Welcome to my 'other blog' the one that explores my crafty side. I have been a maker of 'things' since childhood. By nature I'm creative. I still love to write, and you can click on this link to visit my blog: Hanging On My Word, which is where I indulge in the thought and word side. Although a teacher by profession, I don't offer tutorials. This is my showcase of projects I like to share. So pull aside the curtains and let's begin (I'm a bit theatrical too!).

Thursday, 10 May 2012

Life Below Stairs

Following on from the last post ‘Viewing by Appointment’ which featured my 1:12 scale Dolls’ House, I’ve homed in on the kitchen in order to show a little more detail. Over at Sepia Saturday, there’s a photo prompt of Queen Victoria’s kitchen, with a magnificent kitchen range. I don’t think she personally actually did any food preparation there though. Unfortunately these photographs of my old dolls’ house were taken before the benefit of a digital camera and as I no longer have the Dolls’ House, I can’t reproduce them. I’m sorry they’re a little grainy, but I hope you enjoy looking at the Cook of the household and her rather cluttered kitchen. The kitchen range was made from a kit which I had to glue together and paint with modelling enamel. It was much easier to make it appear shiny, than real life ranges, which some poor kitchen maid would have spent her time blackleading.

The kitchen sink was a Belfast Sink on brick piers and I remember cost quite a bit at the time.

'Mrs Bridges’ was made from a porcelain doll kit. The head, arms and feet were ceramic and the body and clothes pattern pieces had to be sewn, stuffed, hemmed  or finished otherwise appropriately. The cat was there to catch the mice of course.

This was probably the room I most enjoyed putting together, because of all the tiny details. Some items I bought and others I made. I also made use of ‘found’ items, like the perfume sample phials which beacme storage jars. Living in Germany, close to the Dutch border, at the time, also meant I could take advantage of tiny items found in the shops there, such as the coffee grinder.

And just for fun. Here are some kitchens courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

The first is from the Museum Boxenstop, Tübingen and shows quite a large doll’s kitchen, probably based on the Nürenberg Kitchens were designed as ‘teaching aid’.

Photograph by Markus Nägele.) CC-BY-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)]
                                                    One from Strasbourg: The Musée Alsacien 
By Christina from Victoria, Canada (Musée Alsacien) [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)],
           A 1928 Dolls’ House kitchen from the Österreichisches Museum für Volkskunde
By Photo: Andreas Praefcke (Own work) Public domain
                          And from the German National Toy Museum, Nürenberg
 I, Sailko CC-BY-SA-3.0 (www.creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)] 
Do go and visit this week’s Sepia Saturday to see what the prompt has generated in contributors’ kitchens across the world.

Thursday, 3 May 2012

Viewing By Appointment

When the theme of ‘Small’ was mooted over at Sepia Saturday, I knew I’d have to feature my old dolls' house in a post. I’ve always been fascinated by the world of miniatures, and we were posted to Germany in 1982, my husband made this 1:12 scale dolls' house for me as a joint project. We would later visit dolls house fairs in UK when I was really in the grip of this hobby. I made many of the tiny objects and pieces of furniture, including the dolls (the kits had the heads and limbs and the rest was my own work. Jean Greenhowe’s book., “Making a Victorian Dollshouse” gave me lots of ideas. I wish I’d kept the book, especially when I see the price it demands on ebay.

I also made a miniature shop, which now reminds me of the ones I featured in ‘Open All Hours’ in my other blog.

The dolls' house didn’t move with us to Lanzarote, but I did keep the dolls and most of the small items and these are being looked after by my son until the grandchildren can appreciate them. My daughter had a Lundby dolls' house as a child, but I think that was passed on to someone else, just like my lovely bungalow, (handmade by my parents’ friend) which I spent hours playing with.

Ten years ago I found a rather battered dolls house at a huge car boot sale and bought it for £20 for my great niece. I renovated it with wallpaper, roof paper, etc. and fitted it with carpets. These photos show the fun the family had with it that Christmas.  Our niece and my sister-in-law were itching to get in on the act. On my other blog, you can see some more miniature worlds, in U.K. and Lanzarote.

See what other Sepia Saturday participants have come up with after seeing the prompt below.