Saturday, 29 October 2016

Website update.....

I've been really busy over the past few days, photographing and uploading new toys and kits to the website.

Here's a sneak preview of what's available.... click on the links under the photos to go to the website listings.

Complete Kit for Parisian Toy Kiosk
Complete Kit for Toy Doll in Trunk with Accessories

Personal Accessories with Boxes (1/24th scale)

1890s Dress Up Animals Kit

Vintage Litho Pullalong Toys Kit

Set of 6 vintage litho rocking toys kit
Fairy Tale Toy Theatre Kit 

Jumeau style dressed doll's dolls

Shabby Chic doll's dolls
More to follow over the coming weeks when we re-open the Miniature Christmas shop.
Happy browsing..... 

Friday, 28 October 2016

Better late than never.... CMW debrief!

I've been very remiss in posting about the CMW event last week.  Having been working on the planning and preparation for the past 18 months, then the inevitable frantic flurry of activity in the days leading up to it, I don't really feel my feet have touched the ground since we got home.

Well... what can I say? 

The organisation, by Pat, Sue and Louise, both before and during the event was nothing short of perfect.  The new venue in the village of Eye was warm and welcoming, with plenty of space for tutors, students and their assorted paraphernalia.  

Parking was free and plentiful. 

Chairs were padded and comfortable.

The lovely ladies of Eye WI produced delicious lunches on Saturday and Sunday and there was as much tea and coffee as anyone could wish for. 

We three arrived in Cambridgeshire a day early and headed for Ferry Meadows Caravan Club Site which is probably the best campsite we've ever visited as it's sited within a large country park, with more walks than you can shake a stick at.  Small Dog gave it a firm paws up and thoroughly enjoyed a different lakeside walk every day, even spotting a heron to cross off her twitching list.

My Friday evening workshop was attended by five lovely ladies.... and one very intrepid gent.  Who only happened to be the editor of Doll's House & Miniature Scene magazine, Carl Golder.

No pressure there then! 

He happily admitted to being a complete beginner and threw himself into the class with great enthusiasm.... although his plans to 'live tweet' the session were abandoned due to glue.

Everything Alice workshop - boxed picture blocks, playset with scenery and characters and boxed paper dolls 

My group on Friday evening.... getting stuck in!
On Saturday, my most ambitious workshop, the Parisian Toy Kiosk, which had been designed in collaboration with the very personable Nick Day, of Treacle Lane.  As he was also teaching two days of workshops it was lovely to finally meet him in person, having been in email contact for almost two years.  

Four determined students arrived bright and early to make a start and worked right through the day, all completing the construction before heading home with a variety of toy kits to fill their kiosks.

Toy Kiosk kit complete will a variety of toys and games

Sunday, and the final session..... a Jumeau style toy doll in wooden trunk with accessories. So many different techniques and skills, from micro wigmaking to mini rosemaking, and all were tackled with passion and humour.  Again, everyone finished their project and a good time was had by all.

Jumeau style toy doll's doll in wooden trunk

Accessories include silk dress on hanger, silk rose posy, silk and lace hat and illustrated fan

I will admit that by the time PP collected me on Sunday afternoon I was flagging.  Back at the caravan the table was set with candles and wine and I had a lovely meal cooked for me while I put my feet up and recounted tales from the day.

It was good to see some old friends over the course of the weekend.  

I've known Janet Harmsworth, a fellow dollmaker and MS sufferer, for close to 20 years. She was attending a doll dressing workshop and we caught up on each other's news.

Sue Newstead is another friend I haven't seen for some time.  Her two Wire Haired Fox Terriers, Delphi Dog and Samos are also great friends of Small Dog, and we exchanged doggy tales over the course of her workshop session on Saturday.

Likewise, Sue Reeve, who I met online via Sue N. She also has two lovely dogs, Bosun and Blaze, whose exploits Small Dog follows on Facebook. 

So, all in all, a very enjoyable (if exhausting!) weekend, which I would strongly recommend to any miniatures enthusiast.

A few kits for all of the workshops are available now on the website!

Friday, 7 October 2016

Conundrum of the day......

OK... here's a mathematical conundrum for you.


x = amount of work to do
y = effort required
z = available time remaining
q = deadline

When will the work be complete?

You can show your working but do not write on both sides of the paper simultaneously.


You can use a slide rule or calculator if you need to.

Ready now?

Well, the answer is, of course, NEVER.

I fall into the group of clearly insane task orientated people who will fill ALL of the available time, right up to the deadline and beyond.

For the past z weeks I've been head down, working steadily towards my CMW workshops which start next Friday (14 October).  The main prep for each of my sessions was mostly completed during the summer, leaving only a few bits and pieces to finish off, as and when.

But then, because I appeared to have time in hand, I decided to embark on some new kits to launch at CMW.  It started out with just one or two, but like Topsy, the task 'just growed'.  

And growed.

And growed some more.

I think I may have gone a little overboard........