Friday, 14 July 2017

Sewing bee.....


I've been playing this week.... first with the creation of a new little book

Book comes complete with three separate colour plates
Written instructions and patterns for all of the illustrated costumes

And as these things are wont to do, one thing led to another....

Children's Sewing Set

I've again signed up as a dealer for the August Mini Miniature Show, and have been trying to come up with a new, exclusive kit to offer as a workshop at the show.  It was while I was making the Dolly's Dressmaking book that I remembered I had a few half scale sewing machines which would be just perfect for a child's boxed sewing kit.

Et voila!  Over the weekend I'll be refining the kit, adding some other sewing accoutrements and designing a bespoke box for the entire set.

With luck and a following wind my new Doll's Dressmaking Set workshop will be advertised on the Mini Miniature Show website next week 😊

Tuesday, 11 July 2017

Vintage doll's sewing books.....

Buoyed by my success with the sewing machine kit for my L'atelier de Poupée workshop pack, I've been busy again today making two very special miniature book kits, also destined for inclusion.

Both are facsimiles of original books written specially for children, to help them make clothing for their dolls. Like doll's houses, which were originally used as a teaching aid for girls to help them gain skills in domestic housekeeping, these books instilled the basics of needlework, at a time when most clothing was handmade, before the age of mass production.

The text is rather patronising....

..... but I have no doubt that if the instructions were followed to the letter, young girls would have been able to create beautiful costumes for their dolls.

I do wonder though how present-day children would react to being given a non-digital book (with precious few illustrations) some fabric and sewing equipment and left to get on with it.

The instructions for the Mantle, in particular, combine elements of arithmetic and geometry in a form which don't even make much sense to me and I do this stuff every day! 😲

Monday, 10 July 2017

A stitch in time......

A few weeks ago I blogged about the preparations for my swansong workshop pack, which are going rather well, if I do say so myself.

I have 10 boxes, each gradually filling with all manner of mini kits which together will make up my L'atelier de la Poupée Vignette..

This morning I've just finished this.....

..... which will also be included.

It's all coming together very nicely 😊

Wednesday, 5 July 2017

Box of Delights.....!

Regular readers will know that I absolutely love tiny things in boxes.  There is something about a boxed miniature - whether it's a little porcelain toy doll, or a vintage litho board game - that makes my heart sing.

In pursuit of my workroom downsizing exercise I've come across several boxes of full size vintage boxed games, some dating from the 1890s.  All have been serendipitous finds on Ebay over the years, and most are in a parlous state.... creased, marked and dog-eared, with busted boxes and some playing pieces missing etc.  

However, using the miracle of Photoshop, it is possible to painstakingly restore them to their original glory, at least in 1/12th scale.  The process is extremely time-consuming, nit-picking work but I think it's worth it to recreate a much-loved vintage game in miniature.

I've already miniaturised several vintage litho toys and games over the years, some of which were also available as kits, so I've set up a new category on the website titled 'Box of Delights' in which I will list each new vintage game as I complete it.... hopefully one a month.... although they do take a very long time to restore.

First in the series is a rather lovely version of one of my favourite childhood card games, Old Maid.  It was produced by the famous McLoughlin Brothers in 1892 and includes 44 cards featuring illustrations of well-loved nursery rhymes.  

Boxed Set of Old Maid Game Cards

The game is available either as a completed set, or as a limited number of kits HERE

Future games and toys include my version of a vintage Peter Rabbit board game, a rather lovely toy doll's house, and a boxed set of gorgeous vintage paper dolls... to name but a few! 

For anyone who wants to display their collection, either in a miniature toy shop or nursery setting, I am also designing a special piece of furniture, which will be available as a kit around Christmas time.