Friday, December 10, 2010

SUGAR N' SPICE PART 3 .....................PLUS KITS!

I  almost "hear those sleigh bells jingling" and so in the "nick" of time,  here is the  
3rd and final segment of Sugar n' Spice which completes the project. 


                                                                 THE SCRUB TABLE

You will need: smooth white matboard + 4 legs, approx. 2-1/2”H. (these may
be something like Houseworks #7202 or #7025 balusters cut to size or an
assembly of 3/16” or ¼” sq stripwood and Tiny Turning bits similar to that
described for cabinet) + 1/16” or 3/32” sheet basswood + posterboard
(.030, approx. 1/32” thick) + paint and stain (Ceramcoat’s antique white
#2001 acrylic and Delta’s Brown Antiquing gel used here) + drawer handle of
your choice (may be the same as those on cabinet)

-Prepare four, approx. 2 ½ “H legs with at least a ½” long square top section. 
Paint desired color and when dry antique with brown gel.  Wipe gel back off
while wet until desired look is achieved.  A damp cloth may be used to further
remove gel.  Set aside.
-From ½ “high matboard strips cut two side pieces 1 ½” long and a front and a
back piece 2 ⅝” long.  
-From posterboard cut a faux drawer 1⅜”L x ⅜" H.  A design may be tooled
into the drawer front as was described for cabinet, if desired.  Glue drawer to
front piece, 1⅛” from one side and centered top to bottom. 
-Paint and antique the front and side pieces to match the legs.
-From sheet basswood cut a table-top 4” x 2¼”.  Sand smooth and ever so
slightly round off the top edges and corners.  Divide the top into four equal
sections lengthwise with light pencil lines and then use a pointed stylus to scribe
in the faux board.  Hint: an easy way to divide the top into equal sections is to
cut a piece of paper the same size as the top and fold it into 4ths & use it as
a pattern.
- Glue the front, back, and side pieces and the legs to the bottom of the table top
with the front, back and side pieces between the legs, front edges of the pieces
set in 1/32” in from the front edges of the legs and the whole assembly centered
on the bottom. 
-When glue has set add a handle of your choice centered on the faux drawer.
-If desired the top may be treated with linseed or olive oil. 


Using old scissors cut a 1 ½” x 1” piece of screen door wire-mesh/
hardware cloth (hardware store purchase).  Seal cut edges with a thin
brushing of Liquid Solder or E-600.  Use 20 gauge wire to form a rectangle
1 ½” x 1”, starting and stopping on the center of a side, and two 2 shapes per
diagrams.  Using either of the afore mentioned adhesives, adhere the rectangle
to the underside of the mesh piece and then the other two pieces diagonally
from corner to corner, forming an X with the “feet” pointing down.

SET PRINTER TO 3.13"W X 2.45"H

The unbaked gingerbread boys, waiting to be frosted, are made the same as
explained in PART 1, by tracing around a metal-miniature cookie cutter onto
brown cardstock, cutting them out and slightly embossing them on the backside
for some dimension.  You may also choose to use a paper punch like the one
pictured here.  Looking online I see it is available thru eBay.  Punch out of brown
cardstock and trim fingers from hands. 
Boy paper punch approx. 5/8"H

The decorated gingerbread boys may be created by using the same method as
the undecorated ones and then adding "frosting" by using a pointed toothpick to
apply Scribbles Dimensional Paint. 

Or you may choose to use the decorated gingerbread cookies printies below.
Print these onto cardstock.  For ease in decorating, before cutting  out, use the
pointed end of a toothpick or a needle tool to carefully apply craft glue or
Diamond Glaze over the frosting on the cookies.  This will add dimension and
realism to the frosting.  Let dry thoroughly and then carefully cut out the cookies. 
Use a water colored pencil to color the back sides and edges of each to match
the front color as closely as possible.

Click on image and copy & paste to computer.
Set printer to print image at 4.30"W x 0.81"H


Draw a 1 ¼” circle on plain white paper.  Fold for four equal triangles and cut to separate.  Roll triangles into cones, holding with glue.  When glue has set fill each
cone halfway up with Scribbles dimensional paint and pinch to close.  Put a bit
of the paint on the tip of the cone and place on a place or tray with glue.  You can
also add a small smear of paint on the tray and/or the out side of the top of the cone.


