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.
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.