The World’s Largest Miniature Show

Miniaturists

This weekend was Chicago International 2015, the world’s largest miniature show, and I was there! I have tons of photos to share, but I’ll start with just one, showcasing these beautiful original paintings by artist Leslie Smith. For more information, click on the photo to be redirected to his website:

Miniature paintings by Leslie Smith.

Miniature paintings by Leslie Smith.

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Follow me on Pinterest! An easy to make mini-bubble chair by Holly Tierney-Bedord of Flip This (Mini) House

A mid century bubble chair for under $5

Handmade decor for my mini house

I was at my local craft store the other day, taking a look around since I was running early for an appointment. I came across a glass ornament (I have no idea what it was doing out in April — maybe it was meant to be used for a little spring/Easter scene?) that looked like a perfect mid century modern bubble chair. I decided I’d hang it from the ceiling in the corner of the living room. Ten minutes later, wondering down an aisle I’d never before set foot in, I discovered an assortment of plate and cup holders. One of the cup holders was a perfect match for my ornament/chair, turning it into an actual free-standing bubble chair. Here they are:

Cup holder + glass ornament = perfect 1:12 scale mid century bubble chair! Photos by Holly Tierney-Bedord. All rights reserved.

Cup holder + glass ornament = perfect 1:12 scale mid century bubble chair! Photos by Holly Tierney-Bedord. All rights reserved.

My new bubble chair works great with my other living room furniture.

My new bubble chair works great with my other living room furniture.

Bubble chair with a mini newspaper rack and a side table that's actually a container of lip balm.

Bubble chair with a mini newspaper rack and a side table that’s actually a container of lip balm.

Sometimes perfect is the last thing you want to be

Tweaking store-bought dollhouse furniture

As I mentioned in my previous post, my mom picked up some adorable white cupboards for my kitchen. Here they are in place, in my semi-completed kitchen:

White cupboards in my mini kitchen. Photos by Holly Tierney-Bedord. All rights reserved.

White cupboards in my mini kitchen. Photos by Holly Tierney-Bedord. All rights reserved.

They’re a little taller than the window, which is unfortunate but not a huge deal.

I added the refrigerator into the mix, even though it needs some more coats of paint, but left out the stove since the paint was still really wet. It looks very cute, but not exactly mid century, not exactly modern, and not exactly personality-filled like I want my house to be.

I decided to make some small changes. I purchased some cool little gold buttons:

Tiny gold buttons.

Tiny gold buttons.

…and some woodgrain decorative tape, and gave the drawers and doors a makeover. Here’s a look at the “during” portion of the makeover:

Giving my cupboards a makeover

Giving my cupboards a makeover

The great thing about this makeover is that the tape can easily be removed without taking an paint off, and the original brass knobs can be stuck back in place. However, I decided I liked it and felt it was a better fit with the rest of the decor in the house, so I updated everything. Here’s a look at the “after” version:

Kitchen "after"

Kitchen “after”

As you can see, there are plenty of details still needing to be fixed, from paint on the window that needs to be removed, to trim that still needs to be installed. It will all come together soon though. If this new look seems a little weird to you, just wait. When you see the finished product, it will all make sense!

Some small changes to some (small) appliances

Tweaking store-bought dollhouse furniture

The refrigerator and stove I plan to use in my house were a little too small and an icky shade of yellowish beige. After several unsuccessful looks at eBay and other online miniature shopping sites, I decided to do what I could to improve the appearance of them.

I didn’t mind so much that they were a little small — to me, it gave the refrigerator a bit of a Smeg feel to it, and the stove reminded me of a cute little 1960’s gas stove I had in an apartment long ago (my favorite apartment ever). But the stove in particular was just too small to work with the cute little set of cupboards my mom picked up for me, which I am firmly committed to using, so I decided to do what I could to make the stove a little bigger.

Stove before. Photos by Holly Tierney-Bedord. All rights reserved.

Stove before. Photos by Holly Tierney-Bedord. All rights reserved.

Adding coats of paint to the stove and refrigerator.

After putting a couple of coats of paint on each, I added some feet to the stove (tiles, actually).

Stove with feet added.

Stove with feet added.

The tiles/feet overhang the back of the stove, because I’m going to build up the back of it with some cork coasters. These little feet bring it up to the same height as my countertops.

Two cork coasters, painted white, trimmed to size, and glued to the back of my little stove.

