Friday, November 30, 2012

Suit Yourself!

It's taken me a few days longer than I expected to get this post up! First I was having trouble uploading photos to the blog, and as soon as I got that straightened out, I had to emergency house-sit for relatives in the hospital (thankfully, everyone is okay now!) 
 This little boy was sold at Philadelphia Minituria. Mom has been working her way through a commissioned trio of Edwardian children from a customer's old photograph. The last, and most important of of the dolls will be an Edwardian little boy. The boy in this post isn't one of the commissioned dolls, but Mom made him as she was researching boy's suits for the commissioned doll.
Mom used a thin wool for the boy's suit, and he has real leather shoes like all her dolls. I took these photos before she had a chance to position him in his final pose, which is why his arms look a bit strange in the first photo!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Sugar and Spice and Everything Nice?

I was sure I had written a post about this doll, but after searching my blog a few times, I can't find any mention of her!
Mom loves dressing dolls with character. She likes her dolls faces to be craggy and saggy and full of emotion. She based this doll a little off memories of her grandmother. 

I love the juxtaposition of the grandmother's face with the very sweet pink and blue clothing. Did you notice that the flowered trim  on her robes is the same fabric (in a different colorway) as I used on the mouse chair?

I made the slippers for the grandmother. Mom always makes the leather shoes for her dolls, but for some reason she's not keen on making slippers. In this photo, you can also just glimpse the lace lining the inside edges of the robe.  Mom used a ton of lace on this doll, though most of it is not very visible!


Mom had very specific ideas about the type of 'breakfast' this grandmother was going to have. Originally she had even more pill bottles on the table... There's a little book of matches next to the cigarette carton. The clear glass at the back has a set of dentures.
The sole contribution I made to the tabletop items was the tea bag.  I posted a photo of it as a teaser for this doll over a year ago, then forgot to follow up. Oops!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

A Haven for Mice

This was going to be a Halloween post, but with everything going on then, I forgot to post it. 
 The chair started out as a commercial chair.  I don't trust myself to build furniture from scratch. I can usually put together kits, and I love to tweak ready made pieces, but building furniture intimidates me. In this case, it probably would have been easier to start from scratch. Once I'd stripped and pried everything apart, I only ended up keeping three piece or so from the original chair.

 I really went to town aging this chair.  I like to create a sort of history for things as I age them, so that every stain, tear, or worn spot has a reason for being there. I make up things like "someone read newspapers in this chair, and got the arms covered in black ink"or "a leaky attic roof dripped on this section." Making up little stories helps keep the wear and tear logical.

Next post, I'll show another of Mom's dolls.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

A New Painting for the Front Hall

I didn't buy much at Philadelphia, and most of what I got was supply stuff. But I did find a great painting at Henny Staring-Egberts table.  I bought it thinking it might go over the large enterance to the dining room (on the left), but the height of the opening meant that the painting ended up too close to the ceiling. But  it worked out well over the smaller door which leads from the main hall to the parlor.

Sorry this post is so short!

Friday, November 16, 2012

New Again

It's been an embarrassingly long time since I did a thorough clean of my dollhouse. I've done a bit of spot cleaning on the most delicate pieces- I've kept the silver semi-polished, oiled a few of the artisan pieces, but overall it was looking really dusty. The floors were the worst- they looked like they hadn't been cleaned in a hundred years...
But not any more! I finished up yesterday, and it's amazing what a difference it made. I want to rearrange a few of the rooms, but just getting the dust out, the wood oiled, and the silver shining made an enormous difference. 

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Putting the Cat Out

It's been a while since the last time I showed any of Mom's dolls. She's been too busy to make any recently. But I just found a bunch of photos of dolls she made last spring which I never shared. 

 Mom had this fellow in mind for months. He sold a few weeks ago at Philadelphia Miniaturia. I love the fabric she used for his nightshirt, but it's a nightmare to work with.

 I made his slippers! They're made from an old suede skirt, with real fur trim. His hairy legs were a first for Mom. The funny thing about his legs was that, since Mom hadn't added hair to legs before, she needed to make sure the glue wouldn't show. She ended up doing a trial on a commercial maid doll we use as a guinea pig. Now the poor thing has one very hairy leg and one normal one!
 I'm not sure where the pipe and candle came from, but the cat is from Falcon Miniatures.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Where I've Been (and a Few More Beaded Bags)

A lot has happened since the last time I posted. 

 First, there was this:
During Hurricane Sandy, we lost the entire top of one of the oldest trees in our yard. It also took out our power for about a week, and our phone/Internet was down even longer. Being out of power wouldn't have been so bad (we'd stocked up before the storm) but...
we were also supposed to have a table at Philadelphia Miniaturia! We were really afraid that we would have to cancel due flooding. Fortunately, the house stayed dry, and we  were able to go after all!  We left the house in trusted hands, and headed for the luxury of a hotel with electricity.
Unfortunately, I didn't bring my camera, so I don't have any photos of the show, but I'll post photos of the things we bought in another post.
We had a really good time at Philadelphia. Mom sold a bunch of her dolls, and I sold a few of my little things as well, including some of these beaded bags. I'm secretly dying to make more beaded bags -they're really addictive- but I'm going to restrain myself for a while, since they tend to take over my worktable and time!
 I'm generally not a big fan of purple. But the lavender bag (second from right) ended up as one of my favorites. It's difficult to see in the photo, but the design around the edge is backed by silver beads- the lavender is only in the center square.
The handbag on the far left was vaguely inspired by Gustav Klimt ( I was toying with the idea of making a Halloween costume based on his portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer) Somehow it ended up looking more steampunk but that just gives me an excuse to try again!
 My first post on the beaded bags is here, and the tutorial is here.