The Ship Inn

A Typical English Country Pub.

Fairy Treehouse

Autumn Fairy Treehouse for sale.

Victoria Carriage

Queen Victoria and royal carriage currently for sale.

Victorian Car

One of the many different coloured cars I've decorated.


A decorated Spanish Galleon.

Blog Site Moving

This Blog site has been moved to my Emma.J main blog. All visitors will be redirected in 5 seconds to the Shops page there

Monday, 15 September 2014

Sweet Temptations

I have finished a new and larger version of my chocolate shops - Sweet Temptations! . Filled with hand made cakes and chocolates there are more pictures on my Chocolate Shop Page. Sweet temptations is also available to buy on my Emporium Page.

Sunday, 22 June 2014

Rising Cost Of Parts

Hello fellow Playmobil fans I know it's been a while since I've posted some things but I felt I need to explain some stuff to my visitors.

First of all and of greatest interest to most of you, my latest project the Disney Hotel is almost finished and I will have lots of photos up next month. This is a system X building and one of the largest ones I've built so far so I hope you enjoy looking at it :)  I've not given up building Playmobil things yet!

Secondly and most importantly to me I'd like to explain a few things about my work. I regularly get asked to build houses or make carriages and some people are surprised at the costs. I'm not trying to rip people off or charge stupid prices for things but I don't think a lot of people realise the rising costs of parts and materials involved so I thought I'd explain a little of whats involved in a couple of different projects.

This is the Victorian horse drawn bus I've only built 2 so far yet it is one of my most asked for vehicles, in fact I was asked for one today which is what has set this blog post off. If Playmobil made a carriage like this I guess they would be able to do it for around £35 based on the large princess carriage being £22 and I, like you would say that was a reasonable price. But for me it costs a lot more, I went on ebay today where I get most of my discontinued Playmobil to price up the parts. Keep in mind nearly everything I build if it's Victorian is from rare discontinued parts that haven't been made for about 10 years.

So this bus is made from a train carriage, a stage coach and an aeroplane! The only train carriage on there was £40, plus a carriage for the base about £15, plus the seating if I could get it as spares maybe another £10. So that's £65 without me doing a thing. Now add to that the costs of paint, glue, figures, material etc and your getting close to a £100, never mind the time it takes for me to build and paint all this. This is why I've only ever done 2 of these. I had managed to get the parts before really cheap with other items, because to me £100+ is too much to pay for a bus, I wouldn't pay it and I wouldn't ask anyone else to either. But this shows how much even a simple item can cost.

Now think on how much Victorian house parts are, a second hand wall is about £6-8 not including shipping it soon adds up! Most secondhand houses have parts missing and as it's always the same parts gone, those replacements have risen with the demand, e.g. £2 for a railing post, £1.50 for a base clip. The average price of basic furniture sets has almost doubled in price recently.

So why not build things from new modern parts your wondering, if it's still available then it's got to be cheaper right? Not always I wish it was.

This is the arched doorway from the new 5142 Palace, I've just changed the doors on it to those from the farm. Nice isn't it ? I've used these on my Disney hotel and they look great but because no one sells these as second hand spares I had to get them directly from Playmobil at £10 for that doorway wall it's cost me £60 just for the 6 main doors I've put into that building alone. Disney is 2m long 3 floors tall and has 46 windows to give you an idea of size and it's taken 5 months to design and build, when you see the finished building you can have a better guess at the costs involved in making such a large item.

Now I've just mentioned how long it's taken to make the Hotel because that's the other major thing involved with my work and that's the time taken to do it. I haven't got a little factory here or expensive machinery, it's just me with a hand saw, some clippers and paint brushes basically. Everything is hand cut and painted. This all takes time, a lot of time if it's a house, even small things like a customised figure can take several hours to do. I work and have a family and have other interests so making a figure can use up my evening.

The first time I make something it's usually because I fancy trying it out. I build it for me, for the enjoyment of creating something new, trying out a new design, seeing if my ideas will work. I don't care how long it takes to build, if I realise part way through the design doesn't work and I have to start again, I don't mind. When at the end I've built it and decide to part with it so I can start something new I don't really factor in all the time taken. If I was to charge for the time spent building I'd hate to think of real cost of a house!!! Think of the Disney hotel at 5 months to build, on average that's 15 to 20 hrs a week some times more, that's 400hrs at least. WOW until now I didn't think about how much time I've spent on that project alone. Maybe I should start charging by the hour :)

So you see when you ask about how much a house is to buy I can't compete with a company like Playmobil, I don't mass produce to keep the costs down like them, every piece is an individual hand crafted item and I think fairly priced based on the current costs and labour involved to produce.

I hope having read this little explanation you can all get a bit of a better idea as to what goes into my work no matter what the size or shape. Thanks for reading this and I hope you will all continue to enjoy my creations, best wishes to all :)

Saturday, 1 February 2014

Hanson Cab & New Page

The Hanson Cab is my latest Victorian carriage, it's a bit of a fiddly build but worth the extra effort. I've also created a new permanent page on the Emporium blog for any available carriages I might have.

Saturday, 18 January 2014

Victorian Traders

I now have a new page on the Emporium Victorian Traders . This will have any markets, individual sellers and statues for sale on it.

Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Commissions & House For Sale

It's that time of year again when everyone is looking for something special. I always get requests in the last couple of weeks and even days before Christmas for items from my blog. Although this is great to be in demand I have to disappoint a lot of visitors because I don't have many things for sale.

I do go to work for a living and Playmobil is one of several a hobbies I do in my spare time,  which I know will come as a surprise to some people. With all the best will in the world my creations can take quite a lot of time to do and I can't make things as fast as I'm asked. Even a small creation like a decorated room set can take a week to make and that's if I have all the parts I would need. Normally I would say I need a week or two just to get the parts ordered and delivered and a week to paint and decorate it.

As you can guess to do even a small house can take at least a month to make if it's a simple job, usually two months, and some thing large normally four months. I don't keep vast amounts of Playmobil tucked away somewhere - although I wish I could :) - I just order things as I need them.

Most of my work is commissions and I'm always happy to build something on request whether it's a repeat of an older design or something totally new. But this is on a first come first served basis. If your interested in something for a certain day eg Christmas or birthdays please ask well in advance so I will have time to build your creation.

I get a lot of visitors who looking through my blog at past work ask to buy a certain item then and there, thinking that I must still own it. I'm glad to say from my point of view that every thing you see on my blog has already sold. Some items will sell from just a preview others as soon as I show the completed item even before I've decided to sell it. Anything I do have for sale is listed on my Emporium blog.

So if you are interested in buying some thing please feel free to ask but order in advance and I hope you will understand if something isn't currently available. :)

Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Collection Clearout

The time has come to clear out some of my ever expanding Playmobil collection. I have some large projects on the go and I really need the space. It's a hard decision to have to make but I've got to narrow down the themes I collect, I can't keep adding to it as my walls aren't made of rubber :)

So over the next few weeks I'll be sorting out some sets, putting them for sale on here and reducing the price of the items I already have on sale. 

Saturday, 21 September 2013

Chocolate Shop

As you can see I've finished my latest version of the Chocolate shop and there are more pictures on the choc shop page.

Blog Site Moving

This Blog site has been moved to my Emma.J main blog. All visitors will be redirected in 5 seconds to the Shop page there.