AWARD

Saturday, 2 August 2014

MAKING SOME CHANGES




I have always made the living rooms, in all of my doll's houses, the very first room that I start with.
Some people begin their houses with the kitchen while others prefer the bedroom, but for me it has always been the  the miniature front parlor& /or living room.
This is the room where strangers and friends converge to get to know you better, because it is the room where people generally entertain guests and practice hospitality and where folks go to relax.  People form opinions about the home owner(s) based primarily on their personal experience spent in the front parlor, and the  comfort and the social interactions that take place within it.  In miniature, I feel that this room sets the tone for the rest of the rooms that follow, so I usually end up taking a lot of time trying to get it the room just right.  I love making these spaces feel cozy, warm and welcoming
Yet, 'the process' will often Insist that I become more flexible and more willing to bend, even when I don't feel like it,  to thus enable the house to make some needed changes so that the story I'm trying to tell, can eventually emerge. 
And so
for my  Very Welcomed New Followers, not completely familiar with how it all started, this is the abridged version of my progress on my Arthur doll's house kit to date, entitled
#43 Green Dolphin Street.

When I began working on #43 nearly a year and a half ago,
this was how I started the living room.  I roughed out the parlor/living room arrangement with stuff I had on hand and which I thought might work as I tried to get a feel for the space.
The room then underwent a number of major / minor changes throughout the course of time
But

always there remained
A
Big thorn in my side, the 2 Victorian globe lamps.
I disconnected them because  I always felt that the lights were just too bright!   I tried to tone them down by painting them with Amber Glass Paint on the globes, to try to soften that blinding "headlight" glare.  But in trying to get my Big Hand into this smallish space, to paint over the globes, I managed to snap the delicate wiring feeding into one of the brackets, which meant that I had to remove the entire wall sconce.
Ei yah!

now I've done it!

That of course, was when ( surprise! )  I discovered that the globes could be unscrewed from the  metal support bracket
><
okay... so now I know

Fortunately, I had anticipated my future screw- up with these lamps and consequently, I had in my possession, a spare.
whew! what a relief!
I reinstalled the new bracket and fitted it out with some additional metal trim,just as I had done before.
By now though, I  had changed my mind about the globes.
I chose instead, to go with something completely different, less Victorian and a little more classic.
I had 2 plastic pleated lamp shades,( that look like toothpaste caps but aren't ) which I borrowed from some other ( never to be used again ) lamps and tried them out and I liked them better!  But once again, I found the light bulbs to be way too bright.

Why must all mini bulbs produce soooo much light?
I feel that it often kills the realism 
Nevertheless
the shades which were originally a tan color, I painted with a thin black transparent glass paint and here is what they looked like when turned on.
 and Still just a little too Bright


again, I liked the wall sconces better with the lights unplugged.

I gave them an additional thin wash of a transparent pink glass paint applied sparingly over the black and followed that with a coat of Revlon's matt nail varnish to cut the shine from the glass paint so that they took on a softer, silky illumination.
 Ah,... that's better!  

I should have stopped there but instead I continued to meddle with the shades, and added a banding of gold metallic fringe.
( whoops, wrong move! )

To me they looked just like
 a Fez One and a Fez Two.
After removing the gold fringe which I had glued on oh so well,  I was left with a new mess on the bottom of the lamp shade.

Now what do I do?

so once again, another change 

 below: photo on left, the lamps with the fringe-  the photo on the right are current version


My solution in the end was  to repaint the bottom edge of the shades in gold enamel paint and retouched the tacky edges with a gold/bronze pulver that I have had for over a decade which is used for gilding  fimo.  It gave a bit of a fuzzy edge without the visual heaviness of the previous gold metallic fringe.
I think it looks much more to scale don't you?
The refurbished lampshade and the fireplace mantle newly finished.

hmmm...
 I'm thinking that perhaps I should match the standing sheep on the right with a standing sheep for the left, or should it be a reclining sheep on the right to match the one on the left?
these are the kind of things that keep me awake at night
sheesh!
moving on...
here's the mantle BEFORE
with a close up of the things on it
and you can see how simply the mantle use to be arranged between those glaring globe lights.  When I did this, I considered it
Finished.
Not long ago I decided to paint the gold clock, red.
It is easier to see the clock in the photos above.
I like it red and there is a good visual balance between it and the shades.
 I changed the doily to a larger one and rearranged the group of photographs on and around it.
It is a better arrangement.
a close up of the Mantle now

***
changing the look of the front door
The front door in the beginning
It seems that I am  the most happy with the used and abused look
I added quite a bit of aging to the surface of the door, a mail slot, a brass door plate,  a set of iron keys in the lock ( an idea I got from Caroline at Cinderella Moments), a  brass door plate for the latch, and a  tiny working iron slide flush bolt which I saw in a blog tutorial, by Pearly Jones 

The Mini House:  "Lockets, Snot and Two Sliding Barrels"
Anyway, I am really liking the changes made to the front door.  It looks like it has
 been around the block a few times and that is the look I was striving for.
***
Next up is the Rug.
Subtle changes can often make a big difference and that is what happened when
I changed the living room area rug
 Old rug on the left and the New rug is on the right.  The new one has more orange in the background and the blue in it is also more noticeable.  I think it is far richer looking without so much  pink.






















The left side of the Parlor/ living room has not changed over much from my original plan.  I had always intended to use the sideboard/ dresser in this space right from the very beginning and so also, the over-scaled picture of a writer steadfastly ignoring her long-suffering family.
 I remember that I aged the heavy metal frame even more than what it originally was, but other than that, not much else.  The french style arm chair sits right in front of it so it is often over-looked when I am gazing into the room. But just because it is hidden from view doesn't mean that it is not important.  The weight of it  counterbalances the visual mass of the opposite fireplace wall.

