Saturday, July 19, 2014

Special Gifts From Special Friends!

Hi All! How has your summer/winter been going? We are coming out of a heat wave here in Portland, Oregon that had us living in a darkened house to try to keep things cool. I'm so glad it's back to comfortable temperatures now. Hope everyone is doing well. I'll have some fun diorama news for you this coming weekend, but first I want to show you some amazing swap gifts and prizes I recently received. Flossy and Sophie are at the ready to show you all the goodies from these talented artists.


First up, if you haven't found Todd & Lindsey blog yet, you're missing out on some fun! There are lots of miniature tutorials plus fun posts on both dollhouse and real-life decorating, tasty recipes, and so much more. Don't miss it! So Lindsey and I arranged a fun swap together. :-) We told each other our favorite items made by the other person, and we tried to limit our gifts to five handmade ones plus some fun extras. Lindsey sent me my favorite things (there were so many to choose from!), all in my favorite colors! Flossy received a number of darling mini items for her bathroom plus some yummy cookies:


Sophie has already started nibbling on one of the black and white cookies that Lindsey sent, and Flossy is overwhelmed with the cute bowl of homemade soaps, the sweet pedestal stand with toothpaste and two toothbrushes, the pretty pedestal stand with three adorable nail polishes, and the fun Yankee Candle for relaxing soaks in the bathtub. And below the table, Lindsey also sent two sweet green plants and two adorable floral pillows:


She also sent a beautiful sunflower card (not pictured) and these fun mini holiday decorations, including mini candy canes and snowflakes:


Thank you sooooooooo much, Lindsey! This was a really fun swap, it has been fun getting to know you better, and I love the things you sent me. Let's do it again in the spring! You can see what I sent Lindsey on her blog here.

Next up, Monica Castillo of Kitchen Miniature blog and I sent each other some mini gifts. Look at this exquisite cherry pie prep board with tiny Chinese-style metal tea pot. Flossy sneakily cut herself a piece of cherry pie while Sophie was focused on gnawing the delicious dried pork leg Monica sent. Sophie is so happy that for once she can eat some meat at Flossy's house. Flossy's food, including her cupcakes, is all vegetarian (she's a rabbit, after all!). ;-) Notice the vintage Polaroid camera too?


And look at these darling items in front of the table. Mini ice chest with ice, potato chips, and beach towel for a perfect summer day; red polka dot watering can; and special shelf for Flossy's bathroom (see the "F" for "Flossy" and the queen sign?):


But that wasn't all. Monica sent a precious paper mache lapel pin of her Rabbit Queen, and Monica's daughter, Neus, sent a Special Card and two gifts for Flossy in Flossy's favorite color:


Here's another shot of these special gifts:


Monica also sent some pretty fabric and ribbons (not pictured). Thank you so much, Monica and Neus! Everything you sent is so special! I'm so glad we're friends! You can see what I sent Monica on her blog here.

Finally, I was one of the lucky winners of Carmen of Pekevasion blog's recent surprise giveaway. The top five commenters on her blog each won a miniature baby and baby blanket, both handmade by Carmen:


The detail on the baby is exquisite! The soft lavender blanket looks like it needs to be draped across the foot of someone's bed, and it will be soon! ;-) Thank you so very much, Carmen! You're so talented and generous, and all of your giveaways, swaps, and tutorials make blogging really fun!

OK, that's it for today. Whatever you do, keep having fun! I'll be back next weekend with an update. xoxo Jennifer

Friday, June 27, 2014

Sylvanian Families Vintage Tin Litho Dollhouse!

Remember the 3/4 scale vintage 1960 tin litho dollhouse my dad gave me a year and a half ago? I finally decorated it, and a few other houses, with Calico Critters / Sylvanian Families (SF). In fact, I made a small village in 3/4 scale that's threatening to take over my bedroom! ;-) It all started with the tin litho house and some cats and bunnies:

Mama cat vacuuming the living room.

Baking bread and frying eggs at the same time!

Breakfast time in the tin litho dollhouse kitchen.

Mother and daughter bunny are serious about finishing the laundry!

Looking after Mama cat's baby.

The children's bedroom has two sets of bunk beds. I made the bedding.

Knitted sweater by Baby Cat of Laughing Cat Creative Enterprises blog.

Unattended babies on the veranda?!

In the middle of making the Sylvanian Families miniature village, my friend Jane Cherie of the fun and interesting  Jane Cherie blog sent me a darling SF plant set for my birthday. It's perfect for a community center with park that I built. I just love this set! Thank you Jane Cherie! You'll see this set in action in a future post!

