Monday, 18 October 2010

More stuff!!

I am beginning to do some creative things to my kitchen.
Lots of my house still needs finishing/renovating/even BUILDING (like the bathroom which is still 'temporary'!). I have written a bathroom blurb here.
The kitchen doesn't have any cupboards in it.
It never did.
Nor a sink.
Not much of a stove even.
My Best Sister brought me a wonderful old four oven Rayburn stove from Tasmania as a house warming present when I first bought the house. The concrete on the floor was put down with not enough cement in it so it is all flaky and dusty. The bathroom and laundry area (10' x 30') was the same but I have ripped that up and laid lovely old red bricks in it's place. I want to do that to this kitchen area too. Just need to get some energy from somewhere!

the left hand drawer of kitchen cupboard
Anyways! I bought a couple of entertainment units. Since everyone (else) in the world has gone crazy for enormous flat screen televisions there is now no call for the sort of cabinets that used to hold a 'normal' telly, along with drawers etc for CDs, DVDs, videos and all those other useless bits of wiring, remotes, waranty docs and manuals. I have one pine unit which will fit snugly into the pantry, and this one as a bar in the kitchen.

This cabinet has a pull-out drawer shelf at either end (see top photo) which had a couple of vertical boards with plastic thingies to hold DVDs and CDs. So I pulled them out, and cut the timber into lengths to make them into horizontal shelves, and nailed them in.

useful drawers full of jasmine

Just totally perfect for herbs and spices, and all the small things that get lost in a big cupboard.
The centre has two doors that fold back into the unit with another unit inside with shelves where the TV and DVD player etc sat, and more drawers.

interior of kitchen cupboard

One of the Woods Ware Jasmine plates (cups and saucers, jugs, bowls, whatever) which is tucked away in the bottom drawers and shelves of my new unit.
the Wood's Ware Jasmine china I collect

The answer is 42. Painted on 10.10.10 - 101010 or XXX
 On October 10 I made this painting to celebrate 10/10/10. There are 10 x 3 hearts cut from handmade Japanese papers, as well as three x 10, and three x X. Somewhere in there is perhaps going to be a shadowy 42 because in binary 101010 is 42! There are bits of gold leaf as well as a warm and cold cream (ha ha not Ponds...), and metallic sparkly paints. It is a long time since I painted. I think I shall have to do more of it (I need the practice for starters!)

Teddy, and a barbie - with new clothes
I have also been knitting dolls' clothes. And teddy clothes. This is my poor old Bare Bear who I have had since newborn. He is called Bare Bear because when I was three I threw him in the copper when Mum was washing clothes and all his fluffy mohair fur fell out...These are the first clothes he has had since I took him out of the nightie Nana made for Uncle Ernie 89 years ago. Still got that little nightgown, too! I have made a lot of barbie doll clothes, and even smaller knitted ones for a couple of tiny teddies who are about the right scale for the doll's house I am making (see below!). The tiny garments are knitted from one play tapestry wool on 1.5mm needles. I have also made some blankets for the doll's house beds in fine crochet silk, and the one ply wool. Good fun - fiddly but achievable when I am feeling tired!
doll's house bed with knitted blankets
OH look!!! a tiny doll's bed with knitted bedding! Next plan is a weeny small patchwork quilt using fine Liberty cottons and some silks I have stashed away!

This is a smaller scale doll's house that I have been making for years! It was a rather crude kit I bought in San Francisco when the boys were little. I put some of it together with their help a long time ago, and then put it away as it was rather too fiddly for little boys...
cutie pie doll's house and furniture I am making (yep that is a quilt!)
Some of the other furniture there is from the weekly installment doll's house I am currently putting together.
The quilt hanging behind is one I bought in SF back in the 1980s. It is hand stitched reverse applique and made by Hmong refugees who had gone to live in America from northern Thailand/Laos.
Tiny Teddy's new clothes
The very small teddy with his new cable knit jumper and woolly shorts!  That is a dressing gown on the needles.
The patterns are from the booklets that came with the weekly edition packs. We started buying this back about 1997 - it was supposed to be 100 weekly installments costing $10 each. Then it wandered up to $14 or $15, and to even monthly intervals. AND THEN - when it got to 100 installments it kept going for another 25 installments...

It took YEARS to collect!

All up these five boxes of kit must have cost about $1,500 (I could have had a REAL bathroom for that price!). Sadly - or surprisingly! - I am missing only one installment (somewhere in the mid 50s). It is the one that has quilting in the booklet, too. I don't know what part of the house is missing.

Below is a photo of the booklet front page. It was developed by Del Prado, originally it seems from Spain, but then from the UK. Each installment came with a part of the house, instructions on how to construct said part, and a 6 or 8 page booklet that went together to compile a whole book about all sorts of aspects of dolls' house stuff.
Sometimes the wooden bit would be a chair, or a dresser, or half a wardrobe with the other half the following week (fortnight....month...sigh), or a piece of wall, floor, ceiling. Absolutely impossible to construct really until all the pieces were acquired!

Fortunately I DID get a ring binder with separators for each of the construction instructions to keep them orderly.
However, all the other bits are supposed to go into binders to make into about 6 different books. Don't have them, haven't been able to source them online either.
Nor did we get the transformer for the electricals - lighting etc. But that is probably cos it would have been different wiring or even voltage if it originated in Spain. But do have all the tiny light fittings and bulbs etc.
Cover of doll's house booklet
The bottom right hand house is similar to the one I am making. Mine has a narrower hallway in the centre rather than rooms, is two storied with two more rooms in the attic.
So far I have got the bottom left hand room done, and the downstairs hall as well as some of the dear little furniture. It is really lovely silly fun!
right side with new shelves

Oh will you just look at that!
Here is the photo from the top of the page that I thought was lost!
I am not going to risk trying to relocate it again...
This is the right hand pullout drawer/shelf unit. That is the pantry door in the background, and the sink is to the right, lounge area to the left on the other side of the unit.
It is high, high enough to lean on whilst entertaining guests on the other side and I am on the working side creating a meal!

And cheap as chips.
I bought this on eBay for about $80. It was a craftsman-built unit, solid timber as well as classy veneer (not crappy chipboard and plastic!) - weighs a tonne!

I thought I was immensely clever to think of upcycling one of those redundant units (or two of them really!).

Apologies if this is difficult to read and with a messier than messy layout. Suck it up. Next entry will be better I promise - I am at The Sweetheart's on the eccentric notebook to add insult to injury!

1 comment:

Clare said...

No - it's not messy and the layout is ok.

Brilliant post - you really are keeping busy.