Heck Yeah I Want These Houses!

So this weekend, BK and I had the lovely honor of having our niece stay at our place. The gameplan was to take her to our local DMV (Dept of Motor Vehicles) so she can get her learner’s permit. Only to find out at the counter that her paperwork has to be filled out by her parent or legal guardian (in this case, my parents). Talk about a downer! My niece and I spent the week getting her prepped to take the exam. :(

So as a compromise, BK and I took her out to lunch (both uncle and niece were raving about pad thai…I was honestly getting sick of hearing it). Then went home so she could help BK clean our pet rats’ cages. At least she earned $60 from us — and BK and I were free to do other things. Like surfing online. Which in turn led me to find this article on BuzzFeed.

41 Dollhouses That Will Make Wish You Were A Tiny Doll

Thought it was interesting to see this, given that most of the settings had a more modern feel to it. Even more amusing was that I recognized where the photos came from. But I had my way, I’d be adding more houses to this article’s list. Because let’s face it — there are some pretty darn awesome houses that folks made and posted online. And they still make me drool each time I look at them. Just sayin’.

A Lovely Ending for the ARC II – I Think…

After finishing the ARC II, I had originally planned to have it on display in my dining room. Granted, that probably sounded odd for most folks. But since it’s much smaller than my other kits — thought it would be a cute centerpiece. Plus, my dining room is an actual vintage mid-century set…so it seemed even moreappropriate. An even bigger plus was that I can play with it while eating dinner. Because you know….just in case I don’t feel like eating the vegetables on my plate. :)

So the ARC II has been sitting proudly in my dining room since July…till about a few weeks ago. My family decided to stop by the house to say hello. Well, that’s what they claim. But BK and I know it’s mostly to pile on our laps (and fridge) lots of food. Don’t get me wrong folks — I do love to eat. But if my parents keep coming by bringing me my favorite Korean take outs and rice cakes….I’m not going to fit in my pants at all.

Once my family got in (and we all proceeded to nosh on the goodies), I noticed my mother was looking at the ARC II with utter fascination. Which proceeded to her gently spinning it around on its turntable to look at the furnishings. Which then lead to her actually playing with the house.

That’s right folks — my 61 year old mother was playing with a dollhouse. I know she encouraged my obsession hobby and all, but this was seriously the first time I’ve seen her actually interact with my minis. My older sister and I watched as she took the furnishings out, then rearranged them. It was pretty amusing since I’ve never seen her look so focused. I actually felt bad when my family was getting ready to go, Mom had the most wistful expression when she took a final glance at the ARC II before she kissed BK and I goodbye.

Apparently BK noticed it too, because the minute my family left, we had the following conversation.

BK: You saw that too huh?

Me: Yup.

BK: Mom really loves that house huh?

Me: Yup.

BK: ….you okay giving Mom the ARC–?

(BK blinking as he watches his crazy wife assemble a moving box and proceeds to wrap the ARC and its contents in tissue paper)

Me: (hauling the box) Put on your coat and shoes babe. We’re making a delivery.

BK: But your parents just left a few minutes ago!

Me: Yeah I know. I’m gonna drive it home and give it to Mom.

BK: You’re willing to sit through traffic? You’re absolutely nuts hun!

Me: You know I’m absolute crackpot babe. In fact, what did my father tell you when you asked his permission to marry me?

BK: (rather sullenly) ….No returns.

Me: Exactly. We warned you, I warned your repeatedly that you’re marrying an occasional idiot with an expensive habit. And you still went through with it. Who’s fault is that?

In the end, we made a compromise. I agreed to BK’s suggestion to call my parents to see where they were. Luckily, they made a pit stop at a gas station not far from the house. BK made the pretense that they forgot something at the house and asked if they wanted to come back or we hand it over to them on our next visit. My mother answered the cell so she was pretty happy to turn around. Which was perfect, because when we opened the door, BK and I put on the biggest grins on our faces and handed Mom the box containing the ARC. Suffice to say, Mom was totally surprised — and was happily asking my sister about getting a side table at IKEA.

A few days later, my mother posted the following on her Facebook page.  I almost cracked up (Mom’s very active on her FB pages…way more than her daughters and granddaughter). I couldn’t decide what made me laugh/smile some more — the finished decorations, or photos of my own Mom eagerly decorating the ARC.

My mother's ARC dollhouse.

My mother’s ARC dollhouse.

