Last week Jane Harrop asked me to design a kit for her new Christmas Continental Market Stall. She wanted a warm white LED to be powered by a coin cell battery which would be hidden on the back of the stall.
I got a kit to make up so I could design and demonstrate the lighting and so in return I am reviewing the kit.
The kit was smaller than I imagined when I first thought of a market stall. I think I'm still getting used to the concept of 1/48th scale being so small having worked in 1/12th scale for so long!
The kit came in a lovely brown envelope with a picture of the finished market stall on the front and I also had along with it a few small brown envelopes containing a selection of 'gifts' to sell in the stall including tiny Christmas trees, 3D trees, little houses and gingerbread houses.
On emptying the contents of the kit onto my workspace I had the following parts. The shell of the market stall is etched with lines to emulate the wooden boards and all the pieces are precision cut on a laser cutter. There wasn't much of a burnt smell with this kit as there can be with some and the edges were a nice rich brown rather than burnt black so no sanding was needed.
|The market stall kit components
The instructions are very easy to follow and colour photos show the various stages so this kit is easy to assemble. The sandpaper provided is called 'Abranet' and it's a bit of a revolution in sandpaper because it's full of holes so instead of the dust clogging the sandpaper and going all over your wood, it instead falls through the holes to the paper underneath leaving your wood basically dust free and you can wrap up and throw away the paper afterward. Brilliant!
There's plenty of life left in the sandpaper afterwards for future projects too being of the new type which is long lasting.
After a quick sand of the pieces I used a bit of paper towel to apply my wood stain, giving a light coat as suggested in the instructions to prevent warping. My kit was fine and you don't need much to add a nice colour to the wood.
Assembling the kit was pretty straightforward. All the pieces fitted together well. The only sanding required was to the door frame which was slightly long (as noted in the instructions). For that I glued the wood pieces into the doorway and once dry, placed the door in position and used an emery board (nail file) to remove the excess wood from the bottom. Just a few strokes and it was done.
|The stained and assembled market stall kit
|The assembled roof and shelves
I tried hinging my stall shutter by using a bit of paper. It was mostly successful but has a tendancy to not open fully, hiding some of the interior.
The sanding and fixing of the shutter was the only photo I found unclear as it looked like it was fixed at 90 degrees but the instructions suggested a chamfer was to be added and I wasn't sure why.
Once the market stall was assembled I made up the shelves. There are 3 shelves for the walls and also a table for the display of your Christmas goods.
I had to sand the ends of the table slightly so that it would fit inside the stall, again using an emery board to keep the end square.
The shelf brackets are tiny but spares are provided.
|Some of the gifts to sell in your market stall
Again, I stained them first and then popped them out one by one so the pieces didn't get mixed up and assembled them using tweezers.
The final step was to glue the decorations onto the shelves and table and then glue the shelves into the stall. I did have to think about the arrangement as some of the single trees are quite tall and so don't really fit on the shelves so you need to pick and choose which you want to use. I chose not to use the gingerbread houses as I was running short of time but these would fit on better. The 3D trees are smaller and so they work well.
It only took 2-3 hours to make and the light really does make such a difference.
So, here it is... the completed market stall with gifts and tiny nano LED light!
|The completed market stall with gifts and light
|The back of the stall with the battery and on/off switch
If you love the kit and wish to purchase one Jane has them on her website and will also have them at the York and Kensington fairs.
If you want to light the kit you can buy the lighting kit shown here from me by going to my website.
I hope you have enjoyed the review.