The kitchen in Miss Wanda's House for Hapless Haunts was a bit bare. I knew it needed more storage, so I followed a plan given on the excellent blog written by longtime miniaturist Joann Swanson. Except...the rack turned out to be too big.
So I started over and concocted this tiny rack.
The shelves are made from drink coasters, a substance I really like to use. It's an easy to cut cardstock. The struts are from matchsticks. You have to search for ones that aren't misshapen.
The tiny sign was cut from a drink coaster. I painted the flower image and used a .005 Micron pen to write the words. I wanted it to look old and shabby.
On one side is a bouquet of dried babies' breath culled from a RL (real life) bouquet. The labels are from the Internet. You can put "Halloween labels" into Google and find them. I sized and printed them. Most of the tiny glass bottles are from the dollar store, where they held glitter and micro beads to be used to decorate fingernails. The lids are a dab of Elmer's Wood Putty covered with silver nail polish.
"Reposing Rat" was the item that gave me the most trouble!
I had to find a gray substance that would look gunky. Finally I used a gummy product, a putty. The container is the plastic bubble from a pill pack. It's seated on a piece of card stock.
The yellow bottle is different. It's a cut-off piece from a plastic squirt vial given to me by a chef. Fancy restaurants use these vials for lemon juice and such. I sliced it short, glued a bottom on to it, added the label, and painted the bottle yellow. The squat container to the right is a piece of sawed off plastic with a button and two stacked circles of cardstock on top.
I made the green-handled basket from a hollowed out acorn. The top of the nut was filled with air-drying clay. The handle is made from the same clay. I coated it with green nail polish and added plastic plant pieces and a label. The labels really make the scene, I think.
The dried flower arrangement is in a tiny black basket made from cardstock. Although bittersweet is actually too big to be in scale, it still looks cool. I picked it from weeds growing in a lot beside our apartment up in DC. Some of the pod pieces fell off, so I glued them back on.
In situ, the rack is the perfect size. The white color shows up nicely against the orange wall. I'm pretty pleased with it! Now I need to make a small table to go to the right of the sink. I also need to finish up the china set. More to come!
Saturday, June 6, 2015
Wednesday, June 3, 2015
by Joanna Campbell Slan
I couldn't let my "bee encounter" buzz by without doing a wee bee research activity. Here's what I learned:
- The bees that are dying are domestic honeybees, commercially raised. The colonies are collapsing.
- African bees are mating with wild honeybees, creating a more aggressive strain.
- By looking at them, a bee expert can't tell the difference between African bees and native wild bees.
- A nest that's bred with African bees might be docile one minute and aggressive the next.
- Bees don't move much or fly much when it's rainy. Heat will stir them up.
- African bees don't like cold weather, so the problem is confined to the southern states.
- The USDA has told licensed bee companies NOT to move wild nests because they might have African bees in them and that would pose a public safety hazard. Unfortunately these nests should be eradicated.
- Bees rest from five to seven days after swarming.
- The phrase "the bee's knees" might have started with the phrase "the be-all and end-all," but when it was repeated quickly, the new phrase was born. So it isn't really about bees, but about "B's." It means "something fantastic."
- But the first official appearance was in 1907, in a book called Mr. Goggles by Henry Collins Brown: "Bee-raising is a good side line for the farmer, especially since the swell restaurants have made a specialty of fried bees' knees. Such a beesness!"
- The Brits seem to write it thusly: bees' knees.
- And the phrase also became a fad during the Roaring Twenties, when people crowed about, "The bee's knees!" This slang phrase deserves a revival, don't you think?
|That's me, flying off to do my own thing.|
Hmmm. I think I need to write a story about these bees. What do you think?
Oh, and if I have any of this wrong, please bee nice and let me bee correct.