Are you looking for a way to make miniatures for beginners and looking for an easy DIY miniatures course?
Today might be your lucky day because Wei Xu from “Honey” Thistle specializes in creating miniature interiors and is sharing her knowledge with the (online) world!
If you do not know who this fantastic miniature artist is, I am here to help you again with a little walkthrough and review on the hows and whats 😉
As an Amazon and Etsy associate, I earn from purchases, with no extra costs for you, however.
But First: Who Is Wei Xu From Honey Thistle and what are her Easy DIY Miniatures?
Wei Xu is a miniature artist from Toronto, and her brand online is called Honey Thistle.
Can’t wait? Then check out this DIY miniature course from Honey Thistle here, and use my personal discount code for 10% off!: EVERYTHINGVERYSMALL
At first, she started an online store for jewelry, while she was still in school.
These days, she is creating and selling the most fantastic interior miniatures.
As with so many miniature artists, she went to university and then had a full-time job, but that made it hard for her to find her creative voice.
So after one and a half years, she decided to leave and follow her heart to a more artistic career.
With the help of Etsy’s blog called “how to quit your day job”, she learned how to create a business for her art, and after that, she created a store on Etsy.
All of this developed into focussing on miniatures and in this way Wei Xu got a lot of big clients, like Madewell, for which she created a miniature version of some of their popular clothes. Isn’t that cute?
This had a snowball effect and more big clients followed, like Pottery Barn Kids, Walmart, and Hunker.
Also, Wei Xu has been featured in CBC Arts magazine, Chatelaine magazine, and Buzzfeed Nifty.
Also, be sure to check out this fantastic artist’s social media channels, for more pictures and projects:
More pictures of her work:
What Will You Create In This Easy DIY Miniatures Course?
In this course, Wei Xu will show you how to create a little roombox that you can hang on the wall, this way it also saves you some space, which is perfect if you live in an apartment, for example.
The miniatures that will be created include:
- a miniature wardrobe/sideboard
- a miniature chair with upholstery
- a miniature pillow made with cross-stitches
- A miniature hanging pot plant and miniature frames
- a small niche to put your miniatures in that you can hang on the wall, including how to cut out windows and how to decorate walls, roofs, and floors.
In this blog post, we are going over each video course, in English, one by one to discuss what she is teaching in her classes.
Class 1. Which Tools Do You Need For Making miniatures for beginners?
So now that you got to know a little bit more about this professional miniature artist, let’s find out which tools and materials you need for this miniature tutorial.
While you can check out all the materials needed to craft miniatures (kits) over in this blog post, Wei Xu explains a lot more about the things that she uses as well in this course.
Here’s a summary of the tools that you need to make miniatures:
- Pencils, markers, and an eraser
- an x-Acto blade and scissors
- Woodworking tools: all kinds of tools that you can see in the picture below
- This artist also uses a scroll saw by Dremel to cut wood and a miter box.
Now, I don’t have any experience with a scroll saw myself, I have always just used my Proxxon craft table saw, but it does look like a superb tool to use for wooden miniatures, interesting!
In her online course, Wei Xu shows you how to use this machine.
- The sewing tools, including needles and a white Stabilo pencil, and a little clamp to hold the fabric. That’s it!
- Tools to create miniature pieces from clay.
- And lastly, all the tools to finish wood or other pieces, like paintbrushes and a paint pallet.
Class 2. Which Materials Do You Need To Craft These Easy DIY Miniatures?
You might know by now, that it takes boxes and boxes of all kinds of materials to craft miniatures and that it can get quite expanded ;-).
But most of these are easy to find:
- a variety of fabrics
- embroidery threads/sewing threads
- A large variety of glues and a spray adhesive
- green/white cardstock for the miniature plants + metal/floral wires
- acrylic paint
- different clay materials
- Balsawood/wood filler
In the course, she goes into a lot more detail.
Class 3. The Next Thing Teached In This Course is: How to find your own Design Style?
In the next part of this course on easy DIY miniatures, Wei Xu teaches you how to find your own design style, with the help of Pinterest, Coolors, and a few other design blogs.
Class 4. Next Up: How To Scale Miniatures?
In this next part of the online course, you get a clear understanding of how to scale miniatures.
I found myself going all the way through this again as well because sometimes I still struggle with it haha!
The most popular scales in the miniature world are 1:6 and 1:12, so in this course, she will stick to these. But you can scale something down in other scales using the same methods.
You basically need a measuring tape, a pencil and paper, and a calculator. It’s quite easy, just follow the instructions in the video in the course 🙂
Class 5. How To Create A Template For The Pieces Of Your Miniature Furniture and Others
Next up, and it is a step that I would really advise to do and not skip, is creating a template.
This part of the course is 17 minutes long and takes you through everything you need to know on how to create a template of all the pieces of a miniature piece that you are going to cut out and assemble later.
The template itself, which is used to create the wardrobe in this course, is included.
Class 6: Let’s create all the furniture and decoration!
This class doesn’t have 1, or 2, but NINE parts, that’s a lot of parts for your money’s worth!
