Thank you to all the people who passed on these tips.  It saved me so much time and materials having to find out for myself.  I have credited them where I can.

I haven't tried everything here yet but I will ........

  • Use bunka or braided thread to trim upholstery - Susan W  

  • Thin acrylic paint slightly so its not too thick for fine pieces - Susan W

  • Krylon paint pen in gold for gilding - Susan W

  • Buff with brown paper bags - Susan W  - this worked OK

  • Use a piece of ordinary printer paper to smooth and buff them - Jane Harrop - this works too

  • Use oil-based pens for plastic furniture

  • I am using satin acrylic for things like windows and doors where I want a slight sheen.

  • Stain complete sets of furniture by using a small fishing net - the sort used for aquariums.  Dunk the whole set in wood stain, drain on fabric/paper towel.  Wipe off excess and leave to dry. - Sharon Goldsmith

  • Clean laser cut edges with alcohol - not got this to work well enough yet

  • Clean laser cut edges with acetone - ditto, don't know what I am doing wrong

  • As far as warpage, that is a hard thing to sometimes deal with. I do have one suggestion that works with some parts. If you paint just half of one side of a part. If you can hang the part, you can paint both sides of one half of a part. Always paint with the grain. Leaving half of the wood unpainted uses the woods strength to keep it from warping. It’s the water and the grain of the wood that usually will make it warp. This is hard to do on tiny parts.  Once the half is dry you can paint the other half. After that sand the piece and it should be sealed. Then you can paint a second coat, usually with no warping. -  Robin Betterley (Robin Betterley's Miniatures)

  • gold finish. For reference, here is a link to the type of paint we used on the sample:  I really like using Golden brand Artist Colors® Iridescent Gold (Fine) paint because of the fine pigments, fantastic metallic color and smooth coverage. Unlike most craft acrylics, it contains less liquid; helping to keep little wood pieces from warping. When applied in thin layers, it doesn't cover the laser engraved details found in some kits (like the bench kit). I also recommend the other metallic colors that Golden manufactures. - Carol Kubrican (True2Scale)

  • Also for reference, I like to use Krylon brand UV Archival Varnish matte spray. This spray contains hindered amine light stabilizers (HALS) and UV Absorber (UVA) for the maximum in UV protection. Although I print all of our artwork with a printer and inks that are resistant to fading, I still recommend that customers use a spray that contains HALS and UVA to help preserve their work for future generations to enjoy. - Carol Kubrican (True2Scale)

  • ............ the colour of the exterior of the 1:48th scale shepherd's hut (?) then I apply a base of Soot Ash, distressed with Stormy Skies and sometimes finished with a tiny amount of Itchy blanket.
    However, if I want a lighter, more silvery finish I start with a base of Stormy Skies and layer on lighter grey shades applied with a dry brush, such as Itchy blanket and finish with something like Old Sock White or Top Of the Milk to highlight.
    The 'wood' can then be knocked back and aged by sparingly applying some Mucky Paint with a dry brush.
     Bea (Petite Properties)

  • You mention the dark edges on the stairs. You take most of this off with a damp cloth. Don't get the wood wet!! Just a damp cloth. When totally dry, use very fine sandpaper to take off the rest.- Jan Pearce

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