Below, you can see how the chair helps to beef up the left side of this front parlor.
( so sorry, I have tried to line up  these photos but they just won't cooperate )
The sewing bag is another fabulous creation of Fatima's.  It is filled with knitting paraphernalia that is difficult to see well in the photos but is clearly seen in person.  Thanks Fats! :))  
This is the replacement rug with the changed, new and improved lampshades.
I have to say that I love this photo. 
 I am really happy with the "lived in"look of this living room. 


that is until I think of something else to do to it :))

A bouquet of Janine's orange roses are arranged upon the tea table
along with Fatima's Batten-burg squares in a filigree serving tray

and before I forget, I wanted to show you my silver serving dish that I improvised by bending a silver earring into shape, which I then filled with flaky baking powder biscuits.  I made these biscuits by compressed styrofoam popcorn and using a hole punch and "baking" with a transparent  brown glaze and gesso.  Yum!...
Mini Bisquicks!

***
AND NOW WON'T YOU STEP INTO THE KITCHEN
The View looking into the kitchen from the living room and straight at the ratty old cottage stairs.
What a startling change and contrast from the more elegant front parlor! ?
I find it very strange that I should like them anyway.

 Here in this tiny kitchen I opted to make some minor changes, since you last saw it.  To boost the visibility of the tin tile back splash installed behind the cast iron oven,  I selected the same larkspur blue acrylic color and brushed it onto the surface and wiped it off, then stained it, to give it an old/ aged appearance and sealed it with Matt Modge Podge .  The wood colored utensil rack accidently got paint on it, so I painted right over it too.  I like the look much better. Future changes will include a set of gas pipes installed against the wall to the right side of the stove. That will mean an extension of the pipes out to the exterior wall as well, but I will tackle that project later. Meanwhile,  I think that the blue backdrop makes this dark corner a little more interesting and a lot more cheerful to work in.  And more importantly, the camera picks it up.
Yes! ...This looks better!

The prep table's new rustic covered casserole dish, positioned on the corner, is by Jason Feltrope's Studio.  Love it!
And after talking about it for months, I Finally have a pair of some very sexy black stockings hanging from the clothes line of this "Ancient of days" kitchen on Green Dolphin Street!
 My Thanks go entirely to the wonderfully talented Linda Park!
I tried the 2 other more sedate pairs of nylons that Linda also gave me, but the black ones looked best.
sexy over sensible
go figure?!

***
 and now for the stairwell
Changes to the stairwell include Fatima's gift of one of her closed umbrella which now hangs discreetly from the accordion hat rack at the bottom of these treacherous stairs
***
onto the bedroom
This is the early version of the upstairs bedroom
This is the bedroom in the MIDDLE stages
And this is how it looks now
night time 

(I made these two blue and white plates from plastic buttons and paper decals
easy peasy)
by the way, I decided to go with Margaret's ( My Petit Parterre) square blue pillow for the bed rather than the pink rectangular set that I had on the bed before.
Thanks again, Margaret! :))
I thought that an edging of a dense cotton lace would tie in better with the textured cotton bed cover.
But,
now that I am looking at this photo, I think there needs to be a delineating line of color, perhaps some red, burgundy, or brown bunka or narrow silk ribbon or cord, just Something  to run between the toile and the cotton lace to ease the transition between the two.
(sigh)
and for a moment there, I thought this bed was actually "finished" :/
silly me

And I also changed the light covers on either side of the bull's eye mirror from the over-bright white hurricane style, that you see on the left, to the smaller, classic parchment shades.  I am much happier with the switch.
                                                                                 ***
And finally....
what's new in the bathroom
Not a lot of change in the bathroom except for the new framed print above the door, my hand-painted mannequin hat stand and the tiny brass alarm clock sitting  on the top of the battered old toilet tank.
So there you have it .... these are the most significant changes within the walls of my Arthur doll's house;
 #43 Green Dolphin St.


***
But the Miniteers have also made a Change; we've added
  a New One
meet
LINDA PARK!
Here's a photo of the Miniteers and Linda Park who is now our new honorary member.
Hip Hip Hooray! :D
 Janine, Linda, and Fatima and I, were royally wined and dined a few weeks ago at Linda's lovely home in Whistler, B.C.
 In this photo, Linda was in the process of showing us her wonderful French inspired florist's shop,which is Simply Fantastic!
Lidi, of Basketcase Miniatures,  recently made to order the most wonderful basket for Linda's delivery bicycle.
Linda's bike & Lidi's basket... A match made in heavenI can hardly wait for Linda to get her own blog going so that more people around the world can see some of the INCREDIBLE work that she produces! 
But now, the hour grows late
and as the sun goes down, it is time once again, for me to say goodnight to everyone out there in  the Land of Blog
Because.
 it is
 Time to make one more radical Change......

to my

 hair color. yes, I'm
going from drab to Fab!

(thanks to a box of  Loreal)

because I gotta look good for my new main man "Isaac Hayes"
'he's a complicated man but no one understands him but his woman,'


 ... right Grandmommy?
 
wink wink, nudge nudge

heeheehee



elizabeth


80 comments:

  1. Oh, Elizabeth! This is wonderful :-) So much detail and so much to see…I love it!

    Cheers,
    Julie

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    1. Hi Julie! I Thank You Very Much for your Most Welcomed Words! I was just visiting you and your cottage and so I also return the compliment! I LOVE adding details but I do need to show some restraint now and then. :/ Nevertheless, I am so pleased that you've enjoyed what you have seen! :D

      elizabeth

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  2. Super-fun post, Elizabeth. I could return here again and again to look at the fab photos of this house. Plus, hearing about your process always fascinates me. Love it! xo Jennifer

