Monday, June 4, 2018


Where Does The Time Go....?

I had a Vacation week, Dear Readers, but when it begins with a Three Day Holiday Weekend, then somehow the rest of the Vacation feels a little shorter than usual! But nonetheless, it allowed me to continue right away with the painting of the doors and the fourth wall of the little sleeping compartment in the Gypsy Wagon. Above you can see the finished painting as it would be viewed from inside the compartment (if there were light enough to see it!) with the doors closed. One more hen and one more bunny have joined the others in the Meadow.

And here is the view from the other side, with the doors open.
But perhaps you want to see it in the wagon....

With a spotlight shining in
 so you can see it on this dark rainy day....!

And a little farther back....
 the bunny is clearly running for shelter
 and the hen is flapping her wings....
But wouldn't you run for shelter
 if your Meadow was suddenly opened wide....?
And because it was still
 the beginning of my week of vacation, 
I decided to continue with
 the interiors of the Gypsy wagons.

Here I am starting on the second wagon interiors...
I have had to build a "painting box" 
to keep my new cat away from the painting
 which is done on my floor.....
 right in the middle of his play-space!
(Actually we've had him for months now
 but he is very very shy and is finally beginning to get friendly!)
So far Dusty has no respect for paint
 and likes to contribute hairs generously!

Here you can see the Fortune Teller's wagon
 will have a lovely pink interior space....
It is called "Hibiscus Petal".....

I love the way it looks with the
 dark brown trim and the raspberry exterior.....
(I know my lighting angle is poor...)

But the real thing I was trying to make some progress on
 with these wagons, Dear Readers,
 was the layout and furniture for the interiors....
As I am sure you can imagine,
 these wagons have to be carefully designed
 to fit everything in! 
And there are some traditionally accepted
 arrangements of the necessary features....
The stove tends to be on the left just inside the door,
 beyond it is the seating area for a table.
In this wagon the area for the stove is very narrow
 due to the placement of the windows.
There are two windows on each side of the wagon,
 one in the sleeping compartment and
 the other midway on the wall of the main area.

The "hearth" area will need to hold a stove
 and will need to have a tile surround
 to keep the hot stove from burning the walls!
I have a small selection of lovely tiles to use.... 
but needed to make the arrangement fit the tiny space.

(Sorry this picture is so dark... I wasn't paying attention
 to the lighting as I fiddled with the construction....)
 I am building a "brick" base for the stove to sit on....
 with an area under for storage of wood...

(Amazing the difference a sunny morning makes...!)
Here you can see my rough progress... 
there will be a cabinet under the window with a sink basin...
and the seat for the table will be right against the compartment wall... 
with a pull-out table tucked under the bed...
There was an amazing amount of cutting
 and sanding and fiddling and cutting again....
And thousands of falling over pieces.....
But I gradually got the basic design worked out... 

And had to adjust it all again to allow for the thickness
 of the cardboard which will hold the tiles.....

And trying to work out the tile arrangement... 
because I have not enough of two different tile patterns.... 
which combined are enough.....

Here I am just testing the tiles for basic size .....

And still wrestling with the design....
I have painted the cardboard white 
where the tiles will be glued...
 I am planning to cut them all apart, 
since there are already pieces cut apart, 
I think they should all be cut apart...
 but the space they fit in is very tight and
 I don't want to lose the lovely designs too much!

The stove base has been painted white with primer...
 I am going to have to add all sorts of layers
 a la Elizabeth of "Studio E" blog 
to make it look like stuccoed brick....!
(Must gather my courage and some materials...!)

Meanwhile, I have also been making
 the same structure for the other wagon....

And forgetting to take pictures of the duplicated efforts.....

But here you can see my "work table" for these wagons.....
(Yes, I'm a little over-booked and have run out of work space....)

Because I also got all the branches added to the third lilac shrub....!

And added paint and tested the fit of the "cages" 
on the Gypsy Wagon addition...

Added a little more cream background to the petit-point stitching.....

(Did a whole lot of outdoors gardening in my RL Gardens....)
Oh, and went to the Sturbridge Miniatures Fair on Sunday....!!!
(But that will need to wait for another post...!)
 And yes, I did complete Lilac blossom number Eleven...!

And here they are all in the box!

So it was a busy week Dear Readers, 
Filled with minis and much more...
But I just don't know where the Time goes!
And I still feel a bit Scattered.... 
(Which I'm sure you understand, 
has nothing to do with too many projects!)


