Erika Pitera

Featured in the April 2019 Issue of American Miniaturist

Don’t miss the April 2019 issue of American Miniaturist Magazine!

I’ve had the honor of being featured in American Miniaturist‘s latest issue! They included one of my Easter baskets, filled with metallic eggs and chocolate bunnies. The issue is chock full of gorgeous springtime inspiration, including lots of beautiful gardens and flowers – don’t miss out!

See more of my published features here!

How to Make a Miniature Snowy Mailbox Scene for Christmas

How to Make a Miniature Snowy Mailbox Scene for Christmas

Happy New Year, everyone! Today, I wanted to share a little tutorial on how I made this miniature snowy mailbox scene for Christmas. I love how it turned out, and I hope you enjoy!

How to Make a Miniature Snowy Mailbox Scene for Christmas

Basic Tools & Materials:

Most crafters are likely to have the items on this list on hand.

  • Chalk paint in black and brown
  • Paint brushes
  • Wire cutters
  • Hot glue gun
  • Glue stick
  • Scissors
  • Small beads of your choice
  • 3/8″ ribbon (double sided)
  • Card stock

Specialty Materials:

These materials are more specific to this particular project.

  • 2″ to 3″ wood slab
  • 1:12 scale miniature metal mailbox
  • 1:12 scale miniature cardinal
  • 1:12 scale miniature pine cones (I used Bright Delights’ version)
  • 1:12 scale pine garland
  • Miniature bottle brush tree
  • Aleene’s True Snow or Glitter Snow
  • Unfinished wooden block – 1/2″ or 3/4″ cube
  • Brown kraft paper
  • Baker’s twine
  • Fake snow (optional)


How to Make a Miniature Snowy Mailbox Scene for Christmas

How to Make The Miniature Snowy Mailbox Scene

The finished piece measures about 4-1/4″ tall and 2-1/2″ in diameter.

  1. Start by painting your mailbox. For this shiny silver mailbox, I found a couple of coats of chalk paint gave me the rustic, matte finish I wanted. I used wire cutters to snip off the flag, but that’s completely up to you. I painted the mailbox itself black, and the post is a dark brown.
  2. Once dry, use a hot glue gun to affix the mailbox to the wooden base. You’ll want to select one that’s about 2-3″ in diameter.
  3. Next, apply a layer of True Snow. You can use a palette knife or an old paint brush for this. Make sure to give it some texture. Allow to dry overnight.
  4. If your mini tree has a base, use wire cutters to snip it off. Then, hot glue the tree to the base next to the mailbox post.
  5. Now, you can apply a second layer of True Snow to the base (you can also sprinkle on some additional fake snow and gently pat it into the True Snow while it’s still wet to give it extra texture), also dabbing some on the branches of the tree. You’ll also want to apply a layer of True Snow to the top of the mailbox. Allow to dry overnight.
  6. Measure and cut a piece of pine garland long enough to drape over each side of the mailbox and gently bend it into a “U” shape. Snip shorter lengths of the pine garland with your wire cutters and then hot glue them to the longer piece in sections to create volume and body.
  7. Use your hot glue gun to apply whatever beads you selected, as well as the pine cones.
  8. Hot glue the garland near the center of the mailbox so an equal amount hangs down on either side.
  9. Create a multi-loop bow from your 3/8″ wide ribbon and hot glue it to the top of the garland.
  10. Hot glue the cardinal to the top of the mailbox.
  11. Take a small paint brush and dab True Snow on the garland to give it a snowy look.
  12. Cut a piece of brown kraft paper large enough to wrap your wooden block. Coat the block with glue from a glue stick, and wrap with the kraft paper like you would any gift box. Finish it off with a piece of baker’s twine tied around it.
  13. Hot glue the wrapped gift to the snowy base.
  14. Create small envelopes from colored card stock. I used red and green, and then I printed out a white envelope addressed to Santa Claus. Glue them together with a glue stick, then affix them to the interior of the mailbox with a small dot of hot glue.
  15. Lastly, if there are any spots where you can see the hot glue, take a small brush and dab a little more True Snow on to make it blend in better.

That’s it! If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask!

How to Make a Miniature Snowy Mailbox Scene for Christmas

How to Make a Miniature Snowy Mailbox Scene for Christmas

How to Make a Miniature Snowy Mailbox Scene for Christmas

How to Make a Miniature Snowy Mailbox Scene for Christmas

A Charming Christmas Sign

A Charming Christmas Sign

A customer recently requested a chalkboard-style Christmas sign, and I just had to share the end result. It turned out so cute! Hope you enjoy!

My First Dollhouse: Renovating a Vintage Dollhouse

Two weeks ago, I was browsing the Facebook Marketplace and ran across a vintage dollhouse for sale that came with tons of furniture, accessories and a greenhouse. I could tell it would definitely need some work, but I was immediately drawn to it. Despite the fact that I’m working full-time as a miniaturist now, I don’t have a dollhouse of my own!

My First Dollhouse: Renovating a Vintage Dollhouse

At the price she was asking, I just couldn’t resist. So my husband and I drove the 45 minutes to pick it up and painstakingly tried to cram it into our SUV. Yes, it’s that big. It just barely fit in the back with the seats folded up.

My First Dollhouse: Renovating a Vintage Dollhouse

It’s now home and hanging out on an entirely-too-small card table (I have plans to head to IKEA this weekend to pick up a more appropriately sized table), and I’m now faced with the challenge of where to start.

Sorry for the less-than-stellar initial photos. Once I get this on a table where I can move it, I’ll be able to get better lighting and photos.

I started out by trying to identify the maker and model, but that’s presenting a challenge. I’m fairly certain this originated somewhere around the 70s – though I may stand corrected – and I think it’s made by Real Good Toys. Believe it or not, the lady selling it still had all of the parts lists and assembly instructions. According to the parts list, this model appears to be the “Fox Hollow” but I haven’t been able to find a single bit of information about it on the web.

My First Dollhouse: Renovating a Vintage Dollhouse

I definitely intend to rehab and complete the exterior before moving inside. At first glance, the clapboard siding is warped in a number of places, meaning I’ll probably have to remove it all and replace it.

Secondly, all of the windows need to be fixed up and replaced. The good news is the shingles on the roof are all in pretty good shape – only a few little spots to fix up.

Lastly, that porch. I am not a fan of blue, so that’s going to have to go. I would really prefer wood planking, so we’ll see how that shapes up.

So, that’s what I’ve gotten myself into! This is going to be a major learning curve for me, but I’m hopeful that I’ll be able to get the look I’m going for – a modern farmhouse. I’ll continue to share updates about my progress, so wish me luck!

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