Tuesday, 29 January 2013


Someone's been brought back their own little pot of Nutella from Dubai...


Sunday, 27 January 2013

City of London Dollshouse Fair

Ok so here's a post for the miniaturists!

This morning I went up to London to the City of London Dollshouse Fair with my friend Sian. (who for the record is not majorly into miniature things like me but was interested in coming to see what a dollshouse fair was like.)  It was held in the Tower Hotel by the river Thames and it was a lovely sunny (albeit a bit windy) day. 

Of course Celestine popped into my bag too at the last minute and here's a picture of her in front of the Tower Bridge in her new dalmatian print coat.

My favourite stall at the fair was owned by a very nice lady who I think was German.  She specialized in making the most tiny and amazing miniature tapestries. However she wasn't actually selling any of her tapestries (she said they took too long to make)- she was selling things on behalf of other miniaturists including Ursula Sturmer! I was so excited to see some more of Ursula Sturmers miniature jewellery and I might just have ended up buying a piece...

Here are a couple of the necklaces that were on display- this photo does not do them justice at all though! They are the kind of things you need to see in real like to really appreciate the sparkle and beauty of them.

Also on the same stall there were some absolutely beautiful miniature bags. From Italy! Made from what I presumed was Italian leather.  I so wanted to buy a little bag for Celestine but two things stopped me. One was the price (which was sky high!) and the other was that they didn't open. I am pedantic about miniature things actually being able to work. So no bag for me. But they really were absolutely gorgeous. I think my favourite was the polar bear one. Unfortunately there was nothing to say who made them and I forgot to ask!

Then on this same stall there were some miniature books which were actually readable and full of miniature illustrations and writing.  I am a sucker for tiny weeny books- they are the cutest things ever.  Again I can't tell you who made them unfortunately- sorry- I wish I had asked! 

And here are a couple more pictures I took at the show at different stalls:

I have to say I went to this fair with the best intentions of buying only useful things for the decoration of my castle like wallpapers and flooring and lighting.  However I failed miserably! I always get side tracked by accessories and ended up only buying a really tiny Paddington Bear, an Ursula Sturmer necklace and a Beauty and the Beast book. Ah well never mind...

I will take photos of the things I bought but I have given them to Henry to give to me for my birthday. So I will have to wait until March to have them!

So that was that!

I hope you had a good weekend.  I am kind of glad the snow has gone now. Last weekend we were supposed to go up to Derby to visit Henry's mother but couldn't because of it. This was taken just before we realised we wouldn't be able to go. Even Celestine was all ready to go. Then it started blizzarding snowflakes and we had to cancel the trip.

Anyway we made up for it by going this weekend instead. We went to Nottingham and Derby to see both sides of Henry's family and had a great time. We: had a roast dinner with his dad and Gran, went for an icy walk up some hills and down by the river Trent, talked about wedding cakes, inherited some old picture books they didn't want/need anymore (yesss!) drove to Derby to see his mother, saw her newly decorated house which made us feel like we were sleeping in a hotel room (in a good way!) watched lots of TV, ate reeeally nice cheeseburgers and chips and choco cake. drank bucks fizz to celebrate our engagement and Henry's mum's new job, walked the dog in the park, watched a documentary of Raymond Briggs (one of my favourite illustrators of all time and it was so inspiring) went into the city and bought tiny buttons and starry fabric and some really nice Tinkerbell perfume from the Disney store which was reduced to almost nothing (I adore Tinkerbell!) and had a Lebenese takeaway which we had to drive out in the snow to collect. But it was worth it! We love Lebanese food.

Ok reading this whole post makes it look like I've had a very indulgent weekend. Which I guess I have! 

What did you do this weekend?

Sunday, 20 January 2013

Celestine's snow day

Someone's been having a lot of fun sledging down the slopey roof of the green house this weekend....

Meanwhile Henry and I have also been sledging down Pegsdon hills. I have to say it was a little too scary for my liking.  Maybe because the bits of hills we went on were very very steep and full of bumps and tussocks and rabbit holes and snowdrifts up to our knees.  Henry had to go down most of the hills on his own (I did go down a select few though!)  It was so bumpy that he kept bouncing up into the air on the sledge which was very funny to watch!

Also some sheep started following us... I think they might have been hungry.

I'm kind of hoping all this snow starts melting soon. I don't want to be a snow-scrooge but it keeps cancelling all of my plans! We were supposed to be going up to Derby this weekend to visit Henry's mother but couldn't because of the snow.  And we were so looking forward to going! And that wasn't the only thing we had to cancel.

But ANYWAY I shouldn't complain because snow is beautiful and I got some great photos and we had fun sledging on the hills!

Hope you've had a wonderful weekend snow or no snow!

Thursday, 17 January 2013

Castles and Carousels

Hello everyone!

