Sunday, April 28, 2013

Family Weekend - & More Treasures

Well I don't have anything much to report as far as miniatures goes. Due to Anzac Day on Thursday and my office closing for the day on Friday, I had a four day weekend. I took the opportunity to pick up my 86 year old Mum and have her stay for a few days. We dropped her back to her home this afternoon. It was a lovely weekend with three generations under one roof.

Mum used to do miniatures with me back in the 1990s so she really enjoyed looking at what I was up to with my miniatures, both modern and vintage. She also sorted out a few of her miniatures and gave some to Jamie and some to me.

These are some pictures of some of the items she gave me.


On Saturday morning we took Mum into town to have a look at the shops, starting with the Hospice Shop where I found this lovely vintage souvenir doll for 20 cents.


I also picked up this Limoges brooch at the local antique shop earlier in the week. Thought it would be a lovely picture on a doll house wall. 

I won an auction today for five sets of 1950s plastic dolls house furniture in their boxes being bedroom, kitchen, bathroom, dining room and sitting room. 

I also have to confess to buying another vintage dollshouse. I won it tonight on an on-line auction. I am hoping it is a 1930s Amersham doll house but I won't really be able to tell until I have a good look at it when I pick it up. It is certainly not in its original state but it is a lovely little house. Unfortunately it is going to be a five hour drive to pick it up and a five hour drive home again so it may be a week or two before I can organise that.

I'd better stop watching the on-line auctions for a bit and start saving some more pennies. I've certainly treated myself to a few vintage treasures lately.

I'll post pictures of the house when I have collected it.

I'd better get on with the Selina Rose Gallery during the week. The good news is I have found something that removes the sticky tape residue on the side of the house. The bad news is it is painstakingly slow, so guess what I will be doing in my evenings.

I hope you've all had a good weekend. For some of you it is still the weekend. For me in New Zealand it is time to head to bed and get some beauty sleep before work tomorrow as it is now 10.30pm Sunday night.

Sunday, April 21, 2013


I was going to try and experiment with my dremel today and have a go at miniature carving. Then my daughter approached me suggesting we should put some shingles on Nana's dolls house as Nana is coming to stay on Thursday for a few days and it would be a nice for her to see some work has been done on her house.

Nana's house is a house my Dad built for my Mum back in the 1990s but sadly it was not fully completed before my Dad's passing 15 years ago. My Mum has now handed it on to my 10 year old daughter, Jamie. Jamie wants it to be a 'special' dolls house, not just a play toy. She wants it to be based around the 1927 period, the date Nana was born, which I think is a lovely idea.

We are gathering some information together to help us in decorating the house including a 1927 Sears Roebuck catalogue which is fascinating to look through. It will not be exactly true to the period as Mum and Dad did a lot of decorating inside the house and we do not want to undo what they did. I also want to house my special collection of furniture made by my Dad in it which I have shown in a previous blog post.

So today Jamie and I spent quite a bit of time placing fishscale style shingles on the roof of the house. Mum and Dad had started the first couple of rows so we are going to try to finish most of the roof over the next few days. I must say we worked pretty well as a team with Jamie gluing the shingles and me putting glue on the roof and placing them.

Nana's House is the house on the left.

I really enjoyed working with Jamie today. Unfortunately part way through I realised I really should have painted the dormers first. I do make things hard for myself sometimes.

I'll post a photo of the house when we have done a bit more.

In trying to squeeze into my little workroom with Jamie today I realised it still isn't quite set out the best it could be, so even though it is nearly bed time I am in the middle of sorting my craft room out AGAIN. Besides, I needed to make space to display my recent vintage purchases too.

Wishing you all a great week.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Another Box Left on My Doorstep

Great excitement when I arrived home from work this afternoon. The courier had left a box on my back doorstep with the items I won at auction as mentioned in an earlier post. I waited for my daughter to get home from school and we opened the box and took out the little items.