I used inexpensive, unfinished wood bowls from Lara Crafts.  These come in a
package of 8 assorted sizes and can be found at craft stores such as Michaels.
These are filled with Scribbles Dimensional paint for frosting and applied to
disguise the out-of-scale thickness of the bowls.  Chrysnbon soup/serving spoons
were inserted in frosting before it dried.


The jars are the smaller half (approx. 7/16”H) of a #2 size (approx. 15/16”),
2 part pharmaceutical capsule.   These can be purchased at health food stores
and online. Note: These capsules have other interesting uses miniature-wise. 
Insert a dowel or unsharpened pencil into the capsule and press down lightly to
slightly flatten the rounded end.  For the lid punch a 3/16” round from posterboard
and glue to the now flattened end. 

Set the capsule on the lid and fill as desired with colored craft sand (this sand has
other uses in miniatures, esp. baking) Note: Melissa and Doug off kits with asst.
color sands and can be order thru Amazon.  But also look to dollar stores and
the dollar bins at Target, Michaels, and Joann’s for very inexpensive little kits
with a nice variety of colors, and some come with funnels.  You can also use
fine glitter if desired. 
For bottom, run a very thin line of E-600 glue around the capsule edges and then
cover it with a piece of clear packing tape.  When glue has set, trim tape to size.

The thinner candy canes in the purchased glass bowl (a quick look on eBay
shows a nice selection) are made follow directions in part 1.  The larger ones
are made using packaged ones from Darcie.  These are out of scale but can be
reworked.  First add a dab of craft glue to each end to prevent fraying.  Using
pliers (two pair work best) twist the canes, one hand going one way and the
other hand the opposite way until a desired pattern is achieved.  Cut with wire
cutters; leave as is for candy sticks or bend one end for canes.  Seal each cut
with a dab of glue.  For a shiny finish use clear nail enamel or acrylic gloss.
Print out two mirror images of the trees and glue back to back; repeat.  Cut one
tree in half lengthwise and glue the cut side of one half to the face of the uncut
tree; repeat for other side.

                                               Click on image and save to computer. 
                                               Set printer to print at 1.62"W x 1.16"H

 For a bit of whimsy add a gingerbread man escaping his fate….
Run, run as fast as you can!  You can’t catch me, I’m the Gingerbread Man!"
Click on image and save to computer.
Set printer to 0.75W x 0.95H
Print on cardstock.
Cut out and color edges and back with brown water color
pencil.  Slighty. bend arms and legs to a
running position.



Now on to “real life” for me for a bit…decorating the tree, baking some real
cookies, finishing the shopping and getting the house ready for a two week
holiday visit from 2 year old granddaughter Malene and parents.  Do check
back here from time to time to see what new little bits I might have for you and
then a new project for January decorating.

A huge thank-you to all of you who have helped to make my blog so successful,
it is really gratifying. Have a wonderful holiday season and please  take time to
“smell the spices of the season”, that is what it is all about!


Thursday, December 2, 2010

Sugar n' Spice PART 2

By now you have your flooring down, the kitchen cabiniet assembled and 
trimmed with holly.  You have filled the shelves with an array of gingerbread
treats and are now ready to work on the baking prep section of Sugar n' Spice.


Flour Bag:  Print on bright white paper.  Cut out and fold on lines and between
bag sections.  Glue side over tab.  Fold the bottom section in from the sides until
the edges meet and then fold the peaks formed on the front and back of the
bottom, in and glue in place.  Fill the bag about ¾ full with soft tissue or tp. 
Crease the top section of the bag as was done with the bottom section but do
not glue it shut.  Open it up and slightly distress the top edges for a used look.

Brown Sugar:  Fold in tabs and glue the front over them.  Cover whole bag
with packing tape, trimming off excess evenly.  Stuff lightly with soft facial tissue
or tp and then glue the top edge shut.

Spices:  The spices are best printed on semi-gloss photo paper.  Score on all
lines.  Glue side over tab.  Glue top and bottom tabs to inside.

