Sunday, April 20, 2014

A Pause for Thought

I've been feeling very tired this Easter break and while I've wanted to get into my miniatures I have struggled with motivation. I just want to curl up and do nothing. I think the stress of the last few months with my husband losing his job and related stresses have just caught up with me a bit this long weekend.

Today I have been thinking a lot about my future direction in miniatures and have looked back over my old blog entries. Below is part of my first entry on this blog on 8 January 2011. 

"Hi there

I have started this blog for myself really. Being a busy wife, mum and law clerk, I am notorious for not finishing projects and putting other things before my own creative time. I am hoping that by blogging about my creative endeavours it will inspire me to complete projects and to extend myself creatively. I am just getting back into miniatures after about a 15 year break..... My ultimate aim is that, as well as getting back into miniatures myself, I will also hopefully inspire other miniaturists, crafters and busy people who would like to explore their creative potential to just have a go."

I had a shaky and slow start to blogging with 4 entries in 2011 and 13 entries in 2012. I was so excited when I got my first follower on 28 January 2012 - thanks Brae! Slowly other people started following my blog and I started following theirs. Inspiration and motivation kept building slowly until in 2013 I really started getting into blogging posting 67 entries. I really do love being part of this blogging community and recently even when I haven't been motivated to make miniatures I have tried to find something to blog about to keep the communication flowing.

Looking back over my blog I have had moments where I have been passionate about starting a project around certain items such as a bird themed gallery or shop, arts and crafts movement furniture, Timeless Toys toy shop but I have struggled to move forward with those ideas.

In fact the only project I have started and finished has been the project I made for my sister, the Selina Rose Gallery. I have a number of projects that I have not yet completed such as Sugar & Spice, a book shelf in a box, my Christmas box and my vintage house The Laurels.

While I have struggled with motivation I have seen so many pictures of things that have inspired an idea for a miniature, techniques I would love to try, or miniature tutorials I would love to make but they didn't fit in with my projects and I didn't let myself just have a go for the pure enjoyment of it.

I have come to realise that at the moment I just don't work well restricting myself to working on a project based around one theme. I need to just have a go at what I want to make at any one time and just enjoy it. However, at the same time I don't want to have a random collection of unrelated miniature items sitting on my shelves or tucked away. 

One of my favourite things to do is browsing through second hand and antique shops, op shops, markets and craft stalls. You just never know what treasures you will find. That got me to thinking. I can combine two of my favourite things. Miniatures and markets. 

To be honest I had thought of doing market stalls before but I dismissed the idea because I thought it wasn't original. Many clubs and miniaturists do market stalls, but thinking about it today I realised it is original if I use my own ideas and make my own miniatures. It also means I can make anything I wish to in miniature and it will find a home on one stall or another. The options for stalls are limitless - cakes and pastries, fruit veges and home produce, antiques, books, needlework, weathervanes and wrought iron work, bird items, Christmas items, architectural features, art ... limitless. It also allows me to combine my vintage and modern miniatures together and to find a place for the many miniatures I still have tucked away from the 1990s. 

My head is buzzing with ideas and I have started a Pinterest board to gather market ideas. Yes, it is still a project, but it is a project that gives me scope to jump from one thing to another.

As for Timeless Toys, it is just going to get scaled down to a market stall for now.

So far my thoughts are that I want to make different stalls that will combine to create one large scene over time. At the back of some of the stalls I want to create a building facade (so I can play with creating architectural features) possibly with a bit of depth and use some lighting. Each market stall holder will supply their own display furniture, carts, etc so no stall will be the same. The only similarity between each one will be the base of each (a road, cobbles or the like - not yet decided). I also envisage a cafe spilling out of one of the facades with tables and chairs in the midst of the market stalls. 

Above is a picture of a display cabinet I have in my craft room. I have lugged this heavy cabinet around since the 1990s. It is not very deep but I hope to be able to create each stall scene to fit in the cabinet. The five shelves will hold quite a number of stalls so this could keep me going for many years. This height of the shelves will mean any building facades will be limited to one storey buildings. I can also keep like stalls on separate shelves, e.g. fruit, veges, produce, cakes, food stuffs and gardening etc on one shelf, crafts on another and antique stalls/furniture on another shelf. I have also wanted to have a go at making miniature people so I might create a stallholder for each market stall (we will see how my attempts at doll making turn out before we make a decision on that one though).

