A very green diorama

 

Hi, there! How have you all been? I’ve been doing great! It’s been a while since I last posted and I wanted to give you all a quick look a the project I’ve currently undertaken.  The late spring weather in my town inspired me to make a very green diorama, so I’ve been slowly working on it.

For this new diorama, I wanted to make a pond, waterfall, and a river. I bought a couple sheets of Styrofoam used for the home insulation at a DIY store. I know that the craft supply stores sell very nice and EXPENSIVE Styrofoam, but my good friend, who made a Christmas village last year told me that he got his huge slabs of Styrofoam at a DIY store at a fraction of the craft store price. And he was right!! I got mine for about $4-$6 USD a piece.

Photo Apr 28, 5 21 07 PM

I peeled off the plastic screens on both sides first. (If you use a really thick foam board, it doesn’t really matter, but it’s kind of important to peel BOTH sides off otherwise, because the board will bend over time if you don’t. )

Photo Apr 28, 5 29 51 PM

I used hot glue to attach all the foam pieces together. Hobby supply stores will also carry glues specialized for foams as well, if you would rather use that.

Photo May 07, 2 25 09 PM

Using hot wire cutter, I carved out the hill, pond, and the river.

Photo May 07, 4 20 49 PM

If you don’t have a hot wire cutter, I found that a serrated knife works quite well too… just be sure not to cut yourself like I did. :'( In this case, be sure to have a vacuum by your side as this gets pretty messy.

Photo May 07, 5 34 15 PM

Okay, so the rough shape of the terrain is done.  I could use gesso or some other materials to pad and smooth out the surface, but no, I’m too cheap to do that, lol. If things look the same at the end, I really don’t care about following the “correct” method.

Photo May 08, 3 12 40 PM

I did, however, paint the surface with some acrylic paint to make sure that the white from the foam will not show though.

Photo May 14, 4 55 38 PM

So for the bottom of the lake and the river, I thinly lined some pebbles and sand.   Unlike the previous ponds and rivers I’ve done, I sort of wanted to go with a more realistic look for the water areas this time.  I don’t know how well it’ll go with the Sylvanians, but I’m crossing my fingers!

Photo May 14, 5 08 06 PM

Oh I totally just used the real rocks from the DIY store’s gardening section.  Why make fake ones when I can buy a huge bag of the real stuff for like, 3 dollars!

Photo May 14, 4 59 58 PM

Photo May 14, 5 12 32 PM

Just to make sure that the fine sand won’t move around later when I pour in the resin for the water, I sprinkled some glue and water (1:1~1:2) mixture all over.  Just make sure if you do this, that you use the kind of glue that dries clear.

Photo May 14, 5 15 26 PM

Photo May 14, 5 19 24 PM

I also wanted some green stuff at the bottom of the pond and river.  On sale at Michael’s I found this fake, grass looking thing and decided to tear that up and used part of it to line parts of the river/pond bed.  I used some dark green fine turf powder for other areas like on the bottom of the rocks etc.

Photo May 14, 7 10 20 PM

I mixed the green turf powder with some sand in a container, and prepared some water and glue mixture on the side.

Photo May 14, 7 32 09 PM

Using a brush, I applied some glue mixture on some parts of the rocks.

Photo May 14, 7 33 05 PM

Then I sprinkled the turf powder mixture over it.

Photo May 14, 7 33 28 PM

This is how it looks like without resin.  Should I add some tall grass sticking out of the water? I know my son would say I should add some fish in the pond, too.  Hmmm

Photo May 14, 7 37 21 PM

For the rest of the area, I coated the surface with water and glue mixture and simply sprinkled some light green turf powder on top.  I just repeated that process until I was happy with the look and the turf powder completely glued.

Photo May 14, 11 12 38 PM

Lastly, I coated the entire area that will not be in water with water and glue mixture.  This is important because after all, this diorama is for my Sylvanian dolls, and I don’t want their feet to get dirty when I place them here.

