Clearview in the News

I came across this recent article in the London Daily Telegraph about Elaine Shaw's amazing Clearview house. I had not known that she literally tore up a Victorian house to create the Clearview - a lovely metaphor for all of us modern mini lovers!! You can read more about Elaine's creations on the MIAIM website, but it looks like it is currently under construction. Here are some photos that accompanied the article:

To get more of a Clearview fix, check out Linda Gavin's blog -- her photography of the house is stunning, as is her custom Elf Miniatures furniture, based on classic mid century pieces.

By the way, in the article Paris Renfroe is mentioned as one of Elaine Shaw's primary sources for furniture -- I am sure you will be able to spot some of his pieces in the pictures! I emailed with Paris recently, and he let me know he is busier than ever (good for us!). He is focusing on his 1:12 creations, partly as a result of the recession and the decreased need for his full-scale design work, and partly as a result of their incredible popularity, including his amazing Pods. He actually has been doing a lot of custom Pod work (sometimes up to five per customer!), and looks forward to continuing this work after he moves to Las Vegas from the Midwest. See more of what Paris has for sale here. I myself hope to do some custom pieces with Paris for my VERO (as a 40th birthday gift, perhaps?!).

Photos courtesy of the Daily Telegraph website

Roof in Winter

I know, not a typical holiday scene, but I was cleaning up in my doll house room and looked longingly at my very messy Lundby Stockholm and noted that the only uncluttered room was the roof!!

I have to say the concrete walls give an urban vibe, rather than beachy, but it is still a dream scene for some sun and fun. Happy holidays, all!

Credits: Folding chairs are Manor House Miniatures; cafe table and umbrella are Mighty World; flower sculpture on railing is AG Minis; sideboard is vintage Jean of West Germany; plant is an aquarium plant; pot is from a craft store; lounge chair is an eBay find; side table, koi tank, "candle" on cafe table, elephant, and pig are Re-ment; vase is a bead from Pubdoll; "rug" is a coaster. Accessories are Re-ment, eBay, vintage TOMY, Manor House Miniatures, AG Minis, and from France.

Re-ment: I have written about the Re-ment in this scene with a few exceptions. The koi tank is from Dogs Enjoy Life, #8 "New Year's Dogs," and is good in 1:12. The Pellegrino-type bottle is from Black Cat Italian Restaurant, #1, and is a bit large for 1:12. The pink panda keepsake box on the sideboard shelf is from Girl's Treasures, #9, and is good for 1:12.

A Different Kind of Tree

Each year, we buy a 12-15" potted herb like rosemary and have that as our holiday "tree," like this year. My youngest usually makes paper or pine cone decorations in his preschool, so those go on the tree, as do ribbons and other odds and ends.

I created this feather tree to illustrate another way people might celebrate and gather 'round in the holidays. The feather and its fixings came on a gift my husband received and I grabbed them, believing I might put them to some use. A craft store-bought pot holds the tree -- I used a silver marker to color it for a more festive look. My children's Legos came in handy for the presents under the tree. Which reminds me...I have some wrapping to do!

The cats have their little corner den to themselves -- their present is being able to frolic without supervision. I wonder if the cake is in jeopardy!

Credits: Couch and table are vintage VERO; trumpet and black cat stool are Nodameggaki; wallpaper is scrapbook paper; green floor trim is vintage Marx; marble head is my husband's; table with cake is vintage Puppenstuben; wall art is a postcard from France; hanging lights are from the Dolls House Emporium; clear chairs are Bozart; orange chair is vintage Bodo Hennig; rug, pillow, cat art, and lamp are AG Minis; side table is vintage Fisher Price; plant is from Lolly's; cat tower and cats are Playmobil City; orange stacking cubes, espresso maker and cups are Re-ment; cake is a Japanese eraser. Accessories are Re-ment, eBay finds, and from my children's collection!

Re-ment: I have written about the Re-ment in this scene with one exception. The book on the side table is from Primary School Stationery, #9, and is good as a coffee table book in 1:12.

Sail Away

I am getting accustomed to my new doll house room, and am acclimating to the lighting. So, this scene was more of an experimentation than anything. The ship in the background is a framed piece that I love, so I just propped it up. I realize it looks a bit odd, but haven't quite figured out screening the background. I think I might have a photographer friend take some nature shots and I can place those in scenes. Pubdoll did this with some recent scenes, and they looked great.

