Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Home Sick Home

I've been sniffling a little bit with general itchiness that I've chalked up to allergies. This morning, however, I woke up and felt measurably worse. I sneezed, Husband took one look and declared that I was unfit for work. Yeah, there's this little thing called swine flu that been making a few headlines. I haven't been to Mexico recently, and I've been nowhere near the geographic region of the suspected outbreak in New York, but I'm still pretty sure people wouldn't take well to my walking around and sneezing on them. I generally get pretty annoyed when someone who is sick comes into work, touching all the door handles and xerox copiers, sharing their viruses.

This is the first bathroom I've put into the Kaleidoscope House. As I mentioned previously, I was holding off so I could use the ELF vanity unit I had been working on. I also put in the duck board from the ELF shower kit. I love the ELF kits and am looking forward to putting together the other vanity unit I have.

I would write more, but I need to lie down and rest my head. *sniffle*

Vanity unit by ELF miniatures.
Bathtub is yet another dish from Muji.
Toilet is from DHE. Table from Voila.
Accessories are from Re-ment, MiniSquare, wanju, voila, ELF and DHE.
Art is "Instant" by Lisa Beck.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Drill Baby Drill

I'm pretty psyched. I started this ELF vanity kit a few months ago, and assembled it mostly over the course of two days, setting up the main body, then installing the doors. Then I got stuck - I didn't have a miniature drill for drilling the faucet and handle holes. A miniature tool kit I purchased from HBS had a pin vise - but the drill bits were far too small. I almost went out and purchased a whole set of drill bits, but common sense prevailed and I sent an email off to ELF Miniatures for some guidance. After some very helpful tips from Elizabeth LePla (thank you again, Elizabeth!), I set off to the hardware store armed with drill bit measurements. Luckily, I took a sidetrip to visit my niece and nephew on the way, and my brother, after asking what I was up to for the day, exclaimed: "Hey - I have a drill bit set, you can borrow mine!"

It's a good thing I did too, since I actually ended up using four different sizes to get the right holes drilled. Also, my fingers got caught in a minor skirmish with some crazy glue near the finish line, but the kit is finally done! I can't wait to use it in a scene - I haven't done a bathroom in the Kaleidoscope House yet - I've been waiting specifically for this vanity unit to be finished.

Overall, I had a great time putting it together. It wasn't too difficult - if you have mild crafting experience, I would say the kit ranks about a 4 or 5 out of 10 on the difficulty scale. I would have taken more "before" and "during" photos, but I . . . forgot. =P


Vanity unit kit by ELF miniatures.

Contemporary Ranch by Shershe (and Real Good Toys)

I was poking around on Flickr last night, uploading some long past due photos, when I came across this incredible dollhouse in Shershe's photostream. The dollhouse is the Contemporary Ranch by Real Good Toys. I've looked at the Contemporary Ranch before, but Shershe's masterpiece is really inspiring me to pick one up for my first attempt at building a dollhouse kit.

The stock photo that Real Good Toys has doesn't do the house justice. The tall ceilings are great, as are the wide doorways. The loft and spiral stairways are wonderful touches as well.

I LOVE the red painted door. What a wonderful pop of color.

There are many many more photos of the whole assembly process on Shershe's photostream - you should check it out. I think next time the HBS April Fool's Day sale rolls around, I'm picking up the Contemporary Ranch.

Photo credits: by Shershe.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Girls Just Wanna Have Fun

This is the room I wish I had back when I was a teenager. My room decor went straight from a frilly canopy bed to very adult furniture. Granted, it was pretty stylish 90's formica furniture (LOL), but if it hadn't been for my massive stuffed animal menagerie and Depeche Mode and Erasure concert posters, you might not have known it was a room for a teenage girl.

The Pinky girl who lives in this room is a multi-faceted complex girl who likes to read her Lucky magazine and gossip on the phone with her friends. She can also pull kickflips and ollies with the best of the boys. Instead of posters of Britney and Justin (or is it Taylor Swift and Zac Efron? Kids these days . . . ), she's also just the teensiest wee bit angsty and has a huge dark mural from her favorite artist Deth P. Sun.

Although she has a perfectly good desk, she spends most her time lying on the floor, doing homework or just lounging around (much like I did).

The teensy weensy eraser is my favorite.

Although her mother has a rule against food outside the kitchen (as mine did), she nevertheless sneaks a snack or two up to her room . . . on a daily basis.

Maki, Tohru and Sacchin are caught mid-gossip.

Sakura peeks in, wondering if they are talking about her. As my boss is fond of saying: you should never say bad things about anyone behind their backs, save it for when you can say it to their face.


Bed is a designer bed! No kidding, it's a DKNY home soap dish rescued from the sales shelf at Bed Bath & Beyond.

Eero Aarnio ball chair and Panton chair by Design Interior Collection by Reac Japan.

Table is By Barb.

Side tables are craft blocks painted white on a rainy weekend day.