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    1. Hi There Jennifer! Thank You Muchly! :D It is always much more fun to take the photos than it is to do the actual work! :))
      Hopefully, by me explaining my "process" as best I can, it will give a better insight to the "why" I make the choices I make.
      I also helps to clarify it for me too!... hahaha

      elizabeth

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  3. Love the new changes. The door looks really great, and I like that key idea, love the cat too. Oh and I spotted a cat beside the cooker, under the stairs, which I have never noticed before. So many wonderful details in each room, the bed is gorgeous, love the stairwell right beside it too. Do you know I didn't see a Fez, until you said it, then all I could see was Fez's, but they look great now. Whilst I liked the globes, I think the new decision (damn decisions) was wise. I wasted an hour on a decision today myself, then I just went with the original decision :D

    Sarah x

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  4. Ahhh I just wrote a comment and it timed out, now I have to rewrite it :D Love the new changes, the door looks really great, love the key idea too. And the cat! Oh and I spotted a cat under the stairs beside the cooker which I have never noticed before. There really are many wonderful little details to see everywhere. I like the way you can see the stairwell from the bedroom, and the bed is gorgeous. Each room and the flow is fantastic. I didn't see a Fez, until you mentioned it, now I can see a Fez, but thats been fixed :D I did like the globes, but I think the lampshades do work better, especially for a fireplace, good call. I had one of those decision making things today, they take up a lot of time, don't they :D

    Sarah x

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    1. Hello Sarah times Two!:D Thank you, Thank You, for enjoying all of the new changes that I have made. Trust you to spot the cat in the corner in the kitchen. She has been there all along but she is tending her two kittens and not wanting to be too far away from what's cooking in the pot! :))
      Thank you for your comment about the "flow" from room to room. I try and incorporate that whenever I can but it sometimes takes a few good tries before I get it the way I want it.
      You are so right about making decisions that can and do, take up more time than the actual work will. The lampshades I am now truly happy with, but I still wish that they made mini bulbs with a lesser wattage so that not every single one looks like a rescue flare when switched on.
      But then, that's just me

      elizabeth

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  5. Your house is simply WONDERFUL!
    And your writing gave me a big :))))
    Thanks for this post
    Andrea

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    1. Hello Andrea! Thank You so Very Much for your compliment! I have enjoyed developing this house to show it how to live and breathe and tell the story it wants to tell. I think about how it started and what it has developed into and how much has changed between then to now. This house is not what I thought it would be, but it IS what it has wanted to become.
      I've just been along for the ride!!! :D

      elizabeth

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  6. Hello Elizabeth,

    I had to get a cup of tea and sit down to properly read and enjoy this post - how I do love to see pictures of your parlour - it is one of my absolute favourite rooms, and so full of wonderful details! I really like the evolution of the rooms, I don´t think any of our miniatures are truly ' finished', there is always something else to do, to rearranged and to add!

    Jonquil

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    1. PS - have fun with Isaac and your hair dye, it is Saturday night after all!

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    2. Hahahha!!! Yes, You are right about a miniature room" never truly being finished". Even now, I know that something else will present itself and another change will take place again. I personally live by the "RULE OF THREE". I have found that if you make one thing different, that you will usually have to change at least 3 other things around it to get them working again as a unit. I have found this to be true for me in BiG as well as in Little!
      And I think that my mini "Date with Isaac" will be an ongoing event over at Grandmommy's blog. She is naming one of her doll's after me for the party house she has got going on, and as far as I know, the mini me will NEVER have to resort to a box of hair dye!
      Saturday night forever!.... Can you dig it? :D

      elizabeth

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  7. Goodness you have been sooooo busy. Wonderful changes. It's amazing how even the smallest most subtle change can totally transform an item or even the room. I love this house it is just so heart warming!
    All the best
    Vivian

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    1. Hello and Thank You Vivian for these Most Welcome Words! :D
      The details are always what amazes me too, regardless of where I see them! I like to layer them on and put in as much as the room or house will allow, but the trick is knowing WHEN To Stop. I am still learning the art of that! :/
      But generally speaking, it is when I keep staring at something for too long, either on film or in person, then I know that it is not quite right yet. If it is not jumping out and hogging the spotlight, then it is considered by me to be worthy of being left alone. :))

      elizabeth

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  8. Replies
    1. Thank You Isabel!! Your compliments, I treasure Very Much! :D
      I have to say too, that I feel the same way about your little sailboat and treasure chest that you have hand-carved. So much detail in such a teeny tiny little work of art.
      Simply Enchanting l!! :))

      elizabeth

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  9. Elizabeth, I don't know how you do it! Everything you do looks perfect in my eyes and then you go and make it even more perfect!! I adore your worn, used and well loved style. Can't do it myself, anything I try to age would be better in an archaeological dig, not part of a cherished home. So, I shall just drool over your wonderful photos some more.

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    1. Hahahaha!!! You are so funny Susan! heehee!
      I Thank You for your Most Generous Compliments about this cottage project of mine. I try to make it one step closer to what I would consider being finished but so often the "finish line" gets moved just a little further on. Nevertheless, I am still in hot pursuit. I know that I said that I like worn, but never forlorn! I always want things to look "loved To death" rather than "death warmed over". :))
      Do you know that I Just Now, counted the amount of photos within this post, and there are 38!!!

      I do it just for you Susan. :D

      elizabeth

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  10. You have treated us to many wonderful photos.....it all looks wonderful. The second last photo got my attention as I too have had the pleasure of meeting Linda here in Hobart not so long ago.......small world.

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    1. Hi Linda! Thank You!!! I am delighted that you have enjoyed this collection of photos of the cottage! :D It is still not finished on the outside and I really must do something about that soon.
      It IS a Very Small World, isn't it? Linda did mention that she had had the opportunity to meet with you a while back. What is also of interest, is that she use to live not that far from where I live now. When she was coming to visit me here in New Westminster, she was already quite familiar with my neighborhood. Now she lives in Australia and is friends also with Norma of "Make Mine Mini!".
      What a marvelous community of miniaturists we are all so privileged to enjoy. :))

      elizabeth

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  11. Elizabeeeeeeeeth! How do you manage to do it? Everything was so perfect before but you managed to make it even better! You truly are the greatest! I love all the changes you made and I enjoyed reading all about it. This little Arthur house is the best I have ever seen. It's amazing what you have done with this kit! I always thought this was such a boring kit until I saw what you did with it. I could be very happy living in this little home because a home is what it looks like, not a doll house. So many interesting little things to look at. I will come back again to look at them. I love those plates you made. Even a button turns into something magical with you! This is absolutely one of my favourite houses in mini land!

