves in their new place.  the first shelf was at 1 3/4" (7 feet) and I test fit the swaps I had already pulled and it worked so I put the hutch back together.
here's the full view
The drawers were kinda of plain and after glueing on the side trim of the upper, I had some leftovers and I was able to use the pink check with flowers and make some handles. 

I did add a second layer to the handle itself, but didn't really matter.

The trim around the doors was actually same check as the flooring that I had leftover from another project, but I could have made the check on my computer.
this shows the flooring I added

One of things I my swaps boxes was a resin sofa I picked up at a hobby store years ago.  The colors went with the theme I decided to use.  But it is going to need some paint touch up.  And the longer I looked at it, the more I decided it was too high and crooked.
Out comes my trusty dremel.  I carefully measured from the sofa cushions down to where I wanted the bottom to be and marked with a pencil.  I drew this line all the way around.  Then using my dremel I started sanding/drilling it down.  I worked the edges close to the line and still had a hump in the middle so my answer to that was to remove some extra in the middle and then sand/file it flat. 
This pic shows what the bottom looked like after the dremel tool and the file was used.
I was not concerned with evenness inside the area so this bit worked for me.  the metal file is what helped to make it flat.
Now the painting of the sofa.
The chair to the right shows the colors this sofa had before.  The pic shows in process some various painting designs I was experimenting with.  I first painted it with dots, then decided had to paint the trim and ended up mixing some light pink.  I tried some different pink on the trim and it was too much.  I thought I might try to make checks but too much trouble.  So then I just stared at this sofa thinking what would this wide trim piece be in real life.  It was far too big to be piping which is what the pink might have worked with.  Then I decided it might be the wood of the sofa and be wood color but since I was going with my black/white/pink/green theme, I decided it would look best black.
I still liked the dots I had done so I put those back after covering them over with the light pink.
I used the smallest end of my double ball stylus to dip in white paint and then on my paint pallete to remove excess and then onto the piece to get the uniform dots.
Here is the finished piece with some pillows added.  The pillows were made with black fabric and paper cut outs glued on then trimmed to shape.