Monday, January 21, 2013

Summer in the Courtyard:

 The large variety Clematis are on their second blush. It is August in the walled courtyard.  The sun has warmed the walls, even the bees are drunk on the softness of the air.

Well, back to reality  ..... another wall has its vine completed!

This is the corner where the steamer chair will recline. I bought an appropriate sized leaf  to replicate clematis foliage. I used portions of an ivy leaf vine that I also used for the hydrangea petiolaris on the utility wall. The stem and a base for applying foliage was glued into position and trimmed pieces of the foliage applied to that.  You can see pieces of foliage cut ready to be glued onto the base.

You can also see two yogurt container lids. I use my collection of lids to contain projects under way. The lids also serve as a convenient place to mix paints and put dots of glue. I usually wash the lids when I am finished and reuse them.

These plastic flowers were a good start for the clematis. To help them look more dimensional I filled the centres with puffy paint and tinted them yellow - also trimmed the plastic ends of each petal and cut little shapes into the centre crown before painting the markings on the petals.  This really helped make the flowers look more interesting.

Of course you need a few different sizes and buds so I painted watercolour paper pink, then used a star punch to make buds.

The large size clematis buds rise on longish stems before opening wide making the stem less noticeable. I put the buds on fine green wire and painted a little yellow onto the loop I formed at the top of the wire.
I cut each arm of the star almost to the centre where I had made a hole with a heavy needle.
I pressed each petal to create shape before manipulating it into a bud form.
The watercolour paint always shows darker when it is wet.

Below you can see I have applied the flowers and buds to the vine. In August the clematis has a second flush of flowers that do not cover the vine as it does earlier in the spring.

Roses Progress....none!

I imagined I would do the climbing rose on the house first but I still have not worked out how to do the foliage satisfactorily. I do not aim for a duplicate only a miniature representation of the "thing" but it will come to me soon I am sure.

In the meantime a trellis and planter box needed to be made for the rose bush. Here is the Versailles planter box. It is made with basswood, the little decorative balls are held in place with pins while the glue dries.

I also had to change the configuration of the gravel path to fit the box in properly beside the door.

While I continue to think about rose foliage I found some very nice textured beads, in my collection, of suitable size to add a bit of decoration to the walls.

I had only the amount I needed. They are now mounted on bass wood plinths and have yet to have the holes filled before being painted.  I never imagined that I could ever use these beads. Miniaturists - you must never throw anything away!!!

It was foggy today but earlier this week we had one perfect sunny day. The photo below was taken a few minutes before sunrise. You may notice the ice slush on the edge of the water.

 This was a few minutes later as the brightness of the rising sun washed out the colour in the sky.

I think we take a photo of of this view, in its many variations, almost every day.

Have a great week.

Regards Janine


  1. Oh, Janine! The vegetation on the wall is fabulous! The other details are getting excellent. ;)
    I loved the beautiful photos that you shared.
    A big hug.

  2. Hi Janine,

    you have done a wonderful job with your clematis, I thought it must have been a kit. Thank you for explaining how you put it all together, it gives me hope to try some plants my self. I was just looking through Lea Frisoni's explanation on how to make flowers before I found your beautiful example.

    The sunrise is beautiful!

    Fi x

  3. Oh that took a lot work. But your clematis is amazing. I can't wait to see your next project.
    Thanks for sharing.
    Greetings Dorien

  4. Hello Janine,
    No word of a lie, I want to shrink and live in your mini world. It is absolutely fantastic and your plants are wonderful. You are such a talented miniaturist. Bravo!
    big hug,
    p.s. Thank you so much for your comment on my blog. I'm told you can find the lead tape in Golf stores. Apparently it's used to add weight to the club. I purchased mine on eBay.

  5. I only wish my real clematis looked as healthy as this come Spring!

    Thank you for the tutorial,


  6. When first I came to visit Vancouver and met you, you showed me your (real) garden and introduced me to your babies (plants). (Calgary was not the place to learn about plants...nothing much was interesting ---very dry and nothing grew) And the first name you ever taught me was "clematis" followed by some Latin version of its name. That stuck with me and I can't pass a clematis without thinking of you. Little did I know that some 20 years later you would be making them in this crazy miniature world of ours. Thank you Janine. So very talented and thank you for sharing your world withe us.

    1. So this is what you were up to at 1:30 in the morning! Doesn't it make you long for the glory day of summer when you view your little piece of heaven on earth? This clematis is a pleasure to behold and I love it Janine. You were always detail driven with your vegetables and now your flowers are just as meticulously done as they. It is really beautifully executed. Bravo!


    2. Isn't this variety 'Nelly Moser"?

  7. I love clematis and yours are amazing. Your garden is beautiful. Thank you for sharing your gorgeous pictures.
    Hugs Maria

  8. The flowers made fy you are really beautiful. Your ideas how to make Clematis helps me to make flowers. Thanks for it. I am very glad abouth that i found your blog. Hugs Kati

  9. Wow! The clematis are gorgeous. The garden already looks great. I'm sure the rose bush will be stunning. Thanks for sharing.
    Hugs, Drora

  10. Fantasticas fotos!! las flores preciosas y el paisaje magnífico!!
    Besos de las Malu´s

  11. Acabo de necontar su blog y estoy encantada con las cosas que hace!!
    Que bello atardecer!!
    Saludos desde México!!

  12. Le quedó fantástico el muro, felicidades:)

  13. i love the wall with the clematis.

  14. What a lot of work - it looks lovely and well worth the time spent.

  15. The clematis loos perfect! Thanks for sharing how to make it!

  16. Your flowers are beautiful! Thank you for the tutorial!

  17. Hi Janine, thanks for following my blog ; because of that I discovered yours! You create delightful miniatures. I'll be back later and read you blog from the beginning till most recent post! Greetings from Liduina.

  18. Love your clematis and your wall:) Remembers me that I have to make my own vine with flowers...not only for the roof garden but also for the stairs on the side of the house and the balcony....and I need a climbing rose for the walls! OMG, so much to do:))))) In the meen while I enjoy your flowers!

    The sunrise is just like a wonderful dream!

  19. The clematis looks like such a lot of fiddly work, but truly worth it in the end. The 'chunky' wall and fine flowers are such a great team, each compliments the other so well. The whole yard is really taking shape and looking great.

    Beautiful sunrise - it'd be worth getting up early for :)