The Puppenstuben credenza came this week from eBay, and will soon join some matching pieces that Oese had for sale! Yipee! I always love how people can create interesting tableaux on side pieces like this, with artwork or other items. I don't do this in my real life, of course, but tried to simulate in mini. :)

Credits: "Rug" under credenza is scrapbook paper; Side chairs are vintage Bodo Hennig; credenza is vintage Puppenstuben; wall unit and table are vintage Modella; red chairs and Eames lounger are Reac; white couch and artwork on credenza is Bozart; magazine holder is Re-ment; cow throw and some of the books are handmade by Oese; light on wall unit is vintage German; rug is The House That Jacq Built; ship is from DRAP in Spain; ball clock is handmade by Pubdoll; lamp is vintage VERO; guitar is Nodameggakki. Accessories are Bozart, Playmobil, Re-ment, AG Minis, MAR Toys, and our local craft store.

Re-ment: I have written about the Re-ment in this scene with a few exceptions. The apple and tray on the table are from Megahouse Pop 'N Kitchen, # 9 and are good for 1:12. The candelabra is from Princess Tea Party, # 2 "The Princess' Late Night Tea," and is good for 1:12.

More Clues on the VERO

Little by little, I am gathering more clues and information on my VERO house. I saw a house on German eBay this week that looked very similar to my house, and communicated with the seller about it, who dates it to the 1970s. She also sent some additional pictures, which are unfortunately very small.

She wrote: The house looks really like mine ;) wow. It could be clue on the door, what I remember was a plastic glass on it. And after a long time ago we made new wallpaper on the walls, and I drew a pic of a house on the side of the house, but with new color and wallpaper you can renovate the house. I had a lot of fun when I was a child with this house, I just played with it on Christmas time. It's about 1 meters long I think. It was big to me. I´ve really no idea if it´s from "Vero." It looks almost like this from "Moritz Gottschalk." Upstairs I had the kitchen and the living room, and downstairs I had the bathroom and sleeping room.

It's interesting to hear about the door, so it seems very plausible that some plastic was used in the opening to simulate glass. The second floor of my house has a wall of windows, whereas this one does not, and in this way, her house does strongly resemble the Gottschalk house on the Puppenhausmuseum website. The door is very similar, as is the layout, but given the wallpapers and flooring were changed, it is difficult to tell what might be the same.

I felt a bit encouraged by this, but was even more happy to receive a very big clue from Annina, who pointed out this house on eBay now. Wow.

THIS looks like my house! The seller did not have too much to say on it, only that her father bought it for the family in the 70s or earlier, and they have been the only owners. It is apparent to me that the bathroom paper and flooring is not original, nor is the chimney in the same paper. In the listing, the seller states that her father set up an additional room on the roof with lighting, so perhaps that is why this appears here. The other wallpapers, however, offer some interesting clues. I do see some resemblance to my papers, although the flooring looks different.

It is great to see the corner of windows, although my window panes have a different design. And there is a lovely window box under the first floor window, confirming my hunch! The shutters and window frame look identical to mine, and I can see the type of windowpane used. Also, it does look like a terrace with a window is what used to be on the top floor, also verifying my hunch!! This may mean that I try to replicate this simple terrace design.

I was interested to see the pink flowered window drapes in this house, which resemble my blue ones. I did not think mine were original to the house, but perhaps they are! Seeing this door was revealing to me as well, since it looks like an exact match to mine, and there was a panel of glass on the inside -- that is clear in this picture.

Images are from eBay listing.

All in all, it is nice to see such a similar house, although it would be nice to have some verification on the maker and the year. Perhaps my house is from the 1970s, not 60s, and I do wonder about the variations on this particular style of house. This detective hunting has sparked my interest in other vintage German houses, especially the ones I am seeing on eBay. I have been compiling images and information and may put them in a future post.

UPDATE, 12/23/09: The "twin" to my VERO sold for a little over 11 Euros, a lot less than I paid for mine, but it was local pickup only. The other house sold for 30 Euros.

