Thursday, October 27, 2011

I think I solved my niche dilemma!  Whilst pouring the evening cocktails I just happened to glance at the vodka bottle and then it hit me:  The vodka bottle is the same shape as my niches!  So I placed my handy niche template over the bottle and guess what?  The vodka bottle was too big.  Rats! But you can't  foil the likes of me that easily, I'm here to tell you...  

A dash to the recycling bin produced two new contenders: wine bottle versus super-sized, cheap-o wine bottle.   And the winner is: super-sized, cheap-o wine bottle!

Now that we have the mold, what to use to fabricate the actual niches?  We've already poo-pooed  papier-mache as being too difficult to obtain a smooth finish.  I want my niches smooth as a baby's bottom!  Laugh not, gentle Reader, but I have just recently stumbled across a blog posting extolling the virtues of using laundry dryer-lint as a papier-mache substitute!  As unlikely (not to mention unsavory) a prospect this may seem, your intrepid amateur miniaturist has taken a solemn vow to leave no stone unturned in his never-ending Quest for Fabulosity!

But seriously: what am I going to use?  Fimo?  Plaster of Paris?  I've heard that Fimo shrinks when you bake it which might be problematic.  I remember as a boy in art class mixing saw-dust with glue and making a paste that you could model and I assume, sand smooth.  Decisions, decisions! 


Anyway, enough about my tiresome niches...I grow WEARY of them!  In honor of Halloween which is, after all, right around the corner, and since this is a dollhouse blog, (right)? I bring you this macabre little gem.  (Warning, Fiona!  This might give you the hebe-jeebies)!  Happy Halloween, everyone!


Giac said...[Reply]

Hi john,
Where do you find all these great clips!
Did you ever consider plaster of paris to make the niches. I'm thinking you could use heavy cardboard to make a small box around half of the bottle as a mold. When it will be dry you should have a surface as smooth as the bottle. I've never tried this, just a thought.
Look forwarding to seeing what technique you will use, as well as pictures of the hall.
Happy Halloween,

John said...[Reply]

Happy Halloween, Giac!

'Murder in the Dollhouse' recently played here in Minneapolis a few weeks ago, but I thought the topic more apropos to Halloween, so I demurred.

I am leaning toward Plaster of Paris...I'm wondering if there is a 'binder' I might add to it to make it less, I don't know, brittle?

Fi.P said...[Reply]

OMG......what are you doing to me!!!!!!

Now i feel nothing but suspense!!!!!

Just as I was logging off I saw your post and thought.....ooooh I must look!!

I creeped down the stairs so as not to wake my drowsy husband and what did I find??????

A spooky miniature trailer that has me in suspense, What happened????

i have a room full of 12 year old girls and i think I might sneak in and show them...he,he

P.S you may as well go with the plaster of will get the best effect.

I must retreat as it's Darby day tomorrow and bags under the eyes are not the look for this season!!!!!

Anneke said...[Reply]

The bottle is a great find! I've worked with plaster alot, and I like it thought it is indeed very brittle.
I used luiqid rubber from a bottle, you can apply this in layers to an object. When thick and dry enough, you can remove it an you have the perfect mold. If you fill it with plaster, you'll simply have fantastic copies of the original. It's a shame the bottle isn't plastic, than you could've cut it open and used the inside to create such a rubber mold. I used this simple childrenstoy plaster It is cheap, easy to work with and easy to clean up after.

Hope that was of any help! I love seeing the progress on your merriman park. The drawingroom will be a marvelous piece of your project just like the hall!

Anneke said...[Reply]

Oh I just thought of another solution! That would be easier than plaster and just as smooth! I once made these dolls out of airdrying clay. You can make it a little wet with a few drops of water and make it as smooth as the babybottoms you spoke off :P

It doesn't shrink when it dries, it doesn't have to go in the oven. you could just slap it onto the bottle, smooth and shape it, leave it to dry and then take it off again. When it is dry you can paint, saw and sand it if you want. It is a very easy material and less brittle than the plaster...

I used 'Das' and 'L'artist' and 'La Doll' but there are many more brands at different prices available at the hobby stores.

Fi.P said...[Reply]

Yes I agree with Anneke, air dried clay, that was what I meant by Das....I guess I shouldn't use brand names.

John said...[Reply]

Hi, Anneke!

The air-dry clay sounds like the perfect solution. I'm going to run out tomorrow and pick some up! Thank you, Anneke, for the tip!

John said...[Reply]

Happy Darby Day, Fi!

'Murder in the Dollhouse' is a documentary about a group of miniature dioramas that were created in the 1930's and set up as crime scenes. They were (and still are)! used to train detectives in homicide investigations. They played it here in Minneapolis a few weeks ago but I didn't read about it until the day after so I missed it! But John Waters narrates it so I HAVE to see it, someday!

Thanks for your supportive comments and suggestions, Fi. And I hope those girls weren't too frightened on Darby Day!

Fi.P said...[Reply]

I just googled it, and how fascinating. I would love to see it, I wonder if it will ever come out here?

And thanks John, we did have a great Darby day.....12 hours in High Heels is a killer, but so much fun.

On to Melbourne Cup on Tuesday, and some where in there Mia wants to do!