Friday, 19 December 2014
Wednesday, 17 December 2014
Friday, 5 December 2014
When I have fun building a certain house I tend to want to make another. 'Cobweb Cottage' was such a pleasure to make I just had to build another similar and luckily a friend of mine said she would like the new cottage. So this is 'Rookery Cottage' (I saw the name somewhere on my travels and thought what a good name for a dolls house it was!) I have used the egg box stone again like on Cobweb (such fun cutting out bits of cardboard!) and then 'dirtied' the plaster inside and out with various paint washes.
Oh dear! It's December already and I haven't posted anything on my blog since October. I really don't know where the time goes.... Anyway, here is 'Smuggler's Cottage'. It is a 1/12th scale cottage and instead of plastering on the inside I have used wallpapers which I think makes it feel a bit more cosy. The weatherboarding on the front is very similar in style to cottages on the south coast, especially places like Rye where this is a long history of smuggling.
Monday, 27 October 2014
Every so often I like to have a change from making my seaside cottages. This is 'Cobweb Cottage', a simple two roomed cottage ideal for the witch who is looking for a new home. There are little patches of old stonework showing through the plaster and the walls are a bit stained but it's very cosy inside with a warm stove and hearth to sit at.
We haven't seen Sam for quite a while. I think he's been busy over the summer on his boat. But here he is, back on dry land again and looking for a cosy cottage for the winter. 'Tide's Reach' might be just the thing he's looking for. Two rooms and there's even a small area at the front where he could sit and mend his nets and watch the world go by.
I love building this style of seaside bungalow! I have used green for the trim on previous ones but decided to try a pale blue this time and it does look quite seasidey (if there is such a word!) This version is also slightly wider than the original which gives a little more space inside for furnishing.
Sunday, 19 October 2014
I know I said in my last blog entry that I like building smaller cottages but I really wanted to make something a bit bigger for a change so here is 'The Lodge'. It has four rooms and two attic rooms too and is wallpapered inside rather than being plastered. It is fully lit so it is ready for a new family to move in to. Great as a Christmas present!
These two little structures were made as a special order for a customer who wanted to add them to her growing street of seaside properties. They were great fun to make - I do like smaller projects more than bigger houses! So much easier to move around on my workbench!
Wednesday, 24 September 2014
I know it's a bit early yet to be thinking about Christmas but if you are one of those organised people already compiling a Christmas list for Santa here is suggestion for top of that list.
‘THE BIG BOOK OF A MINIATURE HOUSE’ by Christine-Lea Frisoni
I first stumbled upon Christine-Lea Frisoni on the internet some years ago via her blog. I admit to spending hours looking at the photos of her wonderful houses on the computer so imagine my delight when I heard that she was publishing a book! Only trouble was it was all in French. My French dates back to school days so is a bit rusty to say the least but I ordered a copy of the book, waited impatiently for it to arrive and when it did it very quickly became my favourite source for dolls house information. No matter that I couldn’t read the words – I just absorbed the pictures instead!
That was a few years ago. When I saw on the internet recently that an English version of the book was to be published I was thrilled. Now I could read as well as look! And when my copy of this new edition arrived I was enthralled once again by this artist’s skills at dolls house building.
‘The Big Book of a Miniature House’ is exactly what it says – it is a lovely BIG book full of illustrations and the most wonderful photographs so well done it really is impossible to tell whether the images are real or 1/12th scale.
The first chapter of the book concentrates on tools, materials and techniques. These are all laid out very clearly so it is easy to see the equipment needed to start on the building project. Then we move on to constructing the basic house around which the book is based with cutting layouts and step by step guides to the building process. Once the shell of the house has been built the book then concentrates on decoration which is where the real fun begins with lots of new techniques and ideas to be learned covering each room in the house in great detail (I think the kitchen is the best room!)
At the end of the book there is a section on making the furniture and accessories for your house (right down to making roses) along with information on paint techniques. Lastly there is a gallery of Christine-Lea’s past houses – all beautiful of course and to be aspired to!
I think the most obvious thing about this lovely book is that it has been written by an enthusiast. Christine-Lea clearly loves the design and building of houses and all that goes into them and this shines through in how the book is presented. This edition has a wealth of information for both the experienced collector and the beginner and would make the most wonderful Christmas gift for anyone who has ever thought about owning a dolls house.
The Big Book of a Miniature House by Léa Frisoni, translated by Stephen Haynes, published by GMC (£25.00, available from www.thegmcgroup.com)
Tuesday, 16 September 2014
I was in the mood to build another 24th scale property after Dawn's house so I made September Cottage. Just a simple two roomed cottage for a fisherman with room at the front for a little seat where he can mend his fishing nets or just watch the world go by.
A while ago I was contacted by a lady who wanted a 24th scale house building based on the one where she was born. This was the result. There are two large room downstairs and three upstairs. I think it's the biggest 24th scale I have worked on and it was very satisfying when it was completed. The little fisherman in the doorway was made by the very clever Sue Emsell.
This recent house was a bit bigger than my usual one up/one down cottages and it was nice to have a big project to work on for a change. It has four rooms inside with a staircase and interconnecting doors so it feels more like a real house inside than a dolls house.
