Monday, September 4, 2017

The Grand Nativity...

As Small As I Could.....

I Imagine you must be getting tired, Dear Readers, of seeing pictures on this blog of items so small you can barely see the parts I am mentioning as I describe my adventures in this Teeny-Tiny scale! Well, I hope you can bear with me a little while longer, and I also hope you are glad that I decided to keep the "Large" sized Nativity I had started last week. I wanted to be able to see the figures in the nativity, and I didn't think I could paint them any smaller! Above you can see my method. I simply painted the figures on a scrap of the card stock I had used to construct the stable. Hence the cutout outline of the stable could be my guide for the size of the figures. There was no point in trying to measure or sketch.... at this scale the pencil lines would be terribly thick! So I relied on the color to suggest the figures I was painting, and an occasional prop to emphasize the identity of the figure.

Then I needed to paint the stable itself... 
you can see it there on the plastic surface. 
It was quite challenging to hold it and paint it at the same time!

Then I had to cut out my tiny figures! 
I started with the ox and the ass as they would go at the back of the stable.
I used my sharp x-acto knife, very carefully 
slicing as close to the edges of the figures as I could, 
while not cutting off or leaving out necessary parts...!
 Can you see them there in the middle of my gray cutting mat? 
You really need to not take your eyes off them
 for even a second for fear of losing them!

I glued them into the stable right away. 
You can see how snugly they fit!
(You can imagine that by now I have given up on a smaller stable!)
And then I cut out the Holy Family figures and glued them in as well....
Yes, they completely hide the ox and the ass....
*sigh* But I know they are there!
By now we want to see how it looks with the hearth.....

It  is large... but not outrageously so....!
And how about  if we test it in the Parlor?

I think it looks lovely!
I do want to be able to see the figures after all...
But then You must understand that
 there are More figures needed for a Nativity...

At the very Least you need a shepherd with his flock of sheep......
 and an Angel... or two!
You can see I have painted them the same way I did the other figures.
And then because I start to worry that there won't be room 
for them all on the mantle With the candlesticks.... 
I decide it is time to glue the candlesticks on the mantle!

(There is only so much "testing" you can do with items this small...
they just don't stay put without the glue!)
And while I was adding the candles, 
I decided it was also time to attach the stockings...
 That way I could be sure the Nativity would fit around them and still be visible!

 And then we need to test it all in the parlor again....
(The Nativity is still not attached...)

I do think there is room for the shepherd and his sheep.....
which need to be assembled onto a tiny base of "grass"....

Can you see him? I have added the first two sheep on one side....

Here he is finished, surrounded by his flock!
(Right there next to the stable... 
please poke the pictures to see them larger!)
And then we have to see if they will all fit on the mantle....

I thought the tiny doll in the stocking would block them too much 
if they were on the right side of the stable.... 
But they don't look right at all in this arrangement....!

I think they look much better with the shepherd on the right side!

And here they are testing in the Parlor... yet again....!
I think that is the right arrangement... 
but we mustn't forget the Angels!

I carefully cut out the first one and attached it to the roof... 
as if it is just about to land....
Then we test it again...

I think it looks wonderful and "alive"!
But what about the other Angel...?
(You know there were more than One angel at the Nativity!)
I cut the second one out and glued it on the other side of the roof....

But the first attempt had it too close to the other Angel....

I moved it a little farther down the roof to give them space....
I think it looks more balanced now...
I wanted to be sure the figures are visible...
Can you see them here on my finger?

And shall we test them in the Parlor again...?

I do think they look Very Grand!
Even though they block the painting a bit... 
and when the chandelier is in place they might be harder to see....

In this Teeny-Tiny room in this Teeny-Tiny house....
Where there will also be all sorts of furniture
 and even a fully decorated Xmas Tree!

Lady Evelyn has come by to check on the decorations...
She is quite worried that so Little has been done!
Will it all get finished in time...?
Well, Dear Readers, that was all 
I accomplished over the weekend...
one Very Grand Nativity....
that was as Small as I could manage!


  1. Really incredible and amazing!!!


  2. This is a good idea thank for sharing on the website


  3. Oh my. So tiny! Love the angels!

    1. Thank you Sheila! I almost didn't add the second one...!

  4. wow, that is little! The fire place is coming together nicely.

