Here is something I made and have shown on my Dutch weblog last year, but as it is peony time I thought I'd share these pictures with you here as well.
The last two rooms in my dolls house I've been working on are the kitchen and the bedroom. Neither of them are finished, although the bedroom nearly is. Today I'd like to share with you some photo's of the bedroom.
The basis of this room was a lovely toile wallpaper I had. I used the wallpaper pattern to print the silk for the bedhangings and headboard. The sheets are made from an antique hanky my mother gave me. I dyed the fabric for the duvet with acrylic paint. The blanket is a piece of felt edged with silk.

The silver in my bedroom was made by Jens Torp. Well, all except one of the wall sconces next to the bed, I made that one during a class by Jens two years ago.
Most of what you can see in the room was made by me, like the doors, wall panelling, floor, mirror etc. I use wood, paper, card and paint to make these.
Two years ago I got to go to the Guild School in Castine where I upholstered the chair in a Nancy Summers class. It fits the bedroom perfectly. As you can see I still need to finish the windows, put the skirting boards down and put the cornicing around the room.
An overview of the room. I made the floor from slats of old window blinds, giving them several coats of stain, paint and wax in order to achieve the right colour. The door in the back on the left gives access to a small bathroom. The bathroom still needs some work before I'm happy with it.
I upholstered the chair to look like one I saw in a magazine article. Very rococo, so pretty as if it is wearing a little jacket. I love the shoes. I found them at the Arnhem show at a Canadian stand. The chest of drawers was a kit on which I glued a beautiful burl veneer. I want to make silver handles for it one day.

A few day ago I was given a beautiful book on golden juwelry and objects made throughout the centuries. In it I found a picture of a stunning piece made by the Dresden court jeweller Johann Melchior Dinglinger and his two brothers. The piece, made in 1701-1708, is called 'The Birthday of the Grand Mogul Aurangzeb'. It measures 58 x 142 x 114 cm and has, amongst other jewels, 4909 diamonds set into the piece.

Image source:

Apart from the obvious attraction of exquisite workmanship in gold, silver, enamel and jewels (what girl can resist that), the piece has many delightful scenes which make up a whole story. The detail is fabulous. The picture above shows one of the elephants frome the scene. Just look at all the detail! I love the little monkeys trying to get away.

In the image below you can see the Grand Mogul himself, sitting on his throne in all his splendour.

The Rijksmuseum Amsterdam has a great widget available for weblogs and websites which shows you one masterpiece from their collection every day. By clicking on it, it will show you a larger version of the picture. By clicking on the arrow in the corner it will show you all the information on the piece.

I love it. As a little daily exercise I try to describe the piece I see before I read the info. Today's masterpiece (pictured above) is a painting by the Dutch artist Brekelenkam. Painted in 1661, it depicts a tailor's workshop with the tailor and his two apprentices sitting on their work table and a client inspecting a man's jacket lying on the table. Pictures like these are great references for miniaturists. By clicking 'more' on the widget it will take you to the Rijksmuseum website, where even more information on the piece can be found (click 'next'), but also gives the the option of viewing the piece extra large. I love all the detail. Just look at the shopping bucket the customer has hanging on her arm, that must have been so heavy.
I have put the Rijkswidget in the left column of my blog. If you would like to get the Rijkswidget for your site, click here for the English version.
I love peonies, I have several of them growing in my garden. The first one to flower each year is my tree peony.

It has huge flowers the size of a breakfast plate, which sometimes are too heavy for the stems so I have to stake them to keep them upright.

The flowers suffer in rainy, windy and hot weather and as that is exactly what we've been having these past few days, they won't last very long. So I enjoy them while I can!

Last year I decided to try and create a miniature version of one of my single flowering peonies. I love the combination of the soft yellow stamens and the delicate pink petals.

It was quite a job cutting out every leaf and petal, painting them and then gluing them onto their individual stems. But I even managed to put a little spider's web on the bud!

I am very pleased with the result. Best of all: I get to enjoy these all year long!
I will definitely try to make another one this year once the real ones are in flower.

First of all, no, the picture on the right does not show my dollshouse kitchen. It is however, the photo from which I took my inspiration to build the kitchen in my dollshouse. The real kitchen is in Castle Twickel in the Netherlands.

The kitchen in my dollshouse is located in the basement, as most kitchens in canal houses are. As it is in the back of the house, the kitchen windows look out onto the garden. The window above the sink area looks out onto a tiny courtyard in the centre of the house.


Here is my kitchen as it looks today. The sink is nearly finished, all I need is two taps.

I'm very pleased with the sink and the drain boards which I made from a piece of cherry I had in my wood stash. Also the wall tiles turned out very well. I tried to copy the 17th century 'witjes' (little whites) which are still present in many old Dutch kitchens. I made the tiles from thin card stock, paint and spray varnish.

Another view of the sink and the window above it. The difference in colour with the previous picture has to do with different lighting conditions. The view out of the window is the view from my real kitchen window. This picture was taken last autumn, you can see the red apples hanging in my apple tree.

I copied the hydrangea in the vase after a real one flowering in my garden. And in case you are wondering, yes, those are the actual colours of the real one!

To the left of the sink I made a little niche in the wall with some shelves where I can put my porcelain dinner service and glassware. I've been taking porcelain painting classes once or twice a year for a number of years now and I am trying to collect my own hand painted china this way. A lot of fun although results do vary!

Also in my kitchen, the absolutely perfect wine beautifully made by Gerd Felka of Germany.

Last picture today: the salt cellar on the wall in my kitchen, next to the AGA.

Most pictures can be viewed much bigger by clicking on them!

Today I made a little enamelware salt cellar to go in my kitchen (I'll show some pictures of the kitchen tomorrow). I made it for a Challenge in which you had to use card stock, popsicle sticks and decorative stickers to make a miniature. You could use an extra two more materials of your own choice. I used two small nails (as hinges for the lid) and paint.


While I was out in the garden spraying it with a coat of varnish, I spotted the pretty little blackbird's eggshell which has the same hues as the salt cellar, blue-green on the outside and white on the inside. An egg and some salt... perfect together!

As not all of you will be familiar with the dollshouse I am working on, I will share some pictures of it with you over the next few weeks.

This is my dollshouse six years ago, after I had just bought it. In the bottom right hand corner you can just see my son, who had started off my interest in miniatures when he asked for a miniature Christmas village to put up under the Christmas tree.

With no knowledge about miniatures or techniques I started work on the canal house. I get a lot of enjoyment out of figuring out how to do something within my limitations, for a lot of times I don't have the right materials at hand, or the right tools or the right skills!

Although I might do some things differently now, I like to see the work I did on the house in those earlier years. It's all part of the process.

I decided my dollshouse would be situated on one of Amsterdam's famous canals, the Singel. Many canal houses were built in the 17th century and were often changed after the latest fashions through the centuries.

Here's a drawing I made of how my house may have looked at the beginning of the 18th century.
The detailed drawings of the stoop are actual architectural drawings which I found in the Amsterdam archives.

So this is where I let the story of my house begin: In 1742 the house is bought by a wealthy widow, Martha van Grootheest de Kleijne, who made her fortune in the tea trade. The 17th century canal house was remodelled by Martha after the latest 18th century fashion when she had Rococo style elements added to the house. In Holland the expression of the Rococo style was not as abundant as in France, where the style originated.

Even though I do a lot of research on things like the architectural and social history of the time, and I try to tie together facts and the fiction of my house, I am not trying to be historically correct. I'm just having fun.