Sunday, October 16, 2016

Keeping Cozy & Glue Tips

As October arrives in this part of the world we are reminded that the chills of winter are not far behind. Even in Southern California, where the plunging of temps into the low 70's gets miniaturists talking about the harsh 50's to come, the sweaters and quilts start to appear. Rugs are unrolled and set to cover wooden and tile floors, serious thoughts about fireplaces arise and holiday decorating plans come to fruition. It's time to create cozy comfort by using the things we love most.

Hand knit ski sweaters are available in several colors and styles and will add panache to the characters in your creation. Add a scarf and hat ensemble to really get heads turning. You'll want to remember to place a set of clothing pegs in a convenient place to hang all the winter clothing.
Sweaters are available in a variety of colors and designs.

Richly hued quilts and comforters, all handmade, will bring a ho hum room up to fabulous. The detailing is outstanding and there's certainly a color scheme that will fit right into your plans. The first quilt below features lavender and blue shades. A close-up of its intricate workmanship is shown following.

This pink toned patchwork quilt brings both warmth and cheer to a bedroom. A detail is below.

This quilt brings the indoors in with its blues and greens.

Lots of patterns for every taste.

Adorable for a child's room, with pillows to match!

For those who wish to design their own accessories, a length of attractive fabric will make the activity a breeze. This pattern is just plain sweet!

Floors need warmth, too. The shop is brimming with floor coverings to enhance an already beautiful room or to be the basis for a new one.

Notice the fine detailing in these rugs.

With sweaters to curb the nips, quilts to create coziness and rugs to keep the feet warm as well, comfortable, well-cushioned furniture adds an additional layer of protection from the cold.

Nice, warm pretty rooms can be made more so by the addition of a fireplace. There are so many styles to choose from. Here are a few:

An experienced miniaturist pointed out that this last unit could easily serve two purposes. With the proper accessories you can "Stick meat in it and it's a barbecue or put logs in it and it's a fireplace." Either way, it's a sharp addition to your room, adding both warmth and style.

Autumn days herald in several major holidays. Our friends to the north celebrate the Canadian Thanksgiving in early October, falling at the same time as Columbus Day. Pumpkins abound for the Canadian Thanksgiving and our own American one, as well as for Halloween. And then, before you know it, in come Christmas and Chanukah. We've added lots to our holiday collection this year. Please come visit us and take a look!

All dressed up for trick-or-treating.

Ah, comfort foods! In the colder weather they help keep the chill away while reminding us of happy days in the past. 

A brimming breadbasket, 12:1 scale.
Warming soups and stews to enrich the soul.

A succulent turkey for Thanksgiving, whether American or Canadian.
Naughty or nice?
This year Christmas Eve and the first night of Chanukah both fall on December 24th which leaves plenty of room for decorating, whichever your preference.
Beautifully ready for Christmas treats.
Latkes or bust!
A Chanukah packet including menorah, candles, dreidel and other goodies.
Beauty of the season.

Too pretty to eat!

Let them build their own!

What would Christmas be without Bing?

We are looking forward to seeing you soon!


Michael Sue Nanos


Michael Sue's Tips:

*My Favorite Glues*

A few posts ago I wrote about super glues. In case you missed it, here's the recap, followed by some other favorites of mine.
******Did you know this about super glues ?*****

1. If you put small amounts of super glues in a pistachio shell while you're working with it,  it will last longer.

2. For an instant bond apply super glue gel on one surface and a thick white glue on the other. Instant bond and longer life. (Super glues do break down.)

3.There is a spray accelerant for super glues. Apply the glue, hold the two objects together, spray. Done. Don't get on your hands; not only will you be glued but this method gets very HOT.

4. Never use super glue on clear plastic or glass. It will permanently fog it.

5. Don't put a newly super glued item in a airtight container; it will fog it.

6.Super glue is not recommended for wood. Nothing works better on wood than a good yellow or brown wood glue.

7. There are two types of super glue: regular and gel. The gel is much easier to work with and control but it is dimensional.

8. Super glue cures hard or rigid, so it's not recommended for any joint that needs to be flexible.

Here are some others:

1. 527 Multi-use Glue or Quick Grip Permanent Adhesive.

 I would use either in place of a super glue. It will not fog glass or plastic. It is just a little flexible, so a little harder to use for things like perfume bottles, but easier to find than a good jewelers glue (which the applicators get messed up on right away). Good for glass, metal, shells, leather, ceramic, and wood. It is dimensional, but it doesn't take much to work well.

2. Silicone Household Glue and Seal. 

Get the clear. (it comes in white also) It is 100% silicone rubber so it remains flexible forever. Can't be painted. This glue is amazing!! You can glue virtually anything to anything. I use it even to lay my molded vinyl floorings. Fill up the cavities on the reverse; makes for a great seal. I have even been happy with the results on latex brick sheets, but you must really roughen up the reverse to give the glue a chance to hang onto something. I've been told that     an automotive glue works well (such as Eclectic Products' Seal-All), but I haven't used one myself yet. (Just so you know, no white glue or any other glue I know of works on these two items. It just rolls right off.)

3. White glue; a nice one is Aleene's Tacky Gold. 

They have come out with so many designer white glues it is hard to keep up. I really believe they're all the same, just a little more or less water with a new label. Your heavy white glues work very well for fabrics and anything soft that needs to stay flexible. A little goes a long way. I'm forever saying in class "just a whisper of glue". Then of course you need a thin white glue like school glue. Any cheap one will do for landscaping. You just need it to be very thin so you can push it around to apply ground covers. Sorry, spray glues do not hold up.

4. Wood Glue, as long as it's  brown you're good to go. No white wood glue! All white glue has flexibility and therefore  has no place being used on wood. There is one from Timberbrook but very hard to find. Remember, if you get glue on your wood it will not take stain. So you might want to stain first, then assemble.

You can get though almost any project with these five glues (the four from the current post, as well as the super glue, above). Isn't that nice you don't need one whole cabinet in your work space just for glue?

Remember no hot glue anywhere (well, it's pretty cool for landscaping).

*Often asked questions*

What should be used to put pictures, mirrors, etc. on the wall?

Well, if it's permanent, silicone will do the trick; less for lightweight stuff or more for heavier pieces. If you're not committed there just isn't anything wonderful. The clays don't last long because they dry out and your piece falls off the wall. And some of them even leave an oil stain. They change the recipes often enough that you can never be sure if it will or won't. And then the waxes for sure have too much oil.

What should be used to affix an item to a table top, etc.?

If the surface of the table has a hand rubbed finish there just isn't anything that won't stain it. Those are usually very expensive pieces so you really don't want to mess them up. If the surface has an applied finish or is metal, plastic or ceramic you can use a removable reusable glue, such as Plaid's Stikit Again & Again found in fabric stores. I carry it in the shop when I can get it. It's awesome! It comes in a little bottle with an applicator like nail polish. You apply this glue to the bottom of the item and let it dry. It stays sticky so you can put it down and then pick it up over and over. The drawback is it's almost impossible to get off your item should you change your mind. I like using a very light film of silicone on the bottom of an item and setting it right down on the table. It holds well but can be taken off your item by just rubbing your finger across the bottom; it rolls right off (light film is the key here).