Sunday, 30 September 2012

Tomorrow we are moving into our "Shabby Chic" Townhouse

The townhouse we are moving into is quite old. Because of that, it looks shabby on the outside. The paint is peeling. It has weathered many cold Canadian winters.

But the inside is truly fabulous! The rooms are big compared to modern townhouses and condominiums and downstairs the floors are the original hardwood from about 20 years ago. I love my new home and am embracing it by calling it our Shabby Chic Townhouse!

I can't wait to get moved in, unpacked, and start creating miniatures again! I have not been working on miniature projects for about 2 months, since our move and other life events have called for my attention.

I am so happy to welcome Jody, Tink, Assension, Ana, Marianna and Olga to my blog. I feel very blessed by the supportive community I have found through blogging. 

I love new beginnings!

I have always been delighted at the prospect of a new day, a fresh try, one more start, with perhaps a bit of magic waiting somewhere behind the morning. -J. B. Priestly

Friday, 28 September 2012

I just have so much to say....

I guess having two of my own blogs is not enough for me, when I started following a really great Canadian blog called Simply Frugal and read on Taya's blog that she was interested in guest bloggers, I told her I would like to blog about trying to save money and use coupons when both partners are on special diets! She just got back to me that she will be posting my guest blog.
This makes me happy. I love to write and blog, and will continue to look for every opportunity to do both. I will put up a link to the post when it appears on her blog. It will be next week sometime.
Goodnight everyone,
In Canada it's bedtime

Just recieved my first spam comment.

If you look at the second comment about Advice on opening an Etsy shop, and then click on the poster's blog, this is clearly spam.
I think my blog is a bigger target because of all the social media sharing buttons I use. For more information on these buttons, refer to my post "How to increase traffic to your blog" Oh, well. Guess I'll be moving over to comment verification!

Thursday, 27 September 2012

More Etsy Advice

I am taking a much deserved break from packing, since I've been doing it for hours!

I was reading a great Canadian frugal living blog, called Mrs. January, and came across this link:

I think it's full of great advice. What do you think?

Tuesday, 25 September 2012

I just removed the word verification feature

The word verification feature is set up as a default to anyone who starts a blog with Blogger. If you love to comment on other blogs, I think you know what I'm talking about. The wavy letters, combined with a number. Usually illegible enough that I need to click on the tiny grey circle several times before it pops out one that I can read!

I have kept this feature because according to Google, it's necessary to avoid spam. I removed it because I want to make it easier for people (especially for my older relatives who subscribe by email), to comment on posts.

I don't think my blog is a huge target for spam, but if that becomes an issue, I can always switch to comment approval.

Would you like to change these settings on your blog? Let me know and I'll write a tutorial on it. Next week! Because I'm up to my ears in packing boxes right now, and scheming about my mom's present on the side.
Mini Hugs,

Saturday, 22 September 2012

Eeep! I forgot my Mom's Birthday is coming up

I am very pleased to welcome three new followers. Sylvia is from Spain, Doreen is from Canada (it always nice to have a fellow Canadian following my blog) and Jody is from the Netherlands. Jody might have noticed my last name is Dutch. It's my married name. My Father in law was born in Holland and immigrated to Canada with his family when he was 12.

I love following blogs from all over the world. It's quite fascinating, although Google translate isn't perfect and the translation often makes me giggle.

My Mom is coming to visit us in Edmonton on October 6th. I would really like to make her a small miniature scene. I've been contemplating a couple of possibilities. I have a couple of tricks up my sleeve for putting together a scene without spending a lot of money.

I'll post a picture of the scene and explain how I put it together, but not until I give it to my Mom! She just signed up to receive my blog posts by email.

Have a great weekend everyone! Next week will be our last week in this apartment and next weekend we will be loading up a moving truck, cleaning like crazy (I am lucky enough to have helpers), and moving into a townhouse.

Friday, 21 September 2012

Advice on opening an Etsy Shop

Am I capable of writing a quick post? I think today I am, since my seasonal allergies are bothering me. I would like to welcome my new follower, Drora! I'm so glad you've joined me.

 Last week I wrote a post seeking advice on opening an Etsy shop. This is a future dream of mine. Who knows when it will happen? A lot depends on how busy next year gets for me.

Jazzi of Jazzi Mini's left a comment in response to this post, sharing her experiences. She is definitely worth listening to, as she has a great Etsy shop and I think many of my followers already know of her.

I also came across a blog post that gave great advice about running an Etsy shop. The blog author gave me permission to post the link, so here it is:

 This is a great blog with lots of tutorials, it's worth checking out.