Accessories are Re-ment, wanju, Plan Toys, Megahouse, AG Minis, Mighty World and misc. Ebay finds.

Mini skateboard decks are by Tech Deck.

Art is by Deth P. Sun.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Blame it on the Rain (and an inadvertant ghost story)

I've had a few setups ready to go, but the weather has not been cooperating. That coupled with the fact that I'm far too lazy to drag a lamp across the room to provide sufficient illumination means . . . no dollhouse photography. I took a few photos over the weekend, but wasn't crazy about how they turned out so kept on meaning to take a few more. Then this morning after I woke up, worked out and showered, I stepped out of our bedroom to realize that the shy sun was peeking around the clouds after three straight days of grey. Yippee!

This is a room I designed originally for blue-eyed Kokoro, but Rui liked the room so much, she came out of her blister packaging to check it out. Now they *both* think that it's their own room and can't figure out why their stuff keeps on being moved around when they are not home.

"Hm. . . Someone's been sleeping in my bed," mused Kokoro, "and resetting my alarm clock!"

"Someone's been eating my Pocky sticks," cried Rui, "and watching Susan Boyle on my laptop!"

"Is somebody there??!!" they both gasped.


White sofa is Bozart Kaleidoscope House.
Tiger stripe wood platform bed in its previous life was a rather striking soapdish. Husband at Bed Bath & Beyond: "That's not a soapdish, that's a bed!" Ah, I have him well trained now. . .
Flooring is more of that lovely Lama Li bark paper.
Wall art consists of a Frank Lloyd Wright bookmark and brooch, respectively.
Assorted accessories from Re-ment, AG Minis, Voila, Plan Toys, DHE, etsy and ebay.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

City Kitchen

This kitchen was inspired by the New York Times article that ran last week about how the $200,000 studio apartment is making a comeback in Manhattan. I suspect that with the exception of a very few cities (Tokyo comes to mind), $200,000 for a teeny box little over 200 square feet would be not be considered a bargain. Husband lived in a studio before we got married, although as these things go, it was a rather spacious bachelor pad at 480 square feet. Most studios have kitchens (if any) that are set along one wall of the main living space. Husband never cooked a single meal in his studio - go figure.

Most kitchens in the city are set up galley style - long and narrow, like in the galley of a ship - with counters and appliances set along two opposing walls.

Looking at these photos, I realize that the set up of this kitchen does remind me quite a bit of my own kitchen. Also as these things go, I realize that ours is pretty spacious and light-filled, with a large window overlooking the river on one end.

Truly, the sign of a roomy Manhattan kitchen is if two people can both fit in there and pass each other without turning and scooting sideways.

Rui and Moe usually manage to share the kitchen without bumping elbows too much.

Moe, like me, is pretty grumpy in the morning before she has her first cup of joe.

Kitchen set - Lundby.
Accessories - Plan Toys, Bratz, Wanju, Re-ment, Megahouse, DHE, Mighty World, Bertie's Dollhouse miniatures.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Why, hello there!

It's been a good long while since my last post. Even though I had been on vacation, we were traveling and kept so busy during the day that I really didn't have time for much else other than enforced relaxation. And then when I got back to work and a regular schedule, I ironically had the time to spend with the dollhouses, but Husband and I borrowed The West Wing, the complete series from my brother and we've been obsessed with watching the exploits of Jeb Bartlet in the oval office.

I've been meaning to do a completely new interior in the Stockholm House and finally got around to gutting the previous set up. I was also inspired by the arrival of a new mini sofa - from the super-talented and inspiring *annina* over on flickr. The construction is just incredible (and I'm not surprised from seeing her fantastic scenes on flickr), but I was blown away when I flipped over the cushions and saw that the foam inserts are removable and the seams and hems were stitched. Each cushion kind of resembles one of those pocket kleenex holders that you can tuck into your purse, with an overlapping flap opening in the back. I've been thinking about attempting to construct my own sofa (and staring at the huge roll of foam next to my dining table), but this idea had never crossed my mind. Wow.

The new sofa immediately went into the bottom floor of the Stockholm House.

My favorite french treat: macaroons!

I've also been tinkering around with this bathroom for a while. I'm a bit bored with it *shrug*, so figured I might as well just take some pictures and share before I change it up again. Color me fickle.

Mostly, I wanted to use these super cute bath accessories from MiniSquare. The mini loofah is too adorable.

Living Room: Sofa is handmade with care from *annina*. Leather chaise is Paris Renfroe. Coffee table is from MiniSquare. Glass side table is an ebay find. Accessories are Lundby, Re-ment, Megahouse, Bertie's Dollhouse Miniatures, DHE and Bratz.
Oh, the rug is cut from a large sheet of Lama Li "bark" paper that I picked up at Kate's Paperie on Friday. I love their selection of fine paper.

Bathroom: Pieces are Voila and Momoll. Accessories are Bratz, Lundby, Selecta, Re-ment and MiniSquare.