VERO Door and More

After some more vacuuming in and around the VERO house, I came to the front door. It was obviously covered with the same faux wood grain paper as the top rooms, and badly applied at that. Pulling off the sticky paper, I saw the real door emerge...

There is an opening in the middle that was likely covered in acetate or similar material to simulate glass. I assume the door is original -- it resembles the one on the Gottschalk house that I referenced when I originally bought my house.

For the most part, the door is in good condition, but there are stubborn spots of sticky glue on the front and back -- perhaps something decorative used to be applied there? I am not sure how I am going to get it off. I love the door handle, very typical of these houses.

I repaired the window frame to the left of the front door and placed it back. At some point, I may put acetate in there and perhaps put a window box underneath it. It looks like one used to be there.

It also appears as if a terrace or larger window frame was on the top -- not sure if I would do anything on that, not knowing what was really there.

In other news on my house, Annina kindly sent me some high resolution scans of her VERO house wallpapers. Now I need to find the right paper on which to print them. Her papers are lovely:

I may try to scan a good swath of my wallpaper, below. It somewhat resembles the paper in the top left room of this Gottschalk house, although I cannot tell for sure:

Speaking of paper, I quickly played around with some new scrapbook paper and created a corner nursery in the upstairs room. I bought some materials from Blick Art Supplies and set to work with my cutting knife to trim to the right sizes.

I also was able to purchase sheets of an acetate alternative for potential repair of the wall of windows -- that is for another day!!

Gottschalk house photos courtesy of Puppenhausmuseum website.

Credits: Crib is vintage Bodo Hennig; rocking horse and wardrobe are vintage German; rug and whirlygig in corner are AG Minis; table is vintage Lundby; chair is Reac; fabric in back is by Marimekko; accessories are Re-ment, Marx, Lolly's, Nodameggakki, and MAR Toys.

Anyone Else Watching This Gem?

I've been watching this wonderful vintage house on German eBay (currently 204 Euros!) and have noticed with interest how the price has been steadily increasing over the past few days. From the stenciling on the side, it looks like it is "Haus Carmen," and resembles the house styles on this page of the Puppenhaus Museum website. All quite lovely!

The window hanging below resembles one on this page of the Puppenhaus website.

Less than four hours to go on the auction if you are interested!

All pictures from the German eBay listing.

UPDATE, 12/3/09: The auction ended after 102 bids (!) at a healthy sale price of 697.67 Euros! That's about $1,052 in USD! Wow!

An Aerie, Below

What a weekend of cleaning! I have finally cleared out a corner of our basement for my houses and related possessions. Four homes have been living upstairs and now three have made their home in the new (old) room. The Villa Sibi had to stay upstairs for the time being. I also have a workroom where the VERO and Citadel live (I moved the vintage ranch out), since they are in active rehab.

I started organizing furniture and other items in a large shelving unit that we were using for assorted tools, wires, paint, you name it. Do others store their stuff like this? Usually mine is literally one on top of the other, but I am now trying to sort them so things are easier to find. My tiny items are still in little drawers or in bowls awaiting sorting.

I cleared off a shelf in my workroom for my growing collection of 1:144 and railroad houses, so I feel they are a bit safer than crammed in a box.

As I was clearing out, I made a little scene inspired by the K House roof being absent from the move (by the way, my little, apparently very strong daughter was the one who helped me carry the house on its somewhat perilous journey downstairs - unbelievable!). Wouldn't it be great to have a colorful little patio like this for a nice bite or perhaps to gaze at the stars (or bark at the moon)?!

The small house is actually a discontinued Re-ment item made only for the Japanese market - it is actually a Donut shop (see below), but I saw some minimalist potential!

Credits: Picnic table and chairs, dogs, elephant, light, "rug," small house and furnishings, laptop, and Thai wooden piece and stool by Re-ment; wooden cubes under house by Paris Renfroe; cafe table and chairs by Mighty World; plant below is an aquarium plant; pot is from a craft store; plant on patio is vintage TOMY; accessories are Re-ment and from my kids!

Re-ment: I have written about the Re-ment in this scene with some exceptions. The two dogs are from Dogs Enjoy Life, #8, and are a bit small for 1:12, but work. The Thai stool, wooden piece, and elephant are from the Room Series, # 3, and are also on the small side for 1:12, but can work nicely. The house is the Donut Shop, and works as a doll house in 1:12.


