Town fountain top

 

 

Howdy! In today’s tutorial, I’m going to show you how I made the top half of the fountain which we started the other day. If you missed that tutorial, you can find it here.

When I made my old fountain two years ago, I used a store bought miniature fountain for the top half.  But this time, I decided to be more crafty, and made it myself using FIMO polymer clay.  This fountain top has two tiers, but you can do many more following the same method.  You can also use this part alone as a bird bath.

First, shape the two bottom pieces and the pillar piece.

Assemble the pieces like the photo below.

I made tiny clay balls and attached them on the side of the bottom piece for some decorations.

The balls might look a bit tacky, but if you squish them, they don’t look so bad.

Next, I added a horizontal band of clay above the balls for decoration, but mostly to hide the connecting areas. Once this part is done, bake the clay in the oven -or air dry, if that’s the type of clay you’re using.

Once the clay is hard, carve some decorative lines down column.

Proportionate to the size of your newly made bottom piece, shape a dish, which will sit on top of the pillar.

If you’d like, flip the dish over to add some decorations. At this point, bake the dish for a little bit so it is safe to flip again to decorate the other side.

Once the clay is half cured, flip the dish and decorate the top.

Add some extra clay around the rim.

Smooth out the added clay.

Add some textures.

Flip over the dish and attach enough clay on the middle so that it supports the bottom piece.

Stick in the bottom piece up side down.

Add some clay strips to hide the gap between pieces. Once done decorating, throw this back into the oven one last time until it’s completely cured.

I made the top dish the same way, just a bit smaller.

I was going to use this piece in black, but my husband suggested it would be better in off-white.  So I went ahead on the safer route, and painted over the clay.  To attach the fountain pieces, you just need a low-temp glue gun.

I did dark wash and highlights as usual afterwards.

 

International Tokyo Toy Show 2017

 

Ahoy, there!  Guess who’s going to be a part of this year’s “International Tokyo Toy Show”?  Me, baby, ME!

For those who have never heard of it, the International Tokyo Toy Show is the biggest toy convention in Japan.  Every year, major (and not so major) toy companies set up their booths in Tokyo and showcase their newest and upcoming products.  Sylvanian Families has been a big part of this convention for years, making their giant diorama one of the main attractions for many visitors.  This year’s toy show is going to be open to public on June 3rd and 4th.

This year, I had the great opportunity of working with Epoch to make one of their SF displays they plan to have at the convention.  I was asked to make rather large diorama – larger than anything I have ever done!  The photo below became the base of my diorama.  It was bigger than my dining table! :O

One special thing about my diorama display at the show is that visitors can bring their favorite SF dolls and place them anywhere on the diorama to take a picture.  I figured it would be much more exciting and meaningful to me and everyone if the diorama was touchable.  I did have to add some extra work for the strength and durability of the diorama, but I think it was worth it!

I had about a month to create and ship the biggest diorama I’ve ever made (at a time, anyway) to Tokyo.  Quite frankly, it was a challenge because of the time restriction, but at the same time, it was THE BEST EXPERIENCE EVER!!  As you know, I am the happiest when I’m crafting, and I could just sit there and craft all day long without feeling bad about the messy house or not-so-homemade meals! Mwah, ha ha!!  And thanks to my wonderful husband and son’s support, I was able to finish my project on time.

The box I sent ended up being bigger than my son’s bed!

I cannot show you any more photos at this time due to the agreement with Epoch, but they will come in the future, when the time is ripe. So stay tuned! And if you live near Tokyo, go visit the show, as the entrance fee is free! Oh, and don’t forget to bring your Sylvanian doll!

 

 

Town fountain base

Hi, there!  If you follow me on Instagram, you might have seen this picture of a fountain which I made a little while back.

The method I used to make this fountain is very similar to an older fountain which I had made, and posted a few years ago. There are however, a lot of improvements on technique and details which I think you’re really going to like!

There are lots of little things involved in making this fountain, so I’m going to break it up into a few smaller posts. For today’s tutorial, we’re going to start out with the base of the fountain. I wanted to make an interesting shape instead of a simple circle.  It took a little more effort but I’d say it was worth it.

First draw the shape of the fountain base on a card stock.

Cut the shape out.

Trace the shape on to the foam board.  (I used the dollar store foam board, which was about 5mm thick.)

Cut the base shape out of the foam board.

Peel the paper on both sides. (My foam boards usually have paper on it, but you can just draw lines directly on white foam area if yours don’t have the paper.)

It’s time to make the wall.  I cut out 1.5cm tall trips for the corners of the fountain with angled edges so that the pieces stick together flawlessly.

With a low-temp glue gun, adhere the corners then on to the base board.

For the round part of the wall, you take the foam strip and press both sides gently while bending little by little. For more information on bending technique, please refer to “Curved surfaces” page.

After bending the foam strips, don’t forget to adjust the ends to fit on the base without making gaps.

Glue on the curves and the outer layer of the fountain wall is done.

I wanted to make the wall a bit thicker so that my Sylvanians can sit on it, so I made another layer inside of the wall.

Now trace the shape of the fountain at this point on a card stock, and make a pattern of the rim that comes on top of the fountain wall.

Cut the foam board out of  the shape of the rim.

Before attaching the rim and the wall, use sandpaper and smooth out the sides.  I also made a bit of round curves here and there for some decorations.

Glue the rim on top of the wall.

I wanted to have another layer under the fountain base, so I made it and glue it on.

For this particular fountain, I wanted to have some flower beds embedded. I used FIMO polymer clay for this part, but of course you can use air dry clay as usual.

I just made a shape that fits on the curve of the fountain base, and pushed in a piece of a metal trinket I had in my collection.

Just to define the edge, I added a rim to the flower bed. Although these are supposed to flower beds, I didn’t see the need for having to have a hole in them, so shaping these wasn’t much of a problem. You can also use this cheating technique on normal flower pots.

After the clay is hardened, it’s glued on.

I had some extra roses which I had made with clay a long time ago, so I glued them on the sides for some added glam.

Finally, it’s time to transform the funky looking fountain base into something beautiful. Paint the whole thing in the color of your choice.

Once the paint is dry, dark wash with diluted black paint water.

It looks like this once the dark wash is dry.

Add some highlights with a dry brush and very little white paint.

For the flower beds, I painted the area for the soil with dark brown.

Then I spread glue on it, and sprinkled on some tea leaves.

That’s it for the fountain base.  The posts on other parts of the fountain will be available in the future.

 

Oh, by the way, I received the Sylvanian Families Collection Book this afternoon! AWESOME!!

There are 6 SF fans including me participating in the last chapter of the book.

The participants are…Ageha and Rinrin from Japan, Jo de Ruiter from England, FIDJIEUNNA from France, Sylvanako from Greece, and me from the US.

As you can tell, they’ve tried to include people from around the globe!

There are total of 5 chapters in this lovely book, and it pretty much has all the products in the history of SF in order.  It really is a fun book to look at, so even if you don’t know Japanese, I’m sure you’ll enjoy it very much!