Simple little homes

“If to do were as easy as to know what were good to do, chapels had been churches, and poor men's cottage princes' palaces.” William Shakespeare

How many students have I tortured over the years with poor old Shakespeare’s texts? I can’t help but use his words again, fully aware that I am changing the intended meaning just a little. Shakespeare describes the happiness that one can find in a simple little home. The smallest home is surely someone’s castle, a “prince’s palace”.

These miniature homes were part of a summer project assignment for the course Summer Faire with Junelle Jacobsen.

They were definitely an unexpected but appreciated change of pace for me. I hadn't worked on any crafts in a consistent way since the early 1990s when it seemed like everyone was busy making something very cutesy in their homes. This was a time for tole painted projects, various complex wreaths festooned with ribbons and pinecones and all kinds of other hand made items. I quite enjoyed painting on wood again and not worrying about straight lines. The idea of the project was to have FUN! After all, this is summer time and no one wants to be cooped up for long in a craft room or studio, right?

This quick project was a good way to use up some of the inexpensive dollar store craft paint that had accumulated over the years in my craft room. Paper was gessoed onto a scrap wood block and then I used cheap acrylic paint to coat all sides of the block. For the details such as windows, doors and flower boxes, I used acrylic ink and then outlined with a black Sharpie pen.

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This might be a fun project to do with my granddaughter on a rainy day. I still have loads of paint and wood blocks are easy to find in our garage.

I do think that this quick, easy project opens up a world of possibilities for wood blocks. And I am all for using up some of the materials I already have in my craft room including cheap paints and various papers.

Although crafting has gone out of favour in recent years, or maybe I should say decades, I think one of these little homes would be a whimsical addition to a gift basket as a housewarming or a hostess gift. Just add a few jars of preserves, a couple of wooden spoons, some freshly baked shortbread cookies in a cute little tin container,tie it all together with a gorgeous big bow and you have a very presentable homemade gift! A miniature home might even have a place on a mantle in someone’s charming palace.

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