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    1. Oh Lucille, you are such a ray of light and encouragement to me! Thank You so Much!!
      I have to say that the Arthur was a kit that I had considered to be quite boring before too. I think that one thing that could always be said in its favor, is that because it is rather plain, that it had the potential to be "fussied-up"
      Not long ago, my sister Bev said to me, that 'although she was not particularly interested in anything Victorian, that she thought that she would have no trouble at all of living in this cottage'. That warmed my heart, just as your comment has also done, Lucille.
      I guess what has surprised me the most is how big the interior of the house looks now. The more I put in it, the visually more expansive it becomes.
      Just like magic! :))

      elizabeth

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  12. Dear Elizabeth, Fantastic photos! I think from our conversation that the changes all started when you thought you had broken the light. Heaven forbid that ou should break anything else!
    Those pic od the sideboard and the final,house photo seems like a real house. B says all are amaing!
    We did have a wonderful day with Linda!
    See you soon
    Janine

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    1. Hello My Dearest Janine! Yes indeed, the broken light is what triggered an entire series of changes within #43 Green Dolphin Street. What began as a negative, has turned into a positive.
      And as far as breaking anything else..... BITE YOUR TOUNGE! Enough is enough already. I need to get serious about the exterior stone siding and the chimney.
      Tell your Trusty Man Bruce, that I greatly appreciate his approval of the photos since it was he that first showed me how to operate my Canon Elph properly. I realize that it has been hit or miss, but even I can tell the difference between the photos from my early days from those that I am taking now. I may not be a fast learner, but I get there eventually! :D

      And Indeed, that afternoon spent with Linda Park was A Real Treat!

      elizabeth

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  13. What I love about your rooms is all the details, they really make the rooms live in and they tell about the people who inhabit the house. What is also amazing is that the before photos look fantastic and when we see tha after ones they are even more fantastic. Perfect work!
    Geneviève

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    1. Ohhhh Genevieve! What a delicious compliment, Thank You! :D
      You have said just what I wanted to hear.:)) My desire is that whatever I do plus or minus, it is to tell "the story" in a more comprehensive way. My methods are sometimes "unconventional" but the objective never varies.... how best to reveal the story!
      kisses to you

      elizabeth

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  14. What a great post and a fab read! Your changes are so subtle but make a world of difference and I love all the detailed pieces on your mantel. Who would have thought that a tiny lamp shade could cause all sorts of internal debate? I'm glad it all worked out in the end and the finished result is just lovely.

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    1. Hi Irene! Thank You So Very Much and you have said it so succinctly! It is always the little things that stick in your craw and are the hardest to extract! I am thinking of these wall sconces to being the equivalent of a popcorn husk that is lodged on the back of your tongue. It is stuck there bugging you. I tried to ignore the problem with the brightness of the bulbs by trying to fix the transparency of the shades. In the end, I fixed both problems in a way that I did not expect.
      I am glad that it all worked out in the end too, and I am Delighted that you like the final results! :D

      elizabeth

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  15. Oh Elizabeth! What a wonderful house this is!! I always loved it from your older posts but your recent changes and improvements have made all the difference, well done. Atmosphere oozes out of every corner. Your lamp shades are brilliant, I also have problems with the brightness of dolls house bulbs. I'm fitting two dimmers to my new house so I can alter them for more realistic settings. There are transformers that allow to alter the voltage as well and this could help? Having said that, I think you have more than cracked the problem with your beautiful shades.
    Well done again, you have really inspired me.
    Hugs
    Si

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    1. Hi Simon! Thank You SO MUCH!! It is comforting to know that I am not alone in freaking out about the over-abundance of light that POURS OUT of these mini light bulbs and FLOODS the rooms. It is sooooo not necessary to have this much light. I would not wish to have none, but for the sake of realism,.... "less IS more" I do not have the same wattage in every one of my Real Life rooms, so why does it have to be this way in our Miniature World? I applaud your solution of a dimmer switch for your doll's house. It is "Brilliant".( pun)
      I buy my transformers from the electrical section of Value Village thrift stores, because they are very inexpensive. I can usually find the 12 volt that I am looking for for about $5.00 with a 500 m A output.
      Dave, a friend of mine who is also interested in miniatures, told me about the dimmers and tried to explain some of the electrical tricks that I could employ, but I think that I will watch your blog and see what you do Simon, so that I can better understand it all. I am more visual and my eyes glaze over and my brain shuts down as soon as I wade into muddy waters of just verbal explanations.
      And just so you know, YOU Inspire Me Too! :D

      elizabeth

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  16. Bonjour Elizabeth,
    je découvre votre blog suite à votre commentaire et inscription sur le mien (merci Ray;-) je suis en totale admiration devant votre maison; Tous ces meubles merveilleux, tous ces objets partout qui rendent la maison si vivante et si réaliste, ces nombreuses couleurs, votre goût pour assembler tout cela,....c'est un émerveillement pour les yeux et l'esprit qui fait un beau voyage.

