Thursday, 19 February 2015

CHANGING MY MIND... again




 I have recently changed the BIG TILES in my cottage kitchen, but prior to that I had made some Major changes to the front parlor which I would now like to tell you all about.... 
but before I do, I wish to apologize in advance for some of the fuzzy photos.  I am still working on the quality of my shots but I do still have "Fails" every now and then. >< 

                                          Now where was I? 
oh yes....

It all started with rummaging through the junk drawer, trying to find some spare doors to pass onto a friend of mine named Dave. Dave is building an "A" framed miniature cottage from scratch.  I knew that I had extra doors that he could have, and while culling through the lot, I found the Original Arthur kit front door with those MASSIVE DOOR HINGES STILL ON IT.  I took it out of the junk drawer and looked at it again, this time with NEW EYES.
I recall, my dismissive distain that I felt towards this Arthur door back in 2012, but just as I had second thoughts about the Big Tiles, I had a second look at the Arthur front door.
It has been 2 1/2 years since I started renovating this cottage, and  it is only now that I began to see some merit in having a Front door with window panes.  

What would the cottage look like with the original Arthur front door instead? 
I am a visual person and so I had to give it an actual audition to see what it might look like IF I had opted to use it.

the  original ARTHUR kit front door 
with a pretty green satin bow,
 hot glued on for life .

hmmmmm?.....   

what do you think? 



There certainly was MORE LIGHT inside but it also gave an entirely new look to the parlor.
But would you Look at those 2 "Hue-mung-gus" brass  door hinges!!!?

I remember how difficult these hinges were to remove from the wall. In fact, I recall that I took some of the wall off with them.  
***
Well, I was still undecided about replacing the front door. 

So I put the solid red door back in and wanted to let the idea go.
But I couldn't.

The thought of a new window door stuck in my head.   I mulled it over and over and then eventually, I presented my idea to Janine, and showed her the mock up photos of the door with the light streaming through into the parlor.  
She said that she was for the light; 
"the more light, the better." 
is what her thoughts were. 
Sometimes though, it is hard to give up an idea that has become  ingrained.  I stubbornly argued that the solid door would be better for a coastline cottage.  
But the real truth was that
I didn't know where to get a windowed door that would fit the existing opening.  

 However, it was Dave's conversion of the doors that I had given him, that made me rethink what could be done. Dave had cleverly reworked the doors for his "A" frame build and I thought that if he could do it, then so could I! 
I purchased 
an identical solid 6 panel door,  
from Ross's Treasure House, a well-established local miniature store.
I wanted to try and modify the new door to include 2 window panels, with the intention that if I didn't like the end results, then I could always switch it back again to the original solid front door.

The original Houseworks front door that I have had on the cottage for over 2 years.
I bought a new 6 panel door which looked identical to the one above, and removed 4 panels. 
the 4 panels removed from the new door

I carefully cut out 4 of the raised door panels and I also removed the center section with a craft knife. This went a lot easier than I had thought it would.
I inserted some plastic "glass" into the grooves of the frame, and then divided the window pane with another wooden center slat.  When it was done, I painted and aged the new door, the same red color as before.  
(The new door painted red, the panels removed, "glass" inserted and divider installed)
I gave it a temporary try out.
Okay, I think I am getting use to it.
I then added additional cross glazing bars to each panel and finished the door with hardware.  I hung some lace curtain panels over the glass so that there would be some privacy but still allow the light to filter into the parlor. 
The finished exterior front door from the outside.

But what did it look like from the inside? 
Well,....
The "before" photo below, 
is what the solid door use to look like from the inside.
sorry but couldn't find a better picture
the door "BEFORE"
this is the changed door "after"
(above and below)

This gives you a closer look at the  cottage's new front door.
I have painted and then re-painted the front door - 
4 times; first it was Blue, because I was trying to use the same color for the interior as before.  However, that color didn't work for me anymore.  So then the door became dark Brown, (blah)  then Red, (YUK!) and finally it is a Golden, Mustard Yellow-Brown, which picks up the color of the wood in the side chair beside it. Some of the colors from the previous paint layers, I allowed to show through, so this door really looks Well Aged.  The iron slide bolt lock, was removed from the previous solid front door and re-installed onto the top of this new door.  A small curtain rod with supports is threaded through the lace panels which were also stained and aged.
So now the cottage has a 
new/old front door with ancient lace curtains!
*****
Once one thing changes, other things have to change around them.
***
A short while ago, I made a new table cloth to cover the tea table.  I made it from a photocopy of a scarf found printed in a magazine. It is just varnished paper trimmed with bunka and edged with satin fringe.  For Christmas, I purchased a new English style silver teapot by Don Henry, from 
The Little Dollhouse Company, Ontario Canada 
I like the squat, melon shape of this teapot. I eventually would like to get the matching sugar and cream pitcher to go with it. The Federal style cream and sugar that you see here on the tray, will be eventually be moving into a different house, but I will continue to use them until then.
***

I thought I was finished with the side wall next to the fireplace but I changed my mind about the oval mirror that use to be on it. 
I replaced it with the narrow shelf unit that you now see.

The new shelf unit is made from sections of filigree fan slats, courtesy of 
Linda Park. 
Thanks Linda! :D
by the way Linda has a Brand new Blog
lindasminiworld.blogspot.com.au
Make sure that you go and check it out!