Here's another bit of a jumble post- can't seem to keep up with blogging very much at the moment.  I've been too busy which I guess is a good thing but I miss documenting things regularly... there don't seem to be enough hours in the day! 

But anyway, better late than ever here are a few snippets of what's been going on around here lately. 

Firstly have a look at Celestine's Christmas Presents.  How lucky she was this year. Santa did good!

-Firstly there was the easel from Sian.  This was a great surprise! 
-Then there were the little skittles that came out of Sian's cracker. (Thanks again Sian!)
-Next we have the tiny red jumper which was made by Sanna at Sweetneat.
-And then the tiny china mushroom ornament which I found in Oxford a while back.
-Under the easel is the miniature reindeer I made.
-And then next to that is the beautiful necklace I bought at Miniatura last year. Made by Ursula Sturmer.
-Next to that are the two necklaces from Henry that came as part of the engagement. Along with the -pair of scissors on the right.
-That little pink heart is actually a miniature block of post it notes. Real ones!
-And then along the bottom is a multicoloured scarf made by me. I'd really love to get some smaller -needles and thinner wool though so I can knit some really tiny things. 
-Oh and a little lindt bear to top it all off!

Then there was one more very exciting present- which was actually my present...

A miniature carousel!!!

It actually works. It goes round and round and the horses bob up and down and the lights flash on and off.  There are also lots of different songs to choose from- Christmas songs and all year round songs.  It's my childhood dream come true!  It's actually made to be a Christmas decoration but it works just the same as a miniature carousel.

Celestine hopped on it immediately!

I just love it! I hope it lasts forever!

In other news I have decided on another New Years resolution:

I have decided that this IS going to be the year when I finish decorating my castle!

This was the last time I wrote about my castle and to be honest not much has changed since then except I have done a tiny bit of painting on the turrets and wallpapered the front panels. 

Basically the deal with this castle is that I begged and begged for it for Christmas about seven or eight years ago when I was still at school.  My parents gave in and got it for me for Christmas. Then just before Chrsitmas that year I got my first boyfriend and all thoughts of castles or dollhouses went out of my head for a good few years!  I was so embarrassed that I had been given this castle for Christmas that year that I never even told the boyfriend.  When he asked me what I got for Christmas I was like 'umm... just stuff, you know, the usual kind of stuff...' I stored it in the attic and it didn't see the light of day until I decided to get it out again three years later! And then I built a bit of it and then forgot about it again for another few years! I did feel a bit bad for my parents who kept asking me when I was going to build/decorate it... oops.  

ANYWAY that's all passed now and as you can see my love for miniature things has returned with a vengeance.  To be honest I think the main problem with this castle is that I actually hate building and doing all the boring stuff like lighting and putting in screws and hinges etc... but it must be done!  And this will be the year!

This is the current state of the castle.  It sits on a dresser in my bedroom full of random stuff:

Ideally I want Celestine to live in it.  I also want to put stairs into it. It came without stairs for some reason but if Celestine is going to live there then she needs stairs!  Otherwise how will she get from room to room?

So yes operation finish castle must start soon!  I have decided to do it in any spare time that I have. I would LOVE for it to be finished for Christmas so that it can have a Christmas tree in it and a wreath on the door etc...  Or maybe to put on display for my wedding... We will have to see.

Also this Christmas my Grandmother gave me an adapter set so I was finally able to light the miniature chandelier (and a lamp I got given) that I have been hoarding for my castle for about two years. It's a beautiful crystal chandelier. I can't wait to see what it looks like when it's properly inside the castle. Ideally I would like to get enough of them to have one in each room but they are quite expensive.  I know what I will be putting on my birthday list this year!

And now here's a small peek at what I have been up to illustrating-wise so far this year.  I am not sure if I should should put these on my blog but they're only snippets so I assume it's ok...

Lots of glitter so I'm happy!

Other things that have happened so far this year: We ate up another one of our pumpkins from October and made Pumpkin Fettuccine with this recipe which was yum. We went to a very eccentric neighbour's new years party and looked round his house which was like a house I have never seen anything like before! I did lots of sketching of spreads.  We had a big family party as we didn't get to see them on Christmas day. We invited friends over and had a wii gaming night with pizza and chocolate. We booked a wedding venue! I held the first session of my after school kids craft club- nerve wracking but brilliant!...  I also seem to keep losing and breaking things this month which is annoying.  Expensive, important things that I am having to buy replacements of... :S but never mind. Hopefully this run of losing-things-bad-luck will end soon...

ANYWAY that's quite enough narcissistic rambling and present boasting for one night!  I hope you are having a good start to 2013! And hopefully not losing and breaking things like me! Did you get anything really exciting for Christmas?