Baking Powder:  Cut a 7/16”W x 11”L strip of paper and roll up tightly until it
has a ¼” diam.; cut off excess paper and glue to hold.  Glue label around roll,
cutting off excess so ends meet in back.  Punch ¼” round of poster board and
another of silver cardstock.  Glue the two together and then glue to top of roll,
silver side up.

Molasses:  Lite Brite pegs (as pictured) are plastic pegs from a child’s game
that come in assort. translucent colors.  They can be purchased as replacement
parts (check online or in toy stores) and are often found bagged in 2nd hand
stores.  Using them is a fun and fairly easy way to make a wide assortment of
bottles and jars.  Simply insert the fat end of one into a variable speed drill or
Moto Tool and setting the tool to a medium speed use files, craft knife, and
sandpaper to reshape the peg as desired.  Use a razor saw to cut it to size
desired.  For this project create the bottle shape pictured.  The finished shapes
may be buffed to a sheen or coated with clear nail polish.  For the molasses
bottle chose a yellow peg and when it is done use a brown, permanent-marker
pen or glass stain to color.  Glue label  around bottle.  Punch a 1/8” round lid
from gold cardstock and glue in place on bottle top.

Shortening:  Print label on bright white paper.  Cut three strips of paper
½”W x11”L.  Roll one paper strip up tightly and hold with glue.  Add a 2nd strip
where the first ended and continue with roll; repeat with the third strip.  Trace
the top of the roll, twice onto white cardstock and twice onto metallic silver
cardstock.  Cut out the circles.  Glue a plain and a silver circle together to
form two double thickness circles.  Glue one each to the top and bottom of the
paper roll, silver sides showing.  Paint the label with one coat of clear nail enamel. 

                                 Click on photo to enlage and then save to your computer.

Bowl of Dough:  Just about any bowl will do.  I used half of a hollow plastic ball
(just as an aside, every 5th of July I walk our beach picking up a dozen or so of
these half balls in various bright colors that are some sort of detritus from
fireworks.  And I also find a handful of square bass stripwood…always looking
with miniatures in mind).  Cut a 2” to 2-1/2” circle of gingerbread brown
cardstock.  Lay it in the palm of your hand and “draw” over it, again and again,
in a circular motion with the rounded end of a paintbrush until the paper is
softened, embossed, and malleable.   Gently turn the edges of the paper to
the back side until it is puffed in the middle and will fit into your bowl.  Glue in
place.  Of course you may also choose to fill the bowl with clay of some sort. 
For the wooden spoon, sand the end of a wooden sandwich pick to about half
its thickness and cut it off to a ¾” length.  Make room for it in your dough and
glue in place.

Rolling Pin: Cut a 7/8” length of 3/16” diam. dowel.  Sand smooth with
finishing sandpaper.  Drill or ream a 1/8” deep hole in the center of each
end of the dowel.  Nip off a bit from the pointed end of a round toothpick
and insert the toothpick into the hole.  Mark on the toothpick where it meets
the dowel.  Remove the toothpick and measure up ¼” from the mark. 
Cut the toothpick at the mark and round off the end with sandpaper. 
Repeat for other side of dowel.  Glue more pointed ends of handles into
prepared holes.  Handles may be painted; red or green being good choices
or the handles along with the roller may be oiled with linseed or olive oil.


Rolled Dough:  Cut a piece of your gingerbread colored cardstock into an
irregular oval shape of a size that will fit on your bread board.  Lay it, back side
up, on the palm of your hand and “draw” around the edges with the end of a
paint brush or some such tool, until the edges turn up just a bit…this will give
the paper some dimension.  Glue to breadboard.  If desired you may “flour”
the breadboard first by finely stippling some white paint on to it.   Glue a
gingerbread cookie cutter atop the dough.  The 9/16”H x 7/16”W cookie cutter
used here is a classic metal miniature.  It is available thru an online search or
thru brick and mortar stores.


