Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Gifts, Swaps & Thrills-Glenda Howell

This beautiful scarf was made by Glenda Howell of Peppercorn Minis. She gave it to me for no  reason other than that I had commented on her post that this scarf is "right up my alley".

Glenda had written that she made this scarf using Noro silk and wool mix for yarn . Although the yarn for this scarf was store bought, she had once spun these yarn herself after shearing the sheep , also by her. She then made rectangles using a hand held 6" x 4" weavette loom and then  crocheted each piece together. The sheep was  probably fed by Glenda too. I now own this scarf that is made by the multi- talented Glenda's hands.   Can you imagine how in awe I am of her? Or maybe you can't. By the way, not only was weaving a big part of her life before miniatures, Glenda was also a lace maker and an embroiderer. I remembered how  overwhelmed (and over the moon) I was when I found out that this super talented woman wanted a pair of my shoes.

I received her parcel on 8th July 2010 but did not post about it because I was waiting for the right occasion.  Today is the right occasion  and you will find out why when I complete my post on my other mini blog at The Maharajah's Palace

Needless to say. this is now my all time favourite scarf. I place it near where I work on my minis so that I can use it , see it and appreciate it often. It also serves a reminder of the wonderful people I have met on blogland. 

Thank you Glenda, very very much!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Art Running Routes- I Light Marina Bay

Some of you may already know that I run regularly. On Sunday mornings, I run with a group of very dear and wonderful friends who often look for interesting routes so that we are motivated to wake up at 6am , sometimes, 5 , just to run.

It has become almost a habit now that even when I run on my own, I look for places of interest (once I even diverted and shopped for 6 hours instead). Monday night, we hit jackpot when we ran to see the outdoor light installations by international  artists along Marina Bay. I took my camera along and even though we ran for 2 over hours, it felt shorter because it was wonderful.

 ( / ) by Angela Chong

This is one of my favourite installations. I love the title which is a symbol for the backside. The description says "This installation  is a functional sculpture which illuminates at night while allowing the public to use it as a sitting area." Cher Kuan, if you are reading this, I took the last pic to prove that I took the photographs . Yes, it is with the same camera that you own. Eat your heart out!

Another of my favourite, the pattern on the wall changes depending on who is standing in front of the projector. 

Giant can also be beautiful which is why I have decided that I will make this post here featuring non-mini things for the first time. 

 Details of The Living! Project which is made with plastic cups and 

plastic bottles. The public is encouraged to add to the installation with their own plastic cups.

Thanks to my running mates, I have found so much more beauty in my country.

OOOPS! Nearly forgot this one:

Energy Saving Lights by Fai (Ipoh, Malaysia)

Friday, October 15, 2010

A Japanese Ningyo Doll

I saw this  Ningyo (human form in Japanese) doll at an Asian antique shop in Tanglin Mall when I was out running last Friday. The run started at 10am and I didn't get home till 6pm that day because I ended up shopping along the Orchard Road belt. 

I usually do not go for  traditional dolls especially the Japanese ones but this one caught my eye. It was supposedly 50 years old-the fabric does look faded and the details were quite remarkable.

Some of my friends who have read my post on the Krishnanagar dolls on the other blog will know how much I like hair on dolls. You can see why I am charmed by the hair on Ojiisan ("Granpa" in Japanese) .It's so neat!

But in the end, what really sold me was the fact that the doll is made of plastic! I did a double take when I found out. Are you surprise too? I had thought it was clay until I held it in my hands and it was so light.

Punch and Jiji chatting in my garden whilst Punch is working

Friday, September 24, 2010

Gifts, Swaps & Thrills-Tomohachi

I am an avid follower  of Tomohachi's blog. She was introduced to me by  2 other  Singapore based miniature artisans, Cindy and Asuka who knew her from way back when.  On 1st September 2010, Tomahachi organised a giveaway to celebrate her anniversary on blogland (5 for her Japanese blog and 2 for her English one). 

She announced the winner on 8th Sept 2010 and 5 days later, my goodies galore arrived from Japan to Singapore.

Firstly, there is this absolutely amazing strawberry container. They are made with perspex material for the transparent part and plastic for the cover. Just like the real thing. A neatly packed trio of macarons are tucked inside.

She also made a charming country box with 2 bottles of olive oil, extra virgin and virgin with apples to match.   

Here are her super realistic breads and cheese. There is also a bag of scallop biscuits that my nephew will love, if they are life size.