I can now reveal the auction items were some Petite Princess (Ideal) miniatures. Petite Princess furniture was made between 1964 and 1968, so they are almost as old as I am! They are 3/4" scale. I saw some a while ago in a magazine and really liked them. I couldn't believe my luck when I came across these on a New Zealand on-line auction site. Unfortunately I missed out on a few pieces. I really wanted the Petite Princess piano but wasn't quick enough to grab that one. Still, I am really happy with what I got. It is a good start to a collection and Petite Princess items are relatively easy to find on Ebay. Now I just need a 1960s house of the right scale to put them in.
 Fireplace, planter and picture.

 Floor lamp and one of the chairs.

 Sideboard and another picture.

 Table and chairs. Oddly the table appears to have two different legs.
One of them has decoration around the bottom and the other doesn't.

 Bed, footstool and chaise.

 Four small tables.


Monday, April 15, 2013

Toyworks House

Look what arrived in the mail today. I won this through an on-line auction. It is a Toyworks House and I understand it is about the same age as my husband, i.e. born in the early 1970s.

It is about 42 cm tall to the point of the roof.

It needs a bit of a clean and is missing its chimney, a couple of clear windows, a yellow shutter and yellow door but all in all it is in pretty good condition for its age. I think it is really sweet.

Excuse the state of the photos. I am too impatient to wait until good light tomorrow so have had to use a flash.


I also won some vintage items I bid on last night so will post pictures of those later in the week when they arrive. 

A new book Doll Kitchens 1800-1980 also arrived in the post today so I'll be tucking myself into bed early tonight to have a good read. 

Gosh I have been treating myself haven't I!

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Made by Me 1996-2000

Housework has won this weekend but I thought I'd share a few miniatures I made between 1996 and 2000 when I had my first dabble at miniatures.


The Victrola (cabinet style gramophone), wicker chair and pantry were all made by me at workshops at the year 2000 NZAME (New Zealand Association of Miniature Enthusiasts) Convention. The theme of the convention was the 1920s.

The tutor for the Victrola was an Anne Eustace. This took hours and a lot of patience but I was really pleased with the result. A Jeanette Dungan was the tutor for the wicker chair and Jewel Lewis was the tutor for the 1920s kitchen cabinet.

The flapper doll costume also fits in with the 1920s theme and while a similar project was taught as a workshop at the convention my recollection is that I made this at a workshop held at the miniature club I belonged to at the time. I think the visiting tutor for this project was a Lynne Roberts. I have just realised she also has a pale blue feather boa that should be draped around her neck.


The chaise and settle above were also items I made in the 1990s as was the fireplace in the background. These would have been workshops held at the miniature club but I cannot recall the tutors. The wooden settle opens up for storage.


Above is a bathroom workshop I did in 1996. I think this also may have been at a NZAME convention. The tutors were Roger and Maureen Nelson. I still love it all these years later. The top of the housing contains the battery unit. There is a light outside the window to give the effect of moonlight. I remember finding an old card with a painting of trees on it which I think works well as the backdrop scene outside the window. I found a wonderful doll in a dressing gown that used to stand by the bath with a book but unfortunately she fell out of the cabinet a number of years ago and I've never found a doll since that I've wanted to put back in the scene. Maybe one day.

I've just noticed by looking at the photo the mirror needs to be reglued in the cabinet above the sink and the toilet chain has got wrapped around the towel rack. Pity I didn't notice these things before I took the photo.

The doll that leans against the bathroom in my craft room is Orphan Anne, a design by Jess of Little Dirt Lane that I made two or three years ago.

I'm sure I've got a few more things around that I made in the 1990s but these are the things that jumped out at me when I had a quick look around my craft room.

I have promised my daughter I will have a game of something with her this afternoon and she is hovering around the door to my craft room so I had better go, apart from to say I have my eye on some vintage items coming up on an on-line auction later today so if I am successful I will have something to blog about later in the week when the items arrive.

