Once upon a time, I got this delightful room box on eBay. It was originally in an auction of miniatures owned by Caroline Sunstein, an avid collector of miniatures both antique and contemporary. I got only the box, no furnishings.
I did ask an expert, Susan Milmore, if she knew anything about it, like who made it, but she said it was not one that belonged to Caroline, but rather one that had been thrown into the auction. (By the way, Susan has a wonderful blog full of wonderful miniatures of her own as well as lots of information about exceptional miniatures in general.)
So here is that box. And I love it. The lighting comes in through the window via a regular light bulb. It makes a nice effect.
As an aside, those books you see everywhere are from my FREE book kit and you can get it HERE
So I happened to find more of these boxes made by this unknown maker in another auction at Ron Rhoads in March and I won 5 of them. Did I need them? Absolutely not. (There are worse addictions. They cost me less than a year of heavy crack use, which is the standard by which I measure all miniature purchases.)
BIRD CAGES ARE NOTHING OF INCREDIBLE VALUE, BUT I LIKE THEM. Elsa Peretti
So I already shared my obsession with CHAIRS, on my old Blogger blog.
And it would appear that I also have an obsession with bird cages based on the sheer number I have in my miniature collection. You can't really put a skeleton in every room of a miniature setting, (well I can) but you sure can put a bird cage in every room!!
OK, not really cheese exactly, but it's cheese that inspired the project.
Since my idea of big fun is Halloween, and my idea of bigger fun is miniatures, and I am obsessed with pumpkins and also treat baskets that resemble pumpkins, I decided to make said treat baskets by using fine sand wrapped up in plastic wrap. I'd seen this trick in tips and tuts over the years and know that jack o'lantern makers do it that way. I think they mostly use polymer clay. But I use Creative Paperclay a lot and have air dry clay in my hoard, so used that.
And it works. But its hard to get a nice and round little bucket, ball shape. For me.
Now, I had been saving the wax wrappers that come on those small cheese snacks. Because that wax is fun to play with and finally roll into a ball and then keep. Because I might need wax balls someday. You get that right? You might have some in your stash just in case.
Yes, you have seen these before. Made with the wax balls.
This is how it goes:
Well, it's MY favorite time of the year with Halloween heralding the beginning of the fun and games right up until Christmas. How about You?
I personally love the chilly weather, autumn best of all. Winter is my next fave but I can do without the ice and snow that stays piled up against the curb so climbing around it gets tiresome.
Anyway back to Halloween and minis.
For some ODD reason, I have been making actual Halloween stuff - as opposed to my usual spooky stuff.
Sort of. I did do some skellies I used to make my Tutorial
So, these are those. Made from the dollar store skeletons that come on a string. Folks, please, don't use them as is. They look wonky. If you want them to look real - well as real as skeletons animated can be. Then get my tutorial. Or don't use them. Thanks.
I am beginning to think something is wrong with me.
Too much Halloween enthusiasm I guess. I'll have to get back to the spooky stuff. I certainly have plans.
Oh. And I wanted to tell you about how I made those treat pails. SO MUCH FUN! Next blog. Pinky swear.
But if you wanted anything you see here, some is in my ETSY SHOP
And some is in my eBay Store.
And you know, I do take orders.
Hope you liked the pix. Share your love in a comment.
have a wonderful halloween. Not too much candy, now...
It is absurd to look for perfection. Camille Pissarro
You may know already that I am obsessed with Frank Matter, miniature maker - AMAZING.
I think the things he made happen to be perfection in miniature. I think no one has come close to him in the last 40 years. And I think he needs to be remembered.
(in case you are new, well, Frank sadly passed away in 1977 after a long career of making the most extraordinary miniatures. Anything you can think of, he made it in miniature, so he was gone just as the last big blast of miniature makers and collectors shot into focus).
I did blog about Frank last year when I got a few things he made in the Adele Venus auction. Read it HERE.
Anyway, I have since acquired a lot more of Mr. Matter's work from the Joseph Gray auctions last year. (Mr. Gray was evidently a miniatures dealer and carried Frank's work.)
I am sharing the photos here so people can find examples of his work. Since he was long gone before the internet there is almost nothing about him out there on the interwebs.
Keep in mind that these items are made exactly like their counterparts. That vintage hair clipper below comes apart. See the teeny blade?
The roller skates adjust - like the ones you might have had as a kid, if you were a kid long ago.
The lipstick opens and closes just like the full size one. Well, it doesn't twist, it has a little latch you push up and down. Because well, old. Like they were made back in the day.
The cups and saucers and dishes are paper thin.
The bank actually works. The coin was missing, but I am told there was one. Frank made several working mechanical banks. How about that? The roulette wheel spins perfectly too. There are little balls with it...
Oh, and the 1:48 scale stuff? Not laser cut. And nothing like it anywhere.
There is much more than what I am showing here - stuff I have no clue about, stuff in other collections I don't have access to. Where it all went I have no idea. (The National Museum of Toys/ Miniatures has a pretty large collection, but I have not seen it myself.)
Some of Frank's work is signed by his hand, some is stamped with his own tiny stamp and some is unsigned.
Hope you enjoyed looking at these incredible miniatures. Hope you learned something about someone gone. Hope you'll remember that Frank Matter created unbelievable miniatures, working quietly by himself without the large community that exists today. Hope you will pass his legacy along by sharing this blog.
If you loved this, if you have more info about Frank. Or if you have questions. Please leave a comment.