I believe she designed this mug herself and of course, she very considerately put in a bag of marigold tea and a paper crane for company. 

Arigato gozaimasu,  Tomoko.
I will treasure your gifts, always.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

The Sandra Morris Colllection

Sometime in April this year, Sandra Morris of Dimunitive Dolls made the difficult decision to part with some of her much loved dollhouse books, books which she had collected for the past 25 years. I wasted no time and made a beeline for them. I bought so many that Sandra had to split the parcels into 3 different lots. She is from UK and I am in Singapore. To save on shipping, I picked surface mail. I knew I would have no problem receiving them because my experience with UK surface mail is they come slowly but surely. I received Parcel 3 6 days after they were posted out. In Sandra's words, "That's not just amazing, it's practically impossible!  It must have gone by air instead of surface mail.  Even if I'd got on a boat in England  along with the parcels I wouldn't have arrived in Singapore yet!"
These are the books in Parcel 3 :
by Max von Boehn

by Neva Wade Garnett
DOLLS (The Collector's Corner)
Grange Books

by John Noble 

by Sylvia Becker

by Pauline Flick (pic of inside page)

by Pauline Flick

DOLLS' HOUSES Furniture and Decoration 
by Pauline Flick & Valerie Jackson (pic of inside page)

by Beverly Parker

by Magdalena Byfield

2 days later , on 29th April 2010,  I received Parcel 2. Apparently everyone was surprised including the staff at the post office in the UK. Parcel 2 had the rarer and more expensive books:

MINIATURE INTERIORS- Inspirational Interiors for Dolls' Houses
by Nick Forder

DOLLS' HOUSES -Domestic life and architectural styles in miniature 
from the 17th century to the present day
by  Olivia Bristol and Leslie Geddes-Brown (one of my favourite)

Make and Clothe Your Own DOLL'S HOUSE DOLLS
by Ellen Bedington

JUMEAU -Prince of Dolls
by Constance Eileen King (Pic of inside page)

And then we waited and waited and waited. More than four months later , Parcel 1 arrived today. I am so happy because this parcel has my favourite: 

by Roger Baker

by Valerie Jackson Douet

by Constance Eileen King

by Kerry Taylor

Thank you Sandra. I will love and treasure these books.  I am keeping them all in one place and they will collectively be known as The Sandra Morris Collection.

Friday, August 20, 2010

American Architectural Styles And Suggested Colour Scheme Pt 3


Modelled on the frame houses of the early Dutch settlers around New York, New Jersey and Delaware, the Dutch Revival house is a common suburban sight. The style usually features a sloping gambrel roof which jutt out over the facade, and a second-storey front that rises from the roof like an oversize dormer. These revived Dutch Colonials enjoyed their greatest popularity during the suburbia building boom of the 1920s to the 1940s, but variations on the type are still being built.


There's not much of the late Elizabethan about the American suburbs - except for the rambling Tudor Revival homes of the early twentieth century and their later more modest cousins. Thee slate roofed, half timbered houses were inspired by the English Renaissance houses of the sixteenth and early seventeenth century, and featured steeply pitched rooflines and rows of casement windows. Soon the style was adapted to smaller, more middle class suburban homes, though it made use of the same elements- steep roofs, overlapping gables, decorative half-timbers, or stone masonry and stucco exteriors. Tudor Revival was tremendously popular in the 1920s and early 1930s.


In the 1910s and 1920s, when architects and homebuilders in the Northeast looked to the past for inspiration, they tapped into their English colonial heritage. But in areas such as Florida, California, and the Southwest, the heritage was Spanish, and the style it produced was powerfully Mediterranean in flavour. Thick, textured stucco walls, red tile roofs, arched windows and heavy wood doors are all hallmarks of the style, which continues to be popular today, lending design elements to everything from new housing to shopping plazas.

The Garrison Colonial was one of the most popular  of the later Colonial Revival styles, reaching its peak from around 1935 to 1955 (though adaptations of the style are still built today). The hallmark of the Garrison is a slight second-storey overhang with the first storey often clad in brick and the second in wood siding. Many have a gabled side addition that houses either a garage or a family room. 


As American as a backyard barbecue, teh classic split level was born during the post war building boom of the 1950s and 1960s. With a single storey at one end (usually the living room and kitchen) and two at the other (sunken garage and family room below and bedrooms above), the split level was soon a familiar sight throughout the countries as cars opened up farmland to residential development.

This is the end of the series on early American architecture. I hope you'll find this write up useful for the building of your dollhouses.