Thursday, 20 September 2012

How do increase traffic to your blog

I decided this would be a perfect topic for Blogging Tips since I have started to get more followers lately. I would like to begin by welcoming my new Followers: Steve, Kim Stuart-Gregory and Julia. Julia has even started following my Beauty Blog, so extra thanks to Julia :)

Here are my tips:

1) Be willing to take risks in design and be innovative in subject matter. For example, I don't only post when I have a miniature scene to display. My 33 Ways to Be Creative post was very popular, I also like to post about interesting miniatures that have caught my eye. My blogging tips have also been very popular

2) Be clear and concise in your writing style and write in a warm, engaging style that will draw your reader in.

3) Be consistent in how often you post. Lately I have been posting almost everyday because I'm not working. I'm going back to work in October, so we'll see what happens then! Your followers appreciate consistency from you, and knowing roughly how often you post establishes a predictable pattern.

5) Depending on the subject matter of your blog, seek out online groups or forums to connect with  others who share your interests. If you blog about miniatures, you must start following Jazzi Mini's Blog and joining her weekly linky parties! Linky parties give you a chance to submit a thumbnail picture of a project you're working on. It's a chance for you to discover other blogs, and to get your blog noticed. I've seen other linky parties all over the blogosphere.

6) Go to in order to get the Add This tool box. You'll need to register, which is free. If you look at the bottom of my post, you will see little icons for facebook like, pin it, tweet and share. I got this by installing the Add this toolbar.

7) Get out there and connect with other bloggers you admire. This might include leaving a comment on one of their post or sending them an email. As some of my followers know, that's what led them to start following me, much to my surprise. Your comments must be genuine and come straight from the heart. If you are only commenting as a way to try and get someone to start following your blog, that's very transparent and won't work.

8) Last but not least, consider creating an account on If you look in the top left hand corner of my blog, you will see my badge.

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

The First Workshop for my Local Miniature Club

The day has finally arrived. At the show and sale I had a chance to look at the Attic Room Boxes we will be given to work with. They are quite nice. We'll have a lot of freedom to customize our own projects.

When my friend Pat, who is a member of the Miniature Group, told me in June that the club had decided on an Attic Scene but we could make the room into anything we liked, I immediately decided to make mine into a Nursery Scene. I had already started collecting Nursery accessories so this made sense.

When I was in Vancouver with my family over the summer, my Dad surprised me and bought me some nursery furniture at Ross' Miniature Treasure House. I also bought a playpen and other nursery furniture from Pat last spring. I don' think it will all fit in the room box!

Since I love books of all kinds, I decided my Nursery had to have books. I wanted to make them myself. I did research on the internet and realized just how much skill is required to make your own books! But I found a solution that suits me. I ordered the Beatrix Potter Kit from I think paper minis is a great resource for furnishing a dollhouse or a miniature scene for personal use. It's inexpensive, and after buying only one kit from them, you are sent a weekly newsletter containing free printables. I think I will buy another kit from paper minis in the future, but I already feel like I am set up with printables for life. I've included two pictures of the furniture and accessories I've amassed so far.

On the top of the change table are painted wooden animal wall plaques. So adorable!

Monday, 17 September 2012

The new AIM magazine is here!

This magazine is such a fantastic resource. Talented artisans from all over the world write articles for the magazine. It's jammed packed with great articles, projects, and interviews with AIM members.
Head on over to to print, download, or read the latest issue.

Sunday, 16 September 2012

The Edmonton Miniaturists Club Anual Show and Sale

I would like to start by welcoming two new followers, Vicky from Lovejoy Bears and someone who is following some blogs but doesn't have a blog, so I don't know her name! But I appreciate her being here all the same :) Vicky has just opened an Etsy shop and it has some lovely items in it. 

My friend Laura joined me at the show and sale and we had a great time. I was so excited for Laura when she won an awesome door prize! She took home a charming Garden/Potter's Shed Scene which she can mount on a wall.

 I have been planning to shop strategically, but I still wasn't fully prepared for how hard it was to pass up so many beautiful accessories and wonderful furniture sets and Room Boxes.
If money had not been a factor, I can't even say how much I would have spent!

A rug for my Nursery Room Box, and a Set of Depression Ware Pots and Dishes I couldn't resist
This is a toiletries basket. I bought it because it adorable, but also so I can figure out how to make my own toiletries :) They're mostly done with beads.
I picked up this tray, some children's books, and a stationary set on sale

Itsy Bitsy Jars and a Collection of Blank Books that can be covered with printable Book Covers
One of these hutches can be decorated and filled with kitchen items, the other one is for toiletry items!

