Easy Paint Brush Tutorial

Today, I will be giving you the tutorial on how I made those brushes that can be seen in my last story. So, let’s get into it.

You will need:

  • A bamboo skewer
  • A small container of water
  • Scissors
  • Clear drying PVA glue
  • Thread

First of all, cut off the tip of one side of your skewer and then set this side in a small container of water for around 30 minutes to 1 hour. This should give the wood enough time to soften.

Then use the end of your scissors to flatten the last 5mm of the now wet side of the skewer.

Make small cuts into the end of the skewer where you have flattened it. This should me more or less an easy task but if the wood is still too hard to cut properly, let it sit in the water for a little while longer. Continue making small cuts until you are happy with how ‘bristly’ and worn the end of the skewer looks.

Wind the thread tightly around where your cuts stop and then coat this with the PVA glue.

Once dry, cut off the extra thread and cut the skewer to finish your paintbrush, you could sand the end to make it smooth if you would like. You could also try to make a paintbrush like the one in the left of the photo by gluing a skewer into a small ‘T’ shape and then gluing three bristle bits on the end.

Hi everyone! School started two weeks ago, sadly. Anyway, I hope that you have all enjoyed the tutorial and I would love to see some photos if any of you decide to make your own paintbrushes.

Hugs, Emily

The Buckley House Renovation: The Beginning

It was quite a sunny and pleasant day in Dandelion Creek. After a whole week of clouds and rain it was sunny again and the villagers were very thankful as today was the start of the Buckley’s house renovation. At 10 o’clock in the morning, many of the sylvanians which had signed up to the building group in the meeting Mayor Elliot Beaman had called a week earlier arrived in front of the house, laden with tools, materials and other things that they may need. Not present however was Martin Cakebread who was currently lying in bed with a heavy cold (he had been felling a tree to use for furniture in the rain the day before and had not worn his waterproof clothing). Elliot was in the midst of it all, trying his best to organize everyone.

“Come on Herbage! This ladder isn’t that heavy!” called Slick Slydale to Herbage Dappledawn who was struggling to carry his end of the heavy ladder.

“I am trying Slick! I usually work in the veggie patch where the heaviest thing is the rake!” Herbage replied in an exhausted voice, he and Slick had carried the ladder all the way from the main part of the village which was about half a kilometer away.

“You can do it Herbage, keep going!” encouraged Aaron Cottontail who was carrying his saw. It was a very new saw with a sharp blade and a shiny handle, Aaron was very proud of it and this was the perfect opportunity to show it to everyone.

“Put the ladder over there, Herbage, Slick.” instructed Elliot, “Then, all of you come over here please.”

Gladly Herbage put down the heavy ladder, he was very much hoping that there would be no more carrying of heavy things today!

Everyone then gathered around Elliot and he gave the instructions for what he expected the men to be working on today. That included repairing the windows and fixing the roof to make the building airtight so that other sylvanians might be able to start working on the interior in an airtight building. He also suggested to do a little test sanding on the floorboards and painted inside walls and ceilings to see whether these needed to be completely replaced or repainted or could be salvaged.

No, Elliot really did not know what he was doing, this being his first time as a construction manager, so he often refereed back to a copies of  Construction Management; A Guide for Clueless Sylvanians and Construction Management Made Easy both of which he had kindly been given by Martin Cakebread.

So, then everyone went to work with Elliot watching over them like a hawk.

The men’s first job was to carry the planks of wood from behind the Country Market to the building site. Herbage groaned, this was exactly what he hoped that he didn’t have to do. Nevertheless, he partnered up with his good friend Darcy Fielding who was also not very fond of the idea of carrying planks.

“Come on everyone! We need to get these planks moved and don’t have all day!” called Slick who was back already carrying six planks by himself.

Everyone just stared at him in wonder, how he managed to carry such heavy loads was beyond them!

