Thursday, March 14, 2019

Buckets and Straws

Making enamel utensils for the dollhouse is on my to-do list for a long time. Miniaturists do it with so much realism, I thought it would be an intricate process.
Once I started, the only challenge was to stop adding rust stains and chips before the buckets became too damaged and grubby to use. This project was good fun, didn't require special tools or supplies, and it was quick to make. I used cardboard from cereal boxes which I 'rescued' from the dustbin in the interest of protecting the environment, so I feel extra happy with my buckets on that account. When I have a bit more time I will make a tutorial so that you can try it too.

Speaking of the environment - plastic drinking straws were banned in many countries at the beginning of 2019, and the rest of the world is soon to follow. Surveys show that people in affluent countries spend more money on take-out food than groceries. Most take-away food comes in plastic containers and straws are at the forefront of the movement to stop single-use plastic from overwhelming the planet.
I'm all in favour of cleaning up the oceans and reducing the size of landfills but my heart was heavy at the thought of losing drinking straws as a craft source. One can do so many things with them, from dollhouse drain pipes to pram wheel axles, the uses for straws are endless.

One morning last week, Siegfried and I sneaked out for a double thick milkshake (I'm an unadventurous vanilla person). Imagine my delight when I pulled the wrapper off the straw to discover a sturdy cardboard tube! You can see it at the top of this picture. The other straws are a bendy straw from a juice box, McDonald's milkshake straw, and an ordinary plastic drinking straw. While I will jealously guard my stash of plastic straws for future use around the dollhouse, I'm going to invent lots of excuses to go for a milkshake so I can collect paper straws. Just when you think something is taken away, a valuable new provision is added!

What do you use drinking straws for, and what other kinds of plastic or paper containers do you repurpose for your dollhouse?


  1. Those buckets are SO adorable!!!

  2. Wow, you've made lovely buckets, Megan, they look very realistic, well done!!
    Hug, Ilona

  3. The buckets are fab Megan. I’m looking forward to the tutorial. :) I’m sad about straws too, especially bendy ones, they are great for downpipes.

  4. I just LOVE those buckets, Megan. Can't wait to see and read how you made them look so fabulously real. Well, they are real but tiny real.
    Straws...? I haven't really done any 'straw projects' but you got me thinking..

  5. Great job on the buckets! They look so real. Looking forward to the tutorial!

  6. Hello Megan,
    Great job on the buckets. They look very realistic. I will totally stock up on straws in the weeks to come. Enjoy the milkshakes.
    Big hug

  7. Great job on the enamel buckets.
    I have used plastic straws, I cut them open on one side to seal the joint between two parts of fairy houses rooftops. The bendy ones I used for drainage and airing items around the dollhouses.

  8. The buckets are really delightful, Megan! It's incredible that they are paper, wire and paint! If there was suddenly no straws left on the planet, I'd have no fear that before long you'd come up with an even better solution!
    The most common recyclables I use for dollhousing are cereal box cardboard in place of wood and takeout sauce containers for paint pots. I use them again and again, simply waiting for the paint to dry then pealing any leftover out. Saves washing up water and time that way!

  9. Jodi already said it - it's hard to believe that your buckets have a cereal cardboard core. I'm already looking forward to see your tutorial. And what a discovery these paper straws are - and what an excuse… eh… good reason to treat yourself with a milkshake. ;O)


  10. Esos cubos están genial !!!!

  11. Hi Megan. The buckets look FANTASTIC! Just love them. Look forward to some detail on how you made them. The rust spots and dings are very realistic. And straws - maybe I should hoard some before they completely disappear! Uses: rain guttering/pipes, flues/chimneys, components for glowing embers, glassware, are all the obvious ones. There must be so many more. Anything tubular I guess! I am not very imaginative, sorry! Haha! X