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The Tiny Adobe

This tiny adobe (4 1/4 x 2 1/4 inches) was also my friend Pat's Christmas gift several years ago. It's based on one I made from a kit (I believe it was Gale Manning's original design) and I think it corresponds to HO scale in model railroading. The walls of this adobe are made of thin balsa; the vigas, or beams, are stained toothpicks.

The red chilies were purchased. The plants were contrived from dried materials.

I can't remember if the original kit came with the extension on the fireplace or not; I think it was my addition for this particular adobe.

With this tiny scale, every little glitch shows up when the photos are made. What seemed like a perfectly adequate cactus looks rather peculiar in this close-up view. Those "boulders" are actually tiny rocks I picked out after sifting some sand.

The skull on the left inside wall was purchased. Although I thought it looked okay at the time, I have since made more of my own with skinier horns.

The bench under the skull has a "wrought iron" base made from a bolo tie slide painted black. The cushion is thin cotton fabric glued to a piece of business card. (I use business cards a lot!) Notice how thick it looks; it's the enlarging that makes it look heavier than it really is. If I were to do this now, I would use a marker to darken the edges of the card to make them blend in better.

The base for this pot is made from an earring fastener painted black. The pot is a painted wood bead; the plant is made from knotted green thread with its ends frayed out and touched lightly with beige paint.

The fireplace was made from a piece of cardboard curved and cut to fit the corner. Although not visible here, there is firewood inside. It is traditionally placed in an upright stack, rather than lying flat. The pot on the right is a real one, purchased. The rawhide covered stool is made from a painted wooden plug.

The "onyx" table, like some I have seen in Mexico, is a small (about a quarter inch square) ceramic tile to which I added a button base. The onyx bowl is a wee button filled with model railroad apples.

The wall wreath is a tiny desert grass which just naturally curled this way. My husband brought me several of these from one of his hikes, but has never come across them again, although I am always reminding him to look for more. I added the flowers, of course.

The sofa is contrived from a model railroad bench and some fencing. The bolster pillows are resistors my son cut from old circuit boards that had been dumped in the desert. I didn't even have to repaint them; their striped colors worked perfectly.

Here's the original bench. I glued a piece of business card across the legs on front and sides, painted the entire bench brown, then added the "iron" end pieces.

I used one of these benches with the back cut off as a tubside table in the Bathroom in the Quarter Scale pages.

This is the fencing used for both the sofa arms and the legs on the side table.

The throw across the back is a design cut from 100 % cotton fabric. Notice how thick it looks, too?

The rug and wall hanging were cut from the same fabric. There's the side table with its legs made from the same fencing as the sofa arms. The tall sculptural cactus is a tiny snip of preserved evergreen leaf in another painted wooden bead pot. The wooden floor candlestick which sits at the end of the sofa is a tiny wood turning used in making ship models; its candle is a bugle bead. (I removed the sofa in order to take this picture.)

The painted clay pot is a real piece of pottery. I think it came from the Steeles.

This right view of the garden shows a tree made from statice. Most of the other plants are real dried pieces from the desert; none of which you would notice unless you were really looking for them, because they are so small.

This tiny sun face was purchased, although I have made several similar ones since then.

This adobe was a one of a kind gift, although I did make extras of all the furnishings.

I started a SW kitchen using this same layout, but have never finished it. The entire scene is only 4 1/4 inches by 2 1/4 inches, and requires a lot of contriving. When it's finally finished I definitely plan to keep it for myself.

One of these days ....

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