My sister did get her a side table at IKEA, and Mom set up the ARC II in their sun room. Talk about a perfect spot — it’s my Mom’s favorite room in the house because of all the plants my father cultivates. Plus, the ARC II is set next to my parents’ fish tank. “Waterfront property” as my mother pointed out. She said the dolls now have a nice view of the fish when they’re all on the roof.  My poor Dad just laughed and rolled his eyes.

Looks like I might have a convert in my hands . Or an excuse to get more Lundby stuff. <insert maniacal laughter here>

While I’m happy that Mom’s enjoying her new toy….my dining room does look a little empty without its centerpiece. And I did have a good time building/decorating the ARC…and it’s just happened that I won another TOMY kitchen set….like the one I used in ARC II…..

….so Monsieur Z and Mme. KP….this is a friendly reminder that you might be getting an order soon…..

*Sigh*

I’ll write a post soon. I promise. Alot of things are happening in my life that I need to process properly at the moment.

In the meantime though….I found this on Vimeo. Dawn Reese, the focus of this video, think summed up why I do this hobby. It’s funny how my love of miniatures from my school years carried through my life. Especially in the end, how it’s almost a therapy of sorts.

Which is what I’m going to need really soon. Will let you know once I’m ready….

Who Lives There from Art+Practice on Vimeo.

Swoon? Why Yes, Please

Hey everyone, I know it’s been awhile since the last post. Work has really gotten stressful since the last time I wrote an entry. My job promotion this past April has pretty much entered the managerial sphere….which I have no experience in doing whatsoever. So it was essentially a HUGE learning curve, and while I emerged victorious in some, there were others where I seriously thought my bosses should fire me on the spot….

I’m really hoping to see some breathing room in the next couple of weeks. The CC is still not finished (Dasha and Lena are NOT HAPPY with me at the moment), and I did some work on the vintage Lundy Stockholm (need to load the pics). Also on queue is a little mini project for my in-laws (will have to post the entries after the holidays, since it’s part of their present), and a dollhouse for BK’s coworker’s daughter, whom we absolutely adore. So yeah….busy year…

….and it might get busier, now that Monsieur Z and Mme KP just released yet another droolworthy kit from their Etsy shop….the Reversible Row House!

Photo from 3StartStudios. All Rights Reserved.

Based on the shop’s description of the product – essentially you can flip the dollhouse kit upside down. So there’s no right or wrong side in terms of the rooms. It’s actually really cool given that you can flip the rowhouse if you want a different layout of the room. And the best part? This is in 1:12 scale folks — which is a first for me to see come out of this shop. Warning though folks, the price is a little bit high, but from my experience with the ARC, you’re getting a high quality product (the wood is so easy to work with and sands beautifully when it comes to painting the surfaces).

Dear lord, am salivating as I type this. The impatient part of me wants to plunk down an order just so this is my inventory. But then again…my family has been bugging me about what I want for the holidays. *creaky wheels starting to turn*

Again, do check out the 3StarStudio’s shop on Etsy and scope out their stuff.  And Monsieur Z and Mme. KP — please keep cranking out these beauties! I might be losing space in my house, but that’s okay. Maybe BK might be open to getting us a bigger place (insert BK laughing and going “nope!”)….

Food for Thought (Hopefully First of Many)

While I will do my best to write entries that will amuse those who read my blog….Mme. Pepper of MitchyMooMiniatures wrote a very interesting entry recently. And it definitely got me thinking – not just about the miniature hobby in general. In a way, it brought up the question of just what is proper etiquette when it comes to blogging about miniatures.

In her blog entry “Copyright”, Mme Pepper wrote (imho) a very clear, succint entry about copyright in miniature blog entries. As she clearly pointed out, most of us want in our settings, essentially smaller scale versions of real-life items. And from that perspective, to have that said “piece” usually means one of two options. You either look for it to purchase. Or, you attempt to replicate it.

Now when it comes to replicating, some of us have that rare talent of just being able to wing it, make something, and it’s a masterpiece. Others (like myself) tend to check other miniature blogs for references or inspiration, or if we’re lucky, tutorials of how to make said replication. For those of us who go that route — we strive to follow such tutorials to the word and create what the instructions told us. Or we use those tutorials as a guide, and perhaps come across a better method that improves on the final product.

That last part is what intrigues me. If you wrote a tutorial, posted it online, and found out someone found a way to improve your steps to produce a better product — how would you react? If you ask me, I’d be freakin’ thrilled. Because it told me that what I wrote up, and posted (for the purpose of sharing. Because that’s what the bloody Interwebs is for right?) worked for someone else. If that someone else credited me for providing the initial layout? That would be nice -an icing to an already delicious cake known as victory.

