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Creative Competition Winner in Full!

January 20th, 2015

Here’s the first of a series of pieces where we will be showing casing some of the entrants to the 2014 Creative Competition. The competition ran longer than previous years so wasn’t announced until the end of October and we’re pleased to finally be able to bring you  more of the story and images behind the winners and some of the other entrants. Today we’re going to share with you more images and the full story behind the winning entry from Amanda Richardson, in her own words.

I have been a miniature/dollhouse enthusiast since I was quite young and recently my young niece has for me interested in the whole fairy garden craze and I have made a few things for her and I also started sculpting fairies out of polymer clay. I was trying to think of ways to combine the two when I saw your competition advertised on you website in June, it was the perfect opportunity to get creative and ideas of a fairy tree house started flooding in.  I originally had an idea in my mind of how it would look but it changed dramatically right from the start because of the branches I could find. I had to work around the branches rather than build the tree around my idea of what I wanted it to look like. The tree house was build for Ms Mushroom Liddy (my niece, Maya, named her) who is the fairy who mixes all of the fairy dust and potions for all other fairies in the land. Unfortunately I ran out of time to sculpt Mushroom Liddy so we will say that she is currently out collecting magic plants and herbs for her potions.

I will try and explain the best I can as to how it was created but try to make it short … hopefully! The whole process has taken me three months to complete, I am a stay-at-home mum so I did have some time during the day and I had a lot of late nights! Next time I think I will give myself a little more time. My 2 year old  daughter and partner are definitely sick of being covered in moss or glue every time they sit down. The tree itself is a collection of driftwood and branches that were found around our neighbourhood (I sent my partner on a branch hunting mission after a windy night here) that have all been glued and screwed together and then more added around the house as it was constructed and different elements added, the base of the house was screwed on first and then the walled added after to make it more stable.  I made a new window frame for the smaller window of the house and added the “aged” matchsticks to the doors and larger window.

The staircase has been made from popsicle sticks which have all been stained, painted and sanded individually. the staircase was built up step by step and then the bridge constructed in one piece and added to the staircase last. I added moss to all the steps before adding them to the tree. The two decks are also popsicle sticks supported by beams attached to the underneath of the house and with the lower deck the beams are attached to the tree. The  gazebo was built from MDF sing a plan I found on the internet for a full scale gazebo, it was modified quite a bit but the idea was good haha!

The ground area was covered in polystyrene which I shaved and shaped to the roots of the tree (which are also separate pieces of driftwood which have been glued on). The main gate posts and fence are made from balsa wood which have been covered in spack filler and carved into crumbling bricks and painted. The fireplace inside was also made this way.

The whole base, tree and house has been covered in different types of moss and vines. The little bats have been sculpted using sculpey and liquid sculpey for their wings. The jars and bottles inside the house have all been filled suing diamond glaze mixed with pearl ex, pastels and tiny beads.  All bottles have been labelled, some with label I have created and some that have printed out from the internet. The crate at the front door contains the dust which is ready for the fairies to collect. I have also labeled the tiny books with everything that a dust and potion mixing fairy could need, including DIY Wand Repairs (just in case). The tree and the house has been wired and has lights attached to te tree all up the winding staircase. It also has a few extra points to add more later if needed.

Ms Mushroom Liddy also has a potting bench on the side deck as she is learning how to grow her own “magic plants.” the tiny snails on the potting bench are made from sculpey.

I could go on for hours and hours! I’ve had such a great time creating the tree house and seeing it some together and change.


Here you can view all of Amanda’s stunning images of her winning entry to the 2014 Creative Competition and pick up your own Summer House now!
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