Micro Mobile: Tiny Tourists

I was in the local hobby shop the other day (because it’s right next door to Trader Joe’s.) I don’t go in there enough, they have a lot of model kits and model train stuff but also crafty things and toys. So it was fun to walk around and look at all the very small scale things that people buy to set up their hobby scenes. I found a package of super tiny tourists in HO scale that begged to go home with me.
Using super glue and sewing thread (and a needle as a tool so my fingers wouldn’t stick together,) I glued knotted lengths to the nape of each tourists’ neck. I thought tying the string around their necks would be a little creepy and not very sensitive to tourists.I also picked up some very thin (.64mm/.o25) music wire, which is basically thin lengths of metal wire or rods that do not bend. I cut several small pieces, one long and 3 same-sized.Looking at the form of a store-bought mobile I happen to have, I laid out my rods and peeps and began tying up the tourists. The hard truth is that this was a very tedious process of knotting, gluing, trimming and balance. It was necessary that I covered each knot with glue, one at a time, and let dry before committing to any further placement of knots and glue. Because this is such a tiny piece overall, even drops of super glue would change the balance of a section. So I would knot, glue, go do something while it dried, come back and do the next section. The goal was to get all rods parallel and people hanging evenly.Now I have a fun little group of tourists for my studio. I imagine they see me as some sort of Statue of Liberty at work. Just to show you their size reference, I allowed them to explore my keyboard.
I think mobiles are so darn fun. Imagine the possibilities with such things as skeleton keys, buttons, ephemera, junk jewelry pieces, little family photos, shrinky dinks, tiny dollhouse furniture, and so on!

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37 Responses to Micro Mobile: Tiny Tourists

  1. #1 - Loddelina says:

    Incredible, another amazing project!
    Now you have a group of tiny fans watching your every move…

  2. #2 - kathi says:

    Love this!! What a terrific idea!

  3. #3 - Elise says:

    HILARIOUS! I know SEVERAL people who would marvel to have something like that under the Christmas tree this year! What a fabulous idea, Cathe! You AMAZE me!

  4. #4 - Glassprimitif says:

    Oh yes, doll house furniture will look fab! I must try this.

  5. #5 - Susie Jefferson says:

    Oh excellent! Exactly what we all want to do with tourists (except when it's US who are the tourists, of course). Love it!

  6. #6 - Deb says:

    I love coming to your blog. I get so many great ideas. You're one talented lady!!

  7. #7 - The Redhead Riter says:

    I can't ever get enough of your blog and today I am laughing my head off at the hanging people! I'd like to hang a few people myself sometimes…LOL LOL LOL

  8. #8 - Karen says:

    Laughing and enjoying seeing you playing house! Very cute!

  9. #9 - WW says:

    Who would have thought!
    This just cracks me up….Love it!!

  10. #10 - mary beth says:

    yes, but dont you feel bad with them hanging by their necks and all? I mean, really, …you crack me up with this one! I think it is time to step away from the table!

  11. #11 - Diane Costanza says:

    I love it! My husband is a model train fanatic and I have two of his little men staring at me right now on my desk, but I never would have thought to make a mobile. How clever.

  12. #12 - Diana says:

    I love it. Love your crazy ideas. Very fun.

  13. #13 - TheresainMS says:

    How cool; very clever! What an imaginative idea. You are definitely an inspiration!

  14. #14 - crochetgal says:

    What a wonderful idea! Something I never ever would have thought of…

  15. #15 - pepper says:

    oh i love this! little people watching and taking photos, do you hear them whispering on quiet days? makes me think of my favourite books growing up-'the borrowers' 🙂
    x Pepper

  16. #16 - My name is PJ. says:

    So cool and so much fun! Plus I laughed my butt off, thinking you should have hung them each from nooses!

  17. #17 - Cath from chunkychooky says:

    I love it!!!! they are brilliant!

  18. #18 - Tammy says:

    lol…What a funny mobile. Certain to make one smile. Love it.

  19. #19 - SisterDG says:

    OMG, I am giggling and clapping my hands. This is a totally amazing technical achievement. And cute as all get-out!

  20. #20 - Almay Alday says:

    I love it! I want those little tourists!

  21. #21 - Almay Alday says:

    I love it! I want those little tourists!

  22. #22 - Miss B says:

    This made me smile, these little figures are fun props as well to practice creative photography:)

  23. #23 - Becky Brocato says:

    so much fun to be had at the hobby store, for sure! you are such an inspiration for so many fun projects!

  24. #24 - Becky Brocato says:

    so much fun to be had at the hobby store, for sure! you are such an inspiration for so many fun projects!

  25. #25 - Jones says:

    Hi! Nice blog…
    visit also Unpaid Review

  26. #26 - Art Is...Slan says:

    Love it!

  27. #27 - forrestina vintage says:

    Now I'm thinking up other things to make with tiny tourist people…

  28. #28 - Karen at Nittany Inspirations says:

    This is the first time I've visited your blog. Michelle at Someday Crafts sent me over. I think I've spent at least the last hour looking at all your posts. I love your creativity and that you share the gadgets you've created. Thanks. I have added you as a blog to follow.

  29. #29 - Modern Crush says:

    haha! Awesome!

  30. #30 - Annie Pazoo says:

    Be careful, that guy with the camera is a micro-blogger and tweeting about it at Twitter!

  31. #31 - Elaine Elwick Barr says:

    cathe!! these are sooo cute! i've been playing around with model train stuff lately..can you get enough of miniatures? i don't think so!!!

    🙂 great project..as always!


  32. #32 - jen says:

    ha ha! Love them!

  33. #33 - von Hand zu Hand says:

    so funny.
    i like them!

    i set a link. i hope you'll agree.
    if not, please leave a short comment.



  34. Pingback: Studio Shots | Just Something I Made

  35. #34 - mei says:

    cool~!! ahhaha… I love this idea so so much.. impressive! thumbs up for u~!! ^^

  36. #35 - rofina says:

    hi cathe, just came across your site the other day and have been visiting every day. I think you’re a generous and creative powerhouse. Love your wee mobile, as well as all your other brainchildren.
    Thanks, and hi from Bali!

  37. #36 - Colleen Madison says:

    Cathi, I love what you do and wondering if the decals that you print could be suitable for use in restoring vintage sewing machines (such as the one
    in the picture you posted) and if so can you scan any existing one in a picture. I have my grandmothers treadle singer, am restoring it and will need new decals. Please let me know if the paper ones can be used with lacquer over them, or do you use a transparent more durable material?