We're wired for anything today -- computer, bath, sleeping!

The scene started with the bath, which is actually a very inexpensive bowl from Target. I usually put greenery with my bath scenes, which is funny considering I have never had such a bath, but I guess a lot of what I set up is not true to life :)

The sink is totally makeshift! I used a lovely silver bowl received in a swap with Oese and then fashioned a faucet out of a vase from a Re-ment set. The white consoles and table are vintage VERO and were all purchased in two separate auctions from a German eBay seller for 1Euro each total (shipping was extra of course). Their condition is excellent, and they also came with a duplicate couch that I already have in my collection and seen here.

The Mac on the other side of the room was handmade by Lilushop on Etsy, and is amazing in its attention to detail. It's a bit large, but dominates in a good way! My obsession with the Re-ment My Favorite Stationery set continues with the globe and colored pencil set. They just make me smile.

By the way, I purchased some vintage Marx furniture from the Imagination doll house [fellow blogger Rebecca wrote about it back in March] and the pieces are too small, closer to 1/2 scale. I did use a piece as a "trellis" in the bath, but will likely not use the rest. Anyone interested in swapping? There are 20+ pieces and they are in good condition; some need small repairs. Let me know!

Credits: Bathtub is a bowl from Target; bath platform is from the Villa Sibi; plants are Playmobil City; green trellis is vintage Marx; towel rack, bed coverlet, and lamp are AG Minis; white consoles and white table are vintage VERO; mirror is vintage from eBay; cowhide rug is handmade by Oese; bed and vases are Bozart; artwork is from my VERO house; Mac is by Lilushop; cowhide chairs are Reac; globe, pencil set, and shampoo/conditioner are Re-ment. Accessories are Re-ment, Marimekko, and Manor House Miniatures.

Re-ment: I've written about the Re-ment in this scene with some exceptions. The globe and pencil set are from My Favorite Stationery, #7, and are good for 1:12. The shampoo, conditioner, soap on sink, and rubber duck are all from Puchi Drugstore, #1, and are a bit big for 1:12, but workable.

VERO Revealed

I have done a little extra detective work on my new VERO house, and think I have found some original wallpapers under the more recent wood grain papers. They are not in good condition, so I may cover them unless anyone has any bright ideas on some restorative touch-ups for water stains. There are also parts that unfortunately stripped down to the wood wall.

The worst room is the "fresco" room. The overlay of paint and paper is pretty bad, and I could only strip down to the walls themselves with just shreds and glimmers of what was original. What a shame! I am still very pleased to have the house, however. I think I will tackle the front door next.

On a house note, I wanted to share some snaps of two vintage 1/144 houses I just received in the mail. I love the details of the windows and patios!

When One Door Closes...

another one opens!

My VERO doll house from Germany has finally arrived at my door, just as I mailed out my vintage Brumberger Tudor, which sold on eBay -- the guilt of the VERO was somewhat alleviated and justified by the selling of the Brumberger :)

Acquiring this VERO house entailed a nail-biting bidding process, then a more hellish payment process (wiring funds, trying to locate seller's bank in Germany, etc.), and then what seemed like a endless shipping process. And, perhaps the most expensive package to ship that I have ever received.

Alas, it is here, and quite dirty! After I made myself a nice cappuccino...

I proceeded to carefully unpack it down in my work room in the basement. Here are some pictures of how I "birthed" it from its box, little by little:

Now some shots of what I found:

It looks like the blue and yellow flooring is original to the house. I don't mind them, but they are not in the best shape. One of the downstairs rooms looks like it is filled with ancient frescoes, I swear -- layers of paper and then a cobalt paint. I have started stripping some of the paper and have cleaned the ceilings, which were filthy. The windows on the top corner of the house is actually very thick plastic and it is ripped in places. Not quite sure how to replace it altogether or fix those tears. Any ideas? It's such a nice part of the house.

I set up a quick scene, too. As cool as the wall storage panel in my work room is, it is visible in the background. So, I put up an "awning" of some Marimekko fabric to create more of an outdoor space and hide it a bit. There is likely a large window missing from this part of the house.

Lots more work to do here...!