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    1. Hello Jean-Claude! Welcome to Canada! :D
      Joining your blog was no hardship because you came very highly recommended! ( thank you Ray!)
      And Thank You Jean-Claude, for your wonderful compliments, especially when you called my cottage project a "home". That is how I feel about it and how I wish others to perceive it too. I have a real thing for color as you have observed and I like to use lots of it! Just as with the accessories that I choose, I layer the colors as well. My style is a bit of a jumble and a mishmash of style, color, texture which works for me and I am Very Happy that you like it too!

      elizabeth

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  17. quelle agréable visite que cette maison douillette
    j'apprécie beaucoup la lumière et les changements qui en font une maison habitée
    très beau travail Elizabeth

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    1. Good Evening Claude! Thank Your for your visit to my little home and for all of the Lovely Words in your comment! I love it when people talk about how they can feel the presence of the inhabitants. This is a Very Great Compliment and I Always Love to hear It! :D
      kisses to you!

      elizabeth

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  18. I loved it before and I love it now. It has a wonderful lived in look. Each photo is
    lovely to look at and discover the many details.
    Hugs, Drora

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    1. Good evening Drora! Thank You, Thank You, Thank YOU! I really try to give my mini homes a "LIVED IN LOOK". It is not always as easy to achieve, which is what I try to convey when I write about it. It can be a struggle of me against the house, trying to realize that little bit of extra detail to make it look really lived in. When this is achieved, then I am satisfied.

      well.... at least for a little while :D

      elizabeth

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  19. Dear Elizabeth, I just can't tell you how much I LOVE your work!!! And to see the way you tinker and adjust and Improve the results over time is also just an Education in the Art of the Miniature! I have so little courage with new materials.... you forge bravely ahead... trying anything you can imagine.... and coming up with Awesome results!!! Styrofoam to make mini biscuits???? Wow!!! Not to mention the layering of paint and glue and nail polish to achieve your muted and aged looks.... WOW! I ponder and fret for Ages... you layer it on and pull it off again!!!! My new "antique" sink still looks shiny and new.... I need a dose of Elizabeth's Courage to cover it in "patina" of time and use.... *sigh*.... I guess I will learn eventually.... But the most amazing part to me is that you seem to know what you are looking for.... I am still looking for that knowledge!!! LOL!!! Your work is So Beautiful and So Inspiring and SO Educational because you freely share your tricks and tips! Thank you Elizabeth! Oh, and another thing.... Your work is so detailed and complete and realistic... and even in the humble and "small" confines of a little house you accomplish Great mood and depth and realism!!! I am Always so Impressed!!!

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    1. Oh Betsy! I Truly THANK YOU, but When I read your words I am ASTOUNDED at hearing you say that you "have so little courage"!!! WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT!!!? You do things that I would never Dream of and you find solutions that leave me Stupefied and FULL OF ADMIRATION for what you have done and plan on doing next! I do believe that one of the very aspects of this hobby that I find so enjoyable is that idea that each of us brings something new to the table. We each see solutions to our problems in such unique ways and interpret our projects with our own styles. I have been collecting photos on Pinterest, of all of the different dollhouse kits that Greenleaf, Artply and Duracraft have made and how each of them has been translated by the various miniaturists that have taken them on. What a lot of variety and what FANTASTIC ideas people have thought of. IT IS AMAZING!
      I must partly correct you when you say that I "seem to know what I am looking for". Well, I may SEEM to know but I don't, it just SEEMS that way! hahaha But I DO know what DON'T want, so I do a lot of stabbing in the dark until I get it right. That is why there are so many transitional photos of me getting it wrong. You could say that I am just playing the odds, Betsy. Sooner or later I am bound and determined to get a Bingo! :D
      And you should pay a visit to Claude's blog and see her fries that she has just made from styrofoam packing. Again, something that I never would have thought of either.
      Ain't it grand? :D

      elizabeth

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  20. Okay- you know I love love love this house. I can't believe you think of even more ways to make it more perfect than perfect. But you do it everytime. I love this look so much. I love when things are mixed and so cozy looking. It's a masterpiece! And you're not even done! Amazing!!! I hope your make-over turned out fabulous and that you feel sensational now.
    hugs♥,
    Caroline
    Oh! And thanks so much for mentioning me! Wow! I'm so honored!! ♥♥♥

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    1. Hi Caroline! I needed to wash that grey away and Isaac proved to be convenient reason to "make- over" my head! hahhaha
      I want to Thank You for your willingness to share your wonderful world of Cinderella Moments with all of us and for the great idea about the keys in the lock. Sarah of Amber's House liked it too! :D
      And you are right, this house is STILL not done but it needs to be. I have to bite the bullet and get serious about the exterior wall, the chimney and the shingles. All of which I find extremely tedious and repetitive work. :((
      Yet it makes me feel Very Proud that you think so highly of this house.... Thank YOU! :D

      elizabeth

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  21. I always enjoy reading your blog posts. You are a good story teller. Of course, your pictures are also just beautiful and illustrate your story perfectly. Thanks again for a great update on all things E.

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  22. Hey there Shannon! Thank You for that vote of confidence about my blog posts!!! :D I DO like to write and ramble on. I am so grateful that people like to read what I write. :)) So again a Big Thank You for your Very Kind and Much Appreciated comment Shannon. :D

    elizabeth

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  23. Elizabeth, vous avez fait de très beaux et subtils changements !
    J'aime beaucoup cette belle ambiance, chaleureuse et douce que vous avez apportée dans les différentes pièces de la maison. Le nouveau tapis me plait beaucoup.
    Bises. Joce

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    1. Good day Rosethe'! Thank You for your Most Welcomed words of praise! :D
      I have tried to make the changes subtle and effective and it pleases me that you have enjoyed them as much as I have. :)) The area rug is one of my favorite changes. When I began this house and chose the pinkish rug, it was because I was trying to play it safe. This new rug is more in keeping with the orange and blue tones that are scattered through out the living room and I am really happy with the look of it. and I am Delighted that you like it too! :D

      elizabeth

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  24. Hello Lady Elizabeth,
    What a fun post. I think #43 is one of my favorite mini projects! I repeat, there is no one to touch you for creating mood and atmosphere...no one! I wish I has your talent for making things look "Beat up" . Your work has so many layers of well made detail it takes my breath away. I don't want my comment to be a novel, so I will just say Bravo Elizabeth, you have created the most charming, welcoming home and I applaud your need to get things just right and not being afraid to take something and start over until it is just right.
    Big hug,
    Giac

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    1. Hello Sir Giac! :D ..... and I wish I had your talent for Creating Miniature Perfections such as what your Manor is showcasing in every room that you do! AND, as far as "not being afraid to take something and start over until it is just right"..... LOOK WHOSE TALKING!! :D The man who gutted his "Finished" mini dining room and gave it a complete over-haul and took it up to the top of the mountain!
      BROVO Back At You my friend! :D
      A Big Thank You for your compliments Giac and even Bigger hugs back!

      elizabeth

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  25. Hi Elizabeth! I like so much the wonderful changes in your home! They are so many lovely little details to see! The atmosphere you create is fantastic. The door is perfect now,
    Thank you very much for sharing tips! Styrofoam to make biscuits??? Incredible! And your "Mise en scène" is fantastic! You are a very great artist!!!

