Sunday, November 18, 2012

Some progress on my half scale projects

I have been busy trying to get my Etsy store going and making clothes for the upcoming local maker's market, so haven't been making a lot of progress on anything this year. But I have got some pics of progress on my half scale projects.

The Buttercup is coming along. Below are pics of the bedroom and the kitchen half of the downstairs. Will need to go accessory shopping, but for now, at least I have the bedroom furniture (although I think something is needed in the front gable window area). I have also started on the landscaped base but it's not ready for any photos!

The floorboards are painted styrene sheets. I am really happy with them for a rustic cottage floor.

Below is the Chantilly bedroom which also needs some accessories. I will have to figure out how I'll fill the gaps where the roof pieces join. Perhaps I will just fill them and then paint over them. I hope I can remember what colours I painted it! I also think the rug needs toning down!
 I made the bedhead. It is pretty basic, but fits the room.
 The Chantilly salon with a chest I made from cardboard and wood. I will need to find handles that are small enough to fit it, which may be a problem. I hope to be able to handpaint some sort of floral design onto it.

And now the Rosedale. I used the Brodnax parquet flooring for the salon, bedroom and hall (as seen through the doorway) but fell just a little short. Dang. Not sure if this bed will stay yet.

The salon, with the cutest little sofa. I have painted the walls, but will add panelling and then repaint it. Probably the same pink, but maybe ivory. I have a fireplace awaiting a top coat to go on the left wall once I've made the hearth. Little table looks a little stark though....
Hope you are all well, and for those of you in the southern hemisphere, enjoying a little spring sunshine.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Thanks for Blogger help!

Thanks Gill and Karin for the advice. After some fiddling, my husband managed to get rid of the box. Maybe I will just leave the design as is for a little while!

On a mini note, I think I've reached the conclusion that it's easier to just toss all my half scale ideas into the bin and just go with quarter scale. I am just so over trying to find half scale furniture and accessories, and there is so much available in quarter scale. I just like how you can still get a good level of detail into half scale without it being too fiddly but it's so much smaller than one inch scale. I think I will need to get really creative and less lazy and design some furniture kits and get someone to manufacture them for me.

Anyway, have a great week everyone.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Need Blogger advice please!!

As you can see, I've finally updated by blog a little but not sure I'll keep it like this. Contemplating prettying it up a bit. But in the meantime, I am hoping someone with more Blogger expertise can tell me how to get rid of the 'this picture or video has been removed' picture. I've tried deleting the background and all, but obviously that didn't work. And I googled for an answer but came up with nothing. Thanks guys!

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Kensington Dollshouse Festival

Well, I am a little late in posting this. But being back at work really takes up time! The festival was great. I didn't get any photos, but here is what I bought!

Some tiny perfume bottles from Gerd Felka. My husband and I wondered if the stoppers came out but I was too afraid to try. As it turns out, the do come out!

A needle case with opening lid, a thimble and a baby rattle, all turned from timber. It is mind-boggling that someone can do this.

Some ceramic vases in 1" and 1/2" scales from Poteries Miniatures (Elisabeth Causeret).

A very cute little teddy from Ankinaki A. So so cute and so hard to decide from her gorgeous selection.

A little dollhouse and duck pulling a cart from Veronique Lux. I have wanted Veronique's stuff (all of it!!) for so long, so it was great to finally get some pieces.

There was lots of great stuff. I could've come home with tonnes of stuff, but didn't have that much money. Plus, I did have one big splurge, for my French chateau I will build one day, but will save that for another day. I am awaiting some more pieces that goes with it, so will show you when they arrive!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Chateau Challain la Potherie

We didn't get to spend much time at the Chateau the first time we visited, so decided we had to spend two nights there this time. It was well worth the money! It was lovely to waltz about the place for an entire day with nothing else to do!

This was our lux bedroom! That is the biggest, comfiest bed on the planet!

And a beautiful bathroom to go with the bedroom:

It was wedding season at the Chateau. There had been a wedding the weekend prior to us arriving and the place had been adorned with flowers. Everywhere. This bride had one healthy budget.

Quite a lot had been done to the gardens since we were there last. Here is the front yard with one of the outbuildings (not sure what it was originally but had a pool constructed inside which turned out to be too cold, so this was then covered over).

This was a gorgeous wisteria covered cottage just outside of town:

And a very cute garden shed we found in someone's yard in the town:

Next stop, Kensington Dollshouse Festival!

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Saint Malo

Seems like ages since we were there! Had a few more problems with blogging apps (my idea of a blogging app is that you can write the whole thing offline and then put it onto your blog when you get internet access again. Apparently blogging app writers don't share my view or get internet access anywhere anytime) so haven't been able to post anything. Anyways, I had a bout of something, measles or chicken pox or something, by the time we got to St Malo, so I was feeling like crap and very itchy!! Also didn't look great.
St Malo is a really sweet seaside town but it had had the bejeesus bombed out of it during the second world war. There was a really interesting war memorial which was the WW2 fort constructed on top of the very old original town fort. It had been hit pretty hard by bombs/shells/whatever and had been abandoned and left forever exactly as it was. All these bits of the fortifications were missing - you could see exactly where bombs or bullets had hit the stone and steel.