Credits: Couch is vintage VERO; boomerang table, chairs, and two small consoles are vintage German; coffee table is Ryan's Room; Barcelona chair is Reac; wall painting is original to the house (or at least to this house); ball clock handmade by Pubdoll; lamp and wastebasket are AG Minis; plant near Barcelona chair is vintage TOMY; plant on patio, small frog sculpture, bowl and fruit, and potted plant on coffee table are Re-ment; tea service is vintage MAR Toys; rug is by The House That Jacq Built; fabric "awning" is Marimekko fabric. Accessories are MAR Toys and from France.

Re-ment: I have written about the Re-ment in this scene with two exceptions. The frog scuplture and potted plant on patio are from the Room series, #3 and are a bit small for 1:12, but work.


Yes, it is a little workroom for a Mom's hobby :) Inspiration for this type of scene is always present! I decided to use this room off the main living area in the K House, which I have adopted as the default garage. I am trying to use all the rooms in the house, so now I have officially done this!

I must acknowledge the amazing custom work of Susan Karatjas of SDK Miniatures, as seen in the wonderful 1/144 white modern couch and chair. Her attention to detail is amazing. I also bought a 1/144 room box and shelving unit, but need to put them together (with large amounts of time for tiny, tiny work)! Susan is just one of the many reasons to go to the Philadelphia Miniatura this weekend, and I am going to try to get there.

I found the N scale yellow house on eBay -- it is by Bachmann and is made for railroad scenes. I was looking for a while for a modern structure (I love vintage ones too), and think this looks pretty neat.

Credits: Figures and clear chair are Bozart; N scale house is by Bachmann; 1/144 white couch and chair are by SDK Miniatures; curved couch and dollhouse table are vintage Fairline; tub stool is vintage Lundby; shelving unit is made of two vintage Fisher Price beds; blue wall covering is scrapbook paper from Target; dog is from my daughter's collection; pillows are handmade by Tarkus; green and orange stools are Lil' Bratz; accessories are Re-ment, Elf Miniatures, and Mighty World.

Re-ment: I have written about the Re-ment in the scene with the exception of a few things. The two pink filing boxes are from Beauty Storage #10 "Pretty Placement," and are good for 1:12. The flowered three drawer box is from I Love Kyoto #7 "Candy Treasure Box," and is good for 1:12. The little stool on the bottom shelf is from Dogs Enjoy Life, #8, and is too small for 1:12, but can be re-purposed.

Mini Meaning

Not that I need more excuses to like minis...but my nine-year old daughter and I are able to have fun and connect through them. I think she is genuinely curious about my hobby, she knows how important it is to me, and in general is pretty careful with my things.

I stayed home from work on Monday since I fell down a flight of stairs (don't ask, it's been a crazy few weeks), and she was feeling a bit punky, so we stayed home together. I was cleaning up the carnage from three different scenes, and she suggested she do a scene in the Villa Sibi, but NOT with too much of my help. It's hard to resist my control freak mechanism, but I did indeed let go and she set up here very own scene!

I did not move anything around or switch things out, even though I was tempted. :)

Credits: Could I pass on credits since this is not my scene? I feel very lazy tonight. White sectional couches by Bozart; wooden stool is made of two salt cellars (OK, that had some help from me); "rug" is origami paper; Eames elephant is Reac; dog is my daughter's; guitar and piano (check out her sheet music!) are Nodameggaki; Hello Kitty light is Sanrio; Easter Island head is from Barnes & Noble; plant and small round table by dog are Re-ment; table and chairs are vintage Topper Toys; Mini Sibi is handmade by Oese; Mini Sibi table and Easter Island head pedestal are from the Villa Sibi; and artwork is gift packaging. Accessories are Re-ment, our local toy store, Manor House Miniatures, and handmade by Oese.

Re-ment: I have written about the Re-ment in this scene with a few exceptions. The place mat, knife, and cups on the table are from Megahouse Pop 'n Kitchen #5 and are all good for 1:12. The chair and light in the Mini Sibi are from Beauty Storage #10, "Pretty Placement" and are good as minis in 1:12!

Skeleton Crew

I find it very hard to pass by the $1 bin at Target (or walking out of there without spending $75 on things I did not come there to buy). I recently saw these skeleton party favors and while not a big fan of Halloween, thought I might put them to use in one of my houses.

