Now Hiring a Barista Mouse

building miniature cabinet

building miniature cabinetI finally got to sit down and start building all those pieces of furniture for the café.  Most of it went pretty easy.  But the display case in the front of the café that holds all the pastries was such a pain.  All those little shelves and nothing quite fit together right… then you realize you glued everything on backward and then a cabinet nob is super-glued to your hand…. it was a little nightmare.

A room with a red chairI had to rip some stuff a few times, so I think I’m going to end up painting some of the furniture to hide my mistakes.   And I got a nice big gluey fingerprint on the front of the glass cabinet (notice now I strategically left that out of the picture).   So I’ll have to come up with a way to hide that…. maybe a nice sticker or sale sign or something.

Now my friends have decided I need a little mouse barista.   I started searching taxidermy on Etsy and a few other sites… cute stuff but not really matching what I want.   Google image search provided some nice hits but nothing that was for sale…  just images and art pieces people made.   According to Etsy, the going rate for a stuffed mouse is about $80+ … I’m not sure I need a barista mouse that much.  At least not for my first model.  But, I should figure out something cute to stick in there.

Arsenic Mouse
Mouse by Amanda’s Autopsies

Glue and Sort

chinese language manual

Last night, I had a short bit to sit down and keep working on my miniature café.  I can’t wait for retirement when I can do whatever I want all day and not just try to squeeze in a little time here and there.

Anyways… I was going through all the pieces again when I stumbled upon a piece of gold foil wrapped up in a packet of wires.

There IS fabric after all!   And the first thing that came into my mind was “OMG… I lied to the internet.”   Normally I would wait until there was more done to post about, but I had to correct this situation.  After all, you can believe anything you read on the internet and I will not be responsible for ruining that.

So yes, packed away with some wires was a small packet of scraps that will be used for table cloths and seat covers.   Honestly, they kind of suck and look dirty, so I’ll likely replace them if they don’t clean up well.

I got my walls glued together and set aside to dry.

I got some of the signs (menu board and outside company sign) put together.  And then I sorted through the rest of the furniture pieces to make sure I have everything and that the correct pieces were in the right groups.  Some of them were so similar I could’ve easily mixed them up and not realized it until something didn’t quite fit.

chinese language manual

Last, I started going over the little LED lights and how to wire it.  I tested the lights and everything appears to work.  But by the time I deciphered most of the pages in Chinese on lighting I realized I didn’t care enough and went to bed.

So yeah, not much progress but I feel better having righted a wrong.

First Miniature

A graffiti covered wall

A graffiti covered wall

I’ve always been slightly fascinated with miniatures.  After browsing Etsy for a while I finally bought a few kits.   I don’t really care about pre-made kits since I tend to make most everything myself.   But the ones I picked out were really cute and I figured I should see how others construct these things before venturing off into my own projects…. which is very unlike me.

First thing, wait for the kit to arrive.   Then wait more, because it’s coming from china and will be weeks.   I knew this when ordering, so no big deal.  It was also cheap, so I am not expecting much.

When it finally arrives, take note of the smashed up package and realize it probably won’t make a difference because… well because it’s super cheap and wouldn’t be worth the effort to return it if something was wrong.

Next, open package and dump everything out.

img_0033.jpg

See?   Just as I expected.  Plastic, more plastic, some wood and lots of paper you’ll be gluing on everything.   Even the fabric in the picture is actually just folded paper.  The only fabric in the kit was a cut up doily for the window decorations.

 

Next, take all those papers and throw them out.

 

Did you do it?   Good, now go get them out of the trash and put them aside, you might want those as templates later.   But throwing them out felt good, didn’t it?

After gluing a few pieces of paper down to walls and floors I realized I would not be happy with the results.  I mean, I know it’s just a kit, but I also want to walk away with something I want to look at again.   Then, I cut through a sheet of paper that was stuck to another sheet…

oops

Which was fine.  The whole time I was gluing I was thinking how I could make this better with all my craft supplies.  So this little accident just forced me to do it.   Sure, I could’ve just scanned it, fixed it in Photoshop and reprinted it…. but that wouldn’t’ be much fun.

First, I went to Home Depot.   While I had most things, I didn’t have scrap wood.  And my floor was going to be a wood floor.    In the dowel section they have square dowels… I grabbed a bunch of those.   Over in the painting section I grabbed some cherry stain.

I rough cut the pieces down to size to fit their wood base in the kit.   It already had a notched area where the floor was somehow supposed to sit.  (I’m not sure how, I couldn’t get it their floor piece to fit to begin with).

 

A brick wall

I also took a razor blade and cut in little floor board markings about every three inches.  Then I applied a light coat of cherry stain and varnished it.

Next, I took the walls that I had previously glued paper ‘wallpaper’ too.  I picked something similar off my shelf of fabrics.   Maybe a little too similar, but I still wanted to retain the café look and finding mini prints was fabric was proving difficult even with my large selection.

wallpaper

Now the walls are covered, the floor is stained and varnished, windows were put in and some various other accessories were glued.   All that took a long time…. but it was mostly waiting around for things to dry or the time it took to saw all those wood pieces.img_0041.jpg

Stained tuned for the next segment where I’ll be erecting walls and adding the LED lighting.   OOooOOooOohhh!  Exciting stuff!