Baking Sheet:  Cut a piece of matboard or chipboard 1 ½” x 1”.  Slightly
round off the corners.  This piece will be your form to shape the baking sheet. 
Using pewter color embossing metal (this product is extra soft metal sheets
that usually comes in a roll and can be cut with scissors and has many uses in
miniature work. Art Emboss is one brand found in craft shops.  If you can’t find
it you can substitute a disposable aluminum baking pans etc. Cut a piece
1 ¾” x 1 ¼”.  Slightly round off the corners.  Working on a flat surface, center
your form over the metal rectangle.  Pressing down on the form, use a knife
blade or plastic credit card (great way to put to use junk mail) or such, to lift up
the sides of metal around the form, crimping the rounded corners as you work. 
Don’t bring the sides all the way up; let them flare out just a bit. Remove form
and check baking sheet for even flare of sides etc. and make any corrections. 
Do be careful in the project not to cut your self on the metal.  Add your cookies.

Gingerbread Boys:  The gingerbread boys on the baking sheet were made by tracing the aforementioned metal miniature cookie cutter onto gingerbread
color cardstock and then cutting them out.  Lay the cutouts on the palm of your
hand and with a small ball stylus trace around their outer edge to give them a bit
of dimension.  The tooled side is the down side.  Glue to baking sheet.

                                           Metal Miniature Gingerbread Cookie Cutter

Spatula: For the handle, nip the tip off of a round toothpick and sand the new
tip smooth.  Measure from the new tip down 3/8” and cut off at this point. 
Sand the cut end smooth.  Paint the handle either red or green and glaze
with an acrylic gloss.  Cut a ½” length of a straight pin, from the head down. 
Glue the head of the pin to the fatter end of the handle using cyanoacrylate
glue…super, crazy, etc.; set aside.    Click on spatula pattern to enlarge;
copy and paste to your computer. Set printer to print image out at .90” x .90”
and then print onto lightweight paper.  Rough cut image from paper and use
glue stick to adhere it  to a piece of thin aluminum, as from a piece of
disposable roaster pan or pull-out inner lids from peanut cans etc.
Use a pointed stylus to make the nine indentations and then carefully cut it out. 
Remove paper from metal.  Use liquid solder to adhere 1/16” of the pin to the
back of the spatula, centered side to side.

                                          Click on photo and copy and save to your computer. 
                                             Set printer to print image at 0.90"H x 0.90"W
.  ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Part 2 of Sugar n’ Spice should keep you busy for a few days, and then I will have
the final segment, Part 3, the table and its contents ready for you. 

If you are working on this project please let us know how it is going for you….
it is fun and interesting to share progress with one another, especially if you have
little hints that made things go smoother for you or have added your own “spice”.


“Stay-tuned” because some items from my projects may soon be offered as
kits to make your creating a bit easier.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

SUGAR N' SPICE part one


The base is a simple 5" x 7" wooden picture frame.   I choose a green color.
Remove everything from the frame.   We will be using the back side of the
frame for our display because it has more working space.  From chipboard
or double thickness of matboard cut a rectangle to fit snuggly in frame.  
Print out the vintage linoleum pattern onto semi-gloss photo paper (Epson's
Premium Photo Paper Semi-gloss used here).  Trim to fit chipboard inset. 
Use quality glue stick (Avery brand is a wise choice) to adhere flooring to
chipboard.  Glue the assembly into back of frame.

                                             Set printer to print pattern 5.28"W x 8.06"H
                                                        Use best printing selection.

This cabinet is a mini version of the one I have in my kitchen which has been
handed down thru my family.  I have omitted the top doors/drawers to make
room for  display.

The Cabinet Base:
Note: All drawers and doors in the base are faux.  You may re-work the
pattern/directions if you desire working ones.