A $1 package of scrapbook paper also made it into my bag, so that has shown up as a "carpet" for these carousing and contemplative skeletons and their spider friends.

Credits: Skeletons and pumpkin "carpet" are from Target; orange chairs and couch are vintage Bodo Hennig; guitar is Nodamegakki; Nelson couch and black lounger are Reac; fuzzy cabinet, orange flower side table, and bar are AG Minis; gold ball chair is Lil' Bratz; white round table is vintage Lundby; blond wood coffee table is vintage VERO; checkers table and striped lamp are Bozart; orange dresser, tiny "egg" stools by fireplace, chicken phone, and s'mores set are Re-ment; large orange vase is vintage Fiestaware; small yellow and white chairs are vintage Fisher Price; Ibsen book is handmade by Oese; orange polka dot pillows are handmade by Tarkus. Accessories are from my kids, Re-ment, Manor House Miniatures, Ryan's Room, and Mighty World.

Re-ment: I have written about the Re-ment in this scene with a few exceptions. The s'mores set is from Mini Sweets #10, and is a bit large for 1:12, but works. The fish-shaped wine bottles on the bar are from Black Cat Italian Restaurant # 6 and they are good as large bottles in 1:12. The Pellegrino bottle is also from Black Cat Italian Restaurant #1, and is good for 1:12. The orange dresser also comes in white and is fine as a large piece in 1:12. It also comes with a workable lamp, which I have not used here.

Typing Time

Seeing this typewriter reminds me of being in high school (before the age of personal computers) and typing out my papers. I kind of miss the simplicity, but appreciate the (simple) complexity of today's conveniences. :) I am motivated by color, so the yellow and black set the tone for the scene, hence Mr. Penguin had to make an appearance!

You'll see some photos with a wall covering, some without. I decided to put up some strips of origami paper, mostly to see if I could succeed in hiding the outlets!

Pubdoll is a wonder, and has created this beautiful ball clock for me. It is amazing and looks fantastic. I am so pleased to have it. Now I need a 1:1 one!

Credits: Bed by AG Minis; Eames elephant by Reac; table is vintage Bodo Hennig; chair and lamp are vintage German; small table is vintage Petit Princess; typewriter, coffee pot, storage unit, plant, crayons and sketch book are Re-ment; "wallpaper" are strips of origami paper; artwork is a tarot card; cowhide rug and books are by Oese; ball clock by Pubdoll; pillow is by Tarkus; small instrument is by Nodamegakki; vases at foot of bed are Bozart; glass vases are beads; clear shell was a freebie with a Re-ment order. Accessories are Re-ment, AG Minis, Bozart, Mighty World, and our local toy store.

Re-ment: I've written about the Re-ment in this scene with a few exceptions. Coffee pot is from Black Cat Italian Restaurant #5, and is good for 1:12. The storage unit is from Storage Beauty #10, "Display Shelf," and is also good for 1:12. The plant is from the Room series # 3, and is a bit on the small size, but good for 1:12. The plant pot is actually a cooking stand for a pot from I Love Kyoto #1 "Traditional Conger Cuisine." It works for 1:12 as I have re-purposed it. The typewriter is from one of my favorite sets, Natalie's French Sundries # 5, and works for 1:12. The crayons and sketch pad are from another terrific set, My Favorite Stationery # 8, and are good for 1:12.

But I Couldn't Help It!

Yes, I have purchased doll house #8, this time from German eBay (shipping = ouch). I don't yet have a great picture of it, just this tiny one from the listing**:

I truly love this style of house. It is definitely German, likely from the 1960s. The seller could not tell me of any markings on the house, but said it was from the DDR (former East Germany) and rare, but lots of sellers say their items are rare, so not sure. I could see it looks like it needs some rehab, but hopefully is not in too bad a shape. I do not yet have a copy of Zillner's International guide, so I don't have a quick reference to identify it, but will do more looking.

I did see on the Puppenhaus Museum website a Gottschalk house that is not the same, but looks a bit similar:

(photo courtesy of Puppenhaus Museum website)

My challenge, as always, is to find space for it. Right now, we are considering selling our piano (which came with our house) in our living room to create a distinct area for display and storage that looks attractive. But that takes time and money, so for now, the house may stay boxed up after it arrives to me. I have not purchased a house from overseas, so I am a bit nervous about it arriving in one piece! I am also a bit frightened of the work that may need to be done, and the time I do not have to accomplish it!

