- I am 40+ and married with 2 grown up daughters and 2 fabulous grandchildren. I began to get into the dollshouse and miniatures craze after I was diagnosed with Breast Cancer in 2004. Having worked for most of my adult life, I found it hard to be at home for great lengths of time on my own. I became very interested in dolls houses because of a shop nearby which sells all sorts of dolls houses and miniatures. I got my first house Springwood cottage for Xmas that year and the rest is history, and so too is the cancer fingers crossed.
Monday, July 9, 2012
I was lucky enough to acquire a large manor house last year. It previously belonged to a friend of my daughters. She had owned it for several years and in that time it had only had a few windows painted red. Needless to say it is a very time consuming project as it has 12 room/landings to decorate and I don't get much time to 'play' (as my family call it). Before I was 'allowed' to take in this abandoned stray property I unfortunately had to re-home some of my own much loved dwellings. I still wanted to have a newsagents and toy shop for Mr Wilson and a cafe as well, so I decided to move them into the new house and make it into a department store. The department shop has yet to be named but so far will have a cafe, a toy shop, a newsagents, and a new venture- a hair salon. Market Square has also relocated to the entrance of the department store and other possibilities are a florists, a milliners and an odds and ends shop.
I have not decided yet if Wedding Belles will be relocating to the department store. Wedding Belles was a venture chosen after I was a bridesmaid for my sister. The first house Wedding Belles occupied was very basic, it was a present from a family member but it was not really suitable. It's replacement seemed lovely when I bought it, but it was very awkward to decorate because of it's shape and just as difficult to furnish. This dampened my spirits and I lost interest in the whole wedding shop idea.
My other projects also mirror my own life..............
My first job when leaving school was in a newsagents. My boss was a dreadful man and I hated working for him, but putting up with him gave me the confidence to stick up for myself in the future. The job itself was enjoyable so I marked this chapter of my life with Wilson's Newsagents (named after my father-Wilson was his middle name). I moved to Chester-le-street in 1999 and was offered two jobs. One was in a cafe belonging to a relative of my husband and the other was in a pub . This was the inspiration for Beachside Cafe (which is now awaiting it's new name) and the Miner's Arms. My father was a miner so again this was named in memory of him.
A previous house Fairbanks - later replaced by - Meadowfield takes inspiration from several chapters in my life. The blue and white theme in the kitchen is to mirror my mum's kitchen when I was a child. The stone fireplace was a feature in our home during my teens as was the green bathroom suite, and I have tried to replicate many of the toys and games I had for the children in Meadowfield. These include 70's games and books and a miniature 'Woody Atari' complete with game cartridges and controllers. The family who live there are modeled on my own family, Mam, Dad my sister and my Aunt. The nursery is a random addition as I did not know what to do with that room.
The triang house is a real blast from the past. I bought it off ebay, but it is the same as the dolls house I had as a child. My Mam bought it for me in London and struggled bringing it all the may home, only to find the very same house in a local store. She still laughs about it to this day.
Ebb and Flow's cottage came out of nowhere, I just liked the house and was drawn to how cute the dolls were.
STILL PLENTY OFF WORK TO BE DONE...AND A NEW FAMILY HAS MOVED INTO SPRINGWOOD COTTAGE