Newsletter, Calendar, Party


There’s a new issue of my newsletter Cut, Fold + Make going out tonight that includes a modern miniature calendar for you to make.


It’s a quick and simple project.


You can sign up to receive it with the newsletter link on the right.


It’s a good  way to keep track of yourself in sequential time.


And, there’s a party going on to celebrate the new year and new pergola being built at Modern Miniature Succulents + Sundries. All the furniture from Sea House Warming Hut has been dragged over, and there’s a beach driftwood fire blazing, as well as festive beverages. Come on by! It’s been too long since we’ve all hung out together.


PS: Godzilla will be there.


Ties, Lavender, Echeveria, Rocks


Albie immediately curled up on the rest of the ties, and I set up to make more lavender.

I’m still experimenting with technique, but I try to make a shrubbery’s worth of stems each time, so if they change I can call them varieties or cultivars :) #miniaturejustifications

I’m using paper-wrapped stem wire, purple superfine sand (Activa Scenic brand) for the flowers, tissue paper for the petals, tacky glue, and cardstock painted  grayish-green for the foliage. Most tutorials call for lycopodium as foliage, but I’ve decided on this well-designed and versatile punch from Punch Bunch.


I got my birthday order from The Miniature Garden, which included some 28-gauge paper covered stem wire, yay! Turns out what I’ve been using is 26-gauge, so voilà, the first (subtle) variety. (The #28 is on the left.)


I cut 1.5-inch (3.8 cm) lengths of stem wire and rolled one end a scant quarter-inch (6mm) in tacky glue.


Rather than dip the glued end, I pour the sand repeatedly over the stem wire. This builds up and preserves the shape of the flower.

drying stems_032016

The sanded stems are placed upright to dry. (The fluffy ones you see on the left are made with Flowersoft, a poofy kind of scatter that I’m considering using.)

The petals on top are made from tissue paper punched with a small flower shape, cupped with a ball stylus, and glued to the flower.


In the foreground you can see the Flowersoft flowers with petals cut from waxed paper tinted with a marker. Behind those are the sanded flowers with tissue petals.


The lavender spikes are planted in the mounds with an awl and glue.


These ones were built on #26 wire stems.


The foliage is shaped with a stylus and glued in around the stems to create a pleasantly convincing, if stylized, base.



Making more echeveria hen and chicks to cluster in around the lavender mounds. If you look closely above, you can see once again the difference between #26 and #28 (on the right) stem wire.

paperclay_rocks_unThere’s an entire molds-worth of paperclay rocks dried and awaiting mineralization. These will be nestled and half-buried around the lavender, poppy and succulents bed as an unobtrusive border.

Happy vernal equinox (for those of us in the Northern Hemisphere)!


Sea House Warming Hut: Living Roof

Wanting to ensure even plant color distribution with a random appearance, I changed up how I’ve been “planting” the living roof. I’m going through vast quantities of moss because I prefer the fine rounded tops more than the stemmy lower growth, and colors are not consistent bag to bag. This way is more fun, too.

Poppy propagation continues, with a new flavor. This punch is about 1/4-inch (6mm) — compare it to the 3/16-inch (5mm) round — and reminiscent of a pompom variation red field poppy.

Sort of. I like the way they look, and think they’ll complement the CA poppies :)

Sea House Warming Hut: How does your rooftop grow?

The rooftop perimeter is established, and I’m still considering what, if anything, the interior might contain as a “feature”. Miniamalist me thinks more of the same: low-growing poppies, random clumps of wild grass (from Woodland Scenics, dried thyme clumps, the odd cut-silk succulent nestled in amongst the preserved moss.

Mosaicist me is visualizing the Sea House logo done in tiny granite tiles, for the pinpointing of passing pilots, while Gratuitous Decorator me thinks a simple checkerboard of square pavers might add some flair.

As for the California poppies, I’ve made 31 so far. Maybe 200 more to go?! I’ve graduated from the lovely, convenient kit to crafting from scratch, using crepe paper for the petals and 30-guage thread-wrapped bead wire for the stems (what I had on hand). At first I painted the paper with watercolor, but finally arrived at *blush* using Sharpie markers as a best solution.

I punch 3/16-inch (5mm) circles from ivory crepe, then dab colors on the four petals that make each poppy. The centers are made from a thin strip of printer paper colored yellow, snipped into a very fine fringe and rolled around the top of the stem wire. These four Sharpies are giving me all the tints I need, as they saturate and bleed on the crepe paper and thread-wrapped wire beautifully. Who knew?