Preparing for the overhaul...

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Thanks, Michelle, For Bringing Up Some Good Points

Michelle, one of my readers, has asked several excellent questions, as well as provided some expertise of her own.  As I'm sure her thoughts will be of interest to other readers, as well, I'm addressing them in a separate post as well as in the "comments" sections of the relevant posts.  If anyone else has any questions or suggestions, please let me know!
  1. What kind of stucco are you using between your beams?  Inside, I'm using wallpaper.  I purchase mine from, although you can also purchase it on Amazon.  The correct name is "simulated off white plaster ceiling paper".  It's actually vinyl, so it's quite easy to work with.  I use Grandmother Stover's Glue to apply it, but any high quality paste should work just as well.  I apply the paper over the entire room, then glue the beams down on top.  I've had great success with this method, principally because it provides very clean lines.  It's exasperating, cutting paper exactly to shape after you've installed your woodwork.  Outside, I'm using Greenleaf stucco powder mixed with craft paint.  I like DecoArt in "antique white", but any decent craft paint will do.  I mix to roughly a 50/50 ratio.
  2. Are your houses 1:12 scale, or are your cats just huge?  Henry and London are just huge.  Henry is actually larger than London, the gent relaxing in the pictures!  Both cats weigh several stone each.  
  3. Do you have any advice for making golfer's tape curve?  Honestly, it is a bit tricky--but the good news is, the learning curve is steep.  What I found worked the best was a) cutting the tape very thinly, and b) using a much longer strip than I needed.  If I had one side firmly anchored, I found it was easier to move the strip itself about a bit.  For the more acute curves, I nudged the tape into shape bit by bit.  A set of polymer clay styli are absolutely critical for this step.  They're inexpensive, easily found in most craft stores (and certainly online--Amazon carries them), and really help with the tricky bits.  When I purchase golfer's tape, I purchase the thinnest tape I can find, because I only use the edges.  Each length of tape, thus, provides me with two edges.  If you examine a roll carefully, you'll see that the edges are slightly crimped; by cutting off those edges, I create a nice curve.  Also, it's much easier to gauge distance by eyeballing, which not only saves time cut also increases accuracy.
Michelle has also suggested a fabulous hardware vendor, Tony Hooper Miniatures.  Thank you for this suggestion, and I look forward to perusing the site at length!  Indeed, as I have the rest of the afternoon off...

Happy mini-making, everyone!

PS: I've updated the "tutorials" page, reorganizing it so tutorials on different subjects are easier to find and identify.  As always, the list is still growing!  Please let me know if there's anything you wish I'd discuss, or discuss more...


Michelle said...


I've never seen or heard of that Stucco powder (I don't think Greenleaf is sold overhere, getting hold of their dollshouses is impossible let alone anything else sadly). I love the idea that you can buy it pre-coloured! :o)

LOL Your cats are the size of medium sized dogs and not the size you'd want laying across your feet! lol More than a stone each!?!!? lol I know of breeds that are large. :o)

I only have the narrow golfers tape, I have a number of metal stylis' round ended ones too. I'd never would have thought to make and mix my own glass paints I can source all those brands in the UK. I want to have a go and this has been a great help to me! Thank YOU! :o)

I have bought a number of door etc furnishings from Tony and they are already galvenised which is perfect if you want that aged look.

Michelle :o))

CJ said...


It's actually not pre-colored; the color comes from the paint. When mixed, the powder is pretty much colorless, and doesn't distort the paint color really at all, which is nice. This is, to me, it's absolutely best feature!

Have you tried Amazon UK?

Barring that, I can ship you some and you can PayPal me :-) I'm always happy to help another miniaturist find supplies :-)

My cats are about the size of my childhood dog, who was a Norwich Terrier...and quite a large one at that.


Michelle said...

Hi C.J.,

I managed to source the Deco Art glaze for the windows via Amazon UK (I usually just Google an item and see what comes up!), but no luck at all with the Stucco. So very kind of you to offer to send over the Stucco. I may just take you up on that offer and thank heavens for Paypal! lol I'm not sure yet what project I'm going to start on next (the current one won't take too long). So I will let you know.

Many thanks,
Michelle :o))

C.J. said...


You're very welcome, and any time!!!


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