DIY Day

17 Sep

I got a lot done yesterday (yay!) even if one of the nannies was down with the flu (I hope it really is just the flu).  After the kitchen chores and the daily bedroom clean-up, I found time to do some long overdue projects when Alphonse decided to stay outside and play during the day. I could never do any of them while Alphonse was around; he’s a very curious fellow and turns my things upside down when he gets interested. Sometimes, he even steals the scenery from my Sylvanian photo sessions, hahaha.

So what did I do yesterday?

First, I kittified my Kindle. See?

It took all of 30 seconds to stick that itty bitty thing but it’s something that I keep forgetting to do. I like that my Kindle is in a pink leather case but the Kitty head somehow tied all of it together. Vavavoom- instant bling!

Second, I got all of the new Hello Kitty items I collected last week and arranged them for a photograph. I have been very remiss in documenting my HK collection but hopefully, this will give me the impetus to start up again. The diecut bag and pouch from Gift Gate are denim and very casual so these are my everyday bags for now.  The bling stickers (aren’t they’re adorable?), the dispenser, the plastic pouch and HK Nerd necklace are my purchases from my Multiply friends (hello, Mia and Jing-jing!). The iPhone case is a gift from A. ♥  

Next, I worked on photo boxes. This one took a little longer but I was actually able to finish two yesterday. I’ve been following my forum friend Toukkero’s blog, Monta Suloista Kokoelmaa,  since she started sharing her Sylvanian collections online. She has all these really lovely photos of Sylvanians in different rooms and settings. Her blog is in Finnish and I do need Google Translate to get the gist of her stories but I am sure you all will agree that her pictures are amazingly cute! Toukkero is also very generous with her “secrets” and twice in her blog, she shifted to the English language so I can understand her instructions on photo boxes.

Inspired by my friend’s creativity and generosity, I worked on my own boxes. Not only are they meant to be beautiful, they also have the added bonus of being portable. Whenever I set up my work table, it takes a while to clean up everything. When Alphonse barges in, as he inevitably does each time I work on my photography, I scramble to keep everything away before anything catches his fancy. He really loves miniature trees and so far, he has snuck out and ran off with two from my set-up.

I added strings to the front and back edges of these sturdy double corrugated boxes so I can fold them up and carry them outside. The walls are made from a solid removable piece of illustration board that can be replaced with other designs as needed. I experimented with wrapping paper first but I think it’ll be better using scrapbook paper or boards in matte next time.  I love the design of this one so I opted to try it out but flash photography fights with the gloss of the paper.

Living Room photo box

Here's how it looks all set up with figures

Outdoors photo box

How I take photos- with two extra lights and the camera in a tripod

The carpet I use as grass comes from our Christmas tree set and I do have to return it soon as the Holiday season is just around the corner. That it serves another (and more important) purpose explains why I can’t cut it to box size. Instead, I stuck it down flat with some velcro stick-ons.

I’m happy with the boxes for now but I’m a little disappointed with the resulting pictures. I think it’s because I haven’t worked out the kinks on lighting. I am using a battery-operated lamp from Alex’s desk and a portable rechargeable reading lamp. I will try out the different kinds of light available in the house and see what works best. As you can see, almost everything here is DIY and comes from easily accessible materials.

Lastly, just before bedtime, I got started on the Sylvanian pizza store I was planning to make from an incomplete bakery set I bought on sale. I used stickers to mod this, not wanting to permanently alter it and make it unrecognizable. Besides, if I do change my mind, all I do need to do is peel off the stickers and make new ones for, say, an art museum or even a bookstore, as some of my forum friends have suggested.

I printed the stickers on photo paper, stuck them on, and used a cutter to cut the excess. The fluted edge of the canopies was a challenge but it just needed a steady hand and a lot of patience to get through it in one sitting.

Next step would be to replace the missing counter and put the extra accessories from the pizza sets I already have. The window on the left will connect the store with the  takeout pizza stalls, I will have to think through the idea of replacing the missing counter but I do have a few things in mind already.

I’m amazed I was able to do all these in one day. Thank you, Alphonse, for cooperating and giving Mama some hours to do as she pleases. Thank you to my boys (my loving husband A included) who complimented my handmade creations. And most of all, thank you to the Man Up There who never fails to remind me that a day is only as productive as one wishes it to be. I am tired, but it’s a good kind of tired.

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6 Responses to “DIY Day”

  1. Michael September 17, 2010 at 11:39 am #

    I really want that rabbit family, but have little interest in the sets you have to buy so too expensive.

    • Kittymama September 17, 2010 at 11:55 am #

      My sentiments exactly. For some who collect only figures, the accessories are just an added expense. Good thing I like furniture and accessories, but not when they’re the same thing over and over again. I don’t like how they keep making the same “at home” sets with different figures. You have to keep buying the same furniture with different figures if you want to collect the figures as a family. My Mother Tailbury is alone because of this. 😦

  2. Just A friend September 17, 2010 at 11:57 am #

    You got a lot done in one day- good for you! I wish I could even just finish the vacuuming…

  3. Just A friend September 17, 2010 at 11:58 am #

    P.S. I like your Kindle case. Very Pink.

  4. iceklicky September 22, 2010 at 2:47 pm #

    NICE!!!!!! I like the setting!!!

    • Kittymama September 22, 2010 at 10:21 pm #

      Thanks, Iceklicky! I’m glad you like it. Your site is truly an inspiration for Sylvanian fanatics like me. 🙂

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