Hello there, I am Caitlyn's mum. Caitlyn has asked me to write a post about how we made this cute beach scene for her Sylvanian Families to enjoy.
Actually, it was a bit of a family effort - Caitlyn designed it (and helped with a little of the painting and rock placement), her Dad made the wooden box (or hill) for the lighthouse to sit on, and I did the rest.
We started with a Lack table from Ikea. We were lucky a few months ago to find these on a great sale, so we picked some up for storing Sylvanian buildings on - a few green ones for grassy areas, and this sort of sandy-coloured one with the idea that it might work as a beach scene.
The first thing we did was to paint the water. Caitlyn marked out with a pencil where she wanted the water line to come to on the shore, and we decided there would be a kind of rock wall sloping steeply straight into deep water along the side of the lighthouse. After lightly sanding the areas to be painted, we first painted the legs of the table - the back one using a dark blue, and the front one graduating from the same dark blue at the bottom, to a lighter blue at the top.
Once the legs had dried, I painted the table top, graduating the two blue paints, and adding a little green and white toward the edge of the shore line. I did this by just blending, blending, blending directly on the surface with a fairly large (but soft) brush. Then I let it dry, and did it all over again for a second coat.
Once we were happy with the colour of the water, and it had dried again, I used a stiff brush in a sort of stabbing motion, to add some white paint "foam" to the very edge of the water.
Finally, once the whole thing had dried thoroughly, I masked the unpainted portions of the table and sprayed the painted areas with three coats of gloss varnish.
Next, we knew we wanted to raise the lighthouse up above the beach itself. We considered cardboard, but didn't think it would be stable enough to hold the lighthouse securely. Husband had some leftover mdf from another project, and he offered to make a box for the lighthouse to sit on. This was fantastic, as not only is it very strong, but he was able to leave it open at the back, for storage of little Sylvanian bits and pieces!
We stuck the box onto the table using Liquid Nails.
The next step was to create the rocky hill/embankment around the box. We used three bags of stones bought from a two-dollar shop. With two bags of the larger light coloured stones, we created most of the front of the wall/hill, building a foundation with the largest stones first. We stuck these on individually with Liquid Nails, leaving a gap for a "sand" staircase down to the beach.
After allowing the first row to set for an hour or so, I added the next row, and so on.
I used one bag of smaller mixed-colour stones to build the sea wall at the side of the lighthouse, and picked out some of the lighter ones to fill out the top edge of the front (actually there were quite a few of the small stones left over, so perhaps you might see those one day in a Sylvanian garden or similar!).
I then carved a rough staircase out of polystyrene. I didn't want it to look perfect; the idea is that it is a kind of sandy path down to the beach. I mixed various acrylic paints together to get a colour not too dissimilar from the table, and painted the staircase.
Then I glued a popsicle stick to each side of it, to represent the wooden supports that give the sandy staircase/path its structure, and set it into the space I had left for it between the rocks.
At last we were ready to set the lighthouse in its place!
Now all that remains is for a lucky family to move in... who will it be??
I believe Caitlyn has a story about that all lined up in her head, so you will just have to wait and see!
I live in Perth, Australia, and love stories, chocolate and Sylvanians!
Other blogs I like
At The Periwinkles
My Sylvanian Paradise