Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Mrs Puddifoot's Tea Shop...update

Whilst I collect and gather supplies for Sugar Plum's Sweet Shop and practise with ideas and methods, I thought I'd make a start on something more straight forward and which I already had supplies for! So, the tea shop it was!  

I had started some of the priming quite some time ago...well before I even thought about moving home!  
I gave all the decorative pieces two coats of white paint and then applied a thin coat of top coat. 
 I chose to paint them before clay work commenced...as the wood base is cleaner. 
 The plaster and brickwork will be blue.... not as pale as this....it's just a trial to be nosey! lol
I usually paint all my fancy and decorative pieces first and then glue them in situ after and most certainly after clay has been applied! Although I didn't glue these on, I wouldn't have gained any thing if I 'd removed them, the gaps were just too fiddly, so better to get a snug fit with the clay.

I was undecided what to do with the gap between the window frame and the column...pretend it's part of the frame and paint it a creamy-yellow or let it be the wall (because it was!). I decided it had to be the wall and thus added the clay! 

I didn't use Creative Paperclay nor my usual Art Mache that I make up. I instead used Hobby Crafts' own brand air dry paperclay. It's a cross between Creative's paperclay and Das...maybe more like Das. 
After I added those rather tricky pieces (between the window frame and column)  I added and sculpted my bricks. I wanted rough and rather aged bricks...so I tried another method and technique! Although I prefer my bricks to have more texture (the clay was unpredictable with all that), they are for most part fine. :o)
At this point the clay was okay to work with.....and I had no problems. 
After the last lower side done and I was happy...I continued on....bricking! lol
The nightmare began and I've had far better behaved clay! It was a bit of a monster to say the least! lol I am unsure if the clay was too dry or too wet...I think it was the former...and it was a complete nightmare to roll out! In the end I had to scrap each rolled out piece up with a plastic clay scrapper and rolling it over as I went...and apply that. Needless to say the bricking has taken me 3 times or more longer to do! lol  
I left it at this point overnight with a damp/to wettish tea towel laid over it so I could continue the next morning.
 All the bricks started off extremely rough and raw in shape etc., as  you see in the lower part of the photo. :o)
Each area or most bricks were worked on individually. I still have the upper piece to do (underneath the top pediment, by the way the shop is upside down!). 
For ease I turned the shop upside down to work on...parts of the clay kept moving up and down and thus so did my bricks...I had to keep redoing them. :o/
Ta da! One half almost completed, underneath the pediment still has to be done!  
This is the clay now and almost dried. So far so good...no serious cracking.
I will start this upper side at the end of the week...I want to try a few things for a slightly more aged brick this side...well, showing more deterioration and decades of wear and tear! :o) Another nightmare on clay street begins! lol :oP

I hope you don’t mind my ramblings and madness! :o))

Michelle xxxx


  1. It looks great, Michelle, well done. I wish I had your patience, I always end up cheating and buy brick paper. I have always loved this shop so I'm really excited to see what tricks you do with it.

    1. Thank you Simon. :o)) I'm self-taught, so anything can happen! lol You do such painstaking and fabulous work, you could do this! Though if you must cheat, do try the 3D or embossed sheeting (if you don't use it already), they do look very realistic indeed and you can repaint/age them too.

      It's a gorgeous shop, sadly they redid the design slightly and you can't buy it like this anymore. I hope to resume work on it tomorrow...though I'm kinda relieved I only have one upper side to do! lol

      You have inspired me to decide on my next project and so if you like this shop... you will like the next one too! :o))

      Hugs, Michelle ;o))

  2. Love the shop Michelle.... ís it a Sid Cooke? Wonderful brickwork too. Over the years I've tried most methods for making realistic stone/bricks but I've never used air dry paperclay. It looks great! Sx

    1. Glad you like it so far Sandra. ;o))

      It is a Sid Cooke...a very old one, one made by the founding and original owners. It's all plywood..even the windows (I prefer plastic, so much easier to paint and age and I think they are more realistic). Not sure if Sid Cooke are still trading, but they do/did sell an updated version of this shop.

      The sculpting isn't really the hard bit, knowing how to handle the clay is the hardest part of all!

      I will be continuing with this shop tomorrow...and battling to re-glue one of the windows back together (for the 4th time!), after the heat gun made it fall apart! lol

      Oh re your reply on your blog...I haven't seen 1/24th or smaller scale shoes/shop boxes, if I do, I will let you know! :o))

      Michelle xx

  3. Quel travail ces petites briquettes à main levée,BRAVO!!!le résultat est superbe.La devanture de la boutique a un charme fou!!!

    1. Glad you like the little bricks, they take a while to do..but worth it. :o)) It's a favourite shop of mine. :o)))

  4. I love the brick work Michelle :) it doesn't look like you'll be having any nightmares on clay street today


    1. It went better today Marisa, and glad you like it so far.

      I've got used to handling this clay better! lol If it can't work for me in a way it should...I make it so it can and does! lol :o) I've almost completed all the brick work now and the other side is more distressed...but has taken a few hours work today. I can't wait to paint it and age it! ;o))


  5. Michelle,
    I think that your brick work is wonderful! I am looking forward to following your progress with this corner shop.

    1. Thank you for your kind words Martha. I've been doing more bricking today..but it's slow going! Adding more distressing is the reason! lol

      I will show updates soon! :o))