“Aaah aaah!” tutted Elliot crossly, “Planks in a neat pile by this window please. We have only just started this and we are already breaking one of the West Woodland Construction Codes!” he said eyeing the messy pile of planks that was gathering by the picnic table and pulling out a piece of paper which he had evidently written the West Woodland Construction Codes on. “Here, it says that all construction sites have to be clean and tidy to help prevent accidents!”

Henry Hazlewood just smiled to himself, Elliot was obviously taking his new role very seriously and already looked a bit frazzled.

Once the site had been tidied, people began to split up and carry  out various tasks. Herbage was in charge of fixing some of the windows, beginning with this one. He sanded for a while and then realized that there was a gap between the top of the window and the window frame.

“Lupin!” he called, “I need a small piece of wood the length of this window!

Lupin Macavity was cutting a plank of wood using Aaron’s shiny new saw when he heard Herbage’s call.

“Yes, just after I finish this piece for Darcy!”

After the piece was finished, they both put up the ladder and Herbage climbed part way up and positioned the piece with a few nails on the window frame.

Lupin then passed a pot of glue and a paintbrush which Darcy had thankfully remembered to bring. Herbage dipped the paintbrush into the sticky glue and spread it over the piece of wood to be extra sure that it would stay in place. One window repaired, five to go!

Inside, Darcy was teaching Henry how to properly sand the painted ceiling in the upstairs room. The paint had awfully yellowed and in places it was very dirty.

“Just stand here and then make small circles with the coarse sandpaper and the paint should come right off” he demonstrated.

“Like this?” Henry asked.

“Yes! That’s perfect! You could do this as a job Henry!” Darcy laughed.

“No, I think that I will stay with cooking.”

“Good choice, I always enjoy your meals.”

Darcy left Henry to it to pick up his son Jamie and his friend Charlie Cottontail from the Nursery. They had both really wanted to come to see the build!

Aaron was starting to sand the floor and found that some of the flooring underneath the leaks in the roof would have to be replaced while most of the other flooring was in good condition and could look quite nice once fully sanded and stained.

Darcy soon returned with the two excited boys.

“Hi Daddy!” Charlie exclaimed as he saw his father working, “What are you doing?”

“Hello Charlie and Jamie, I am sanding some of the floorboards.”

“Why are you doing that?” Jamie asked.

“Because at the moment this floor is very rough and I am seeing how long it will take to sand all of the floors to make them nice and smooth.”

“How are you going to do that Daddy?” Charlie asked.

“I am going to time myself how long it takes me to do one square meter and then multiplying it by the square meters of flooring.” Aaron answered patiently.

“What’s a square meter?” Jamie wanted to know.

“Yeah Daddy, what’s a square meter? Why do you need those?” Charlie asked.

“Slow down boys, you will learn all about square meters when you get to school, why don’t you two ask your siblings this evening?” Aaron suggested.

“They learn about square meters at school?! Daniel and Maisie must be so smart!” Jamie cried in astonishment.

After a quick lunch of sandwiches, roasted vegetables and a drink of water, the men all went back to work as energized and motivated as ever. Herb Wildwood was helping Slick to set up a ladder so that Slick would be able to safely climb onto the roof and begin repairing it.

“There, now I will hold the ladder and you can climb up.” Herb declared and held onto the ladder tightly with both of his paws.

Unfortunately, the ladder was a bit short and only just reached the roof so Slick had to climb to make in on top of the house where the majority of the leaks appeared to be.

“Yes! I am the king of the house!” Slick exclaimed excitedly once he had finally clambered up. He gave a shout of surprise when he saw the roof on the other side of the house, there were a lot of holes and some of the roof tiles had cracked. Slick was shocked to see that two of the main support beams seemed to be rotten and would have to be replaced immediately. Thankfully Elliot had left the site earlier to help his wife with the washing as otherwise he would have immediately have ordered everyone to leave the site at once and would have made them invest in an expensive scaffold. Slick was sure that he could get the job done safely without the need of a scaffold as he would just avoid standing anywhere where the rotten beams would be.  “We are going to need some planks of wood up here so that I can brace the beams until we can get a replacement for them!”