Two cork coasters, painted white, trimmed to size, and glued to the back of my little stove.

These coasters not only give the stove a top portion for knobs, but they also make it so the stove is the same approximate depth of my counter tops.

I added some tape to round off the border of the stove, some more coats of paint, and some black brads as tiny control knobs.

Almost done!

Almost done!

My stove is almost done! It needs another coat of paint and some of the details worked out, but I’m much happier with the color, size, and general appearance. Photos of it in the kitchen coming soon!

Kitchen and Dining room update

Flipping my mini house

The floors and wallpaper are done in my kitchen and dining room! Now I just need to add some trim. Here’s a peek at the progress:

FlipThis(Mini)House kitchen and dining progress. Photo by Holly Tierney-Bedord. All rights reserved.

FlipThis(Mini)House kitchen and dining progress. Photo by Holly Tierney-Bedord. All rights reserved.

Artist Soon Young Lee’s Miniature Worlds

Miniaturists, Reblogs

Before starting FlipThis(Mini)House I occasionally featured articles about miniatures on my other blog, Holly Recommends. This is a reblog of an article I originally published a few years ago on that blog.

Holly Recommends...

In keeping with my love of bizarre, miniature worlds, I bring you these fabulous creations by artist Soon Young Lee:

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Woven blinds for your mini home

Handmade decor for my mini house

You may not be a big fan of the woven yarn and wood slat blinds like the ones featured here in this kitchen that used to adorn homes in the 1970’s. I happen to like them, and feel that they’re perfect for the early 1960’s – late 1970’s vibe that my house embodies.

To make some for your own mini house, all you need are some skewers or similar narrow sticks, some yarn, and a small loom (As I’ve mentioned on here before, a potholder loom works great for dollhouse weavings. You can pick one up at your local craft store for usually under $5.00).

Easy to make woven dollhouse shades. Photo by Holly Tierney-Bedord. All rights reserved.

Easy to make woven dollhouse shades. Photos by Holly Tierney-Bedord. All rights reserved.

Once you have a the window covering part taken care of, you can make another piece from cardboard to top it off with. This also gives you a way to hide the knots you’ll tie on one side of the weaving, and gives you a place to install a small pull cord (not installed yet on mine).

Score your cardboard with an exacto knife or scissor edge and it will easily fold like you need it to. The score should be on the outside, not the inside.

Score your cardboard with an exacto knife or scissor edge and it will easily fold like you need it to. The score should be on the outside, not the inside.

Making mini woven shades for a dollhouse. Photos by Holly Tierney-Bedord. All rights reserved.

Simply wrap your cardboard in yarn, adding in some skewers (break or cut them if needed) to complete the look. You can use tape or a dab of a hot glue gun to hold down your yard, since the back of the cardboard won’t be seen. Finally, finish it off with a small pull cord that has a tiny knot or bead at the end (still to come on mine). I think I may add some black yarn to mine to make the top and bottom a better match.

Kitchen tiles and wallpaper

Flipping my mini house

I think I’ve finally chosen a look for the kitchen.

It hasn’t been easy! Kitchens are so important. I really wanted a mainly white kitchen with orange or yellow Orly Kiely-esque wallpaper. Finally I decided it wasn’t realistically going to happen, no matter how many times I sifted through the scrapbook paper at my local craft store. So this is what I came up with:

Tiles and wallpaper for my mini kitchen. Photo by Holly Tierney-Bedord. All rights reserved.

Tiles and wallpaper for my mini kitchen. Photo by Holly Tierney-Bedord. All rights reserved.

I’m not sure about the multicolored tiles. I’ll have to put some in place and see what I think. Stay tuned!

Jewelry as dollhouse art

Everyday objects repurposed

I’ve mentioned how much I love small hardware items like handles, knobs, and hinges when it comes to creating miniature decor. Jewelry is another excellent source for dollhouse design. This vintage fish brooch from St. Vinny’s is going to work perfectly over the fireplace.

Vintage fish brooch. Photo by Holly Tierney-Bedord. All rights reserved.

Vintage fish brooch. Photo by Holly Tierney-Bedord. All rights reserved.

Vintage fish brooch back. Photo by Holly Tierney-Bedord. All rights reserved.

Vintage fish brooch back. Photo by Holly Tierney-Bedord. All rights reserved.