Hope you are all having a great weekend. Bye for now.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Thinking of Christmas... Meet Edward

First of all I must report in on my weekend to-do list. If you recall I had four items on my list:

1. To wallpaper a room in my vintage house The Laurels - achieved. See previous post.

2. To play with fimo.
I did have a play with fimo trying to make some candles but I wasn't satisfied enough with the end result to bake them or show them on my blog. We will just say that working with fimo is a work in progress.

 3. To get better organised by keeping a record of my projects, things I buy, ideas etc.
This will go on my next to do list! I just plain ran out of time last weekend.

4. To create 'tags' on my blog linking blog entries that relate - achieved. I worked out how to do this and started linking blog entries. Now hopefully if you click on e.g. Selina Rose Gallery on the label sidebar of my blog it will bring up all the entries relating to that label.

Three out of four isn't too bad.

Anyway on to more exciting news. I want you to meet Edward Elf who has travelled all the way from Germany to New Zealand. I recently saw a picture of some of the lovely mice Melanie Frank creates and thought I'd have a look on her Etsy site - and there he was. I just couldn't resist. He was lovingly packaged by his creator and arrived safely on my doorstep earlier today. He was waiting for me when I came home from work for my lunch break.

Malanie's blog is

At the moment Edward is temporarily sitting on a cotton reel.

Edward is going to reside in a  Christmas project I will work on throughout the year to be housed in a lovely Christmas box I bought last Christmas that just begged me to buy it and turn it into a miniature project.

The box is so lovely I don't want to cover too much of it but my vision is that Edward is appointed by Santa as the Master Creator of Decorations who spends his year creating beautiful Christmas decorations to decorate the tree in the Christmas Village come December. I will probably also create a decorated tree to sit in front of the box when it is on display at Christmas.

The box has lovely images of decorations on it and I intend to highlight these by adding diamantes etc and making a feature of them. I envisage just having a few shelves on the back wall with some of Edward's creations. I have put a paper chain and small wreath in Edwards hands which I have made.

Enjoy the following images of Edward and his Christmas box:


Sunday, April 7, 2013

Wallpapering Completed

I have completed my challenge to wallpaper a room of The Laurels this weekend. I wanted an oriental feel to the room as I have a collection of vintage miniature Chinese mudmen in the room and have one or two Japanese miniatures I may include in the room at some stage. I haven't really decided whether it will be a living room or a library/study.  I still need to hunt out some vintage miniatures to go in the room.

The wallpaper is a reprint of a 1914 wallpaper from

The pink nursery paper was a reprint of an old dollshouse wallpaper from the same site.

The wallpapers are printed on the back of old rolls of wallpaper and so are easy to work with because they are thick enough to hide some of the imperfections you find in an old house. They were also one of the few options I could find that was tall enough for these rooms, the rooms being 12.5 inches tall. The other advantage is that for most papers you can order any length you want. I ordered 100cm, enough to cover the three walls.

I still need to do the floors as you can see.

The fire places are original to the house. They are rather large and cumbersome but it is part it's history.

On the fireplace are some vintage vases I have managed to find.
The little dog I picked up at a local antique shop. Isn't he cute.
The globe is a vintage Chad Valley .
I made the table the globe is standing on.

One side of The Laurels wallpapered.

Now lets see if there is enough weekend left to play with some fimo!

Saturday, April 6, 2013

It's the Weekend

Yeah, it's the weekend. I've decided I need to plan ahead a bit in the weekends and do a to do list as far as miniautres goes. I seem to achieve more that way, especially if I make my to-do list public.

So, this weekend I plan to:

Firstly, wallpaper one of the rooms in The Laurels. I've only wallpapered the nursery so far as I have got side-tracked with other projects. I have been prompted to do this via a challenge by one of the members on the Dolls Houses Past and Present site to pick something that you need to complete with regard to your miniatures, state it on the website and complete it this weekend. Thanks for the prompt.

Secondly, I want to have a play with fimo. I ran out of time to do that last weekend so that is on this weekend's to do list.

My third 'to do' is just to get better organised. I want to work out a method of keeping a record of my projects, things I buy, ideas etc.