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    1. Oh Nono, I am Thrilled that you are enjoying the changes in #43! You know that I am such a great fan of your work and the creativity of your own staging, so Thank You Very Very Much!
      I was glad to have been able to re-locate the blog that featured that wonderful flush bolt that was the finishing touch to front door. Before that I was concerned about the security of the lady of the house but now I feel much better. Interesting to note, she always keeps her front door open anyway so the bolt is never really used.
      The styrofoam biscuits were cheap and easy. Once you compress them to fit the hole punch they will "rise"again as they absorb the air. It is really quite cute, and needless to say, they are very "light and flaky" heehee

      elizabeth

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  26. Just beautiful! It's so classy but comfortable! I would love to have this as a feature in Dollhouse Miniature Magazine! Would you be interested in that? I think I already told you I'm the editor for AM and DHM right? Anyway let me know if you would like to do this. I think our readers would be delighted to see a little house that is so fancy and warm.
    email me at auralea@ashdown.co.uk if you want to do it!
    ~Auralea

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  27. Hi Auralea! Thank you so Very Much for your most Welcomed comment and compliments! I don't believe that I have ever thought of this house as "classy" so that is a new word for me to consider, but I can agree whole-heartedly that it IS indeed "comfortable!"
    What an Honor to be considered for your magazine! :D
    But Now of course, there is the very great danger of my head swelling uncontrollably.
    Look Out! .... she's gonna blow!!!! :O ><

    Yes,... I will email you!

    elizabeth

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  28. This is one of the best miniature houses I have seen. I can just imagine walking through those doors and feeling the atmosphere, smelling the smells and feeling the homeliness. You have a very discerning eye for what works and you aren't scared to change things you think can be improved. You have a talent for putting scenes together that exude atmosphere and draw you into them.

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    1. Hey Sharee, my reply got bumped below the Grandmommy
      check down under

      e

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  29. Ok lets see. lol When I visit your blog I actually have to take notes so I wont forget anything. LOL
    First Elizabeth I love what you did to get that warm lighting. You know I am going to try those biscuits with all of these peanuts I have around LOL Those plates on your table are so so pretty and realistic looking! I am going to use that word a lot when I talk about the goodies on the table, the bedding and that beautiful picture of the writer! did you do something with the artwork or you purchased it? The carpet looks much better. Something you don't realize until you change it.
    When I thought of what you did with the door I thought of one that was much used and worn by visitors and family.
    I felt really at home when I noticed slightly ajar door seeming to say you are free to roam.
    There was lots more. My bursitis would act up if tried to write everything I wanted to!LOL Just thank you thank you thank you for sharing you are such an inspiration. You really make me look at my own work and ask myself what I could do better.
    Grandmommy :-)

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    1. Hey Grandmommy! I Thank You Very Much and I hope that you DO make those biscuits!!! If you can't get them to fit into the slot once they are compressed, just sandwich them in between some paper so that it moves where you want it to go. I made a lot and lost a lot too, but they are fast and they are fun to do! :D
      You have said the "Magic Words", Grandmommy! I AM inviting all of my blog friends and family, to come for a visit and so the door stands ajar all of the time. Tai the cat, is always looking down the road for the next Welcomed guest.
      And I am Very Glad that now, it is YOU! :D

      elizabeth

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    2. Hey Grandmommy, I answered you question about the painting on the wall a little further down under Sharee's, so look there for part 2! :))

      elizabeth

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  30. Hi Sharee! WoW! What a Wonderful thing to say!!! :D I appreciate your words very much as I am trying, with everything that I do, to make the house as much like a Home as possible. You have caught the feeling of this house so Thank You for saying so, Sharee.
    When people see the finished rooms they seem to think that they sprang from my fingers fully formed and so these posts are meant to show that although it may appear that I always know what I am doing, often I don't.
    And as far as being scared, I can be petrified for months before I take the plunge and try. There is a song from the movie "Oliver" that goes like this:
    "Whenever I feel afraid, I hold my head erect, and whistle a happy tune so no one will suspect, I'm Afraid. I whistle a happy tune and every single time, the happiness in the tune, convinces ME that I'm Not Afraid"

    and that about sums it up

    elizabeth

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    1. Oh and I nearly forgot to answer your question about the artwork. They are photocopies that I mounted onto a heavy matt/ cardboard. I used a very small brush and did tiny stokes of Matt and Regular Mod Podge over the surface. The Matt alone didn't have enough shine and the Regular had too much shine so I did a mix.

      e

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    2. Oh ok I guess that is why it looks so vivid. I know that song...now I am going to be singing it all day! LOL btw it is from the "King and I"

      Delete
    3. THAT'S RIGHT!!! :D Deboray Kerr was singing to her little boy, what's his name_____?