  5. Wow! I'm going to need another word. But, for now. WOW! :D

  6. Wow, that is little, Betsy, although I poked on the pictures, I still can barely see it!! How do you manage to see, hold and paint them in the same time ;O?? I think it's very clever of you! And have I ever mentioned that I absolutely admire your patience, because this work is so very little?!
    Hugs, Ilona

    1. Thank you Ilona! I almost lost the ox and ass before they were glued into the stable...! It was challenging to position them... a sewing pin for nudging into place helped! :)

  7. That's amazing and so very tiny! I for one am not tired of seeing these tiny things.

    1. Thank you Shannon! I am glad you are not tired of them! There will be more... even if I do get distracted and show larger pieces from time to time! I do have a lot more teeny-tinies before this is all done!

  8. Your Angels were the icing over the stable, Betsy! ♡


  9. ***Gasping in delight***
    Oh My Heavens to Betsy! Absolutely enchanting! To paint them, cut them out, arrange them, and manage not to sneeze the whole time for fear of losing them forever is truly a Christmas miracle! :O)
    I have honestly never seen something so adorable in my life! Just wonderful! I think you and this tiny scale were a match made in heaven! :O)

    1. Thank you Jodi! I am really getting into it! The more I do this scale the more ideas I have....! I am so glad you like it!

  10. Lovely and fantastic work!

  11. I am speechless. I usually don't "poke" because my computer takes me all the way out when I try to come back in - a nuisance - but this time I had to. Twice! Glad I did. Love those angels. What lucky kids to have such huge stockings!
    An altogether beautiful scene.

    1. Hi Mom! I'm glad you "poked" even if it is such a hassle... it really is the only way to see these tiny things! I'm glad you approve of the angels! :)

  12. Usually you knock me out with your eye for any possible detail... maybe that's why I'm a little bit disappointed now. Come on, Betsy... a shepherd without a shepherd dog??? And as we all know - there were shepherds watching over their flock - not just one single guy. And no heavenly choirs for the "Halleluja" but just a couple of angels... tsssss... Okay, I can't keep this bad joking up any longer *LOL* - you blew me away once more with this post!!! Even you have outdone yourself with these teeny tiny paintings that are yet so detailed that every figure has the appearance and character it should have... and in case of the angels even trumpets to announce the birth of the holy child with its halo in gold color. Wonderful, wonderful work, I am in awe with this piece and have not the slightest clue how you can manage to paint and cut that tiny. And I even learned something today... another meaning of "ass" that I've never heard before... as well as double meanings of "large" and "huge" which appear to stand also for "overwhelming and fantastic micro tiny pieces" ;O) Oh, and before I forget - looking at your tiny miracles could never become boring!


    1. Dear Birgit, I am so glad you are having fun and not "issuing challenges" to my abilities! LOL! I have to admit that there would be more of the figures if the mantle were bigger! I had even thought maybe a separate table...! But I realized I need to save room for the decorated tree and all the gifts too..! There just might have to be other nativities for the other houses....! :)

  13. Hi, Betsy - What a success your Nativity is. It definitely isn't too large on the mantel. I really like the way you've offset the stable rather than having it centered on the mantel. And angels! And a shepherd with flock! I'm overwhelmed not just at your sheer creativity, but at such creativity in such tiny form. And no, I will never tire of looking at all these teensy tiny wonders! (Although my eyes may blur a bit now and then...) Your Nativity is spectacular; I'm eager to see the completed room.

    1. Hi Marjorie! I'm glad you like the offset stable... I do like the asymmetrical in design... it creates tension and a sense of movement because the eye follows the irregular line... ! In this case the stable roof is also uneven, adding to that offset energy! I am having fun with these teeny tiny creations... I'm glad you're not tired of them... there will be more! :)

  14. Heavens to Betsy!
    This is amazing! The pieces are intricate and delicate and you have the eye and the patience to cut all of those tiny pieces and to arrange them. An amazing job!
    Mini hugs,

    1. Thank you Hopblogger! I am glad you like them! I am really enjoying these teeny-tiny projects! :)

  15. admiring and stunned in front of this tiny scale! magnificent!

    1. Thank you Claude! This tiny scale is a lot of fun!

  16. Hello Betsy,
    Tire of your work...NEVER! I am just amazed and thrilled at your incredible super small scale minis. The nativity is lovely and looks beautiful on the mantels. I don't think it is too big at all. We have a nativity built by Jo's grandparents from wood and papier maché and I would say it is about the size the one you made would be. The stockings and decorations on the fireplace make me happy. It really is an amazing house and you have worked wonders...I am convinced most of those small pieces would have been glued into to the underside of my nails! Please keep it coming, I cannot get enough!
    Big hug

  17. Perfect inspiration :) and what attention to detail! I admire and congratulate.