Monday, January 30, 2012


I was just looking for information on old wallpapers on the web trying to date a wallpaper in my old dolls house and I stumbled across the following YouTube video from a Kit Laybourne at Oxygen Media (with the Cooper-Hewett National Design Museum) called 'Wallpaper That Moves'. It basically covers 300 years of wallpaper in 3 minutes. Very clever and a good quick reference.
Unfortunately it didn't help me identify the wallpaper in my dolls house. I'm still looking!

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Lamp Table

I had to cover my daughter's school books today before she starts back at school tomorrow. I have to say it is not one of my favourite jobs. I usually end up with as much plastic cover screwed up in piles on the floor as I have covering the books. When I was finished I was determined to get into my craft room but didn't feel like doing anything too precise.

I made this table. It is scratch built with no measurements taken or anything and only a rough sand and no varnish - certainly not the precise accuracy miniatures usually require, but I had fun and I think it worked out fairly well in the circumstances.

I think the design would probably look good with a plant or lamp on it, perhaps one each side of a large Arts & Crafts Movement settee.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

First Follower

I'm so excited. I have the first 'follower' of my blog. Thanks Brae of 'Otterine'. I will really have to make an effort with my miniatures and blogging now. If you want a dose of inspiration check out I would have to say it is my favourite blog.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Reporting In

Well, it is now 9.00pm NZ time on Sunday night. What did I do today in between housework?
I made up a book kit from They have some lovely items. Today I made up "Schubert's Illustrated Animal Kingdom" which was illustrated during the late 19th century. It even has fold out pages, a dust jacket and a book sleeve. I get a Classic Book of the Month kit sent out to me each month. I won't try to post a photo of the book as it won't do it justice. Check it out on their site.
Also, I made a fabric covered sewing box as shown below, some of the contents of which are also from a kit from the Paper Minis website. I'm quite pleased with the way the box turned out. I think it looks quite good on the seat I made for my sister's gallery. I might have to make myself one and find a little lady to sit and sew on it.

I also managed to pick myself up a new 'old' dollshouse. It is an old tin Triang No.50 (one of the earlier ones) from about the 1950s. It has certainly seen better days but it will be a good challenge to try and restore it. Hopefully I will receive it during the week and will post some photos. I really must stop looking at the on-line auctions.
Anyway, I think I'll retire from my craft room for the day and will go and flick through some dolls house magazines.

I've decided today is a 'Miniatures Day'

Hi there. I've decided today is a 'Miniatures Day'. I haven't told my husband and daughter yet though who are currently out playing golf (or at least my daughter is at her junior golf lessons)! In the meantime I am having a very late breakfast in front of the computer - I love Sundays! (It is currently 10.20am on Sunday in NZ).
My goals for today: Today my goals are to turn some more of my sister's art into canvases for her mini art gallery, trial my new dremel tool that my lovely husband bought me for Christmas, make up a couple of book kits, and anything else mini that takes my fancy - oh and probably look at a few blogs. I'm addicted to blogs. Isn't it great how people share their ideas and skills via their blogs. While I may not have that much to offer yet, I know my blog has been read in New Zealand, the UK, the US, Russia, Germany and Latvia. What a world we live in.
The Laurels: In flicking through an old Dolls House & Miniature Scene magazine the other day I came across a house that had very similar details to my recent purchase "The Laurels". It was an old G & J Lines house from the early 1900s. Subsequently I have found a great website that has members that are keen collectors and will help you date your old dollshouses and there are some great galleries of old dolls houses and furniture on the site. Well worth a look. I am in the process of having pictures of The Laurels uploaded on the site. I will let you know what I find out.
Anyway my breakfast has been eaten and I've nearly finished my coffee so I'd better get on to my minis or the day will disappear.
Will report in later.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Did I Really Do That?

What is 'That' you ask? Bid on an on-line auction for a pre-loved dolls house. Not only did I bid, I also passed the limit I had set myself. I am now the proud owner of 'The Laurels'.

It so looks like something my grandfather would have built for me had he been alive when I was into dollshouse miniatures. I just had to have it - to give it a bit of TLC and be its guardian for the next period of it's history! Through email correspondence with the seller I know it was purchased secondhand about 10 years ago from an auction house in Wellingborough, England. She wonders whether the builder might have built it based on a grand old building called the East Carlton Hall, although it has 'The Laurels 1895' written on the front. I may never find out but I'll see what I can uncover.

As far as my previous post on the Arts and Craft Movement, I have really enjoyed doing some research. I found a great book at the Library called "The Arts and Crafts Movement in New Zealand 1970-1940 by Ann Calhoun and of course the internet is a great source of information. I've discovered there is a bit of an overlap with the Pre-Raphaelites, Arts & Crafts Movement and Art Nouveau periods and sometimes it is hard to distinguish which period certain items come from.

Being school holidays I have spent a bit of time doing crafts with my daughter. Even though it is January now we have mainly been making Christmas items. I have a slight reluctance to let go of Christmas. While I don't always like the hussle and bustle of Christmas I love all things Christmassy.

Well, must go. I have to work out where I am going to fit another dollshouse!

Thursday, January 5, 2012


I've been having a real think today about the direction I wish to head with dollshouse miniatures rather than having no particular focus or direction. I am pleased to say I have made a decision. I have long had a love of things relating to the Arts and Craft Movement, particularly with regard to Morris, Rosetti and Edward Burne-Jones. I've decided to do some research and try to create some miniatures in line with this period. I would also like to look into how this movement influenced New Zealand furnishings and design. I've also decided to have a go at miniature wood inlay when I can get hold of some wood veneers. I'm by no means an expert woodworker so this will be a real challenge, but every craftsman started somewhere. I'm just heading to bed now with my husband's i-pad to do some research. Watch this space!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

It's a New Year

Happy New Year everyone. Hope you had a lovely Christmas with family and friends and got lots of nice pressies. My lovely husband bought me a Dremel so I will be having lots of fun experimenting while learning how to use the tool and learning what it's capabilities are. I have made a new year's resolution - to try to enter a blog once a fortnight and to make a real effort to make time for miniatures. Will keep you posted - hopefully at least once a fortnight!