Friday, 14 September 2012

Seeking advice regarding selling on Etsy

My blogging tutorials are a big hit, and I have several more I could write today, but I like to mix them up with other posts. My favorite posts are those which include pictures. Unfortunately, this has not been possible lately, as I have been taken up with packing for our upcoming move.

However, on Sunday, September 16th, I am attending my first Miniature Show and Sale, and I am super excited!!! That's really an understatement. Words cannot convey how excited I am. I will post about it and include pictures of what I buy there.

In the mean time, I would like to reach out to my followers who are experienced miniaturists and sell their creations on Etsy. I was chatting with a miniaturist friend about this the other day and she said that you have to be very cautious when setting up an Etsy shop. She spoke about making sure you have your shop name and pictures copyrighted, and other details which I'm afraid I can't remember. Eventually I would like to sell miniature scenes on Etsy.

Do any of you have suggestions or feedback about selling miniatures on Etsy? Thanks a bunch!

Saturday, 8 September 2012

Don't be a No Reply

If you are a blogger who is following me, you may not know what No Reply is. I didn't know what it was until about a month ago when another blogger kindly enlightened me.

When you post a comment on a blog, most Blog authors like to respond to your comment personally.

I have already explained how you can connect with bloggers on your own blog by setting up threaded comments.

However, not every blog you follow has enabled threaded comments. It is very simple to edit your blogger profile to ensure that your email is visible to other bloggers, so when you post a comment, they can get in touch with you easily and reply to your comment.

First, click on design. In the upper right hand corner you will see your name as well as the profile picture you have chosen to appear on your blog. Click on your name and a drop down menu will appear. Click on Blogger Profile.

This will take you to your Blogger profile page. Click on Edit profile. This is a small orange button which you will find in the upper right hand corner of the screen.

When you get to the Edit user profile page, click on the box next to show my email address. You're done!

We're moving!!!

I am so excited to share this news with my followers. My husband Mark and I are moving into a townhouse October 1rst, and there will be plenty of space for me to set up an enormous workstation.
I make my own beauty products so I will be storing my beauty making supplies as well as my miniature tools and projects in one place. I recently created a separate blog to promote my beauty products: 

I have been dreaming about my ideal workstation for awhile so I already have lots of ideas about how I want to set it up. I'm planning on finding a huge wooden desk from Value Village or the Salvation Army ( or maybe kijiji or I have a great tool caddy from Michaels Crafts Store. It's white and holds lots of stuff and spins around.

I want to find interesting containers from Antique Mall, like old pop bottle six pack cases and small glass dishes so that my workstation will be unique and reflect my love of antiques. It will take awhile to get it completely set up but when I do I will post a picture! I would love to hear from my miniature blog followers. What does your workstation look like?

Hugs to all,

Wednesday, 5 September 2012

How to enable threaded posts on your blog

This is a great feature, as it allows you to interact with other bloggers on your blog. When they post a comment in reply to a blog post, it will go straight to your inbox.
This is very simple to set up.

Go to design, which you will find at the top right hand side of your blog, next to your dashboard. Click on the Settings Tab, then click on the other tab. Make sure the Blog Post Feed is set to full, but I believe this is the default setting. To set it to short or none would mean that your posts would be abbreviated or wouldn't appear at all. Save your changes.

Click on the Posts and Comments sub tab, which is also under the settings tab. Next to Show Comment Location, Choose Embedded. Make sure you save your changes. You're done!

Sunday, 2 September 2012

It's so hard to resist!

Isn't this camper the cutest thing? Many of you probably recognize it as the $25 kit from Greenleaf. Our local Miniaturists' Club Show and Sale is coming up  on September 16th and I'm sure they'll be selling it there. But I have to buy strategically at the show and sale!
I've decided to spend my money mostly on accessories, ones that are hard to find, like those tiny glass jars you use to make itsy bitsy jars of jam.
I think my miniature coke and seven up bottles would look great in front of this Camper.

Saturday, 1 September 2012

How to leave a comment

This post is for the wonderful folks who subscribe to my blog by email, or for those who occasionally stop by, and aren't as familiar with the blogging world as other bloggers.

If you're subscribing by email, every time I write a new post it arrives in your inbox. You can click on that post, and be taken straight to my blog page. At the bottom of my most recent post, in extremely small writing (I need to look into changing the size of the font, last time I tried this, it made other text bigger too, oh well!) you will see text that the post has 2 comments, for example, if some comments have been left.

To leave your own comment, simply click on the text that says 2 comments and the comments box will expand. Then you will be able to leave your comment, and if you would like, subscribe to further comments that are made regarding this post by email. You can also unsubscribe from the comments at any time.

See? Easy Peasy.
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