Sylvanian Families stock photo from eBay.com

And then I won a fantastic giveaway from Eaton Blackberry of Sugarbush Valley blog. Isn't this SF tableware set cute? I'll be able to use these dishes in all sorts of mini scenes. Eaton also sent two darling mini flower bouquets as extra surprise gifts, and it all arrived from South Africa--how exciting! Thank you Eaton Blackberry! Be sure to check out her blog for fun and humorous Sylvanian Families stories.


OK, that's it for today! Hope you had as much fun as I did! In future posts, I hope to show you some more of my Sylvanian Families mini village. Until next time, keep having fun! xoxo Jennifer

Monday, June 23, 2014

Miniature Gifts and Giveaway Prizes!

With all of the birthday gifts that arrived this year, I started to feel overwhelmed about posting them all, and I was suspecting you all were too. ;-) I want to make sure that I show everything that arrived in the mail, though, because so many thoughtful people put their time and love into making and mailing such beautiful miniatures.

First off, I purchased a gorgeous painting from Caroline of Shop Cinderella Moments blog, and she generously sent two beautiful hand painted rugs as gifts. I wanted to post about them after I decorated part of Flossy's house, Cupcake Cottage, so that I could show them in place, but I still haven't finished the house, so here are Caroline's precious pieces now:




What thoughtful gifts! You'll all see these beautiful pieces again later. ;-) Thank you so much, Caroline! Caroline's shop is cinderellamoments on Etsy.

Next, Wyrna of A Fairytale Come True blog, who won one of Kim Saulter's gorgeous cakes in my Miniature Dessert Giveaway, sent me some lovely thank-you gifts:


The shabby chic things are perfect in Flossy's house and in Bluebelle's cake shop, and the Buddha and antique-style mirror are perfect for Dad's Dollhouse mouse house. I love everything. Thank you so much, Wyrna! You might want to check out Wyrna's shop, WyrnasMiniatureB on Etsy for more lovely items.

Next, Hannah of Hannahsminiatyrer blog offered to do some swaps on her blog, and I jumped at the chance. You can see what I sent Hannah in her funny and cute post, and here are the sweet things that Hannah sent me. She even sent lovely extras, including the tiny needle-felted giraffe, books, and postcards:


Hannah also sent a lovely postcard from her home town in Sweden (not pictured) plus these great miniature classic vintage movie posters:


I love all of it--thank you, Hannah! Hannah's shop is Hannahsminiatyrer on Etsy.

Birgit of BiWuBaren on the Blog surprised me with an amazing spread of thoughtful gifts and one of her beautiful handmade cards. Rosey and Flutterby's photos are featured on and in the card, and look at all of these beauties, including a shabby chic cat pull toy and two real magnet bulletin boards, featuring tiny postcard versions of my Plushpussycat greeting cards :


Wow! And this tiny miniature scene is exquisite! I noticed that Birgit has more of these scenes, including both a shabby chic-style scene and a witchy, Halloween-themed one, in her *new* BiWuBear Etsy shop right now. ;-)


The cat toy, Mickey Mouse poster (both in above photo) and the three mouse-related books (above and below) are dedicated to Dad's Dollhouse mouse house--they're so thoughtful and perfect! I LOVE them!

Birgit also sent two more gifts: a bag of ribbons and lace, all in pretty girly colors, and a big box of marzipan:


Mmm, yummy, tasty marzipan candy, long gone. Long gone, because I recently discovered that I'm very sensitive to sugar. If I eat a cookie or candy bar, I wake up the next day depressed, and very often three days later I have a bad cold. So when dear, sweet Birgit sent me the marzipan, I held it longingly and appreciated her kind gesture, but then I gave it away quickly. And who do you think I gave it to? My postal worker, Cindy! Doesn't she deserve it more than anyone else, when she has to deliver so many packages to me?! ;-)Thank you for everything, Birgit (and Cindy thanks you too! ;-))! You're so talented and generous.


Last but not least, I won an amazing giveaway from Julie at A Little of This and That blog. I won both Martha Stewart (blue) and Wilton (pink) molds in the giveaway:


I'm going to have so much fun using these with polymer clay! I especially want to try the Martha Stewart frame mold, which is perfect for a 1:12 or 1:6 scale scene. Julie frequently hosts polymer clay molds giveaways on her blog (you might want to check it out!). I've purchased molds from her Molds4You shop on Etsy in the past, and they are high-quality and good value. Thanks Julie!