      I guess that hair dye went to my head and caused a Blackout! haha

      e

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  31. Это замечательно, что вы снова что-то меняете в твоем доме! Мне доставляет удовольствие наблюдать изменения в вашей работе! Согласитесь, что все было прекрасно! Удивительно, но вы сделали еще лучше! Мне нравится читать сообщение и смотреть фотографии. Кажется, что машина времени отправила в далекие времена. Ощущаешь атмосферу, запахи, слышишь разговоры за стенкой, мяуканье кота.....Каждая фотография напоминает живопись. Есть тени и лучи света. Это завораживает..... Мне нравится как свет струится из окна, проходит через птичью клетку, через зеленые листочки. Мне нравится, как сидит кот, и прислушивается к шагам за дверью. Я не поняла из чего вы сделали слоеные пирожные. Они смотрятся так аппетитно!!!!! Как красиво вы провели экскурсию по дому. Сначала гостинная, потом кухня, и по лестнице вверх... Я люблю твои старые стены. Я восхищаюсь вашей работой! Как мне нравится фотография лестницы, где на деревянном столбе висит сито для муки.. Я могу много писать и восхищаться о вашей работе.
    Мне понравилась полка для книг около кровати!!! Хочется сделать такую же! :) :) :) Мне кажется, если вы будете каждую неделю что то менять в твоем доме, мы, ваши последователи, будем только рады! Будем наслаждаться!!!!:):):):)
    С уважением, Татьяна

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  32. Honestly Tatiana, I do believe that you were born with the soul of a poet! You express yourself in such a way that I feel as if I am reading a Classic. Thank you for all of your Beautiful words, which strike so deep. Everything that you have mentioned, " talk behind the walls, the cat's meow, the shadow's and rays of light, passing through the window and the leaves", are a YES! for me too! This is such a lazy household and I wanted a feeling of serenity and a sense of well-being and security that comes from living in a place that knows you and loves you. That is why the owner will not up-date that old kitchen, because she knows it too well and it has never let her down even as old as it is. She always expects company so the door is always ajar and the kettle is always full.
    I shall explain the puff pastry: The white packing styrofoam chips that are usually surrounding fragile materials, is what I used. I flattened them down with my fingers and then slid the foam between a sheet of folded paper and into the hole punch. The plump back up a little after the air gets back into them but they look continue to look like puff pastry with the layers visible.
    I am glad that you will use the idea of the books beside the bed! It gives me a great deal of satisfaction to know that there will be a little piece of me in Gerard's home. I MUST always have books about me in real life as well as in mini and there was just no where else to place them. I am so happy that you noticed and that you have approved! :D
    Again I wish to express my Thanks to you Tatiana, your comments continue to make me smile! :))

    elizabeth

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    1. :) :) :) Дорогая Элизабет, спасибо за комплимент, но я обыкновенная фантазерка! Любая фотография заставляет разыгрываться мою фантазию. Вплоть до чувств вкуса и звука... Я вижу цветные сны... Может быть это диагноз?? :) :) :) Мне кажется даже сухое дерево даст зеленые ростки, если увидит вашу удивительную работу.
      Спасибо за объяснение... Но, увы.... Может быть , вы покажете мастер класс.... Когда-нибудь...
      Татьяна

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    2. Okay "dreamer" I shall try and get a mini tutorial on these puff pastries as soon as I can find some more of the materials. I went looking for it earlier but it is nowhere to be found right now.
      but Stay tuned.....

      e

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  33. Elizabeth it's so cute, I love the changes but where is the dog? I dont see him anymore did the poor Goggie run away? since it was so humid here I was going to put my hair in afro puffs and go down the soul train line but I can't find my platforms but I did find my wedgies and my maxie skirt so fire up the 8 track Im ready shake my groove thang..oh wait ..back to the house..love it and welcome to the new member please get a blog soon so we can see your great stuff. back to the dance floor

    shake shake shake
    Marisa :)

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  34. Hey Marisa/ soul train sis-tah! What do you mean" Where is the dog?" He is in the last photo guarding the slipper, as always. I just moved him over a 1/2 inch.
    Girrrrrlll.... you are in another world! Bedda give your head a
    Shake shake shake ......

    elizabeth :))

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  35. Soultrain sistah, afro puffs, people shaking...did I miss something? LOL

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    1. Marisa was referring to my talking about my new steady guy,your "Isaac Hayes doll" that I was coloring my hair for. She has decided that she now needs to get in on the action and "shake her booty" waiting for her turn on Soul Train. However, I didn't have the heart to tell her that the Soul Train has already left the station.
      so I Just let her dance

      e

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  36. Elizabeth,
    Your work is amazing! The detail is wonderful! I may have to get mom to work on bedspreads. Just lovely.

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  37. Hi Anita! Thank you for your Wonderful Compliment! :D I love incorporating details and lots of them too! Your mom is such a talented lady and I see where you have derived your own talents from. I look forward to the opening of your Etsy store. You have some pretty Fabulous stuff in waiting right now and some of your mom's Fabulous work, as well!
    Thanks again for your comment :))

    elizabeth

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  38. Wow! Where do I even begin here? You posted so many lovely scenes that my mind is a blur! I love the fireplace mantle vignette you have going on and I particularly enjoy the sheep figuring. So adorable! It was so funny because I was thinking you used toothpaste caps for the shades and then right after I thought that, you said that you didn't! Very funny! I like the trim that you added to make it feel more homey. The earring back is so clever for the biscuit dish... I would never have guessed what it was repurposed from. The biscuits also look good enough to eat! I think I could eat all of them! :)

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  39. Heeheehee! Thank You Lindsey, for you warm and lovely compliments! You know when I was fishing around looking for alternate shades and found these two, I thought that IF these didn't fit then I would look at using Toothpaste Caps, but then I thought, the toothpaste that I buy has a flip-top! Do I even see this style any more? It has given me the idea that I may have to change my brand of toothpaste and begin collecting this style again, before it becomes extinct! And wouldn't you know that the packing popcorn that I made the biscuits out of, has also gotten lost in the chaos of my workroom. I had lots and now I cannot find any! It is no wonder that I tend towards hoarding when what you know has been usable, is no longer available. Like McDonlalds styrofoam packages that they years ago, served their burgers in, which are now replaced with cardstock. If only we knew ahead of time, which garbage to throw away and which junk to keep!

