A tiny world

I’ve never been a model-maker.

Giant jigsaws, yes, making garments and quilts and jewellery, assembling flatpack furniture, all within my wheelhouse, but for whatever reason I haven’t gone tiny.

Until now.

I was browsing some website, and saw an ad for a model kit (the Sakura Densya from Rolife, if you’re interested). I was riveted! I jumped on the website… and I was lost. So far, I have bought two kits, and there are at least four more that I want to make Now. And that’s just for starters.

So, here’s my first. It’s the Sunshine Town alley, complete with coffee shop and bookshop, street furniture, lights and cats! I did the wiring for the lights myself, which I’m proud of. It was fiddly, I learned a lot about model making and assembly, and I can’t wait to start the next one. This completed on is one of the ‘book nook’ series, where you slot the finished thing into a book case for best effect.

The next one will be Lisa’s Tailor, a sewing room with three sides and half a roof, but there’s a lot more stuff in it, so at least the first two days will be spent assembling all the components.

You do need to be good at following visual instructions, but the instructions are good. This kit had 24 pages of assembly information and multiple sheets of laser-cut press-out pieces in thin ply, cardstock and acetate, all clearly numbered. You only needed to sandpaper off the ‘ties’ that held the pieces in place on the sheets. A little painting, a little glueing, nothing technical. Steady hands and a bit of manual dexterity are helpful.

They provide almost everything you need. Due to the customs regulations here, you don’t get the paint or the glue or the batteries with the kit, but that was an easily-solved problem, and now I have them for the next one.

I’m in love with my tiny world. Maximum cuteness, maximum satisfaction at making it, and maximum willpower required to not dash off and open that second kit Right Now. It’s a little bit… ok, a LOT, addictive, which is kind of odd when you remember you’re fiddling about with glue and paint and little bits of wood and paper, but there it is.

I’ve made mistakes and done some things a bit wrong here and there, but I’ll know better next time. And as always, it’s probably only me who sees the mistakes. I leave you with my book nook lit up and looking extremely ravishing…

At least the Husband now knows what to get me for virtually any future celebration!

EDIT: for everyone who’s wondering if they can get these kits where they live, here’s a link to the company’s web page which shows the countries they ship to and the timelines/costs.


54 thoughts on “A tiny world

  1. tialys says:

    Fabulous! This might be too fiddly for me – plus I’m on another crafting track at the moment – but I think Mr. Tialys might really enjoy making one of these as the dark evenings are long here at the moment and his workroom in the garage is too cold. I’ve had a look and they are available in the U.K. so one of these kits might be under the tree with his name on it.
    You’ve done a grand job – I look forward to seeing your next one(s).

  2. So darn adorable! I’ve hankered after these book nooks for a few years now. Not sure I can pull such fiddly projects off with an essential tremor— just need to convince the spouse it’s a group project.

  3. mlmcspadden says:

    That turned out lovely! What fun you’ll have making your mini world.

  4. Caroline says:

    Oh it’s so adorable, sort of cosy and comforting.
    I’m a bit puzzled though why in the fifth photo the words BOOK SHOP are mirror image.

    • katechiconi says:

      Ah! Well spotted! The rear wall of the thing is a mirror, to give depth, and that sign is *mostly* seen as a reflection in the mirror, so it reads as Book Shop the right way round when you see it reflected. It puzzled me initially, till everything went together.

  5. I love tiny! thanks for the link…these projects look delightful to me – though even a Hitty would be a giant in there!

  6. Dayphoto says:

    I have a hard time with tiny, but I Love little houses. To make my own would be a hoot! Thank you so much for the idea

  7. Wow. Yet again I’m impressed with your dexterity and talents. Clever find and speedy turnaround of it prettily lit on the shelf.

  8. anne54 says:

    Oh, I am in love! It might be just what I need at the moment ~ absorbing but not too mentally demanding. I bought a model of Monet’s house when I visited his garden. It’s just the outside shell, but it was still satisfying to make. Thank you for the inspiration (again!)

    • katechiconi says:

      I think you’d love it. None of it is hard, it just requires patience, a bit of 3D imagination and a delicate touch with a brush. The finished thing is so charming, so endearing… I can’t stop looking at all the detail and marvelling that I did that!

    I’m in LOVE 😍😍😍😍😍

  10. I will need to live vicariously though you as the right hand will definitely NOT take the strain of tiny pieces… much as I would love to.

    • katechiconi says:

      It really is. The details are amazing: piles of books in the bookshop window, a tiny cup and saucer on the table, a cat on the chair and another behind the mailbox, the wrought iron balcony railings, the tiny ‘open’ sign on the door…

  11. Oh that is gorgeous! I love the Flower House and now I will try to see if I can find one in the UK.

  12. nanacathy2 says:

    Oh my they are gorgeous. Can we call you Alice now you have fallen down the rabbit hole? Mr E used to make models for railways. I had a load of unused kits which I took to a charity shop, so do look there too.

  13. Going Batty in Wales says:

    That looks fun!

  14. claire93 says:

    very clever!

  15. what fun, the detail looks amazing, Can’t wait to see your tailor shop

  16. I have a number of teeny people you should visit if you are planning on making accessories to go with… https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/WhysperFairy?ref=usf_2020 https://www.agneshorvath.co.uk/ http://coldfeetstudioblog.com/ and of course, there are some on Insta, but you don’t use instagram, do you? enjoy.

  17. kymlucas says:

    Definitely too fiddly for me, but I love how they look on your shelf!

  18. magpiesue says:

    How wonderful! And now the hubs will never be at a loss for a gift for you. 😁

  19. cedar51 says:

    the finished “book” face looks wonderful, enjoy…

  20. Debbierose says:

    Cute and incredible. I have considered going tiny, as the MOTH is looking into model trains so I can the mini architect, if he commits to the train.

    • katechiconi says:

      Google Robotime: they make these miniature scenes and dolls houses under the Rolife brand, as well as wooden 3D puzzles and mechanical objects such as clocks. And no, I’m not affiliated or paid to recommend, I just find the products extremely good.

  21. That is just adorable! I don’t know why tiny things are so brilliant but they are.

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