Sunday, May 31, 2009

Details from Phoebe's room

Well, my brother had a wonderful time, and brought the camera home safe and sound, so here are a few more photos. This sewing basket is from Phoebe's room. My grandmother does all sorts of heirloom sewing, so I've gotten lots of miniature sewing things from her over the years, despite the fact that I can barely thread a needle! Many of the smaller items have gone into this basket. There are many spools of thread, some made by my mother while others were gifts. The pattern in the back (not particularly period, but oh well) was a printie I made years ago. I was probably around twelve at the time, and just figuring out how to use the computer to design miniatures.

I fell in love with this little cabinet, purchased from Eileen Godfrey Miniatures. It is signed Rosemarie Torre.
On another note, I'm getting really excited about the Sturbridge miniature show next week. My mom and I tend to go to the local shows a lot, so this will be a nice change.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Micro Cottage Project

I was going to share a few more photos of Phoebe's room, but my brother's prom is tonight, and in the rush to clear space on the camera, I deleted the photos. My brother took the camera with him, so I can't even take more. Oh well. Instead, here are some pictures of a recent micro (1/144th scale) project which I'm working on.

I built this little cottage from scratch. The base is 2 1/4 inches by 1 1/2, so the whole scene fits on the palm of my hand. I really like 1/144th scale, but I'm not fond of building structures, so this project was a bit different for me. I usually adapt pre-built containers into room boxes instead.
The roof in the picture below looks very shiny, but it isn't in real life. I'm slowly working on landscaping, and adding details to the outside. I think I'll add a few more rose bushes, and possibly a small tree or sundial.

I just added the bench, but I'm noticing it looks a bit large. I might have to cut it down or build another one.

Can you see the stained glass? My original idea was to do a whimsical cottage with a Gothic influence. My lackluster building skills meant that I had to scale back the design, which originally included all sorts of odd angles and possibly a turret or two. Then I started to actually build, and realized that while I could draw and calculate all those angles, actually cutting and gluing them was a big challenge. Maybe the next house I build can have the tower.
The interior is pretty bare still, as you can see. I aged the carpet before gluing it in, (there are worn spots, and stains) and the walls are a rather mouldy cream color. I'm planning to make comfortable but battered furniture to furnish this someday, but I'll wait until I'm really in the mood.

Phoebe's room

This is the last room in the attic, Phoebe's room. Phoebe the maid is named after a character in Louisa May Alcott's books Eight Cousins and Rose in Bloom. Her room is really far too cosy for a servant, but I can't seem to stop adding little things. Here is Phoebe's dresser. Notice the glove peeking out from the drawer and the hairpins scattered about? There is also a scrimshaw busk, which was a gift from Phoebe's sailor swain. I plan to someday replace the big wooden drawer pulls with smaller glass knobs, but haven't gotten around to it yet.

I really wanted a very plain brass bed for this room, and had the worst luck trying to find a bed without ornamentation. Finally found one on a trip to England. Someday, Phoebe will have a crazy-quilt for her bed, but that's on the back burner for now.

The gorgeous sailor's valentine was made by Bone-Art Miniature Scrimshaw. The sampler is a recent purchase. It was mixed in with other samplers with very traditional, serious sayings, so I don't think it was intended to be funny, but it makes me laugh all the same.
The wallpaper in this room is quite possibly my favorite wallpaper ever. I don't remember who made it, but there were only a few old sheets left when I bought it. Honestly, I wish that I could have this wallpaper in real life!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

The Playroom

Here's a quick view of the playroom. The stick on the right side is a dowel to prop up the roof. This room is in the attic portion of the house, on the far right. Lottie's room is just to the left. I've been trying to go through this room recently, and pull out some of the toys. I'm a bit addicted to miniature toys! The fireplace and corner cupboard are half scale, but I liked that they were child sized. I'm toying with the idea of making this room more of a school room, but I haven't quite decided yet. The fireplace originally had a HORRID brick surround. I seached online for antique tiles that would work in the room, printed them out, varnished them and glued them on. That little change helped the firepleace so much! I also replaced the rather boring gold metal fireplace screen with a little scrap screen. I have no idea if scrap fireplace screens were ever made in real life, but I like the interest it gives.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009


Just realized that I've been showing pictures of Lottie's room without introducing Lottie. So here she is! I've no idea who made her, since I got her from a local shop before they closed a couple years ago. I couldn't resist her! Like most of the dolls in my dollhouse, she's named after a book character. She's named after Lottie from Frances Hodgsen Burnett's book, A Little Princess.

On another note, I figured I'd share these photos of my dollhouse, reproduced in 1/1728th scale. It's not an exact replica, because my 1/12th scale house is front opening, and this has an open back and only four rooms inside, but it's close enough for me.

It's made of paper. I designed the house pieces on the computer, printed them out and then assembled it with a little help from tacky glue and tweezers. The rooms all have different wallpapers!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Little Treasures

I thought I'd show you a little corner of Lottie's room. I have a small collection of these dolls, made by Lucy Coles. My mother used to get me one every Christmas. They have handsculpted porcelain heads and limbs, and most are dressed in silk with lace undergarments. I'm a bit addicted to mininture toys! I like to mix scales, because I think it makes everything look a bit more toylike. The painted bed was bought years ago from Eileen Godfrey. The hat was from Earth and Tree, I believe, and the little basket from a local show.

Latest Project

I ordered a few of these 1/12 scale screeens unfinished from Matlock Miniatures awhile ago. They came last week, and I made this scrap screen from one of them. Scrap (decoupaged) screens were popular projects in Victorian times. I've never been able to find a miniature scrap screen that looked like the real ones, so I decided I had to make my own.All of the different images were individually cut out and pasted on top of each other. I've been finding, reducing and cutting out scrap (decoupage images) all winter, so the glueing only took a few hours. I tried to get a nice balance of colors and subjects. I left a few holes in the collage to let the rust colored backround peek through. None of the images are repeated.

Here is the screen in my house. Right now it's in Lottie's bedroom, but I may move it over to the playroom next door.

And this is my house. I've got two other houses, but this is the only one with a finished interior.

Monday, May 25, 2009

First Post

I’m not sure exactly what to write. I’ve been thinking about starting a blog for a while, but now that the moment is here, I’m overwhelmed with possibilities. I could write about my dollhouses, or my latest miniature projects, or… the list goes on. When I was three, my uncle built me a big pink Victorian dollhouse. Somewhere between then and now, I collected a few more houses, and started to make my own miniatures. So hopefully, this blog will be a way to share my latest projects and some favorites from my collection.