You will need:
¼” sq. stripwood + two Tiny Turnings #3000 (available from your miniature dealer
or look online Note: Tiny Turnings are quality wood turnings that are offered in 4
styles, multi-packed for very reasonable prices with many fun mini-uses besides
the obvious) + smooth matboard + thin cardstock (index-card weight) +
posterboard (.030, approx. 1/32” thick) + 3/32” bass sheetwood + ¼” long crystal
clear bugle beads and seed beads to match + 15 gauge wire + wood glue, tacky
glue, glue stick + paint and stain (Ceramcoat’s antique white #2001 acrylic and
Delta’s Brown Antiquing gel used here)

-For legs, cut four, 2 ⅛” lengths from ¼” square stripwood.  From Tiny Turnings
# 3000 cut four 1” long pieces as shown.
Glue the ends of the 2 ½” x ¼” sq. pieces to top end of turned pieces to form
4 legs.
-From 1/16” smooth matboard cut a front and a back 3 ¼”W x 2 1/16”H; two
sides 1 9/16”W x 2 1/16”H; a bottom per pattern.
- Glue back piece between a pair of prepared legs, top and back edges flush.
-From cardstock cut two side relief pieces 1 9/16”W x 2 ⅛”H.  Use the RELIEF
FOR SIDES pattern as guide to cut out the center of these pieces.
Glue cardstock relief pieces evenly to face of side pieces.
-Glue assembled side pieces to back leg assembly, top edges flush and set in
1/16” from outside edge of legs.
- Glue front legs to sides, top edges flush and legs extending 1/16” out from
-Cut a bottom per pattern and glue in place to insides of side and back pieces
and legs.
-To prepare front cut out breadboard section as shown.
-Using posterboard cut 2 bin doors, two center drawers and frames for lower
drawers.  Using a pointed stylus score lined-pattern, as shown, into doors and
-Glue bottom drawer frames to front to form bottom doors.  Glue all drawer/door
pieces in place on face of front piece using glue stick.
-Prepare 6 vintage faux glass handles:  Feed a length of wire through a seed
bead, then a bugle bead, and then another seed bead per diagram.  Hold beads
together with a drop of cyanoacrylate glue.  When glue has set, bend wire ends
down at right angles to beads.  Insert another seed bead on wire ends. 
-Poke holes thru front piece to take wire ends.  Insert wire ends of handles into
holes and bend back wires in back to hold in place.
-Glue front piece in place to bottom piece and sides of legs. 
-Paint and antique as desired.
-Cut a 2-5/16” x 4” top from 3/32” basswood.  Sand smooth and glue to top of
base, back edges flush, overhang to front and centered side to side. 
-Breadboard: From 3/32” bass sheetwood cut a piece 2 ⅛” x 1 ¼” with wood
grain running lengthwise.  Cut another piece 1-1/4” x ⅛ and glue it to front edge
of the first piece using wood glue.  When glue has set, sand smooth and ever
so slightly round off front and side edges.  Check to make sure this breadboard
will fit into the slot allotted to it on base front and if needed, make adjustments
as needed.

Set printer to print at 5.21"W x 4.85"H


Set printer to print at 5.05"W x 8.16"H

Cabinet Top:
-From matboard cut a back piece 3 ¾ “W x 3 ⅜”H, two sides 1”W x 3 ⅜”H,
a sub-top and a shelf 1” deep x 3⅝” W. 
-Glue a long edge of the side pieces to the face of the back piece, outside
edges flush.  Glue the sub-top and the shelf to the face of the back piece and
side pieces, the sub-top flush with top edges and the shelf placed as desired
for what you wish to display…as seen, it is 1⅝” down from top piece. 
-From posterboard cut 3/16”W trim strips.  Use these to frame the outside face
of the side pieces, top and bottom frame pieces first and then side pieces;
from these trim pieces cut a piece to face across the top from side to side,
top edge flush with top of cabinet; Use the same trim pieces to face the front
edges of the side pieces, from top to bottom, outside edges flush; face the front
edges of the shelf, top edges flush.
-From matboard cut a top piece 1 ¼ “x 4”.  Glue it atop the cabinet, back
edges flush and centered side to side.
-From ¼” square stripwood cut a bottom brace to fit from side to side, inside the
cabinet top, glue it to the back and side pieces, bottom edges flush.
-Paint and antique the cabinet top to match the base.
-Glue the top of the cabinet to the cabinet base, back edges flush and
centered side to side.
- Cut two 3/16” slices from a 13/32” colonial moulding wood strip (Lowes) or
similar moulding (check your miniature dealer’s supplies) to act as
Paint and antique to match cabinet.  Glue to top and base sections of the cabinet
as seen in photograph.


