Thursday, October 5, 2017

Christmas Patchwork

Forward thinking is quite an unusual thing for me to do, but I needed a project to take on holiday last month.
Not one for sleeping on a sun lounger all day I packed a zipped pouch with scraps of material, needle, thread and scissors and put together some tiny hexagon patches.
The fabrics were snippets of silver, white and blue fabric left over from a full-size heart wreath I made last year, so without thinking, I had moved on to Christmas mode.

Over the last few days, I have been sewing them together, making small patchwork mats for the Christmas table. Today I finished the last one.

The lovely little Christmas cake was made by Linda Cummings
My summer holiday project is now finished, well in time for Christmas. I suppose I should now start making something in readiness for Easter!
It's almost the weekend, Have a good one,

Saturday, August 5, 2017

The Victorian House Renovation

Slowly but surely the work has continued but since the summer arrived I managed to get the house outside and do the really messy sanding job. I removed all the lumps and slurries of dried plaster that were spoiling the outside walls. It is now smooth and ready for the new paint. I plan to add sand for some texture.

 The paving slabs have been removed but I shall keep the grey tiles on the roof.
The shop windows were held in with two screws so I removed them and was able to disconnect the roller blinds and will be able to put in new ones when I've made them.

My dilemma is whether to decorate the outside first or the inside. 
Any suggestions?
I hope you're having a sunny weekend,

Monday, January 9, 2017

Retro Cushions

My little retro scene of 60s and 70s was sadly lacking. Considering the humungous  amount of cushions I make every year I have never made any for this scene.

I have two fabulous chairs made by Kris Kompas that I was creating the scene around.
I bought a table, chairs and wall unit from a lady on Face Book because they resembled the G-Plan furniture my parents bought in the 70s.
I stitched the small rug and my old friend, Bob made the wooden coffee table which displays the fruit made by Bel in a turned wooden bowl I bought on the internet but it was so long ago I can't remember and I didn't keep details, I'm very cross with myself as I usually keep note.
So, this morning I made two cushions, and already the scene has livened up a bit.

Typically, I have more waiting to be made up so that's my job for today.
Happy Monday!

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

A Visit to Kensington

Oh wow, I can't take it all in! As I enter the doors of Kensington Town Hall I'm in a frenzy as to where to go first!
Eventually I manage to organise my brain and take it steady, one floor at a time.
Yet again, totally spoilt with row upon row of wonderful miniatures all shouting, 'Take me, take me!'

I had to find my favourite food maker Linda Cummings. Apart from her skill and artistry I have to admire her ability to make all the 'boring' stuff - and so much of it. By boring I mean meat, vegetables, and fish. Linda doesn't hasten back to making 'pretty as I and many others do.
That is what is so special about her miniatures, the detail. Take a close look at her mushrooms, all detailed with the frilly bit underneath!
Typical of me though, I didn't buy them, I bought 'pretty' cakes and fruit and here they are.
 The banana slices are so tiny and thinly sliced!
 This bowl of blueberries and strawberries is hugely magnified in this photo.

Another favourite of mine is Sally Meakin. I have collected many of her delightful miniatures over the years. These are what I bought this time.
Something for Christmas and something for my Halloween scene.

At the May fair I bought a gorgeous floppy, brown bear for my Easter scene from Veronique Lux, who makes the cutest animals so I made for her stand where I found this sweet lamb for the Christmas display.

Patrizia Santi is well known for her amazing shoes but she has branched out and now makes furniture too. I bought this photo frame. I just need to slot in some photos.

I also bought this for my florist/garden centre from a Spanish lady but unfortunately I've lost the the card with her name.

Here it is with a fabulous tree by Ketty Pierro, I love the little houses that hang on the bare twigs and go back in their box after Christmas - although mine will be hanging all year round !

And another gorgeous little Christmas thing from Ketty
Her miniatures are so different and extremely well made.

As you see I had a fabulous time and now I'm enjoying 'playing' with them all, moving things around and finding homes for them.
Thanks for looking!

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Modernisation for the Victorian House

After two years of deliberation I have made the decision to modernise my Victorian dollshouse.
There are two voices to be heard here, 'No don't do it!!' and 'Why not, it isn't genuine Victorian'.
It is a sad thought that 25 years of work and love are to be destroyed but I wasn't enjoying it as much as I did. It is dull to look at, has very dark rooms, the furniture is dark and drab and the rooms too small, especially the kitchen.
My real life changes meant I had to part with several dollshouses so finding space for a new one isn't an option, so I'm sticking with this well made, strong George Parker house and revamping.

I'd never been happy with the shop because it was too dark to see into and the kitchen so small it was impossible to make it look interesting.
I began ripping off wallpaper and realised how dirty and stained it had become, just like the real thing. I started pulling down the decorative ceiling and they practically fell down. Ten years in the hot climate of Spain had dried up the glues. Most of the glass fibre parquet floors pulled up easily. Now that the walls and floors are uncovered you can see the copper tape wiring exposed. I hope it still works, I haven't plugged in the lights for a few years but now I have access to it all and can rewire where necessary and add or change light positions.

Many of the interior walls felt loose due to the drying out of glue and with a bit of wiggling and then brute force I was able to get most of the interior walls out.

Now that I've started I've got to keep going with the knowledge that I can make it look beautiful again.
This was my first house and was Victorian because that was the style that was largely available in 1990. The inexpensive, imported furniture was all dark wood and perfectly suited but in my heart I wanted modern and started making modern miniatures. I began filling room boxes and selling my modern miniatures at Dolly's Daydreams fairs whilst continuing to buy Victorian for my house. The response to the modern was amazing, I had duvets and carpets, cushions and decorations in styles from the 50s, 60's and 70's and 80s as well as current styles. The feedback from customers was encouraging as I realised many collectors were stuck in the past with Victorian, Georgian and Tudor. Naturally I had to have a modern house as I was making so much and had become really keen to keep a record of current styles and not just replicate history. I ended up with eight dollshouses, one a 1960s beach house which I still have but I have parted with all the others.
I was never brave enough before to change the Victorian house but now my space is limited I feel justified in doing it.
Watch this space, it can only get better!