**10/12/09:Oese sent me pictures from the eBay listing that are larger -- thanks, Oese!

Brown Time

Well, I really mean "Down Time," but the scene ended up with lots of brown/yellow/creme hues. The anchor of the room is a new (but vintage) shelving piece I scored from German eBay. The round table came with it, as did a smaller rectangular table I did not use.

The piece is a nice way to show off some nice handmade books by Oese, as well as some smaller Re-ment items on the bottom shelf that took a lot of patience to situate properly (the bird candle kept falling down). The coffee table is a Re-ment invention -- a tray from the Lovely Chocolate series (received in a swap with Tarkus) atop a shelving box. Now there's a thought...edible furniture!!! :)

UPDATE, 10/10/09: While looking through the Puppenhaus Museum website, I came across a few pictures of Modella furniture, and saw this picture, which leads me to believe the shelving unit* is indeed Modella (photo courtesy of the Puppenhaus website):

Credits: Striped console by Paris Renfroe; abstract artwork and white poof are Lundby; white chair is Reac; standing light and brown hanging light are AG Minis; daisy stand and white couch are Bozart; dog is from a game called "Lucky Puppy Math"; shelving unit and round table are vintage German eBay finds (Modella?)*; gold drum chair is vintage Petite Princess; antique marble bust is my husband's; coffee table and stand, potted plant, and tea service are Re-ment; "rug" is a paper coaster; long grasses are aquarium plants; white "rug" is gift wrapping; lucite chairs are an eBay find; and "Drink" wall art is a cork coaster. Accessories are Re-ment, Manor House Miniatures, Pain d'epices; MAR Toys, and hobby shop items.

Re-ment: I have written about the Re-ment in this scene with a few exceptions. The coffee table is from Lovely Chocolate, # 9, and is a bit large for 1:12, but can be re-purposed. The bird candle is from Beauty Storage, # 3, and is good for 1:12. The two jars are from Is Dinner Ready Yet?, #9, "Fried Dumplings," and are good for 1:12 as condiment jars or display. The teapot is from the Megahouse set "Cafe de Cake," # 6, and is a bit large, but good for 1:12.

Creative Chaos

Don't we all want the work + play combo? I know I do. I guess when I think of that concept, I envision a thirtysomething-type deal, where these cool dudes work in an ad firm and play basketball during meetings. I forget if they brought their pets to work, but that would just about complete the vision.

This is one of the most chaotic scenes I have created -- there's lots of stuff in here, perhaps because I decided to create different work/play spaces: the eating space with coffee and treats; three workstations: Hello Kitty table; tulip table; and low coffee table with couch as chair; and the middle for endless play!

If anyone has a job like this, more power to you!! :)

Endnote: I bought a new lens for my camera, so I am happy camper!

Credits: White couches, striped lamp, and Hello Kitty desk by Bozart; glass coffee table by Ryan's Room; orange chair and white tulip table are vintage Bodo Hennig; office chair, black lounger and ottoman, and tulip chairs are Reac; two mini dollhouse scenes/figures on floor are vintage Galoob Toys; "rugs" are origami paper; cow rug, books, and some of the pencils are by Oese; Hello Kitty desk lamp and box next to desk are Sanrio; wood block table and blond coffee table are Paris Renfroe; orange side table is AG Minis; artwork is a postcard from France; lots of accessories by Re-ment, tech decks, our local toy store, Mighty World, and Pain d'epices.

Re-ment: I have written about the Re-ment in the scene with a few exceptions. The green paint set is from My Favorite Stationery, #2, and is good for 1:12. The pencil sharpener, yellow pencil box, notebook on white table, and ruler and pen in pencil cup on Hello Kitty table are all from My Favorite Stationery, #10, and are all good fr 1:12. The detail on these sets isamazing, and I wish I had more of them! The strawberry clock on the white table is from Merry Strawberry, #9, and is good for 1:12. The white laptop is from the Room set, #2, and is good for 1:12.