    elizabeth

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  40. Hi Elizabeth,
    I saw this post in my reader awhile ago but wanted to wait until I had time to sit down and really enjoy it. And enjoy it I did! I feel like I've just been given a guided tour of a historic house, taking me into another world. You've done such a fantastic job creating just the right atmosphere. What impresses me the most is how you are able to layer all the different pieces to create a signature style within the house. It looks home-y, inviting, well lived in and enjoyed. It also has a touch of decadence. A very multi faceted piece. I liked learning about all the different approaches you took too -oh! those lamps would have driven me crazy! And your solution looks wonderful. And can I please own those drapes surrounding the bed in real life? The look super luxurious.
    I know I haven't been following your blog the whole time, (so please forgive me if you've made lots of posts about this before) but have you done quite a few other pieces in the same style? I saw those perfume bottles you made a few posts ago and they seemed to have this antique look. It's a gorgeous style to play with.
    I hope you are enjoying these last few weeks of August, hugs
    Kristine

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  41. Hi Kristine! Thank You for your wonderful words and for the beautiful way you have of expressing yourself! :))
    I set up this post this way because I had a number of new followers that I am sure would not want to sift through all of the back posts and through all the numerous transitions that this house has undergone. I tend to be rather "chatty" and I know that there are readers that would like to just "cut to the chase", so I tried to condense it. However I still managed to rambled on and on.....
    I did a tutorial on how I made the drapes and Simon from Miniature Enthusiast, in his most recent post, tried it out with great success and so also did Catherine of Niniette and Co, in her Mouse House blue sitting room. The tutorial is entitled "Bed Curtains" and is super easy.
    As to other things that I have done , there is not much left to show since the real life rats ate up two of my finished doll[s houses that I had carelessly storied in the garage. Only the carcass of my Glencroft remains but the other one I gave to a friend who took it home and has nursed it back to health. :))
    One day I will re- work the Glencroft , but not yet. After 12 years of doing nothing in Miniature, I got my feet wet again with a tiny roombox entitled "GOTHICA" which won BEST IN SHOW, in last years West Coast Miniature Show and Sale. Gothica is posted under that title if you want to have a look.... I have promised to show how I made the hanging fixture in it and will hopefully get to it before Christmas.
    Meanwhile, I have finally begun work again on the EXTERIOR of #43 and have had to undo and re-do some of what I had already considered done!
    Now you can see why there are so many layers and why everything takes me so long which is why I have to show the same house 10 times over. :D
    As an artist, I find it very difficult to stay satisfied for very long, with anything that I do. Which makes me wonder how many times I will be showing and re-showing the tiny front garden of #43 before it too is "Finished AGAIN", for the umpteenth time?
    Ei-Yah!!!!
    this is my life
    hugs back! :))

    elizabeth

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  42. Your living room is gorgeous. I love the homey feel. At the same time it looks slightly steam punk. Thanks for sharing the lovely photos!
    XOXO
    Ruth

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    Replies
    1. Hello Ruth! Thank You very much! I am a big fan of the living room too. :D I am curious as to what makes it look like "Steampunk" to you? I had never considered it before. I am working on the front garden right now and as a result, I am thinking it is looking more American Eastern Seaboard than Victorian English seaside. Looks like the War for Independence is waging here, all over again.

      elizabeth

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  43. Hi Elizabeth....
    I didn't know...I didn't know you had posted. I thought you were on a break. That being said, I love love love all the changes. I can't wait to see them all up close and center.
    Also...I have no doubt of a "Best in Show" at this year's West Coast Show and I haven't even seen the finished product!

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  44. Hey there Fatima! How could you know when you and your hubby were out of town and finally relaxing and having fun together! Very Important, I think! :D
    I HAVE been on a break, from my Etsy store but still working steadily towards getting #43 closer to completion.
    I am glad that you approve of the changes, Fats. My sister has been giving me the "unhappy face" these last few days because she doesn't like my current plans for the front garden. When I run an idea past her, she basically gives me "Thumbs Down" :(( Needless to say, I feel like I am chasing my own tail trying to come up with better solutions. It is good to have YOU believing in me and this house as far as being ready for next years show,but at the rate I am moving in constant indecision and uncertainty, a year may not be long enough to get it ALL completely done.

    I think that I am needing a Miniteer Intervention! :))

    elizabeth
    p.s. I am glad to see and hear,that you are feeling better Fatima. :))

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  45. Hi Elizabeth,
    It was so nice to hear from you hon, you leave such sweet and encouraging comments that always make my day. It is so nice to know that it is my Thankful
    Thursday post is such an encouragement to others.

    Wow, I love your new house..........you do such detailed work it is amazing. Loved
    how you made the biscuits and the wall plates, they looks so real, and just like the
    normal size ones. Did a great job on the door and the bed too, Nice to meet your
    lady friends and other miniteers, once you get that Loreal on then you will have to
    put a pic of you on there, so we can see you!! lol
    Your houses are just so full of wonderful artistry.............you do an amazing job....
    always enjoy seeing your houses.

    I wound up leaving a comment on a post I realized was way back in February of this
    year cause I have to finnagle some to get to your blog, and happened to find your
    blog address and it took me there. It was the one where you were giving away a lil
    perfume tray to the 2nd winner Linda, just in case you want to check it out.

    Well you take good care dear, and have a lovely weekend,
    Blessings Galore,
    Nellie

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  46. Hi Nellie! Thank you for all of your Most Welcomed words! I always enjoy your Thankful Thursdays because it is a lesson of how to to find joy in the things that we often ignore or take for granted. When a person pays attention to the life around them, they can easily find God's blessings waiting there to be discovered and acknowledged.
    I like to think that I do a little of the same with my doll's houses in placing little surprises within it just waiting for the viewer to discover ! :D

    elizabeth

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