Much of it had to be rebuilt but this was done in mostly a very sympathetic style. Many of the houses had names, as can be seen by the scrolls on the buildings in the pictures below.

This picture shows the cutest little tower tucked between buildings. I am guessing the tower was there first...

This appears to be a particularly old little cottage with a lot of character:

This was a gorgeous old hotel located on the waterfront. Great inspiration if you ever wanted to build a fancy miniature French hotel (if you were fortunate enough to have the space!):

The tide rose and fell on average 8.5m! It was really amazing. Our hotel was located on the waterfront, and when the tide was in, it was most of the way up the seawall just outside our window, and at low tide, there were a couple of hundred metres of beach!

The funniest thing was the sound of the seagulls. They sound very different to Australian seagulls. When we were at Paris Disneyland 3 years ago, we stayed at the Newport Bay Hotel and they played seagull noises over the PA system. To us, it sounded really fake, but imagine our surprise when we hear the exact sound coming from real seagulls in St Malo! Very strange!

Next stop, Chateau Challain la Potherie! Yay!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

La Rochelle.... Love La Rochelle!

So, the results are in. If we ever buy a place in France, I reckon it will be in this area, or somewhere around Narbonne/Bordeaux. Just beautiful. We had picture postcard weather. It was a very cute little town, full of shabby little seaside houses, a nice marina lined with restaurants and cafes and some areas of gorgeous Victorian townhouses.

Our lovely hotel...

This was the chandelier in the bar:

And this was the guest lounge. Chairs not so lovely, but the rest was amazing.
A sign on a cottage:

A beautiful townhouse:

And lastly, a cafe with the cutest table decorations of boats:

La Rochelle had a great atmosphere and some interesting history. We visited three towers on the waterfront that had graffiti dating as far back as the 1700s! The stone walls inside the towers had been carved by sailors and criminals - ships, people, names and dates.

Then on to St Malo!


Having trouble uploading to my blog on my iPad, so now trying a third blogging app in an attempt to post something! Although we are nearly home!

Bordeaux was lovely, although it rained most of the time we were there, and many of the monuments either weren't ever open to the public or were only open during the high season. I really don't think I captured the charm of the place, and it is made especially difficult with the narrow streets common throughout France.

Old Theatre in Bordeaux.
They love chocolate in France. This was in a shop window.

We went on a winery tour to Saint Emilion, one of the best wine regions of Bordeaux (or all of France). The landscape was just amazing.
Next stop, La Rochelle!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Villa Ephrussi de Rothschild

Hello everyone. I am sitting in the train between Villefranche Sur Mer and Bordeaux, which for the record is running 75 minutes late! Yay. I had to take the time to tell you all about the beautiful Villa Ephrussi de Rothschild at Saint Jean Cap Ferrat, just around the bay from Villefranche. It was built at the turn of the 20th century by Beatrice de Rothschild and her husband. She was an avid art and artefacts collector and used these items in her (then new) home. She has incorporated carved reliefs, fabrics, tapestries, painted panels, etc into her home, collected from many historical places. This includes a rug from the chapel at Versailles for example. As you enter the house, there is a large 'patio' (made to look like an enclosed courtyard) and the doors to rooms leading off this patio are all different, having been collected from a range of old buildings.

The following photos show the boudoir and bedroom. The magnificent bed is Venetian, and I'm not 100% sure, but I think the dress is 18th century.

The picture below shows part of what I think I think is a dress. It was exquisite but difficult to photograph in dim light.

This picture is a view of part of the French garden. Baronness de Rothschild was also into gardens.

This picture shows part of the house exterior, with the entryway visible behind. It wasn't a huge house, given these people obviously had huge amounts of money.

If you are ever in the area, I highly recommend a visit. It was so lovely. It has given me so much inspiration for my own mini French chateau and I fully intend returning one day, hopefully with a really fancy camera for better pictures! And the hot chocolate in the tearoom was to die for!

And PS also on the band-wagon with the new Blogger interface dislike. It's so clumsy. I don't understand why you'd make it so complicated and non-intuitive.

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Monday, April 23, 2012

Hello from Villefranche-Sur-Mer!

Bonjour everyone. My husband and I are here in Villefranche for a week in total, which is now half over. After a cold and damp start in Paris, we are enjoying the sunny (although a little blustery) days. Of course the architecture is one of the first things we look at, and we have not been disappointed. Although it's not a great photo, here is a stunning mansion to drool over (due to the hills, it's hard to get close-up photos).

Just around the corner from our street, there is this cute little building - no idea what it's for. I had some idea that it was a garage, but on second glance, I don't think it is.

There is much to see down this way. We've spent a bit of time exploring the old town, the waterfront, the old forts and citadel and also went into Nice (for the record, something we could've happily missed in hindsight).

Across from where we stayed in Paris was this boulangerie - it was just so pretty. I took many photos, trying to get the perfect one (I missed the perfect opportunity the very first morning we were there, with all the lights on inside and a wet footpath, but never mind). Also below is a picture of the interior. Just gorgeous. One to make in miniature without doubt.

Hope you like the photos! Will try to post again when I find something else awe-inspiring!

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