Rupert Buckley who had been standing near when Slick had called, quickly raced to get him a plank of wood. Carefully, he made his way up the ladder with it.

“I can’t quite reach it! Wait, I will lie on my stomach and if you just push it up a bit higher, a bit higher, a bit higher still, I’ve got it!”

“I will use this plank before I ask for another one.” Slick decided as he carefully walked with the plank, “All I need now is some glue and a hand full of nails to keep this in place.”

Rupert, grabbed the glue bucket and brush as well as a hand full of nails and climbed back up the ladder with them.

“How am I going to get these things to you Slick?” he wondered.

“First of all, throw me the nails one by one, I am a good catcher and as they are large, this shouldn’t be too difficult.” ordered Slick and positioned himself as close to Rupert as he could.

Rupert threw the nails one by one and one by one they were caught by Slick and placed into the pocket of his trousers.

“Now you have to climb a little way up to pass the me bucket and brush” he announced once all of the nails were in his pocket.

Very, very slowly Rupert began to make his way up the roof carrying the bucket and brush. It was very hard work, Rupert naturally wasn’t a very good climber and with only being able to use one hand made it even worse but he was determined to do it so carried on.

“Only a few centimeters more Rupert and I can reach the handle.” Slick encouraged and was then finally able to grasp the handle.

“Rupert David Buckley!” came a shriek from below.

Rupert was so surprised that he nearly fell off the roof!

It was Agatha Buckley, his wife who was shrieking at the top of her voice.

“Come down! What do you think you are doing?! You could have gotten hurt! I made you promise that you wouldn’t do anything dangerous! Come down right now and explain yourself! Come down right NOW!”

Once Rupert had climbed down from the ladder he got a very stern telling off which he was very sure he would never forget. All of the other sylvanians had come out to see what the commotion was about but quickly backed off when they saw Agatha. Sweet, dear Agatha was very, very scary when she was angry.

“That was so dangerous Rupert! You could have fallen! You know that you aren’t the best at climbing!”

“Calm down Agatha, I am fine.” Rupert responded but immediately regretted opening his mouth. Telling an angry person to calm down is never a good move!

“CALM DOWN?! You are telling me to CALM DOWN?! When YOU could have”…

Agatha continued to scold Rupert for another solid few minutes before she finally calmed down and dragged her husband away to the village muttering something about how she was going to make him wash all of the dishes in the Bakery as a punishment for giving her such a fright.

Slick in the meantime finally had everything he needed to brace the beams so made a start to his work.

It was getting late in the afternoon and the workers were getting hungry! Thankfully, a group of volunteers had spent the afternoon making pizzas after pizzas in the Bakery. Marley and Melinda Cakebread had also went around the village to collect all of the cups and bottles that they could find and filled them with water which they put on the trolley to go over to the building site.

Some of the volunteers began to pile the food onto the picnic table and chairs and then quickly walking back with the serving trolleys to get more food.

“Look at that, brushes all over the place and just a pile of planks, really, what a mess!” exclaimed Clara Macavity in disgust and began to tidy up.

“Oh yes, Elliot would get a heart attack if he saw this, let’s quickly tidy it up before he comes.” Ginger Wildwood suggested.

“Good idea” Bridget Fielding agreed, “It probably goes against one of those codes he talks about. Elliot certainly doing his best at managing the site and keeping everything to the building code!”

Alonzo Macavity came back at that moment with a group of Nursery children who had all eagerly wanted to come and see what was going on.

“It looks the same as before!” said Skimble

“Yeah but Daddy did a lot of work with triangle centimeters!” said Charlie Cottontail.

“Can we move in tomorrow?” asked Oscar Buckley.

Then all of the workers began to finish their work for the day and saw the food and water.

“Wash your face and paws before you eat!” called Theodora Dappledawn who was holding a bucket of water, soap and a towel.

The workers then began to tuck in, even Elliot Beaman had made it to see the progress made and to chat with everyone. All of the sylvanians were eagerly exchanging stories of what they had done today. Lupin for example was telling Henry how he used Aaron’s new saw and how wonderfully it worked while Henry told him how he had learned a lot about sanding from Darcy. It was quite noisy with everyone chatting and talking at once!

“Hello!” called Cameron Moss who had just arrived with his wife Rowena.

“Don’t worry, we aren’t here for the food, all we want to do is to take a few photos and get some information about the days happenings for our article.” stated Rowena brightly. She pulled out a pen and a pad of paper. “So, what happened today?”

Would you like me to post the news article that Cameron and Rowena will write for the Daily Dandelion tomorrow? If not, I won’t post it but if you do, I will.

What do you all think about my photos? They are a lot brighter and warmer which I really like so I am happy with that. Also, I have noticed that recently I have been posting a lot of stories (this story today is very long so I apologize if you don’t like long stories) so I think that nest week or so I will post a tutorial to change it up a bit. I will be posting a tutorial for the brushes that some of the workers used in this story so you can look out for that. I hope that all of you will have a great week!

Hugs, Emily


Buckley House Renovation: Dividing the Tasks

“Now, now Agatha. Do calm down. It won’t help if you fluster around like that! I am sure that people will come to the meeting today as many people do really want to help you get your house in order. Cameron has really done a great job.” said Elliot Beaman, referring to the article that appeared in the Daily Dandelion the day before.

Agatha Buckley was tightly holding onto her husband’s shirt as she was very nervous. The villagers so far had been very much willing to help them renovate their house but what if they had changed their mind? Agatha was quite worried that no one would want to help them after all and that she would have to spend the winter in the drafty cottage which they owned.

After a few minutes, and to Agatha’s great relief, sylvanians started to gather in front of the Country Market. First of all came Ginger and Herb Wildwood. Ginger immediately gave the doe a warm hug. She always smelt of cinnamon and spices which was very soothing. Then came Slick and Velvette Slydale, then Herbage and Theodora Dappledawn, then Aaron Cottontail, then Henry Hazlewood, then Darcy and Bridget Fielding and then Evangeline Beaman.

“I was talking to Alonzo Macavity this morning, he is coming and so are the Dante’s, they are even bringing little Larkin!” Evangeline chattered and then noticed her husbands shirt. “Elliot! Look at the state of your shirt! It has wrinkles in it! Goodness, how many times do I have to tell you to hang up your shirts so that your ironed shirts stay nice and wrinkle free? Really, you can’t give a speech looking like that!” and she began fussing and tugging at the shirt. Evangeline greatly cared about a tidy appearance and would not stand anything which did not look neat and tidy.

Soon, even more people were arriving in front of the Country Market, all chattering excitedly about what they had read in the Daily Dandelion about the meeting here today.

“I hope that I will be able to help Agatha and her family, she is such a lovely woman and I would like to help with the sewing that needs to be done. I have also sent a letter to my old friend Annette Grasshill who lives in Seashell Bay to see if there is a willing seamstress there.” Clara Macavity, the oldest daughter of Alonzo and Caroline Macavity said. As she was nearly an adult, she felt that it was appropriate to refer to Mrs. Buckley as Agatha, something that she was very proud of.

“What a good idea! I will write to my sister to see if she knows anyone in Thistle Meadows who will be willing to do some sewing.” Primrose Dante replied eagerly.

“I want to write a letter too!” little Larkin Dante squealed cheerfully, she was really a lot happier and energetic since she was adopted by the Dante family.

“Well darling, you are a bit young to write a letter. You don’t learn how to write letters until you are in school, and you are a bit too young for that.” Primrose reasoned. She saw her daughters disappointed face and then quickly added “But, you can create drawing for your Auntie and write your name on it and I can post that with my letter. Your Auntie would like that.”

“Oh yes! I will do it right now!” she exclaimed.

“You can after we hear what Mayor Beaman has to say. Then I can take you to the Nursery where you can use the paints and special crayons to make your masterpiece. Would you like to do that?” Primrose asked.

“Yes! And then we can eat cookies and drink hot chocolate at the Bakery!” Larkin giggled.

“We shall see darling.”

Clara smiled, Larkin was such a sweet little girl. She couldn’t wait until she might have a daughter of her own someday.

Mayor Elliot stood on the balcony of the Country Market and watched as sylvanians streamed towards him. Most of them were adults as the children had school but as he watched, he saw that a few children followed Aristotle Treefellow (the teacher of the local school). Evidently, some of the children had convinced their parents to write them a note so that they could go to the meeting and coincidentally miss out on some school. Elliot felt around his jacket to make sure that his notes for his speech were there, reassured that they were still there, he let his hands drop back down to his sides.

“Excuse me! Excuse me! Press coming through! Excuse me! I need to write an article! For the Daily Dandelion! Excuse me! Excuse me! Press coming through!” Cameron Moss yelled as he pushed his way through the crowd. Rowena Moss his wife, followed holding paper and pen. They were determined to write a smashing article for the newspaper and needed to hear every word of the Mayors speech in order to do so.

“You are not setting a very good example for my students Mr. Moss” Aristotle commented, “The students here today are to act as reporters and then report back to their groups and write an article on the days events. You are not setting a very good example by barging your way through the crowd, not only is it highly disruptive and disrespectful, it also makes it look like it is okay to act in that way when you are a reporter, which it is not. You should really be more considerate Mr. Moss.” he went on.

Cameron looked a tad embarrassed and then quietly made his way to the edge of the crowd.

“I am so sorry about my husband Aristotle, he does get a bit…, well, you know, overexcited when there is an event.” Rowena explained “I would love to see the articles that the children will write, maybe we can print the best ones?”

“Good idea Rowena, I will give you the articles next week when they are finished.” Aristotle agreed.

Aha!” thought Elliot, “So that’s why some of the children are here“. He cleared his throat and then began his speech.

“Good morning villagers of Dandelion Creek. We are gathered here on this cloudy and overcast day to arrange groups of people which will be responsible for different tasks concerning the Buckley house project. There are many jobs that need to be done and they should get done quickly as we want the Buckley’s to have a nice home which they can enjoy. We also would like this project to be completed before the winter arrives as a tent is not a very warm place to be in the snow. I encourage that every one of you perform some sort of task, you never know when you may need the help and support of the village. Not all jobs are physically demanding, there is also the styling and choosing of paint colours, the gardening, providing food and many more. I am sure that there is something for everyone. I would like to arrange all of you gathered today with the exception of the children into groups so that I can arrange a time table that will work for you and that I can keep everyone and everything nice and organized”

“I would like to welcome four wonderful volunteers to come up here. Yes, come on up Oscar, Jamie, Larkin and Karenza. Now, I want the sylvanians who want to do some of the cleaning, gardening and sewing to line up in front of Karenza, the sylvanians who would like to provide some food in front of Larkin, the furniture builders and painters in front of Jamie and the sylvanians who want to perform the actual repairs on the house to line up in front of Oscar. Yes, you can be in multiple groups.” Elliot instructed.

“Mayor Elliot, Sir, do my sister and I count as children or as adults?” Lupin Macavity asked from where he had lined up in front of Oscar Buckley. He wasn’t too sure because he and his twin sister Clara were seventeen and almost of adult age.

“You may count as adults, you and Clara are both hardworking and mature and will do a splendid job in this project, I know.” he replied.

Clara and Lupin both glowed with pleasure as they heard the Mayors words. It was a lovely to hear that the Mayor thought so highly of them.

“SNAP” went Cameron’s camera, “Come on Rowena, we have an article to write!”

Hello everyone! I am very happy to say that this post is finally getting published though the photos are not my best work, they are a tad cold looking and plain in my opinion. Thankfully, my next photos have turned out very well and I am really excited to publish them, they are a lot warmer and clearer and I love them! I am aiming to publish the next bit of the story soon, maybe in a week or so? I don’t really know. Thanks to school, I feel quite drained of energy. Luckily, only two tests, two project hand ins and one more week of school to go. This term has just dragged on!

I hope that all of you have had a good week,

Hugs, Emily