Happy Easter, my friends! I can’t believe how quickly April has arrived, and with it, all the best parts of spring! I’ll admit, the holiday snuck up on me this year, and I didn’t have time to make nearly as much as I wanted to for Easter, but I thought I’d share some of my little goodies here with you. After all, there’s always next year!
I’ve been wanting little chicks for the longest time, so this past week I decided to just give it a go and make some myself! Overall, I’m very happy with these little cuties for my first attempt. I learned quite a bit in the process and may give them another shot in the future. I also made little bird nests from coconut fiber and moss, and then I added polymer clay robin’s eggs. The lovely little bunny is by Juan Manuel Diaz Solis.
I actually made this leaping bunny topiary last year, but for some reason I never really did anything with it! The bunny is a plastic figure that I painted green before covering it in model railroad foliage. I made the ivy by cutting out the leaves on my Cricut Maker, then coloring them with alcohol ink markers and painting the edges with white acrylic paint.
The potted bunny topiary was also a leftover from last year, made the same way as described above. I think the topiaries are so cute!
Now, back to what I made this year! I’ve actually been wanting a set of “cabbageware” for a while now, so voilà! I made each plate from white polymer clay that I veined with a silicone mold. Then I painted them with acrylic paint. Finally, the critical step for making them look like ceramic was a coating of UV resin! I liked them so much that I made chargers to go with them from orange jute twine glued onto orange cardstock. The result is very garden-y, isn’t it?
I also made the speckled eggs, which are displayed in a depression ware bowl from Melvin’s Miniatures. The white lilies I made from a laser cut sheet from Mary Kinloch. The clear depression ware jar (also from Melvin’s Miniatures) is filled with polymer clay jelly beans I made, and the glassware is all Chrysnbon.
And of course, Easter just wouldn’t be complete without a basket, so I made a new one this year with glitter eggs, assorted candies, chocolate bunnies and a tulip “carrot” bouquet!
I hope you’re all enjoying your Easter! ‘Til next time!
Spring is in full swing in Florida, so I’ve been pinning all sorts of garden inspiration on Pinterest lately. I’ve been wanting to create a miniature herb garden, and when I saw people repurposing vintage window shutters into vertical gardens, I knew it was the perfect way to display herbs!
I actually had these shutters in my stash of odds and ends, and I had already painted them in a shabby chic style, so all I had left to do was make the potted herbs. The parsley, sage, mint, oregano and basil were all laser cut sheets from SDK Miniatures that I colored with alcohol ink markers. I made the rosemary and lavender from painted princess pine (and Flower Soft for the lavender). For the chives, I painted a preserved flower I had (I have no idea what it’s called, though), and I made the little purple flowers from crepe paper.
For this scene, I included some other little gardening goodies, including the gardening tote kit from Dragonfly International, and the ADORABLE calico kitty by Juan Manuel Diaz Solis. I absolutely love how it turned out!
I’ve been admiring farmhouse-style laundry rooms on Pinterest for months, and I’ve been wanting to create one in miniature for just about as long, so when I saw the roombox kits from ScaledRealmMinis, I immediately knew what my next project was going to be!
After collecting copious inspiration photos on Pinterest, I got to work on creating the mini laundry room of my dreams. Even though the roomboxes from ScaledRealmMinis have awesome laser cut floors, I knew I wanted a tile look in the laundry room, so I found trendy printable patterns from ChloeMiniHome for the floor and for the white brick wall. I printed the tile on glossy photo paper and the brick on matte.
Once the floors and walls were done, I added in the baseboard and a quarter round in the corner. Then, I started with the most important part of any laundry room – the washer and dryer! I used a standard wooden set, but I wasn’t happy with how they looked out of the box, so I decided to get a little creative and make some modifications.
To start, I printed out photos of Speed Queen control panels (in honor of my own Speed Queen washer and dryer). Once I placed those over the existing controls, they looked much better, but they still didn’t have the gloss sheen that you see on real appliances. Rather than try to repaint with a gloss finish, I decided I would try my luck with coating them with UV resin. Several coats later, I was pretty happy with the results! They’re not perfect, but definitely an improvement over the originals!
The other main elements I needed to install before I could get to all the fun little details were the lights, the counters and the sink. The awesome sink cabinet, faucet and handles all came from Melvin’s Miniatures.
From there, I just cut, stained and painted wood to create all the other countertops – including the L-shape in the corner and the enclosure for the washer/dryer set. I also installed two shelves with brackets from Melvin’s Miniatures above the counter and sink.