They are divided into:
Part 1: 3 videos on making a gorgeous miniature sideboard.
This part of the class consists of 3 videos of making the miniature sideboard credenza/wardrobe:
- video 1:
In this video, 13 minutes long, Wei Xu will show you how to cut, sand, and put together small pieces of wood, both by hand and by using a scroll saw.
She will also teach you how to achieve a smooth and professional finish for the pieces.
- Video 2:
The next video is 16 minutes long and in it, you will learn all about how to assemble the pieces of this miniature furniture and you will learn a simple way to attach working hinged doors.
- Video 3:
In this 7 minutes video, you will learn how to paint the assembled miniature sideboard, from the inside out to the outside.
She will also show you how to embellish the sideboard with subtle decorations.
Part 2: Upholstering a miniature chair.
This part of the course contains 2 videos, where we will be assembling and upholstering a lovely miniature chair!
- Video 1:
Video 1 is 13 minutes long and teaches you how to assemble a miniature chair for which she created a template for.
She will discuss this template, and then explain how to cut and transfer the fabric unto the wood.
One hint that I can hand you, is that you need to find stretchy fabric, but there are lots of other tips in this video!
- Video 2:
In the second video for upholstering a miniature chair, which lasts 15 minutes long, Xei Wu will finally tell you how to now assemble it!
You can follow along with her work and templates, or you can now try to create your own design and apply it!
I bet that you can use some tips and tricks to tame the fabric so that it looks well-finished! Remember how I struggled with this for the mini chair from Sam’s study?
The final chair, still waiting for some little pillows, which we will learn about in the next video.
Part 3: Cross-stitching a miniature pillow.
And yet again, you get to see 2 videos with thorough information on how to create a miniature pillow by cross-stitching, I love these!
In my opinion, these are really worth it checking out!
- Video 1:
In this video, Xei Wu will teach you about basic hand sewing techniques-the cross stitch, back stitch, and whip stitch, so you can have your own custom-made pillow and design.
She also teaches you how to plan out a graphic. This video is 14 minutes long.
- Video 2:
Next up, is this video, about 11 minutes long, where she assembles the mini pillow and shows you how to put the three stitches you’ve learned together to design, create, assemble, and stuff the small pillow 😉
Part 4: Creating a miniature hanging planter.
This part is all about creating a terrific mini-hanging plant, and it comes with 2 videos.
Can’t keep plants alive in your real life? Why not create some more greens in the miniature world then haha 🙂
- Video 1:
A 16 minutes long video, where the teacher teaches you how to create a tiny potted plant.
In this first video, she will show you how to create the pot that the plant will sit in, by using polymer clay.
- Video 2:
In the second video, you will learn how to create the leaves of a plant, that will be “planted” in the pot, made in the previous video.
This video is 13 minutes long.
Here’s the result!
Also included in this tutorial, is an attachment on how to create miniature picture frames, using the same techniques that we have learned to create the small sideboard!
Class 7: How to Create a niche to set up your miniatures in?
So you have created all these wonderful miniatures, but where are you going to place them in, if you don’t have much space in your house or small apartment?
Then the next classes and videos will teach you how to create a hanging wall niche!
This can either be hung on the wall or placed on a table or shelf.
Part 1: Creating the niche
In this part, we are using 2 different videos to have you set up and finish the small niche.
- Video 1:
This 11 minutes video walks you through how to prepare all the different wooden pieces that will form the walls, floor, and roof.
It will also teach you how to create space for windows, and to prepare and insert them.
In the attachments in the course, you can find all the templates that you need to build this niche!
- Video 2:
Once the holes are made in the niche, Wei Xu will explain further how to build and set Plexiglas within the holes to create a polished finish. This video lasts almost 10 minutes.
You will also learn how to create window frames and how to paint everything if you choose to because you can leave everything blank.
At the end of this video, you will also have crafted a roof piece with a window.
Part 2: How to treat the walls and lay the floors of the niche?
There you go, another part with 2 high-quality videos. This time, we will discuss the decoration of the walls and how to place a floor, all in detail.
- Video 1:
In this 15 minutes video long, we will have a look at a few decorative options you can explore for your own niche. After that, she will show you how she created an upholstered scallop panel wall for her niche and decoration of the floors.
- Video 2:
In this next video, the teacher finally explains how to assemble all the pieces step by step and add some finishing touches. This video is 11 minutes long and then your niche is done!
Extra: This fantastic and long tutorial finishes with 2 more videos:
- How to display your miniatures
- How to store and pack miniatures and post them
My Final Conclusion
I hope that I could help you out with this course review and walkthrough by Wei Xu on how to create all these easy DIY miniatures.
This tutorial is really expanded and I enjoyed it very much myself and I’m sure that you will too!
If you have any questions about this topic, please feel free to leave a comment below or join me on my Facebook group or social media channels.
I wish you happy crafting!
My name is Lizzy, and I am an amateur miniaturist obsessed with everything in the dollhouse and miniature world, ever since I was a teenager.
I love to write as well about all things happening in the miniature world, hence the reason why I created this blog!
I wish you happy reading and crafting!