Tuesday, January 28, 2014

New Etsy Shop

Hi everyone! 
As most of you know Ive been busy moving unpacking, organizing and settling in my new home.  Although its not spring yet I've been decorating, cleaning and re-organizing all areas of my life. A new fresh start which makes me happy and gets my creativity into full speed.

My first exciting news is that I opened my New Etsy Shop. I love the clean lines and user friendly approach. I was spending way way too much time editing and uploading items on my web site shop. So now that I am selling on Etsy, this frees me of computer time, and allows me more time Creating Minis.... much much better.

Here are a few new Minis I've posted on Etsy....

 I hope some of these pics have given you a splash of color and brightness in your day but most importantly give you some inspiration to your imagination
With Smiles

Sunday, December 1, 2013

The Mascot The Minis

 I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving. Mine was quiet. A romantic stay at home celebration with Milt. Relaxing and a well needed break from an overwhelming schedule.
My favorite part of this work is photographing and editing the pics. Photographing miniatures is challenging and I love challenges aiming to improve, learn and grow. It's another creative avenue that I enjoy. A huge, big part of shooting is setting up the scene. Deciding the floor, and wall treatments and my most favorite is dressing the scene or pieces with accessories. I find the accessories give the "room" or piece depth, layers and interest.
Now through the years I have collected my own pieces from artists I adore. I began collecting 21 years ago. About 19 years ago it was the original Art Director of the Carol and Barry Kaye Museum of Miniatures Paula Pasic Tillinghast that was a great help to me. Although others try to take credit, it was Paula who was instrumental in sharing technique, info and resources. Paula was one of the most talented artists ever known. She had a calm, stable, sensible personality with tough shoes to fill. There is no other like her with talent beyond comprehension. She was responsible for the entire museum designs and displays from day One of its conception, museum opening and for many years following. 
It was Paula who introduced me to the who's who and what's what of the mini world. (Paula was also a curator for the Walt Disney Family, aiding in the conservation of Walt Disney's miniatures and personal memorabilia; as a busy freelance interior miniature designer; as a Director of an exhibit on the history of miniatures; and as a painter and fine artist.) We lost this incredibly talented woman in 2011 to cancer at the young age of 54, but her legacy and contribution to the preservation of the art of miniatures will be with us forever. 

                                    Above: Paula Pasic Tillinghast 

Paula introduced me to a floral artist Marie Petrik at a mini show in Anaheim Ca. I purchased a gorgeous little basket of hydrangeas. Later in 2000 at the Chicago International show Marie's table was next to mine. What a treat! I think I spent more time at her table than my own. I just could not decide and eventually purchased a glass vase with roses. 
Marie and I became friends. A fellow New Yorker, personality plus. I always love her energy, her happy big laughter. She a riot, warm, talented and awesome. Believe me, I love so many floral artists and think they are amazing too. But I met Marie in my early years of miniature work and this makes her special to me. 

                              Marie Petrik 

Marie will tell you, I'm always yelling at her to get on the Internet, a web site, a fb page, something... She smacks me on the arm, yells back "I'm busy"  HAHAHAHA ... love that New Yorker she makes me smile just writing about her. So finally Marie is now on Facebook ...thank heaven above! 

Now that Marie is on fb, she goes through my mini pics and writes on my fan page....
You see... I've been using those 2 florals arrangements I purchased from Marie 18 years ago in practically every mini photo! And to be honest I never realized how much! But how can I help myself? 18 years and these little pieces are my treasures. I love them. They are timeless and beautiful 18 years later. So now you're in on the joke.... Yes the rose vase AND the hydrangea basket ARE MY MASCOT! 

 The Mascot: Rose vase by Marie Petrik .... 




                    The hydrangeas ......


At the Good Sam show 2013 my wonderful Marie attended and her table was close to mine. Of course I had to have the yellow Lilly's and this sweet hydrangeas in terra cotta pot. They will grace my mini photos and my personal collection for the next 18 years. "Thanks Marie! ... Now could you please get a blog?" 

Thursday, April 11, 2013


It's a gorgeous Spring day and plan on painting minis outside today ....the expected high today is 82 degrees so its a perfect day to paint while getting a little sunshine and work done on my porch. 


How my brain works

Ohhh How my Brain Works...hmmm... if you're sure you want to go there... OOOOkay. Here we go...

Lots of people have said they enjoyed seeing the pics of my REAL LIFE SIZE to MINIATURE inspirations, so I went through my files and found some more to show you. I often have said that I get inspiration from LIFE... a book, a movie, fashion, etc. Now, with Pinterest [my new obsession] I found some pics of Real Life size items that I have seen in museums and in my travels that I can show how I translated them to Miniatures. 