The filigree sections were doubled up and glued together to re-enforce them, then glued onto a mat board backing.  Wood shelves were added and faux drawers.   The layers of applied color are reflective of the corals and blues that are elsewhere within the room
The shelf was built to house; 

some old but favorite books, 
Kaiser porcelain cream and sugar bowl, 
a floral china ornament,
Kaiser tea cups, and saucers, that I have had for years, 
as well as a favorite green floral teacup, saucer, and Toby mug by Canadian I.G,M.A artisan, Janice Crawley.  
To soften the shelves, I topped it off with a trailing house plant, which I must remember to water.
I am quite satisfied with the way it looks and especially, with the extra storage that it now provides. 
***  
 I had decided that the lady of the house needed to be able to hear some music while she sipped her tea and tended to her needlework when she was in the parlor. 
 Quite a while ago, Fatima had made Janine and I,
a vintage style box radio 

and although it is rather boxy, it fits right in with the time-worn look of the interior decor.
Thanks Fatima, 
it is tuned into a BBC classical music station that I really enjoy!
:D
***
And who do we have here?
A New Dog 
lying on a New Carpet!
 yep! another carpet change
I found the to scale carpet photo in an old Architectural Digest Magazine, circa 1990's.  I always look for these old AD publications because "dimes to donuts", there will be a full-sized, straight on, color photograph of a lovely rug within its ad pages,  which prints beautifully onto either suede paper or onto fabric.  This rug is an English Victorian from the 1880's.... 
it's PERFECT!  
 for the room and for the dog!
the old carpet is in the photo directly above .

This is "Edmund" aka "Mr. Ed " the English Cocker Spaniel that I also purchased for Christmas, from
The Little Dollhouse Company.  

(just look at those soulful eyes)
He is made by Canadian Miniaturist,
Karl Blindheim

and in case you were wondering,
"Nate" the Great Dane, 
the previous dog in residence, will be 
  changing his location too. 
but more on that later
***
And here's the Metronome that I won from Magda's "17-17" blog. giveaway, which sits proudly on the re-arranged sideboard.
(The removable cover of the metronome, is stored in a drawer of this sideboard )
Thank you again Magda, I love it! 

:D. 
And Guess What?
I happened to find a mini violin in one of my storage boxes.  It is made of plastic and unfortunately, it doesn't have a bow, but at least it is to scale, and now when practicing 
the scales,  I can set the metronome into motion. :)
***

I changed my mind about the lighting around the fireplace.
 The new front door had changed the entire atmosphere inside the parlor and like Janine had said earlier-
"The more light the better!"
I used some nail polish remover on a cotton swab to erase the black varnish I had painted onto the insides of the lamp shades.  By removing the lacquer, more light filtered through the red shades and lightened up not only the mantle but also the entire fireplace wall.
 You know, I remember how pleased I originally was about toning the light WAY DOWN and now here I am changing my mind about it  

and turning it up again!?
It didn't stop with the lights either, but I altered the arrangement of the items on top of the mantle too.
The changes to the top of the mantle are as follows:
I added a glass vase of shiny red faux flowers.  The vase is Real Life, bi-pin bulb with the bottom cut off,  then inverted and glued to a base.  The 2 cranes came from a Chinese cork art piece that I bought from the thrift store and oh so carefully removed.  The cork is thinner than paper and super fragile.  I glued the birds and their cork-reed bases, onto a flat metal bead.  I painted the reeds and the bead base, with green water-based glass and tile paints.  Then I coated everything with
 Testors Clear Parts Cement & Window Maker.
This glue made for plastics, is super thin and liquid-y, and so it spread over the surface of the birds with relative ease, and dried super shiny, just as I was hoping it would.  This gave a little more strength to these "china" ornaments, but they are still extremely delicate to handle. 
I found a pair of wire bird's nest earrings from the thrift store, that I clipped the backs off of and I used one on the mantle.
I like the arrangement of all of the photographs but I really like the bird's nest and the 2 "china" cranes.
***
And I made some small changes to the front window while I was at it.
To match the lace panels on the new front door, I glued the same lace to the inside edges of both curtain panels behind the writing desk.
It makes looking out the window at the garden, even prettier!

So now you have had a complete tour of the entire front parlor, 
wall to wall, and also the floor. 
                    But by far, the BIGGEST change has been
                        to the parlor ceiling.
I  re-plastered and then re-painted the ceiling a dark, greyish- brown.  I also added 2 heavy cross beams to it.  It was very tricky to do. It took me a quite a few days to complete, and I pinched a nerve in my neck in the process, but it is all better now and it was worth the pain.  
Are you curious as to why?  Then let me give you my reasons.
Although this cottage is not a duplicate of the book
"Green Dolphin Street", I had wanted it to have some of the same"sea faring flavor" of that book.  The setting of the story initially take place in the coastal island town of St. Pierre, Guernsey Island in the English Channel. From there it moves aboard the merchant ship" the Green Dolphin",  and then spends many years pioneering, settling and logging down-river in New Zealand.  Eventually the adventure steam-engines its way back to Guernsey where it all began.   That is a lot of water to traverse.
Somewhere along the way, I felt the cottage was steering off course.  The summer garden contributed to this gradual moving away from  from the water but I felt, that I needed to get some of that water feeling back 

 and 
get it back inside the house.  
The ceiling was the avenue that I chose to express it.
It is rough and it is dark.  But it has the effect of making the parlor feel more snug and self-contained like the cabins of a sailing ship, rugged like the pioneers of the story and definitely more cozy; a safe haven for those "seekers" in life.  And like The Green Dolphin of the story, it too, has weathered a lot of life's storms and over time has
encountered 

many changes.
It has been over 2 and a half years since I began this journey, and it is not over yet!  

This parlor has been slowly, but consistently changing to become what it is.  But just as is now with the kitchen, I believe that the parlor 
is finally
DONE! 

That is:
If I don't go and change my mind...

again!
:D
***



elizabeth





86 comments:

  1. Oh Elizabeth! It is difficult to understand the huge job you did. It was so funny to read all this. You seem to know, what you want and how to do it. The result is perfect, again. I would like to write much more, but my bad english skills prevent me to do that.
    Hugs,
    Sirkka from Finland

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    1. Hi Sirkka and Thank You! :D
      Because I did this parlor over the last 2 months, it was not such a big job as it may appear. But If it seems like I know what I want; I DON'T! That is why I keep on redoing it and changing my mind, so often. However, I think I Do Know when I have finally gotten that elusive something that I was looking for! :))
      And please do not apologize for your imperfect English. I have NO Finnish at all, not even ONE WORD,
      but HUGS is Universal! :))

      elizabeth

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  2. a very warm atmosphere with light
    the view of the garden is beautiful
    bravo Elizabeth

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    1. Hi Claude!
      Thank You Very Much for your comment and I also am Very Pleased with the views from the parlor into the garden. They turned out much better than I had expected! :))

      elizabeth

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  3. Dear Elizabeth, how wonderfully to read your new post. I am fascinated by your house! I have a feeling, there's real life, which goes on in the miniature world! This is a very good idea of replacing the door, the new ones are such a unique and perfectly fit the character of the house. With big joy I watched all the beautiful pictures, I love their atmosphere! With joy I saw also my little metronome which you put between your beautiful minis, it looks so nicely, thank you :-)
    Magda

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    1. Hi Magda! I Thank You so Very Much for the opportunity to have participated in the giveaway for your Metronome. It has found a place inside this cottage as if it has always been there! It is a Perfect fit!:D
      Thank You for your comment about it "feeling like Real Life"! Nothing could please me more! :D

      elizabeth

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  4. Ese ambiente es impresionante, maravilloso y precioso. Los cambios lo han mejorado más si eso es posible.

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    1. Hello Eloisa! Thank You Very Much!!! Your words are so encouraging to me! Each time I make a change it sets the stage for so many other changes to happen. I Thank You again for really liking the photos. Your comment is Awesome! :D

      elizabeth

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  5. LOVE IT!!!!! - As always:)
    Hugs
    Andrea

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    1. Bye Bye Google + And Welcome Back Andrea!!! :D
      Thank You Very Much and
      Hugs to you too!

      elizabeth

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  6. I love your posts, Elizabeth, they are epic!! And all the wonderful pictures make the, a real pleasure to meet read, enjoy and take inspiration from. I love the new door with windows, very clever and they add a whole new dimension to the room. And the beams are perfect! And the dog, and the violin... So many wonderful mini things - I can't believe you found the violin in one of your storage boxes - I'd die for storage boxes full of treasures like that!
    Big hugs
    Si

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    1. hahahhah! I KNOW that I blog sometimes the word equivalent of Tolstoy's "WAR AND PEACE", but I can't help it, Simon! heeheehee
      I am so glad that you like the new door, and the beams Thank You! The beams were such a challenge but I prevailed in the end! Hooray! :D
      And isn't it Marvelous about the violin? I knew that I had one but I couldn't find it. It seemed to have re-appeared just when I needed it.
      Thank you for your comment Si and for your encouragement about the photos. Some were not so good but fortunately there were more that Were Good than otherwise.
      Big Hugs back!

      elizabeth

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  7. Hi Elizabeth.
    Entertaining as usual! I think we could rename your house to "The Never-Ending Story". Every change is just amazing!
    Yes, I love the glass door. (That is something I do to all my houses as well). The light just looks wonderful filtering in. Anyway, the miniature people need to see who is coming to the door, as well as being able to peek out and see the glorious garden!
    Hugs,
    Sam

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    1. Hello Isabelle and Sam! I think that the re-christening of #43 to "the Never-ending Story" is entirely appropriate, because it sure feels like it! :)). This was supposed to be a short story when I started this project,... What happened?!
      I have enjoyed all of your home renovations Sam, but I must make a return trip and look again at the doors. Some things slip past me but you are right in saying that the miniature people Need to see who is coming to the door; because it might just be those Magnificently Efficient and Oh So Macho Piano Moving Guys that you and Isabelle, regularly hire! :D
      Hugs Back!

      elizabeth :D

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    2. Hi Elizabeth. Sam here.
      I think I have just had a revelation thanks to you. The current house that Isabelle is renting, (the Tamarack), has a boring solid door. I REALLY dislike this house probably because I bought it as is, and have never changed it to make it my own. Now I KNOW that I need to change the door!
      (I have even changed Mr Arthur's door on the Westville, but have not updated any photos yet.) Hmmm, I might need to renovate Isabelle's house. Oops, better not, Kinsey will be upset as I need to finish her house first! And Mr Crumble's bakery, and Bessie's Tea room and .........
      Too many houses, too little time!

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    3. Hahahhaha I hear you Sam, Loud and Clear! :D

      Delete
  8. I really love the changes you've made, Elizabeth, especially the ones involving light! Redecorating is so much fun, and thanks to blogging you have a record of all of the different ways you've done it, all of them lovely. xo Jennifer

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    1. Hi Jennifer! Thank you for liking the changes involving more light! :D I must admit that there has been a number of blogs that are currently renovating their finished rooms or houses and who could not be help but inspired by such changes. You are right in saying that blogging all of the different changes has provided a good record. I was reviewing my POOR ARTHUR posting on this house when I began to get serious about doing it and What a Difference between then and now.... and Who Knew?????

      elizabeth

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  9. Oh...Elizabeth...you are such a perfectionist! I'm not complaining.... Just when I think it is the best ever I could imagine, you do it again and even better. Yes....let there be light! For sure! Thank you for giving up on "Google"
    Your pictures are improving and I'm loving it. Thank you for a great spot for the radio I made for you and Janine. Somehow you managed to make it look better than I remember it.
    I love love your post!
    fats

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    1. Hey there Fatima! I am far from being a "perfectionist" but I"m not complaining that you have called me one; hahhah, THANK YOU! :D
      I think though, that rather than striving for a perfect environment , I am in hot pursuit of the perfect spirit. There is "good stuff" and "not so good stuff" all working together within this cottage that individually may or may not be able to stand up to close scrutiny, but all together it will invite you to "come in and set a spell." That is always my aim... A Perfect Welcome Home!:))
      Thank you for your contribution of the radio, Fatima. I too, am glad that it has been able to find a home here at #43,
      it's just Perfect! :D

      elizabeth

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  10. ah ah ah ! Elizabeth, encore et toujours mieux.
    Ces changements sont plus que parfaits. La lumière qui pénètre par cette nouvelle et jolie porte, les divers éléments embellis eux aussi, sans oublier, le beau chien, enfant, j'avais un adorable cocker anglais brun et noir.
    Je suis sous le charme de cette maison, tellement vivante.
    Que de progrès, d'améliorations concrètes, c'est un merveilleux travail, toutes mes félicitations Elizabeth !
    Bises. Joce


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    1. Good Morning Joce! I Thank You Very Much for calling the changes "Concrete Improvements":D I felt the same after they were done and that feeling that the room was "on hold", until another idea sprang to mind, was not there. I have the sense that this room is Pretty Solid now.
      I see that you too are also renovating your Provencal Farmhouse. I know that this will be a new adventure for you Joce, as you journey through making Big Changes with this property. I am intrigued by your future plans for it. I know that you are going to have lots of fun AND frustrations with your farmhouse reno, but I also know that the results will be well worth it, in the end! :D
      hugs and kisses

      elizabeth

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  11. HI Elizabeth! It seems that this house is still 'talking' to you in a special way.......it is so capricious and exacting to you, cause it wants continuous something different ;O! And you, my friend, are always willing to make it better, even if you've said that you definately won't change it anymore, hahaha LOL!
    But you did an excellent job at all the things you've changed, so this house had a lot to tell you, the result is that it is (just like you) telling us even more now ;)! This house has so much atmosphere, you've even outdone it.
    And please: don't 'rumble' again on the window for your comments, because I'm so glad that your sweet daughter have fixed it for you, so that I now can write you a comment again :D!!
    Hugs, Ilona

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    1. Hahahhahah, I promise that I will Never Again Tamper with the comment section of this blog Ilona, because I would hate to miss EVEN ONE of your enjoyable and oh so readable, comments! hahaha :D
      I agree that the house does talk to me. If I have other ideas then I try to ignore it, but when I listen, then I find that something unexpected happens that I would never have thought of on my own, and that gets my interest rekindled and then nothing will satisfy, except to DO IT! I am Very Happy that you are enjoying the Atmosphere of this house, Ilona. That Really makes me Happy!!!
      Hugs Back,my dear friend :D

      elizabeth

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  12. Cette maison est si réelle, si vivante, si riche en détails que chaque photo raconte toute une histoire et laisse notre imagination vagabonder. Félicitations Elizabeth, vous nous faites rêver.

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    1. What a Wonderful comment Jean-Claude; Thank You Very Much!!!:D I love your statement of "every picture telling a story" ( which should save me from talking so much throughout the entire posting ,.... but it doesn't! ) hahaha But, seriously, I am Very Pleased that you have enjoyed each of the photos and have paid me such a beautiful compliment too, Merci beaucoup! :D

      elizabeth

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  13. Hi Elizabeth, Ilona said that the house keeps talking to you. It certainly seems to do just that. However, soon I think, you will let it rest and enjoy itself!
    The front door looks wonderful and such a good solution to use the same door so that you would not need to make any changes to the doorway!
    The ceiling also helps age the cottage and makes it cozy - completely appropro.
    Always love looking at the contents of your house.
    See you soon.
    Janine

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    1. Hi Janine! Yes the house does keep talking to me and I have been all ears lately! :D
      Thank You for your wise words about the light; it was good that I listened to you. The new door install gave me my MOJO back and got me motivated to get the room finished for good and all. The ceiling was a challenge, I decided to tackle it after everything else was already done, but again, I am very glad that I listened to the house and tackled it, AND finished it. I like it and I am So Glad that you like it, too! :D
      I am looking forward to your return soon and hope that you and your faithful sidekick and trusty man Bruce, are having a great time in the Land Down- Under. When you return, expect to see many Spring Bulbs already blooming; it has been that mild.
      Big Hugs to you my friend!:D

      elizabeth

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  14. I love your changes, especially the door. I find this new door perfect , because it adds light to the room. The new curtains are great too. I'm fascinated by the view of the garden through the door and windows. The dog makes the room cozy, very cottage style.
    Geneviève

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    1. Hi Genevieve! Thank You Very Much for liking the changes to the door! :D I was unsure about it initially, but I have now come to love it. The view from the parlor windows was such a Great Bonus. I wasn't sure if the camera was going to be able to capture the garden through the plastic glass, but it did; just enough.
      To switch from a pet Great Dane to a Spaniel, was traumatic! I was emotionally attached to "Nate", but I think that "Mr. Ed" has finally fit in, and has made himself quite at home.
      And like you Genevieve, I think that He's a Keeper! :D

      elizabeth

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  15. Hello Lady Elizabeth,
    Now that is what I call an upgrade. You really took an amazing room and pushed it so much further. The new door is wonderful. I agree that more light is a wonderful thing, but what most strikes me is that when I look at the room, it makes me think more of a cottage by the sea. I also think the sconces was a great idea. the warm glow really makes everything more cozy. You have had a crazy adventure and I can imagine the work, thinking and trouble it caused, but I really adore the changes and would spend a holiday in your cottage anytime.
    Brava my friend. You always inspire me!
    Big hug,
    Giac

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    1. Hello Sir Giac!:D And If ANYONE should know an Up-grade when he sees one, it would be YOU! hahahhah
      Thank You for agreeing about the plus side of having a door with light, but most of all for your comment about the cottage looking like it is by the sea!:D That comment makes me feel so happy Giac! And you are Most Welcome to come and holiday here at #43 whenever you like.

      And I will even let you cook in the little kitchen too! hahaha
      A Big Hug Back :D

      elizabeth

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  16. И да! Чем больше света тем лучше! Интересно то, что дверь стала, как родная. Она , как будто, была там всегда.
    Дорогая Элизабет, вы создали удивительный китайский шкафчик. Очень красиво! Вы заметили, как проникает свет через ажурную сетку шкафчика? Радиоприемник смотрится замечательно! Вы совершенно правы! Как может быть живой дом без музыки?
    Вы купили потрясающий чайник. Это ювелирная вещь!
    Я люблю вашу собаку! Удивительные, живые глаза! Она отдыхает, но кажется, что она следит за хозяйкой. Еще секунда, и она с радостью подбежит к ее ногам.
    Вы создали удивительных фарфоровых птиц! Они смотрятся очень изящно и натурально! Браво!
    Кружева на окнах смягчают ровные линии. Это здорово!
    Что сказать про балки на потолке! Вы молодец! Я чувствую, что в моем домике нужно сделать подобные балки! Но я труслива и ленива! Я должна вытащить из домика все мелочи, а потом установить их снова! Это выше моих сил! Надеюсь, что когда-нибудь... Я знаю вас... Вы еще вернетесь к своему проекту десять раз. Вы сделаете прекрасное еще прекраснее.
    Умиротворение царит в вашем доме. Такое ленивое лето, жужжат пчелы в саду... Как приятно...
    Спасибо за приятное времяпровождение!
    Татьяна

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    1. Good Evening my Dear Tatiana! I would like to Thank You for taking the time to write me such a Detailed and Wonderful comment about the changes in the parlor! :D The observation about the light passing through the fretwork on the shelving was something that even I did not see until you mentioned it. Your power of observation has always impressed me by the details that you are always able to pick up! I am very happy that you agree with Janine in that "the more light the better". I have a very wise friend in Janine. The new door has made such a difference to the general atmosphere of the room, and I cannot think of why I did not consider it sooner, except to say that everything happens in its proper course of time; ie, the dog, the music, the new door and the beams on the ceiling.
      I don't know about you Tatiana, but if I get an idea in my head that will not go away but continues to grow and haunt me, then I HAVE to try it out, even if it means taking all of the finished work out of the house. Otherwise, I just get cross with myself for trying to avoid dealing with it. So if you are wanting to install beams, then I would say Just Do It! In the end, You will be glad that you did and Gerard will be too! :D
      A Big Hug to you my dear Tatiana.
      I enjoyed every word of your comment!

      elizabeth

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  17. The door redo was perfect Ms E, love the light it brings in your shots, that filtered lighting, it makes it look so wonderful. The natural lighting and those warm lit sconces look so classic, the nostalgia on this cottage is so wonderfully transportive.

    While of course your decorating is always top notch, I love that you've paid attention to every nook and the celing beams as well.

    Looking throught your fabulous shots are like a mini Easter egg hunt, something special is always about to make you smile.

    Inspiring and wonderous as always!

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    1. Thank You Ms.Jane, for mentioning the lighting. This has become a sore point with me of late. I keep trying to get the light to look natural and have ended up with over-exposure and hot spots where I do not want them to be. OR the lighting is right and the subject is blurry. I am still looking for that fool proof combination of good lighting, a steady hand and a composition that doesn't look too busy. Some of the photos in this posting have come out better than I thought though, and I am Very Happy that you have enjoyed them, Jane. Your comment on the "nostalgia" that is evoked, has struck a chord with me. It is funny to think that something new can make you feel that you have known it from before and/ or for a long time.
      and as the song goes.... "But who knows where or when?"
      A Big Hug from one of your Biggest Minifantaticus Fans- ME! :D

      elizabeth

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  18. Wow... you made a lot of changes... a little bit here and plenty of it there. Following your process that lead to the stunning makeover of the door was fun and inspiring, it looks gorgeous and in my opinion it's good that there's more daylight now. And welcome to Mr. Ed... what a beautiful dog. But the best part for me was having back the good ol' comment box... ;O)

    Greetings
    Birgit

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    1. Hahahhahha!!!!! I couldn't agree with you more Birgit! That Google + was a nightmare to remove once I activated it. The adage "Look before you Leap", comes to mind. All that I can say in response is that I have learned my lesson, and I promise that I shall NEVER activate Google + to my comment box EVER AGAIN! ..... scouts honor
      Meanwhile, I am Very Happy to see your comment here again and I Thank You Very Much for it. :D
      It was such an odd thing seeing the difference between the solid door and the window door. To me the light changed everything! The photos really emphasized the difference more than in person, and the photos were what made me finally decide in its favor.
      As Tatiana has mentioned, the new door feels like " a native" as though it has always been this way. I suppose that is what keeps me so enthralled by this hobby. How even little changes can have such Big Impact!
      I am Delighted that you have enjoyed the parlor make over Birgit
      Greetings to you also! :D

      elizabeth

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  19. Has hecho un trabajo increíble en esa sala. La puerta es un buen cambio. Me gusta como se ve el interior,Las fotos con el visillo o con la puerta medio abierta son encantadoras. Las garzas han quedado muy bien y el techo es precioso.

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    1. Thank You Isabel for your lovely comment and I agree with you about liking the photos of the door and the window looking out to the garden. Those three shots were happy surprises for me. I particularly like the door one because it came out the sharpest, but it was lots of FUN trying to get different angles and perspectives with the camera. I am Delighted that you have enjoyed my efforts! :D
      Hugs to you Isabel

      elizabeth

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  20. Elizabeth, you never cease to Amaze and Astonish me!!! Your creativity and your Vision that you are working towards constantly unfolds in such an organic and growing way! Every little change you have made has reason and purpose behind it.... and every time the results are just jaw-dropping! I can't imagine making those tiny cork cranes into "china" or a bi-pin bulb into a vase! And every time you alter one thing.... you are not afraid to change everything else around it!!! My admiration is endless!!! This house continues to be a voyage and an exploration of what it means to connect with the Soul of a place! Bravo for your courage, your ingenuity, your sheer brilliance and your perseverance! Your work is just plain Awesome!!!

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    1. Awwww Betsy! You are far too kind but Thank You my dear lady for all that you have said. I really treasure your words! :D I believe that every change SHOULD have a purpose and a reason, otherwise why change it? Sometimes the reason is simply because, I don't like it anymore, or I'm tired of it or I have up-graded to something better etc, Or it can be that something else tells the story with a clearer voice. I refer you to your fireplace makeover that you are doing with the Willowcrest. Those trees that make up the top section have made a fascinating difference to your parlor but it all began with the light fixtures before it moved onto the sculpted trees, which now tell your story with a clearer voice than they did before. You and I think a lot alike Betsy! I think of my cottage as a story in motion and I know that you feel the same way about your work too. That is why this project is, as you have so beautifully expressed it , "a voyage and an exploration of what it means to be connected with the Soul of the place"
      I just Love That
      Than You dearest Betsy! :D

      elizabeth

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  21. It's gorgeous! The original door was nice. But the new door with windows does bring in more lights to see your super cute details. I love the lace. I'm so happy to see the little metronome in place. it's so cute! You have so many treasures in here. It's dreamy!
    hugs♥,
    Caroline

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    1. Hi Caroline! Thank You Very Much!!! :D Like you, I have no hard feelings towards the original door either. I loved it for 2 + years but, just as with those Wonderful French doors that you are now building from scratch, this window door allows in so much more light. The lace was necessary although I'm not a lace person or a doily person either, but for this cottage, I now have both; ..... go figure?
      I LOVE the metronome and was so happy that I won Magda's giveaway and that it fit so beautifully into the space. Hooray!!!!!
      Thank You for your lovely comment and for your compliment Caroline. I have appreciated them both!
      Big Hugs Back :))

      elizabeth

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  22. It's a pleasure to read your posts. I like the red door and the details in the interior are amazing.

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    1. Thank You So Much Faby! I get a lot of enjoyment in writing them and even more in taking the photos! I am So Pleased that you like the changes to the front door and the details of the interior. I hope that this will be the final chapter of changes in the parlor and also of the kitchen. I am now going to focus on the 3rd wall of the exterior again, so there will be plenty more to show about this cottage as time goes on, But once again Thank You for all of your encouraging words! :D


      elizabeth

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  23. Finished... we shall see :D Love the new door, your changes are always for the better, I do believe there is a good "before photo" of it somewhere with a cat on that chair beside it, though too late now :D I think letting more light in is always a good idea and any excuse for lace curtains. Really love the teapot, and the fan shelf is fantastic, I've just started following Linda, as someone else had mentioned her on their blog, though I think you had mentioned her quite a few times. I love the beehive too. I've been absent from blogging lately, trying to catch up :D The view through the door into the garden is just perfect! Very Thorne like.

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    1. Hahahah "Oh Ye of little faith!!!!" :D
      Thank You for loving the new door Sarah! I had forgotten all about that cat on the chair photo until you mentioned it! I had to delete hundreds of old photos from I Photo because it was slowing my lap top down to the point where it paused after every sentence, but I know just what picture you are referring to.
      Good Recall, Madame! :D
      I love the teapot too and wish that I could have purchased the rest of the set at the same time, but there is nothing wrong with waiting a little longer. The Fan shelf was fast, cheap and easy and who could ask for anything more? !
      Ahhh, the beehive was another EASY, albeit messy project, I was thinking about showing how I did that project as I took photos along the way. I find that the older I get the less I can remember: "Old-Timers" memory so if I make a tutorial then I can follow my own directions if I wish to do it again. I use to write everything down in a book, but now I just try to work it into a blog so that I can find it again when I need to. Is that weird or what!?
      And I have to agree that that view through the door was a shot that I had not expected to have turned out as well as it did. I am soooo Proud of that photo, It is sharp and clear and the balance of color and composition made me feel that it is one of the Best shots that I have done to date. It really makes me happy that you have singled it out too, so Thank You for that Whopper of a compliment, Sarah: I feel very blessed! :D

      elizabeth.

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  24. Wow! So much to look at, that I could stare and dream at your pictures for hours. I love the windows in the front door; it adds so much more light to the interior! My front door of my dollhouse also has windows in it. I like the curtain that you added and may have to steal that idea for mine, so that it doesn't look quite as bare. The radio and shelf are wonderful gifts and look perfect in your home. I love how everything looks worn and cozy. So many accessories- just enough to look perfectly lived in!

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    1. Hi Lindsey! Thank You for your lovely comment about the windows in the front door Linsey! :D When one compares what the room felt like before and what it feels like now, it is a wonder that I hadn't thought to change it earlier. It makes an enormous difference doesn't it? The curtain panels was for light and privacy. I was going to do a pull shade but I thought that the lace curtain panels were more consistent with the style of the rest of the house.
      Fatima did such a great job of duplicating a Vintage box radio! She even added a plug to the end of the cord. She is Amazing! The shelf I made but Linda provided the materials and for that I Thank her Very Much! I hope that you will check out her new blog. She is just getting started but she has an INCREDIBLE French Style that I love, and I know you will too! :D

      elizabeth
      p.s. I hope that your pregnancy is going well, and I look forward to hearing about you and Todd's new Real Life Miniature sometime soon! :))

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  25. Hi Elizabeth! I love all the changes you have made. You certainly are persistent to have made all those changes to the front door and it turned out perfect. The new door brings a completely new atmosphere to the little house. When I look at all those photos, I feel like I am looking at something from another era and I would love to shrink myself and live in that little world for a while. Love what you have done to the curtains. Love your new shelf. So glad your neck has healed. It must have been so very hard to do that ceiling. Love Fatima's radio! Visiting this blog is such a treat. You have done such finicky stuff here. I don't know how you manage it! Thanks for all the wonderful idea that you share with us.