Creating this market will also mean I will have my own market to shop at as I do other projects in the future. I really would like to enter some competitions in the future as I love a challenge so I don't see this as being my only miniature project for the future. There is also also one large project I wish to do in the future but until I can afford a suitable 8+-roomed dolls house it is on hold. In the future I wish to do a dolls house based around the story Ballet Shoes. There are so many varied and interesting characters in this story that this project would also give a lot of scope for variety.

Anyway it is now late afternoon and I have spent most of my day thinking and blogging. I do feel more motivated but I don't want to rush into the market base and building facades yet until I have a clear idea of how I want the overall 'market' to look. However I can start making miniatures of any type or description. I think I might go and start a miniature blackwork table cloth - just because I can and because I am going to let myself!

Sorry if this is a bit long-winded. I guess this blog entry is probably more for myself - I just needed to think in blog format.

I hope everyone is having a great Easter.


  1. Leyendo tus pensamiento creo que la mayoría nos pasa lo mismo,nos encanta cualquier cosa en miniatura; nuestra imaginación vuela, pero el tiempo no da para tantas cosas que quisiéramos hacer . El descubrimiento de los blog nos permite disfrutar de todos los trabajos que hacen otras personas con el mismo amor hacia lo pequeño, así que ánimo , estaré pendiente de tus proyectos. Feliz día de Pascua,besos:-)

  2. I think this is a wonderful idea. It opens up so many creative possibilities and is such a free concept. I can't wait to follow what each stall becomes!
    Happy Easter.
    PS my daughter had that same doll's house that is sitting on your cabinet... it is in storage and may come out for some work soon - we had such fun with it when she was little.

  3. Hi Sharee & Happy Easter!
    So here is my input...It's interesting that the project you finished was for someone else. It sounds like you have trouble allowing yourself to be good to "you." I think the market stalls are a wonderful idea so you have an excuse to create whatever you want. I too have trouble not feeling guilty about wanting my "mini time" when there are life issues going on. It leads to many unfinished projects. I think it's ok...that's how creative minds work. They'll get done someday. :-)
    Ok, enough preaching. Thank you for sharing with us and as always, I look forward to you upcoming work.
    Hugs & have a great day!

  4. Hola Sharii, independientemente de lo que quieras hacer ( puestos, mercados,,,) debes disfrutar lo que haces, si no es así no sirve de nada esta afición. Tómatelo con calma, descansa un tiempo, y cuando tengas ganas te vuelves a enganchar. Un abrazo.

  5. Creo que lo mas importante de este pequeño mundo es pasarlo bien y disfrutar. Hacer las cosa que imaginas y hacerlas cuando te apetece. Sin obligaciones ni prisas

  6. Lisa already said it - I too think creative minds find it hard to concentrate on just one thing... there are always too many ideas, inspirations... so many things that need to be tried... Your stall project sounds like a fanstastic idea - fantastic in every possible way. A perfect way to display all sorts of miniatures and you can always add as many as you want to, mixing up all sort of styles. I hope your Easter day of reflection will lead to a fast start on this... - Happy Easter to you and your family!


  7. Hi Sharee, I'm not at all surprised that you've been feeling like doing nothing - it's been a very stressful time for you, and stress and worry about the future can be very draining. I'm glad you've been able to do not much for a while.

    I love your idea of markets - there is so much potential for creating different objects, different styles of presentation, different characters ...

    I love Ballet Shoes too, and I look forward to seeing how you use your skills and creativity to interpret it. Remembering Julie's holiday camp on shelves, I'd suggest starting on it if and when you feel inspired - you could use a cupboard or shelving for that too, or have a series of roomboxes, starting with one, adding another, etc, which could make it more attainable than waiting for a suitable 8 room house, perhaps?

    One of the things I love about the things you create is seeing how you see potential in the materials you have, and how you can transform them into your vision with your skills in shaping the materials, and creating effects with paint. I don't feel I'm saying that very well, but I guess part of what I'm thinking is that you don't need an 8 room house to create the spirit of Ballet Shoes, I think you have the skills to conjure it out of what you have, even if your initial vision is on a larger scale.

    Look forward to seeing the mini blackwork table cloth - or whatever your inspiration produces next!

  8. Crear un lugar donde ubicar todas tus creaciones, no importa del estilo que sean, me parece una idea estupenda, práctica y divertida.
    Estoy segura que vas a disfrutar muchísimo. Y nosotros, los blogueros, disfrutaremos contigo.
    Feliz Pascua.