I modified an existing ironing board to fit my theme, painting the legs silver and recovering it with black and white checkered fabric. The rolling laundry hamper was inspired by some I saw on Pinterest, as well. I used chip board covered with cotton batting and gray fabric to make the hamper. I sewed an inner liner from white cotton fabric, and I used card stock and beads to make the casters. Then, I just filled it up with dirty laundry!
I was most excited about figuring out how to create my own working set of farmhouse-style sconce lights, but I also knew it was going to be the most challenging to do. After quite a bit of trial and error, I ended up using chip LED lights from Evan Designs along with suction cups, silicone tubing, wire, no hole beads and metal bezel stud settings, all spray painted a satin black. I absolutely LOVE how they turned out!
I also designed all the labels for the various jars and cleaning products myself. I’ve got everything from dryer balls to scent booster! After seeing detergent and softener dispensers on Pinterest, I recreated them in miniature by taking glass jars and gluing on spigots, then filling them with resin. The scrub brush was made from a piece of popsicle stick with little clumps of jute twine glued on for the bristles. I wish my real laundry room was this organized!
I had a blast coming up with decorative elements for the laundry room, and I thought eucalyptus would be a perfect fit – it smells nice and it’s very soothing. I made this one from laser cut leaves by SDK Miniatures.
I made these rolled towels and the folded towels next to the washer from white baby wash cloths. They are a little better for scale than standard terry cloth. Then I placed my Wash Dry and Fold sign next to them!
I made this little grapevine wreath with a paper magnolia flower and cotton bolls from my tutorial! There’s also a little pitcher of cotton over on one of the shelves.
A simple wood disc and a toothpick painted black makes for an easy paper towel holder. The sponge was also a cinch: just a piece of green felt glued to a yellow foam sheet.
This spare change sign was a last-minute addition after I saw a real one on Pinterest! After all, what else are you supposed to do with all the change that falls out in the wash? I made the mason jar from resin in a mold, and then I made all the coins from black polymer clay dusted with metallic mica powders in silver and copper.
The laundry basket is just filled with scraps of fabric that I saturated with water, scrunched up and arranged until it looked just messy enough to be unfolded laundry. Once it all dried, it looked perfect.
I don’t really sew too frequently, so I definitely wanted a no-sew solution for having a few folded shirts to display, and I followed this helpful tutorial on YouTube to create them!
In yet another burst of Pinspiration (that’s a word, right?), I wanted to make a little decorative wall shelf that looked like an old washboard. This was super easy to make, using craft wood matchsticks, balsa wood and corrugated paper painted silver and gunmetal gray. Isn’t it just the thing to display this Sir Thomas Thumb antique flat iron?
And of course, I just can’t seem to make a scene without an animal, so I tucked a little dog bed under the countertop and added a bag and bowl of food. He looks cozy, right?
Sources for other special items I didn’t make myself:
Old-fashioned clothespins and clothes hangers by Reynold’s Metal
Bucket, dustpan and brush by Miniature Corner – Bodo Hennig
Wooden clothespins in jar by Dragonfly International
Floor vase with branches by IslandTradingCo
Special thanks to my supportive husband, Tom, for helping me with the photos for this feature. I hope you enjoyed this look inside my little farmhouse laundry roombox!
These miniature natural cotton bolls are a great way to add farmhouse charm to your dollhouse decor because they’re so versatile! Whether you make an arrangement of stems, or use them to decorate a grapevine wreath, the possibilities are endless.
After making the pussy willow branches, the only logical next step was to figure out an uncomplicated way to make natural cotton bolls (the round seed-bearing part of a cotton plant) since they’re everywhere in farmhouse-style decor right now! They use some of the same materials from the pussy willow project, as well, so that’s even better. Let’s get to it!
What You Need to Make Miniature Natural Cotton Bolls
These little raw cotton stems are a little more complicated than the pussy willow branches, but they’re still a great project for beginners. Here’s a little more about the materials I used:
Yep, literally just your drugstore variety of cotton ball. You’ll be tearing off little pieces, so even a single cotton ball will last you a while!
Alcohol Ink Markers
Alcohol ink markers are my favorite choice for coloring paper petals and leaves for a few reasons: they fully saturate the Japanese crepe paper I favor (more on that next) with bold, vibrant color; they dry almost immediately, which wins over waiting for paint to dry in my book; and they can be blended for a natural look with a blender marker.
I use the brand Spectrum Noir, and their markers are a little more budget-friendly than Copic markers. The shades I chose are EB3 and TN9. I used a combination of both to get a slight variation in color, but they’re quite similar so that’s not absolutely necessary.