Shared Space

Full disclosure: photos taken with my cell phone. Apologies in advance for the poor quality.My camera broke and I am still working out the solution, but couldn't keep away. :)

My brother and I are three years apart and our bedrooms were usually in close proximity while growing up. The older siblings tended to get the larger rooms, or shared a very large attic space. When we moved into a brownstone in New York City, we shared the top floor, and our rooms were separated by a bathroom. The room setup in the Kaleidoscope House inspired me to think back to those years.

His room was usually pretty tidy, but he had a weakness for bringing food upstairs. To this day, we make fun of him for his love of Pop Tarts and fruit (eaten together), and peanut butter. He is a big snacker, and at 6'5" had all sorts of excuses to keep his body fed on an hourly basis.

Me, on the other hand...I loved to sit and play with office supplies. I had lots of knickknacks and wrote letters all the time. My room was usually messy, but I couldn't bring myself to mess up the scene!

Speaking of's been great to do a few swaps with Oese and now Tarkus! Oese made some wonderful books and pencils and also sent a lucite box and other mini treats. Tarkus and I swapped Re-ment and she threw in a few of her handmade pillows! Lovely!

Credits: Yellow beds, bathroom set, and toy chest (actually a refrigerator) are vintage Fisher Price; red chair is vintage Fairline; red and white dresser is vintage Jean of West Germany; plant is from Lolly's; egg table, fish bowl, peanut butter, Pop Tarts, pink clock, rocking horse on top shelf, "Happy" lunch box, brother's side table, bathroom back splash, and sewing items on toy chest are Re-ment; Easter Island head is from Barnes & Noble; speaker is vintage TOMY; bowling pins are Japanese toy erasers; red striped bed cover and green bath mat are IKEA; purple flower bed cover, flowers and silver box on top shelf, pouf, magazine holder, and lamps are AG Minis; pink vanity and pink cup are Sanrio; violet desk and matching lamp and bathroom mirror are vintage eBay finds; bedside table is vintage German; bird pillow is by Tarkus; accessories are AG Minis, TOMY, Pain d'epices, Re-ment, KidRobot, and my kids!

Re-ment: I have written about the Re-ment in this scene with a few exceptions. The stamp set is from Girls in the City, #3 "Accounting Essentials," and is good for 1:12. The sewing items are from the Primary School Stationery set, #10, and is good for 1:12. The Pop Tart is from Fun Meals, #7, "Morning Grab 'n Go," and is a bit large for 1:12, but works. The rocking horse is from Princess Tea Party, #5 "A Rocking Horse Cutlery Tree," and is good as a toy in 1:12. The "Happy" lunch box is from American Kitchen, #5 "Fun at the Cafeteria," and is too large as a lunch box in 1:12, but can be re-purposed as a small suitcase.

Less than Picture Perfect - A Small Call for Help!

The weekend was going great until...I dropped and broke our very nice Nikon D40 camera!! I set up a new scene in the Kaleidoscope House using three rooms (read= time+ effort) and ran to get the camera off a top shelf (so the kids don't paw it) and boom! It came crashing down (lens first) out of its bag and onto our computer desk and then made a resounding thump on our wood floor. The automatic focus seems very broken and it now makes a horrible-you-just-mangled-me-inside noise. It still takes pictures (when switched to manual), but they are not in focus at all.

The camera is my friend, my buddy, my essential item to document and share my hobby, so I am royally upset at myself for doing something so stupid. I am working to get it repaired, but will likely be without a camera (and blog material) for a couple of weeks.

The light at the end of the tunnel emerges, however, through the vision and patience of my dear hubby, who said, "You know, with the kids and all, we should have a smaller, less expensive camera anyway, and who wants to lug that thing around on bike rides or other such activity?" Smart fellow.

SO...does anyone in this talented community have recommendations on a good, not-so-pricey ($200 or so) digital camera that works really well for you and your mini scenes? My priorities for a new camera would be the ability to focus on those (very) small details and have it produce photos well in natural light. I'd really appreciate any words of wisdom as I continue to research the options to remedy my klutzy move! Thanks!

UPDATE, 10/2/09 - I brought my camera to a camera shop and they let me know I had only broken the lens, not the camera. So, I decided to purchase a used lens for under $100. Problem solved (for now)!

Image from