Finally, I want to look at how to link different posts on my blog so, for example, if you want to just look at my blog entries on The Laurels or The Selina Rose Gallery you can just click on a link that will bring up all those entries.

Anyway that is my plan for this weekend. I'll let you know how I get on.

With regard to The Selina Rose Gallery, I've come across a slight snag (or perhaps I should say a sticky situation)! I decided to tear off the old electrical tape on the dolls house but it has left a sticky residue that I can't seem to remove. I have tried all sorts. I may resort to getting some brick paper or something  and just go over it. Because this has meant I haven't been able to complete painting the exterior yet, it also means I don't want to install the papers and floors in the house.  I'm a bit frustrated with it so I will give the gallery a miss this weekend and see what I can sort out during the week to get rid of the sticky residue. Sorry Sis.

I've just picked up an interesting item on the New Zealand online auction site, TradeMe. It is a pudding doll. Apparently in the late 1800s these were baked into cakes and puddings on special occasions. It was believed if you found one of these in your pudding it would bring you good luck (or a broken tooth). It is only 1 inch long. Very cute. It now resides in The Laurels.

Pudding Doll

 Pudding Doll with some of the other residents of The Laurels.

I hope you all have a great weekend doing what you love.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Bird Gallery/Shop - It Needs a Name

As I have said at times throughout my blog I love bird items. I think this might have first started when I was very young and fell in love with my grandmothers embroidered bluebird of happiness supper cloth. I've been looking on the internet this morning and I have decided to start a collection of antique/vintage bird brooches, pendants and little bird items which I will eventually display in a miniature gallery/shop. I will also collect/make some bird miniatures for display inside and outside the gallery/shop and will hunt out vintage bird images to make pictures/furniture.

I'd love for you to tap into your imagination and suggest a good name for such a gallery, e.g. Flight of Fancy, Chirp & Cheap, or ???????

Monday, April 1, 2013

Creative Flow

I've been enjoying my weekend so far. I still have another day to go before I head back to work on Wednesday and Pete and Jamie won't be home until tomorrow late afternoon. However, I thought I would post what I have done so far as I'm quite proud of myself for sitting bum on seat and being creative.

Yesterday (Easter Sunday) I experimented with some resin pouring. I recently got a starter kit from Altered Image Studios so I could have a go at pouring resin and consider how it might be applied to miniatures.

The two wooden hearts, the domino and the wine charm all came with the kit.

 The red Paris image also came with the kit. My daughter loves anything
to do with Paris at the moment so she will love this.

On the blue heart I poured the resin over a bit of handmade paper I had made.
I love the way resin intensifies the colours.
I put a William Morris paper on the domino.

This was an image from a 1920s Girls Own Annual.

This square I have done to make a little table top. 
The resin is poured over a paper from a 1938/39 Sanderson Samples Folder.

I was really pleased with the way the square in the above image came out as I used a very thin wood as a base and I was concerned it might warp but it  didn't. There is certainly potential for using resin in miniatures. I will have to experiment some more.

Today (Easter Monday) I set myself the task of making an artist's easel for the Selina Rose Gallery.

 To the right is attempt No. 1. To the left is attempt No. 2.
On the side wall is also the second bench seat for the Gallery which I made yesterday.

 This image shows the back of the easel. The legs do fold in on both easels.

Close up of the easel holding one of my sister's paintings.

I had an idea in mind when I started the first easel but unfortunately I glued some pieces of wood on the wrong way so I ended up making it into just a simple easel, which as you can see has come in handy for photographing the resin images. I think I might use this one to hold a sign board.

The second easel I made was more what I had in mind. It still needs perfecting. I would like to make it workable so I can adjust the easel to the size of the canvas on it. It has a little shelf and a little hook on the side for a dirty rag.

Well, that is what I have created so far this Easter weekend. I really need to get some housework done tomorrow, but I am hoping to have a bit of time to experiment with some fimo.

I hope you are all enjoying your Easter break.