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    1. Oh Lucille! I am sooooo Glad to see your smiling face here again! :D
      Thank You Very Much for all of your enthusiasm and for your support for this cottage project. I have enjoyed reading your words of wisdom and even when I have felt discouraged about this work, you have bolstered my ego and said just the right thing at the right time.
      I am so Pleased that you are enjoying all of the Changes in the parlor. And Thanks for being concerned about my neck! I had a head-ache for 3 days during and after the re-surfacing of the ceiling and installing those new beams. It wasn't easy but in the end, the pain is past, and the beams have me..... BEAMING! :D

      elizabeth

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  26. It's Sunday evening here in Sydney, and quite late and it's been a busy weekend so I was feeling rather tired but after reading your post Elizabeth I admit I am entirely exhausted as I've removed door panels, installed glass, and moved stuff around ad infinitum right along with your so now I'm just so glad to be able to have a cup of tea from your wonderful tea pot and relax in the wonderful filtered light that's now coming in the front door, and maybe even listed to the radio a little but I'll draw the line at trying out the violin - that would only make the dog howl! - and I am much to sensible to even consider getting on a ladder and helping out with the ceiling even though I should since you injured yourself but a woman of my age has to recognise the limits of the more mature body :) So if it's okay with you I'll just chill out for a bit and take in all the treasures... (BTW while I'm loving the extra light that the new door lets in I'm a little disappointed it's no longer possible to run from the bathroom to the living room fireplace on cooler evenings to towel off in the warm glow of the hot coals without worrying that the gardener is still lurking out there somewhere - sometimes there is something to be said for solid wood!).

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    1. Hey Norma! I am jumping the comment queue, because I have to let you know that there IS a fireplace in the bedroom that you can towel off in front of, without the prying eyes of nosey neighbors or curious gardeners.
      That will save you a trip downstairs.
      BYW, is it true that ladies of a certain age still run naked through the house? Living in such a cool temperate zone as I do, it is not something that I had previously considered, but I have now learned something new about the ladies Down Under.
      But you are right that there are certain benefits of a solid door. If my neighbors happen by to visit, first thing on any given morning, they would find me shuffling around in my ratty old bathrobe and dirty and worn out slippers, hair uncombed and face all puffy with yesterdays makeup still sticking my eyelashes together, stuffing my face with cold biscuits and hot tea, and THEN I would be VEHEMENTLY WISHING for MY SOLID FRONT DOOR AGAIN. :((

      elizabeth
      p.s. I LOVED your comment!:D

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    2. I'm delighted to know that there is a fireplace in the upstairs bedroom, this is a most civilised arrangement. Now, this must be absolutely our secret Elizabeth but there is at least one 'lady' Down Under who loves nothing more on cool nights than to dash from (downstairs) bathroom to towel off in front of the living room fireplace in a certain little cottage in the New Zealand countryside (spoiler - this link does not include images of such activities!) http://www.makeminemini.blogspot.com.au/search/label/%22Real%20world%22%20cottage

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    3. Whew!!!! I am glad for your sake Mrs. that there are "no images of such activities" because apparently Blogger is putting a ban on all such explicit adult activities, which will soon be deemed ,* whispered* .... "by invitation only" :o

      :D

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  27. Elizabeth, I love your "new look". It is just as pleasing as the "old look"! They do have a slightly different effect, and you are right, the new look does capture a bit more of that seafaring flavor. I love the additional light added by the window lights. I do, however share Norma's concern that the occupants will have less privacy for those towel dashes from room to room!

    I also really, I mean really, like the new carpet for the room, it captures so perfectly the other colors in the room and ties everything together better than ever! Nicely done!

    Doug

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    1. HeeHeeHee! Never Fear Doug, because a Solution is Near! Just for the "Daring and Baring Norma's" of this world, who would like to towel off in front of an open fire. The fireplace in the bedroom spares you having to do any IN HOUSE STREAKING. You see, I try to think of Everything. :))
      Thank You Doug for liking this carpet as much as I do!!! When I saw it, I knew it was THE ONE! When I laid it out on the floor, it was an AH HA moment. I could stop right here. There are certain things that you just know will be perfect when you see them. This carpet was one of them, and I am So Glad that you think so too! :D
      Thank You Mr. D; I Always greatly appreciated ALL of your comments!

      elizabeth

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    2. Oh dear, I fear that I may have somewhat damaged my reputation as a 'lady' and will henceforth be known as 'the streaker'! ;)

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    3. Well, if the Blur fits.....

      :D

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    4. Never fear Norma! "the Streaker" has a tough sound to it! No one will mess with you with that moniker! :0)

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  28. What a great post this is - I've read it twice AND I've done the "open pic in new tab" thing and had a good snoop around your rooms - inspirational is all I can say. I do love your Parlour, there are so many interesting things to see and it all looks so life like. You've just given me the kick up the whatsit I needed to get motivated.

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  29. Thank You Very Very Much Irene! I had no idea what the "open pic in new tab" was but now I do! :)) I am always excited when I learn a new thing that can be done on the computer, that I didn't know how to do before. :D
    I am so glad that you have been enjoying the photos. I feel that there is a definite connection NOW with my original vision for the parlor, and what it has evolved into. This does not always happen when I work, but it has this time. The book Green Dolphin Street, inspires me every time I read it, and I am Very Happy that this room has in turn, has inspired you. :D
    Thank You again Irene, for taking the time to read this post over twice AND for your lovely comment about it too!:D

    elizabeth

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  30. I like the changes, it was very gloomy before but that was when it was a seaside house now that you've moved to town its very bright and cottagey feeling is cottagey a word any way it looks great...I will miss the great Dane..I hope he gets a great home..he's a good boy :-)

    Hugs
    Marisa

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  31. Hi Marisa!:D Surely it was NOT gloomy!!!!!:O Well, okay perhaps it was a wee bit gloomy.... but it ain't dim anymore! :D
    I am glad that you like the new/old changes, Thank You! and please don't worry about Nate. He has a new home in mind, that he WILL like better. I agree, he has been a Very Good Boy!
    Big Hug back! :))

    elizabeth

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  32. Hello Elizabeth,
    always a pleasure to watch your pictures!! Your changes are great. With more light I think the room is perfect!
    Greetings and a big hug
    Melanie

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    1. Hello Melanie! I am Delighted to hear from you, and Thank You for your lovely words!!! :D I have not regretted changing the door at all, but it did take a little getting use to. From now on though, I shall remember this experience and the great value of more natural light, because it really does make a difference.
      And I am very glad that you think so too!
      A Big Hug back! :))

      elizabeth

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  33. Dear Elizabeth ,
    I think the changes you have done made everything more cozy. Some of your pictures its hard to think it is miniature... looks so real to me! :)
    Beautiful and fun!