  9. Your idea of creating a market with all different stalls is absolutely fantastic. I think it's the best project for somebody that has ideas shooting down their mind constantly. You can add, removed, change, move, swap as you like and when you like. It could be a never ending project that you could pass down to somebody else!! :) It would be really fun to see and follow this project and all the steps you will go through to achieve your dream project. Happy Easter to you and your family!

  10. I understand Sharee, my scatterbrain Jane comment is only way too true and troublesome! I also feel that although we have a lot of projects we want to do you do have to be in the spirit of the project to really complete it. That's why it is best to work on the things you feel inspired to do. Even if its..all over the place ;P

    I have no less than 6 boxes of house kits and 5 room boxes upstairs. I have 100 different minis I've made and no scene to place them in...I get it ;)

    I think marketplace is a fantastic idea! I know it will be wonderful when its completed. Don't worry dateline just have fun.

    Now I only wish..I didn't now want to make... a market stall...Coo coo!
    Hugs, JS

  11. Cara Sharee, ho letto tutto quello che hai scritto e mi sembra una bellissima idea quella del mercato. Mi dispiace che tu abbia avuto un periodo stressante ma mi auguro che stia passando. Ti auguro una Buona Pasqua.
    Un abbraccio. Manu

  12. I love how you thought through your situation and came up with such a fun and creative idea, Sharee! I notice that I, too, jump from project to project and have several unfinished ones. One thing that helps me is that I'm not interested in tons of things, so I can say no to a lot of things, such as certain styles and types of projects. That keeps me from getting completely overwhelmed. :-) So I only have a few projects going, and I flit from one to the other without too much guilt or grief. When the mood strikes, I work on my Hello Kitty Strawberry Shortcake house, Sylvanian Familiies, Flossy's house, Sophie's house, etc. Now and then I wish that I would finish Flossy's house, but if I'm not in the mood, I won't be happy with the result anyway. ;-) I like your ideas and look forward to seeing whatever you work on. xo Jennifer

  13. Hi Sharee,

    I'm sorry you are feeling down and unmotivated and I'm so glad you have a built in support group from the blogger world. It was really neat seeing your first post and also your blog out loud :-) There are so many things I want to try too and I'm regretting putting money into so many things that I don't think I will be able to get to and in things that if I do I probably will not have the room to put them, hence the reason I'm scaling down to half and quarter scale I think. If I do anything in 1 inch scale I will probably only do roomboxes or scenes. You could do that if you don't want to do the market stalls and display them on the same shelving unit.... Just a thought. I hope we are all being of some help to you. Happy Easter and I hope you had a good day :-) Big Hug!


  14. I like your new project. It's a funny idea.

  15. Oh Honey you are preaching to the Choir, we all do that (lack motivation and procrastinate) in my case Im limited because of money..Im the sole supporter of my family so I dont have a lot of extra cash to buy the things I want but I still want to make mini's so I do the trash to treasure ...I make things out of everyday material which is why Im thankful for Kris's blog..Now I can play with everyone else and I feel included and Happy :) Im glad you found your Muse ..let her guide you on this wonderful new adventure and dont hold back

    Mini Hugs

  16. I also know how you feel. I have 4 houses and have finished non :D Like you I always want to try something new. I also love swaps and they let me try other things. Market stalls are a fantastic idea also a great way of showing off gifts. Lol now i want market stalls. I am looking forward to seeing your many projects :)
    Hugs Maria

  17. Just do what you love. It doesn't matter if it's been done before or not. Just do what you are in the mood to do at this very moment. That's what I did with my last dollhouse. And I had a blast. I love coming to your blog. So keep us posted!

  18. Hi Sharee, Sometimes sharing your projects online really can put a lot more pressure on you, making sure you have something new or sticking to one thing. We like hearing about anything you do mini related so whether its market stalls or something else just keep doing what you love and we'll be right along with you! :)

  19. Hi Sharee! I like your ideas for the market stalls! I am a firm believer in following your urges.... Keeping busy and being happy and creative is what it is all about... so just make what you like to see.....! I am sure we all will learn new things and discover techniques and be inspired right along with you! I look forward to seeing what you are making! (No pressure!):)

  20. Hi Sharee! I think that the beauty of this hobby is that we can do what ever we want, whenever we want. There are so many irons that we can have in the fire and for some people they like to switch it up and do whichever one is calling to them at that moment, and others that press on with just single projects that have to be done before they can build another. There is room for many ways to express yourself, Sharee. I know what you mean though, and I think that your Market Stall ideas are such a Great Ones. Variety is the spice of life they say so, START SEASONING SHAREE!
    Were with you all the way! :D