  1. Hi Betsy, You always make the most of your vacation time. As it has been sunny for the past month I hardly seem to be able to enter my workroom. My interests are all outside in the garden.
    However you are doing both - inside and outside gardening. The little caravans are coming along as is the lilac bushes.
    Great work.
    Regards Janine

    1. Hi Janine! I am only spending a little time in the garden each day so I don't "overdo" it and injure myself like I did last year! But being in my mini projects is Paradise for me so I am just happy to not have to pay much attention to the passing time! LOL! :)

  2. Hi Betty, I love what you are doing to the wagon! From the painting of the compartment to the tiles of the stove. And I love the pink and brown combination. In fact, I own a sweater with that combination. Haven't been able to fit it for years but I am keeping it because of the colours! 😉
    Your petit-point and lilacs are both so delicate! I admire your patience!
    I am also relieved to see that my living room is not the only one having multiple uses 😂
    Big hugs!

    1. Sorry! Every time I write your name, autocorrect changes it. Then I change it again and think it's OK but unfortunately my phone changed your name again. So sorry! Betsy!

    2. Hi Veronique! That is hilarious! (I won't mind being "Betty" only because it is the machine, not you! LOL!) And I am so glad I am not the only one who likes Pink and dark brown! (It makes me think of chocolates or ice cream sundaes!) And yes, my mini life has completely taken over.... but it is so much fun I don't mind! :):)

  3. Hi Betsy, I love your tiny paintwork in the wagon under the bed, the children will love it so much, when seeing it before they will close their eyes and fall asleep! The tiling must be fiddly work, especially in that tiny space, but it looks gorgeous. I'm sure it will be a cosy and wonderful wagon, when it's time that the family can move in there ;).
    Your embroidery is getting wonderful, you even spent some of your precious vaction time in embroidering....and I love seeing your newest member of the lilac blossoms family ;)! In short, you spent your time very well and in miniatures. Enjoy your real life gardening time!
    Hugs, Ilona

    1. Hi Ilona! The Gypsy wagon would be "cozy" even with nothing in it because it is so compact! LOL! But I know what you mean.... it is going to feel warm and inviting inside... no matter what the weather is doing outside! And you know I just love to paint! :):) The tiles are being very slow and fiddly... and the stitching is just slow! LOl! The lilacs will take a very long time... but they are "growing"! :):)

  4. I think it looks wonderful. The murals are so cheerful. And the pink is so pretty.

    1. Thank you Sheila! That is exactly the effect I am hoping for! :)

  5. Wow Betsy you made such great progress on so many things! It sounds like a fun and interesting vacation! So glad you got some sunshine to enjoy, too!
    I also love the color themes for both gypsy wagons. That tile is so vibrant and beautiful - it is going to look marvelous! You are really making the most of the limited space, and cutting and fitting around door frames and such is an exercise in patience and skill.
    Hope you are having a great week back at work and that you continue to find time and sunshine for all your endeavors!

    1. Hi Jodi! It was a great time filled with minis! I love it when I can just immerse myself in any and all projects and not worry much about anything else! My idea of Paradise! LOL! I am really enjoying getting going on the decor for both the wagons.... there is still a lot of structural work to do... but I need to get the interiors mostly done so I can attach the walls! :):)

  6. Oh Betsy, you are such a run! I love your tiled oven area and am looking forward to seeing how it looks when finished. These wagons are gorgeous. As a child in Ireland, we had gypsies camp near us in the summer in wagons very similar to these. I was always amazed at how small they were and how many people seemed to be able to sleep in them. Of course they usually cooked, ate and 'lived' outside when the weather was good, but in the winter or in bad weather a little stove like this will be heaven. AND keep the wagon warm.

    Your lilac is also coming along really well. Looking forward to seeing more of that too!

    1. Hi Carol! I LOVE to hear about the Gypsies who camped near you when you were little!!!! It makes the stories I am imagining so much more real... I am not "just" making it all up! LOL! And yes, they will do most of their living and cooking outside.... but having the shelter is important and part of the mystique! :):) Thank you for sharing your gypsy memories with me!

  7. I'm quite impressed by your art work Betsy and can see that the you've been hard at work on EVERYTHING, needlepoint, painting, interior design and plant making; a true Renaissance Woman!

    1. Thank you Elizabeth! :):):) (Praise from you is praise indeed!!!)

  8. I love everything you are doing on your gypsy wagons, they look fun and warm. I specially love your art work! I wish I could paint. I am glad you made such a good use of your free time and I hope you enjoyed yourself a lot. Ah! And I love those tiles and what you are doing with them, the main space will look wonderful.