Thursday, 10 January 2013

Celestine goes to Dubai

As I mentioned in my last post, I didn't spend Christmas this year here in England. I went to Dubai!  On the 23rd of December I said goodbye to Henry (sniff sniff) and drove to the airport with my family.

Of course Celestine came too. It was her first time in an airport so she was very excited. She even has her own miniature passport as you can see above.

We did lots of things this Christmas in Dubai. Lot's of un traditional things like ringing in Christmas day with a Johnny Rockets burger at one in the morning and going to a hotel for lunch.  I have never had my Christmas dinner at a hotel before so it was certainly an experience. And the food was anything but traditional too. It was an all you can eat buffet and there was sushi and squid, raw fish, cheese, lentils, sea food, pasta, cheese, the list goes on... there was anything and everything!

On the last few days we drove to Oman to a place called Musandam for a night and went on a boat trip there. The surroundings were stunning!  I especially liked the colour of the sea which was a light aqua colour. Beautiful.  We also saw dolphins leaping in and out of the sea from the boat which was very exciting.

Celestine also enjoyed her trip to Dubai and Oman very much. It was the first time she has ever been abroad. She especially enjoyed making sand angels on the beach.  Her other favourite thing to do was sail the toy boat across the swimming pool. 

Overall it was a lovely Christmas even though it didn't feel amazingly Christmassy.  I got some really nice presents- one of which Celestine found extremely exciting... but that will have to wait for another post!


Wednesday, 2 January 2013

A Christmas Jumble

Hello!  I hope you had a good new year!  Henry and I went to a friend's house for a party but then broke down on the way back and spent the rest of the night sitting in a cold car waiting for the AA man to come and tow us home! We ended up getting in at about 4am- and sadly it wasn't because we had been partying... but never mind.

I hope you had a wonderful Christmas also.  Mine was spent in Dubai!  I have never spent Christmas in Dubai before so it was an experience.  Even though it didn't feel amazingly Christmassy out there it was nice that all of my immediate family were together at the same time- which is a rarity these days!

Because I was out in Dubai for a week I never got round to posting these pictures before Christmas. So here they are now- better late than never!

1- Firstly: Celestine's Christmas outfits.  I was lucky enough to be one of the winners of PlushPussycat's giveaway last month.  It was seriously an amazing prize!  There were tiny weeny Christmas trees, miniature candles, miniature wreaths, ribbons, miniature patterned fabrics, a miniature box of peppermint crunch, a mini tripod and probably a couple more things I have forgotten to list.  All very exciting to receive in the post and all things I will use.  Here's a picture of the fabrics I received- possibly my very favourite part of the prize!

And here are some of the miniature clothes I made for Celestine this Christmas. The two dresses are made from the fabrics above. I reeeally wanted to make more things but ran out of time what with going to Dubai, getting engaged and having a tight work deadline...

2- Just before Christmas I bought four little fairy decorations to go on the tree. I did mention somewhere a while back that I wanted to write about them.  I have always been a massive fan of the Betty Bib books and was delighted a couple of years ago when I discovered that she had a blog as well.  On the blog there are more fairies showcased and a lot of them are for sale. I have always wanted my own Betty Bib fairy and so this Christmas I bought four tree decoration ones. Its so nice to have a souvenir of her work to go along with what are some of my favourite books of all time!

3- A couple of years ago for Christmas Henry got me a cuddly reindeer that I asked for. It's really cute and just before Christmas this year it I suddenly felt inspired to make Celestine her own cuddly reindeer for Christmas too! It took me a morning to make it and I was pleased and surprised with the result. Considering I just drew the pattern out freehand and sort of made it up as I went along I think it turned out quite well.  He's absolutely tiny- smaller than an inch long. 

4- As you might but probably wont have noticed in the fairy decoration picture- I recently got a new filter for my camera. It's a star filter so when ever I take pictures of lights it turns them into spiky stars.  Needless to say I have been using it a lot. I love it! Below is Celestine and you can see how I have made the subtle glitter on the end of her antennae sparkle. Below that is a photo of my Christmas dress glittering in the sunlight and below that is a photo of the lights on Celestine's tree a twinkling. This star filter brings great fun!

5- Christmas at Daves.  Every year me and my closest friends all meet up for a pre Christmas gathering/celebration.  We usually do it on Christmas Eve but last year, because I was going to be away for Christmas we did it on the 22nd instead.  It was a such a good evening full of laughter, secret santa presents and good food.  Celestine even received her own present from Sian- a miniature drawing easel!  She also managed to nab Sian's cracker present- a miniature set of skittles. She was rather chuffed with her haul. 

Dave handmade all his Christmas cards which completely surpassed anyone's expectations. Personally I think he could have a career in card desigining! 

...and that's about it. Phew! Next time: Celestine's trip to Dubai!