But I honestly don’t expect folks to do that last part. Why do you ask? Because even with all the hullabaloo about copyright/infrigement/intellectual property laws – especially when it comes to online stuff — the bottom line is this (again, imho):

You post it online – you are essentially sharing it with everyone else.

There. I bloody said it. I mean, think about it. Isn’t that the point of people being online nowadays? Well, at least initially when the Interwebs was introduced. You want to share ideas, connect with folks you probably wouldn’t be able to do in person, or in your lifetime. At least that’s partly why I write what I can for this blog.  Because I want to share my love for the hobby with everyone. And whatever knowledge I have decided to impart by posting them online. Because again, I want to share what I know, and hopefully….someone will come along, see what I’ve accomplished, and go “huh, this looks interesting. let me try it out.”

It really saddened me to read what Mme. Pepper had to write about. To see that there a few folks within the miniature community who would be willing to kick down a fellow miniaturist mostly on the basis that “hey, you stole my idea. I’m going to sue your ass.” Again, repeat statement in italics.

You post it online – you are essentially sharing it with everyone else.

Have I copied things from other miniaturists you might ask? I’m sure I did. And if I did, I do try to make it a point to credit them out of respect. Respect that they decided to put it online for folks to see and read and admire. And — I’d like to assume — to inspire the rest of us to try it out and see where our own creativity will take us. Plus, I like to apply credit where it’s due — because I want others to see these sources of inspiration. Because let’s face it folks — this hobby is not cheap. And I’m sure alot of miniaturist will agree – that sometimes we look to our fellow miniature enthusiast for inspiration and guidance on how to make things we’d like to have for our settings, but simply cannot afford.

If you haven’t read it, I truly suggest reading Mme. Pepper’s post. It really does make you wonder. And at least for me, it definitely makes me look differently at miniature blogs now.

Anyone Looking for Some Brinca Dada Furniture?

Now that I’ve accepted the fact that I have two Lundby Stockholm dollhouses soon to live under one roof, it was time to do yet another round of inventory in my bins o’ crap. Mostly to see if I have anything that I need to give up or sell to make room for the soon to arrive packages.

After going through everything (BK decided to amuse himself by parking nearby and watching the drama unravel before him), I decided to give these guys up.

But before I put these guys up on eBay….anyone in need of Brinca Dada furniture? I got these on eBay probably about a year ago.  I have the kitchen, office, bath and bedroom set.

BrincaDada-Kitchen01BrincaDada-Kitchen03BrincaDada-Office01BrincaDada-Office03BrincaDada-Bath01BrincaDada-Bath04While the boxes are banged up from being in storage (and surviving a move), the pieces are in great condition. I’ve mostly kept them in the boxes, and sometimes pulled them out just to make sure they’re still in one piece.

The only exception though, was the bedroom. I got this set also on eBay…but got it in a cheap price because the bed was broken. I glued it together because it was a relatively easy fix. But figured I should disclose that fact first.

BrincaDada-Bedroom01BrincaDada-Bedroom03

Where the break occurred (shown in circled area).

Where the break occurred (shown in circled area).

If anyone’s interested, just let me know in the Comments area. Otherwise, I’ll post it on eBay over the weekend.

Really Need to Curb My Insomnia

You probably know of someone who ended up buying something very ridiculous in the middle of the night. Perhaps it was due to insomnia, or maybe they had to pull an all nighter. Either way, it seems that loss of sleep always leads to receiving a package at the doorway and going “I ordered WHAT?”

Apparently I need to add myself to that growing list of folks. The last two nights have been pretty crazy with last minute projects that needed to be done before the end of the week. So instead of being in bed at a normal time…apparently I’ve joined a program where sleep is a nonexistent concept.

I guess in between emails, coding, and reviewing one inane document after another, I did a random search on more Lundby items….and realized I got an email confirming that I’ve purchased this.

Lundby Stockholm dollhouse. Photo from www.lundby.com.

Lundby Stockholm dollhouse. Photo from http://www.lundby.com.

While my miniature obsessed side is clapping her hands in joy (a vintage and modern Stockholm dollhouse under one roof? Capital!), the sleep-deprived, supposedly mature self immediately though “okay, how am I gonna explain this to BK?”.

Before I could gather my wits together, I found more emails for order confirmations for more Lundby stuff. To put in said Stockholm dollhouse.

Good lord, I need to get some sleep. And probably change my PayPal passwords and hide my Visa card before it gets out of control…..