I'm super excited to show you these. 

I suppose it is because I studied Fine Art in college that my eye is trained to look at details. I can find the most obscure "thing" in a photograph that sparks an idea for an entire collection.....It can be as subtle as a pleat, color palette, or overt, as in an actual furniture piece. The trick is to look closely...I do this so automatically and very quickly. We all do this... our brains are always taking dictation... the trick is to pull it from memory when you need it.

Let me show you some ideas and how my brain works.....
The Color
 Sofia Coppola's Marie Antoinette
Immediately your eye goes to the center pink dress. BUT look closely to the dress on the left. I love the color combinations and pleating. Soft Flesh/Blush Rose, with a deeper Peach, and BRIGHT PINK. Just the color combination alone is breath taking and to be honest would have never thought of it. This palette could be used in any Mini room....I'm thinking for a babies room?

Here's another color combination RED and PINK. Stunning chocolate brown tufted chair with copper tone gilding.

Look at these colors.... Oh MY 
I love the vibrant orange and turquoise but look how
 these colors are grounded 
by the neutral sand color of the stone wall...you see?...I'm not just looking at the focal point. I'm looking at the whole palette. Simply blocks of color next to each other.


I also look at couture fashion and period fashion references for print designs, pleating and draping ideas that can be used on a chair trim, Bed skirt, Canopy, or Throw blanket. 

Magnificent pleating with fabric billowing for a bed canopy or bed curtain

 In the Movie, Marie Antoinette's champagne color wedding dress had the most gorgeous trims. Literally I pause the movie, go frame by frame to look at a particular detail. The trim fabric was pleated, sewn down the center and the edges were slightly frayed. I used that technique for the edging of this silk organza bed throw, and silk taffeta canopy crown. 
The sherbert color palettes used in this entire film to portray "youth" is INCREDIBLE and not the usual "patina" used in period films. The older generations of royalty are portrayed in Very deep dark rich tones in palettes emerald greens, black reds etc. The foods and floral arrangements are pieces of art on their own. If you love Minis, no matter your taste, or your favorite period style, this movie is a MUST HAVE

Imagine this ... 3 tiers. Fabric/Pleat/Layered Lace, for a Bed Canopy, Curtains, or Bed Spread.

Now you're starting to get how I see things.... but there's more.....

This appears to be a folding screen. I just love the design and I currently have this on my work table. I am painting this motif on silk for 2 chairs that will be a part of the Vintage Vineyards Collection.
I'm taking pictures as I work on these pieces to show you how I am painting this in my Next Blog...so stay tuned. 

Big Shot ~ Little Shot

Here are some actual pics I used for some inspirations

REAL LIFE Paris Apartment
MINIATURE: Paris Apartment

LIFE SIZE: Frick Collection Chair

MINIATURE: Frick Collection Chair painted on China Silk

LIFE SIZE: Queen Sophia's Bedroom
MINIATURE: Queen Sophia Chairs. Painted silk taffeta

LIFE SIZE: Canvas Canopy Daybed
MINIATURE: Canvas Canopy Settee

LIFE SIZE: Bright Fuchsia Rococo Chest
MINIATURE: Fuchsia Chest

Sometimes with photo inspirations I combine ideas. With the pieces below I loved the yellow pleated fabric doors with hanging picture frames and I also loved the grisaille [tones of grey] painted chest. I simply combined the two ideas.


LIFE SIZE: Grisaille Chest


LIFE SIZE: French Country Couch

MINIATURE: French Country Couch. Painted fluffy silk pillows

LIFE SIZE: Zuber Print wall cover
MINIATURE: Zuber Print on Chaise... why not?

LIFE SIZE: Black Bed with floral painted head board and crisp white linens
MINIATURE: With a punch more color, oil painted head board

I hope you enjoyed seeing how sometimes the Life Size inspirations can change or be translated to better fit a proportion or color scheme. The secret to all things is to dive right in, experiment and don't be afraid to "fail" because there is really no such thing. The ABSOLUTE truth is, I've learned more, and have had more successes through my "failures" than you can possibly imagine. Play a bit ....sometimes it works and sometimes it needs to be Re-worked but in the process you come up with your own interpretations which also leads to more ideas.... and when those ideas are simply flowing it is the BEST feeling.

I hope everyone enjoys the rest of their week. Have FUN creating 

Feel free to visit and follow my boards for your inspiration
You can visit my Pinterest Boards at: