Sharing a love of Dolls House Miniatures - and making time for other creative crafts and the garden.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Let's Take a Look at Flowers....

A little 1/24th scale Flower Lady opens the flower show today.....and my the garden is full of flowers!

If I'm not pottering in the garden I'm working with a view of it and keep popping out for another peep as it changes hour to hour - never mind day to day!
I could indulge myself and just fill this blog with photos of flowers because I know many of you love them as much as me...but I do like to show I'm working! So may I introduce you to Flo......she's just a little lady, 1/24th scale to be precise, getting on a bit as you can see.....and still working!
Around the turn of the century she walked through the local markets selling her flowers, which she grew at the back of her little old cottage. She puts on her smartest 'every-day' frock and wraps a warm shawl aound her shoulders; her hat has seen better days too but she re-trims it now and again - with flowers of course.

Like Flo I love the cottage garden style of planting - the slightly disheveled, overblown, stuffed-full variety - with old terracotta pots and ancient watering cans strategically placed...... grassy paths.......old bricks...scarlet runner beans up hazel poles.....

....So I've squeezed in just a couple pictures of my flower border - fabulous oriental poppies, and a wonderful black bearded iris - which was cut down by the wind just after I took this photo!
Not that I'd have picked it otherwise, but it does look exceedingly grand in a vase!

Back to work! Fifty years or so after Flo, these 'young people' wearing the height of 1950s fashion are on their way out for the evening. I'm not actually sure that 'fashion' was an 'in' word then - my Mother talked about particular styles being 'all the go'! The comparison between these frocks and and the current crop is pretty dramatic - today's clothes are so much more fun!!!

I hope you've enjoyed looking at both the characters and the flowers...Morris Dancers are on the work bench at the moment, more flower-trimmed hats!
Thanks for looking.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Home Thoughts from Abroad.......

Somehow, when I received these photographs, this so-familiar, well-known phrase seemed the obvious title for this blog......but I didn't know where it came from. In the end I Googled it - so to save you wondering too, it's a poem by Robert Browning and I think it's particularly lovely - especially when I look out on my garden......go on....look it up!!!

I am immensely grateful that Hazel and Steve from Western Australia were patient last year to wait until I eventually recreated them (or more accurately, semi-portraits of them both) in 1/12th scale. They were trusting enough and apparently pleased with the results, so this year I have recently made their grandchildren too......our respective Post Offices put us through all sorts of agonies as the parcel was 'lost' and finally about six weeks later 'found'. Great jubilation on both sides of the 'pond'!!

Hazel originally hails from Cheshire and between them, she and husband Steve have recreated a version of her old home and as you can see the result is simply stunning and the family do look so at home there. I was thrilled to get the pictures and with permission and thanks to Hazel I can share some of them here.

Steve built the house, wallpapered it, installed the lighting and stairs and laid all the carpets. He also fitted the kitchen stove, all the skirting and cornices and hand made all of the books. Hazel did the painting, made all the curtains and a lot of the soft furnishings, pictures, toys and the bathroom accessories and most of the small kitchen items like the tea towels, filled jars, biscuits, flowers for vases and the super frames for miniatuarised family photos.
What a team!!

I've made other characters for them, and I see Fag Ash Lil' has been installed as the cleaner; I love the hall stand and the flying ducks on the wall!

I know lots of collectors recreate a favourite home - or even the dream home - and especially with 'family homes', it's a particularly effective and evocative way of preserving a little bit of real life history for future generations as well as being a wonderful hobby.

My visit to Kensington Dolls House Festival last weekend was really inspiring and I do pay tribute to the many artisans of such exceptional talent. My spending was modest I'm afraid....but when I win the lottery, the list is ready!!

My thanks to you all for continuing to look at the blog and a welcome to those new Followers who have recently joined us.

Friday, May 13, 2011

A Victorian Dockyard......and other bits and pieces

Sometimes my lovely customers are kind enough to send photos of my characters in their new homes.....looking so much better than on my muddled workbench......

Last year Jennie did a course to create a corner of a Victorian Dockyard, and asked me to make a figure for her.... and some little bits and pieces like seagulls and old filled sacks to add to the atmosphere.
She's a very talented lady and to prove it here's a fantastic photo she's taken of her super completed scene - don't you just love it!

I'm delighted to say she's coming along to our Over the Little Garden Fence Workshop in June and I know she'll produce a wonderful little garden. Incidentally one space has become unexpectedly available, so if anyone would like to take it up please do contact me or Celia at
KT Miniatures - or simply click the Workshop panel in the right column where you can find out all about it and see some pictures too. We've been thrilled that there has been so much enthusiasm for it, but sorry that the date (inevitably) didn't work for everyone......if enough folk were interested we could perhaps run it again in the autumn - do let us know.

The day job is doll making and I'm working on 1/12th commissions at present, but I do like fiddling with other things, especially when they fit on a tray in front of the T.V. in the evening. As well as the characters and the handcrafted furniture it's nice to have the odd chicken or pot of geraniums about on the website (still not updated....) and the stand at fairs. So here's another little 1/12th stone sink, planted up with 'house leeks' and other rock plants and some really tiny ones in 1/24th scale on natural pebbles.

This weekend is The Kensington Dolls House Fair so I'm off on Sunday to be inspired by hugely talented colleagues and friends and hope they all have great success.


Friday, May 6, 2011

Another Old Sailor...and some Miniature Gardening!!

I've finally stopped coughing (nearly), dragged myself in from the garden and got back to work on some nice 1/12th commissions....and discovered I can make miniature Houseleeks while watching T.V.!!

But first - for the Aquilegia fans - I picked a bunch from the garden for you!!

Another retired old sailor - he's heading off to the Wirral - I'm sure he'll be happy in his new home. He's in 1/12th scale.

Just sometimes things come together don't they?? I had been punching out some mini paper shapes for geraniums - I picked up a couple of nice holey pebbles from my gravel garden - and BINGO! Sempervivum - Houseleeks - Ice Plants..(and other local names) ...used in the old days with lard to make a soothing ointment for burns. When I was a child old Mr Arlott had them all over his one storey cottage roof and made ointment for the whole street.
Anyway....I can make these little plants while watching T.V........ lets face it sculpting a doll and T.V. don't work at the end of a busy day!!

Here's a close-up of another.

Then I got really cocky! I love my own rock garden, with its stone sinks, so the temptation to recreate one was too tempting to resist. They aren't on the website - yes I know I need to update it urgently - but if you are intersted, please email me. These are all in 1/12th scale.

Finally, welcome to my recent followers - thank you for joining us. Thank you all for continuing to look!!