That being said, you can color your paper however you like: colored pencils, watercolors, acrylics, or whatever else you have on hand! We’re just going for a nice dark brown shade on this project.
Japanese Crepe Paper
This is a special paper I learned about from Mary Kinloch. It is not the same as crepe paper that’s used for streamers. In fact, it’s actually a mulberry fiber paper, so it has a fantastic texture that works great for a lot of flowers and plants. I recommend checking Mary’s shop on eBay because she often sells it in small quantities, which is perfect if you’re just getting started. She also has an awesome selection of laser cut sheets!
Even though the crepe is my favorite, you can use other paper types for this project, as well. Experiment with different types and see what you like best. Even regular copy/printer paper will work, so don’t hesitate to try it!
For this project, I used two specific punches: the Mini Birch Leaf from The Punch Bunch and the Mini Daisy Hole Puncher from EK Tools. I have a number of punches from both of these brands, and they work really well.
If you decide to use the Japanese crepe paper, I’ve found that I get a cleaner cut with the punches if I sandwich the crepe paper in between a folded sheet of regular copy paper.
Ball Stylus / Needle Tool
These tools are really handy for shaping petals and veining leaves. I found an embossing stylus set by EK Tools on Amazon where one of them has a ball on one side and a needle tip on the other – that is PERFECT for this project! But if you don’t have these, don’t worry. You can actually use tweezers to shape them, too, you just have to be careful not to tear your paper.
I bought a foam pad (it’s actually similar to a mouse pad in terms of density and thickness) for shaping paper, but if you don’t have anything like that, you can actually use a rubber art eraser. You just want something with a little bit of give that will allow you to use the stylus and needle tool to shape the paper without tearing holes in it. Gentle pressure is key!
Tips for Making Natural Cotton Bolls for Your Dollhouse
If you look at pictures of cotton bolls online, you’ll see that they can range from 3 to 5 segments. As a beginner, I made mine with three, but now that I have a little practice under my belt, I may try some more with five instead. You’ll just need to make your individual cotton balls a little smaller for that to work.
Prepare Your Glue
I like to use a paint palette or a little piece of aluminum foil with a blob of white tacky glue and a small pool of superglue so I can dip the pieces in to adhere them. When you use white tacky glue and superglue together like this, it creates an almost instant bond, but you have to work quickly!
How to Make Miniature Natural Cotton Bolls
Active Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Learn how to make natural cotton bolls for your dollhouse!
24 gauge brown floral wire
Japanese crepe paper
Brown alcohol ink marker
White tacky glue
Mini Daisy Hole Puncher by EK Tools
Mini Birch Leaf by The Punch Bunch
Ball stylus / needle tool
Paint palette or aluminum foil
Cut 2" lengths of brown floral wire with your wire cutters. I like to have a little extra length to hold on to, and you can always trim them down afterwards as needed.
Tear off little bits from the cotton ball and roll them tightly into smaller balls. You'll need 3 for each stem.
Dip the end of your floral wire into the white tacky glue, coating about 1/8" of the way down. Pick up each of your prepared mini cotton balls with tweezers and just barely dip them into the superglue before attaching them to the floral wire.
Repeat with 2 more cotton balls so that you have a trio attached to the end. Set aside to dry.
Get your paper and punch out 1 daisy and 3 birch leaves, then color them brown with your alcohol ink marker.
Cut off each of the 6 petals from the daisy and lay them on top of your shaping surface. Use the needle tool to score a line directly down the middle so you can fold the petals in half lengthwise.
Pick up a folded petal with your tweezers and dip the folded edge in your tacky glue and then the superglue. Place the glued edge in between two of the cotton balls, pushing it in as deep toward the center as you can. Repeat with 2 more and set aside to dry. You can use your tweezers to open up the petal a little once it's nestled in place.
Grab your birch leaves and lay them on top of your shaping surface. Like with the petals, score a line directly down the middle for the vein. Then, use the ball stylus to curve the leaf.
You'll want the curl of the leaf to point downward. Pick it up with your tweezers and dip the stem in your tacky glue and then the superglue. Place it on the floral wire just under the cotton balls. Try to offset the leaf from where the petals were placed in between the balls. Repeat with 2 more and set aside to dry.
Trim your wire stems as needed to arrange in a vase or to add to a wreath. Enjoy!
Please feel free to tag me on Facebook or Instagram @petiteprovisionsco with your version of miniature cotton bolls, and let me know if you have any questions!
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