    1. Hi Alexandra! I am glad you like these wagons too! They are going to be such intricate "puzzles" to get put together... I keep having to stop and decide which part must be done before I can attach something.... but it is a fun challenge! And they allow me to follow my imagination and love for color and pattern.... You will see.... there is so much more to come!!! LOL!

  9. You're very busy. Great work.

    1. Thank you Fabiola! I am having a lot of fun! :):)

  10. You have been busy. I love the chickens and rabbit.

    1. Thank you Polly! I always have to be careful when I start adding "creatures".... they start to need names and stories! LOL! But I am having fun with these wagons! :)

  11. I really admire how much you've achieved during your vacation - are you sure it was only one week? You have been busy as a bee and I like everything you've done - especially (as Ilona so nicely said) the newest member of the lilac family. It's amazing to see the beginnings of the wagon's interior with the stove, this is such fiddly work but you're always doing it straight with a clear vision. And I really liked the lighted pictures of the kids' sleeping compartment, you know I admire your painting skills and your ability to set the Colours making them shine - and this one is no exception to the rule. Oh, and what I liked too is your workspace for the wagons… so familiar… ;O)


    1. Dear Birgit, I know you can imagine the difficulty I have with "Vacation Time" which is supposed to stretch magically for weeks and months even.... considering the number of projects I think I will be able to get done during my "Time off".... so I have to be careful not to be disappointed when it ends up just being one week! LOl! The true Joy is in the freedom to play and drift from project to project.... so I do get a lot of little things done! And always always wish I could just keep going.... but the next vacation is really soon already!!! :):)

  12. Here I am at last.
    Living in a gypsy wagon would be a lot like living in a small yacht. In those days there must have been one-burner stoves to fit such small spaces? And what about heat in the winter? In a small yacht there is a small built-in heating stove, too. Just to make life more complicated...
    Love, Mom

    1. Hi Mom! I am using my memories of "ship shape" interiors to help plan the wagons! They are very similar in space and requirements.... if you leave out the waves, of course! LOL!

  13. Hi Betsy, wow such beautiful doors! I love the way they split and your painting looks so sweet on them. The tiles are just gorgeous, I love the pattern on them. So nice to see you got so much done :)

    1. Hi Kristine! I love those double doors too! And I really love vacation time when I can work endlessly on my mini projects!! :):)

  14. Hi, Betsy - I thought I had left a comment on your post a few days ago, but for some reason it hasn't shown up; I probably forgot to push "publish!" That's happened before. So I've come back to read, look, and enjoy your post again, and fall in love with those gypsy wagons again as well. I love the compactness of the furnishings in the limited wagon space, and I can't wait to see the finished stove area with the beautiful tiles in the Fortune Teller's wagon. The color scheme of Hibiscus Petal with the dark brown and raspberry is luscious - a wonderful choice! As always, my mind goes all boggled when I see the different projects that you're working on at the same time - and doing amazing work on them all. The lilacs keep multiplying, as they should, and the bushes keep growing, and the petit-point stitching keeps moving along, and it's all done beautifully! Now, if this comment doesn't post, I'll come back and enjoy it all again!

    1. Hi Marjorie! I am so glad you don't mind coming back again! And I am always glad to see your comments! I am having a lot of fun with the Gypsy Wagons.... of course, my ideas go at the speed of light and my work goes at a crawl.... but that gives me time to figure out the "how to" part of some of my projects! LOL! The colors are beginning to express the different character of the two wagons... something which I was hoping to manage! The structure has to be so similar... it is fun to make the variations where I can! And yes, I am never happier than when I am up to my ears in projects and jumping from one to the next.... That is my idea of Paradise! LOL! (Vacations come close!) :):)

  15. Wow you have been busy. I love love your wagons and the paintings are true pieces of art. Beautiful flowers.
    Hugs Maria

    1. Hi Maria! I am so glad to see you commenting here! I have had a wonderful vacation, and you know I love to paint! The Gypsy Wagons give me room to get "carried away" with the colors and patterns I love so much! I hope you are well and will have time for minis again! :)

  16. Love the progress on your Wagon, especially the bunny paintings. That's a lovely touch.

    1. Hi Irene! I am so glad you like the paintings! I wanted to make the space clearly a "child's" space.... and the bunnies and chickens leapt to mind! LOL! :):)