Holly Garland
-Using a solid core green paper paint both sides with holly/Christmas
green acrylic paint.  Let dry.  Using a holly shaped paper punch
(there are several on the market that are good scale, check
scrapbooking/craft/miniature suppliers, brick and mortar or online), punch out
leaves from prepared paper.  Place several leaves on the palm of your hand
(left hand if you are right handed) and use a pointed stylus to “draw a line”
down the center of each leaf.  This process will give the leaves dimension. 

This is the holly punch I used:

-Tightly twist brown floral tape into a rope long enough to go across top of
cabinet and drape down each side.  Glue the rope in place on the cabinet.
-Using pointed tweezers pick up leaves and glue to rope, starting at each
end and working to center top, overlapping the leaves as you go. 
-Use red no-hole beads or Woodland Scenic’s Fruit (a scale model
railroad supply) to add clusters of “berries” on holly.

-Print out small gingerbread men onto cardstock.  Use brown watercolor
or water color pencils to color edges and back of the cookies. 

Print out at 6.23"W x .53"H

 Dip the tip of a pointed stylus into Judi Kin’s Diamond Dimensional Glaze (scrapbooking/craft/miniature store purchase with lots of miniature applications)
and trace over frosting on cookies. 

 Add gingerbread boys to garland as desired.

Gingerbread Houses Etc.
The gingerbread pieces used in Sugar n’ Spice are from my collection.  These
include vintage Hallmark miniature ornaments, craft store finds, and handmade.
The darling gingerbread sleigh and reindeer is an assembled laser kit from
Charlotte Atcher  She offers a nice variety of
well done gingerbread kits, including, houses, cookies, train, etc.
Look here for some fun gingerbread houses and patterns that can be adopted to

The roofs, door and window top, base, etc. are frosted with Scribbles
Dimensional Paint, Spackle, Gesso, or acrylic snow available such as
Delta’s Fantasy Snow.  The roofs may also be shingled with “cookies”
created by punching out small rounds of desired colors and over lapping
them from top to bottom. 
There are tiny stars, hearts, trees, etc. shapes to be found on paper punches. 
Often these shapes are tiny parts of a bigger design…look at your punches with  
“miniaturist’s eyes”.  Punch them from colored cardstock and glaze for a candy
sheen.    Of course you may choose to use Fimo to create your house and it’s
decorations.  Candy canes are a traditional part of gingerbread houses and
Fimo makes excellent ones…simply roll out a red (or whatever color desired)
and a white snake of the same size; lay them side by side and twist together. 
Continue rolling and twisting until the pattern and size of the cane meet your
needs.  Lay the rolls on a piece of glass or ceramic tile.   Bake according to
package directions.  When cool cut lengths as needed.

Candy canes can also be made from Knit-Cro-Sheen thread.  Cut a piece of
white and red.  Lay them side by side; using your fingertips wipe tacky glue on
them.  Twist them together until you get your desired pattern…hold for a few
seconds until the glue sets.  Keep a damp cloth handy for sticky fingers. 

Martha Stewart has a product called Baker’s Twine in her holiday collection
at Michaels, six spools in three different colors that are already twisted.  You
can add glue to solidify and also twist it finer if desired.

Coat your thread or twine canes with clear nail polish for a shiny finish. 
Be sure and make some extra ones to fill a bowl, as seen on the table in the
opening photo. 

I am including two house printies.  Print them onto cardstock. Cut out, score
and glue sides over tabs and roof over eave tabs.  Glue on printie doors and
windows. Or create you own from snippets of cardstock, remember it is a
gingerbread house so it is best not to perfect.  Glue house onto a cardstock

This house is a version one found in  Dec. 1951 Better Homes & Gardens

The little gingerbread creations are a fun project.  You may find items in your
collections that with a bit of paint, cookies, candy and imagination can be
transformed into gingerbread…don’t overlook Monopoly houses.

Whew!!!  That is it for right now. In a few days, in Part 2,  I will tell you about
the baking taking place on the lower part of the cabinet.  Then we will be on to
the scrub table and the frosting and decorating going on there. 

Do let me know if you enjoy this project and if you should create any or all of it
how it went together for you.