Wednesday, 13 August 2014
After my experiment with brickwork on my last house I decided to go back to the tried and tested plaster for my latest seaside cottage. This little 1/12th scale house would make an ideal home for a fisherman or it could be a holiday let or perhaps a seaside tearoom/gift shop. A great way of making the summer last that little bit longer if you add this to your collection!
Thursday, 10 July 2014
My friend Brenda has always wanted a tree house. I always had the idea of building one. When we recently bought a new sink complete with huge amounts of lovely strong cardboard I realised that the time had finally come to have a go at creating this woodland home. I made it completely out of cardboard, paper, plaster and a bit of air drying clay all on a plywood base for stability. It's roughly 1/12th scale with just two rooms inside. I had such a lot of fun making it - getting very sticky, dirty and covered in plaster - I may well make another one.
I bought an old house front at the York Fair - I liked the bay window - then I built the house to go with it. This is the result. I even wallpapered the insides - unusual for me these days as plastering is so much quicker!
Friday, 4 July 2014
I'm very late posting this photo of my table at the York Fair in June - I can only apologise for my laziness! York is a lovely fair - lots of interesting stalls and a very nice venue. It was my first time there as a seller and I really enjoyed the day meeting lots of people and seeing old friends too. My table was opposite The Miniature Scene of York's table and they had a wonderful display of handmade items. I had several favourite things I planned to buy but as the day went on each item was sold - great for The Miniature Scene of course but not so good for me! Will have to be quicker next time!
Wednesday, 28 May 2014
This is a photo of my table at the Kensington Dolls House Festival, taken just before the show opened on the Saturday. It was a busy weekend - Saturday was very crowded with lots of people interested in my houses. Sunday was quieter - the weather worked against us I think - it was just too sunny for people to be coming to an indoor event. I did have a chance to look round the other tables and there were some gorgeous things available - some very expensive and some more affordable! It's a wonderful fair so if you ever get a chance to visit please do - you won't be disappointed!
Tuesday, 20 May 2014
Tuesday, 15 April 2014
I was asked by the organiser of the wonderful Kensington Dolls House Festival if I would like a table there in May. Not an offer you can easily refuse! I have been busy building for the past few weeks and now that I have seen the floor plans for the fair and have located where 'Cottage Creations' will be it all seems very real and coming very quickly! I hope lots of people will come and say hello over the weekend of 17th and 18th May. It's a wonderful fair with lots and lots of lovely things to look at and drool over. It is well worth a visit!
This was a recent special order for a customer who already owned one of my shops and wanted another to stand alongside it. As she hadn't fully decided on colours for the windows and trim I left those bare for her to paint herself and just plastered and painted the rest of the building.
Friday, 21 March 2014
This was my table at the dolls house in fair Winsford last month. The fair was in a new venue - the smart new leisure centre - and it was a lovely big hall, plenty of room and lots of light. Unfortunately people just didn't seem in the mood to spend. It was also a very sunny day so I think a lot of people went out for the day rather than visiting the fair. Still, it was nice to see the other traders and have time for a chat and I did manage to sell a few bits and pieces of furniture so I have created some space in my work room!
Wednesday, 19 March 2014
I bought a family of 1/12th scale handmade dolls at a recent fair and thought they would suit a 1950's style house. I also thought it would be nice if they were on holiday so I got out my favourite ever dolls house book by Caroline Hamilton to look at her wonderful Sea View' seaside chalet and decided I would try to make one myself. This little holiday home is the result. I had such fun building this house. It's only 16 inches wide and 10 inches deep so takes up no room at all but it's still big enough to give a true taste of the seaside.
Tuesday, 18 March 2014
I know it's still not quite warm enough for trips to the beach but I couldn't resist making this little beach hut. We change the clocks at the end of this month in the UK for British Summertime. Hope someone has told the weather that it's supposed to be 'summertime'!
Tuesday, 4 March 2014
Tuesday, 18 February 2014
'Pebble Cottage' is another newly built 1/12th scale house which I will be taking to the dolls house fair in Winsford on Saturday. This little house is just a basic one up and one down dwelling - ideal for a fisherman or perhaps as a tiny holiday home.
This is a newly completed 1/12th scale house called 'Harbour Cottage'. With its weather boarded front it could be somewhere in Kent - we saw lots of houses of this style when we were down in the South East visiting relatives. Sticking the weather boarding was a time consuming job but strangely very relaxing!
Sunday, 9 February 2014
This is Catkin Cottage, a 1/12th scale house completed just last week. I felt like doing something different to my usual seaside cottages and this is the result. I find adding all the timbers to the outside then plastering very satisfying (sad I know!) and I also enjoy doing the painting too. For sale on ebay right now or if you look at my Cottage Creations page on facebook you can buy it a bit cheaper!
Here's Bill the window cleaner busy cleaning the windows of Sea View ready for the new occupants to move in. Sea View is a 1/12th scale property with two main rooms and the additional scullery space to one side. Of course that doesn't have to be a scullery - I know some people worry about the bathroom facilities (or lack of!) in my little cottages so that extra room could house a downstairs toilet to make life more comfortable.
Wednesday, 29 January 2014
Tuesday, 28 January 2014
This project started life as a single storey 1/12th scale shop made by Sid Cooke. I stripped all the old wallpaper out of the shop started building. I added a first floor and an attic so now there's plenty of living accommodation for the shopkeeper. I thought this would make a lovely 'shabby chic' shop or perhaps a seaside tea room.