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    1. Thank You Very Much Patricia for such a Wonderful comment and compliment because I Adore warm and cosy atmospheres! :)) Your comment about the photographs is especially appreciated because I have more fun taking the photos than I do building the project
      Trying to make the photo interesting to view has been my own personal challenge and your observation that the pictures look "real" is immensely encouraging to me. Thank You!!! :D

      elizabeth

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  34. I think the changes in life and new visions of things are good, also in this case, spend a fun time and leave your thoughts to the imagination! your changes are great, and the scenes are very realistic. Congratulations, great job.
    Hugs! :0)

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  35. Hello Monica! I am Very Happy with the changes to the parlor which DID INDEED give me a new vision! Thank You for that comment and for enjoying the changes that I have made!:)) It pleases me Greatly that you have also enjoyed the realism of the scenes. That is a compliment for me to Treasure forever! :D
    Hugs to you too!

    elizabeth

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  36. So beautiful and heartwarming. Warm greetings from Montreal.

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  37. Hi Linda! Welcome to my blog and Thank You for your kind words! :D I love the word "Heart-warming" as it conjures up the feeling that the owner really loves this old cottage,
    and seeks comfort and warmth from the memories that are deeply imbedded within its old walls. :D

    elizabeth

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  38. Who knew you could improve on perfection? It looks even more stunning. And I do love the new front door. The light coming in looks wonderful.

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    1. Hi Kat! :D Thank You Very Much for all of your Lovely words!!!:D I really do appreciate them Like you, I enjoy taking cast -offs and turning them into something really special, just as you have done within your new little kitchen! :D

      elizabeth

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  39. This is just beautiful! I adore your very cosy and 'cluttered' attitude to decoration and I think the new door just sets this one off perfectly!

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  40. Hi Christine! Thank You Very Much for your comment and for your LOVELY compliment! :D
    I especially like the reference to the "cluttered attitude". :)) I love this type of Miniature Decorating although in Real Life, I prefer exactly the opposite. In miniature however, I can indulge in my secret fantasy AND if I was actually living in this cottage, ( which I think I DO), then I would have every single nicknack and piece of bric-a-brac, within this house.
    And perhaps even MORE!!!! :O

    elizabeth :D

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  41. I just love your little spaces - they are so cozy and full of life. Cheers!

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    1. Hi Alessandra! Thank You for your lovely comment! :)) I am partial to small cosy spaces in Real Life as well.
      I am really looking forward to seeing more of your little English cottage soon too! :))

      elizabeth

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  42. Ok, Love this little cottage. It makes me want to pull out my little Arthur, it was my very first dollhouse and it's sitting sadly in my closet as i kept changing my mind on what to do with it. lol I love all the little settings you have created, so many interesting things to look at. I adore the ceiling, it adds so much character to the room. The table cloth is wonderful too, Its amazing the things you can do with paper, i made drapes once, as im not fantastic with fabric. lol

    Jenn

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    1. Hi Jennifer! I am so glad that you like this little cottage and that it has perhaps given you a NEW ATTITUDE towards Your Poor Arthur! :D
      About the ceiling,... I have to say that renovating that ceiling after the fact, was one of the most challenging jobs that I have ever attempted. I don't recommend it but I had to take on the project only because it would bug me forever, if I didn't.
      Thank you for liking the paper table cloth. If ANYONE knows the wonders of paper Jennifer, IT IS YOU! :D

      elizabeth

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  43. It's beautiful! Sorry about my english mistakes, I'm hungarian:) You are very talented, and this little world.. I just wondering.. perfect. I making my first dollhouse now, with my first student mistakes:) and I learning a lot about this amazing things. Thank you!

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  44. Hello Nitta and Welcome! :D I am so glad that you liked the story behind "Changing My Mind... Again." Thank You Very Much for your lovely compliment! :D
    Everyone has to start somewhere and I am so Excited that you are beginning to make your very first doll's house!!!! I have made 4 to date but I currently only have 2 left, the one that I am working on now and an empty one in my garage. The other 2, I gave away long ago. When I began to make doll's houses, there were no websites
    ( back in the late 1970's), to see what other miniaturist were doing with their projects. The only way to get a hint of what was happening worldwide, was via Miniature Magazines. You will have a much easier time constructing your doll's house because their is so much more information available and right at your fingertips. :D
    I wish you all THE BEST with your doll's house Nitta, and if you ever would like information about how I made something or where I got something that you are interested in, please feel free to ask. I try to keep up with my correspondence and if I don't know the answer, then perhaps I could direct you to someone that does know.
    Many Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment Nitta; it makes me HAPPY! :D

    elizabeth

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  45. Oh thank you so much the answer!! Very kind of you! You know, I'm very sad now, because my grandma died:( and I have other problems too, so the miniature making is a "therapy" for me. You are amazing :) Thank you for your words! :*

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  46. I know what you mean about having other problems and also about the death of a loved one. Tragedy strikes and affects us all at different times in our lives and when it does, It Hurts! There IS a therapeutic forgetfulness that miniatures have to offer because the worlds of make-believe that we build are to transport us temporarily to another kind of life.
    But as for my Real Life, when faced with grief and pain, there is no Greater answer than God in the person of His Son Jesus Christ. He has gotten me and my family through every Bad time I can think of and that includes the death of loved ones, both of family and friends.
    I am very sorry that you have lost your beloved grandma, Nitta. I sounds like she was very close to your heart!
    God's Comfort for you as you go through this hard time, and also for your family---God's Peace

    elizabeth

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  47. Thank you so much! <3 I'm very grateful for your kind words.

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