Photo May 15, 10 17 24 AM

Now I’m just waiting for everything to get completely dry.  Then I think I will glue on some bigger rocks for the waterfall and other areas.  Oh, and I need lots of bushes!

A New Beginning

Hi, friends! I am all better now! Hooray!!

I have a news to share with you today…

My town….is….gone!

This is what’s left of it.

Photo Apr 26, 6 04 26 PM

I ripped everything apart and put the buildings in boxes.  It was sort of impulsive, and wigged my family out like I was going crazy or something, but I just had to do some Spring cleaning! XD

Don’t worry, I’m still very much in love with Sylvanian Families.  I was just tired of the same view that had been my room for over a year.  Plus, the town was taking way too much space in my room. 😉

So I decided to keep only 3 IKEA tables and tucked away the rest.  I want to rebuild a gigantic town when I have my own SF room some day, until then, these 3 tables will have to do!

Right now, I’m finishing up cleaning up in the rest of my house, while I plan the landscape of the new land for my SFs.  I’m thinking since I like making dioramas more than anything, I can make a scenery, and move on to the next when I’m tired of it.

 

Anyways, some of you might be wondering what happened to my seaside restaurant, so here is how far I got with it.

Photo Apr 26, 6 02 55 PM

I repainted the furniture and some of the wall decorations with Tamiya paint.

Photo Apr 17, 12 13 00 PM

Tamiya paint is really good when you paint slick surfaces like plastics.  The color sticks and won’t come off.  In fact, you’ll have a very hard time cleaning up your brushes or your hands unless you use high alcohol content remover.  I recommend antiseptic from the drug store, as it is so cheap.  But anyway, this characteristic of Tamiya paint will help you achieve a good coat on your surface without clogging the details.   If you decide to look for these special paints, go to the stores that sell miniature models and train dioramas etc.

Well, I think that’s enough for the paint talk.  As for the completion of the restaurant, I cannot give you the estimate date.  I totally lost interest in it, so I’m dropping it until my passion returns. lol  Oooh, this is why I have so many projects going on unfinished….but alas, I swore to myself that I will not do anything I don’t 100% want to do with my hobby so that I keep it enjoyable. 😉

Hopefully next time I post, I’ll have more exciting photos of my new scenery….hmmm, should I keep calling it Humpty Town? Maybe….well, maybe I’ll just consider that I’m making parts of Humpty Town or something…. Chao!

Toy Poodle Family

Hi, there, fellow Sylvanians! I’m still suffering from a cold! Ha ha! What sort of nasty cold is this!? I thought I was over it for a few days, then it all came back!! >.<

Anyway, so no crafts to post this week…sorry!

However, this post might be interesting to Sylvanians living outside of Japan.  Did you know that they just came out with toy poodle family in Japan? Well, they have whole bunch of other exclusive new stuff over there, and this family was one of them.  They are so adorable! Check them out!

 

Photo Apr 15, 7 38 37 PM

Awww, so stinkin’ cute!! I especially love the baby poodle. Such cute eyes!

Photo Apr 15, 7 49 28 PM

The tails are short and wiggly. 🙂

Photo Apr 15, 7 50 42 PM

Each doll came with its own story book.

Photo Apr 15, 7 44 38 PM

Matsuko also included some ruffles for dresses! Nice color choices!

Photo Apr 15, 7 37 39 PM

Now if you are interested in other new items in Japan, here is the link to the official site.  Unfortunately, it is only in Japanese, but on this page you should be able to see the photos of all the recent releases.  I’m sure many of you are familiar with the page set up of SF official sites, so you can probably navigate to see all the cool items in Japan.

“Japanese Sylvanian Families Official Site’s Catalog Page”

Ah those lucky Sylvanians in Japan….I wish we had access to all these items in the US, too! Waaaaa! lol

Alright…I’m determined to get better this weekend….lots of sleep and boredom, here I come!!