Whew! Thanks for reading this far, guys! And thanks again to everyone who sent such wonderful miniature gifts! Next time, I hope to tell you about my latest diorama public installation and more! Until then, keep having fun! xoxo Jennifer

Friday, June 13, 2014

Strawberry Season! Plus News

It's Strawberry Season in Flossy and Sophie's neck of the woods, and they are making the most of it! Flossy has made some yummy strawberry shortcake...


...while Sophie is about to sit down to a huge plate of warm, delectable strawberry pancakes...


...and Bluebelle is taking a load off with some tasty strawberry cupcakes (in her new house, since Strawberry Shortcake is traveling for the summer).


Latest News

Ah, there is so much catching up to do since my last blog post. Rufus, my precious guinea pig, has had a painful bladder infection, which we are treating with antibiotics. :-( Both my husband and I were ill but now are better. Since then, I've been trying to catch up on home projects and manage my greeting card accounts. I've missed writing blog posts so much, but I've had little to no time for it.

There's something else: For a long time now, I've had very little free time for working on my own creative projects, such as creating new characters, decorating their homes, and developing new stories. On top of that, postage in the U.S., especially international postage, has skyrocketed (not a joke!). It is $10 minimum to send an extremely light package to a foreign country (usually it costs $12-15 or more). For these reasons, I will not be able to participate in any more Christmas gift exchanges for the foreseeable future. And starting in 2015, I won't be able to participate in any more birthday gift exchanges either.

I've loved being part of these exchanges, but now I need to carve out time for my own creative projects. If a solution can be found so that the gift exchanges take less time and cost less money, I'm all for it. Until then, the gift exchanges have been a fun way to make friends, and I still value the friendships I've made and the wonderful gifts I've received.

Now I hope to be able to post on the blog more often. I still have some more gifts and giveaway wins to show (from April and earlier!) and now not just one but two (!) new interests to share with you. I also have a new diorama on public display to show. Then it's on to new characters, a new dollhouse, new stories, and more! I hope you'll all be here to share it with me. :-) Until next time, keep having fun! xoxo Jennifer

Friday, April 18, 2014

Springtime at Cupcake Cottage

Flossy got really artsy-craftsy after she learned that the "kitty grass" that Anna sent us from Finland was actually the base for a "rairuoho." The rairuoho is an Easter tradition in the Nordic countries. As Anna explained, usually this time of year there aren't many green plants growing yet, so they grow Easter grass on a tray indoors and decorate it with Easter eggs and chicks to celebrate spring. Flossy got so excited about this idea that she made her own rairuoho in Anna's dish of grass:


It has Flossy's own style, doesn't it? ;-) Thank you for the interesting information about the rairuoho, Anna!

Then Bluebelle (our resident "chick") came over for a visit to Cupcake Cottage, and she and Flossy made special bunny cupcakes together. Mmm, don't they look pretty and tasty?

Mini Easter cupcake set by CuteinMiniature on Etsy. Set doesn't include
duck or bag of Easter eggs. The Peeps box was a gift from Beverly of CiM.

Wishing all of you a belated vernal (spring) equinox and happy Easter! Until next time, keep it fun! xoxo Jennifer

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Generous New Blog Friend

There's a new blogger in town I'd like to introduce you to. Not only is she creative and talented, but she's also extremely generous. With always a kind word to leave on the blogs, she's as generous with her gifts as well. I'm talking about Simona of Soft and Malleable blog. Soft and malleable, you ask? Simona loves to work with both polymer clay and needle felting, and she shows lots of creative projects on her blog, including a needle felted miniature house and scrumptious mini desserts.

Simona's first gifts, shown here in Bluebelle's Cake Shop! 

Simona and I became fast friends. In fact, I was her blog's first follower. Simona told me she wanted to make "a few" gifts to thank me for being the first. I think you can see where this is going. "A few" gifts turned into a massive number! First, I received this lovely package that Simona ordered from Wyrna's shop on Etsy:


Isn't everything beautiful? You can see these items in Bluebelle's Cake Shop in the first photo of this post. Next, Simona sent this amazing package of cute kawaii goodies from Hong Kong:


There are dessert stickers, multiple rolls of washi tape, two kinds of clay, food erasers, a squishy strawberry dipped in "chocolate" with sprinkles that even has a yummy scent, and gorgeous kawaii-style fabric! Simona's package also included these Re-Ment beauties:


These dollhouse miniature sets from Japan are so cute! Here's a close-up of Hello Kitty Supermarket set:


And here's a close-up of the other supermarket set:


Strawberry Shortcake is going to have a ball with all of these cute mini food items!

So all the while that these precious gifts were arriving in my mailbox, Simona was making more special gifts for me, the ones to thank me for being her first follower. She sent a box packed with gifts, including all of these lovely craft supplies:


One of them, on the far right, is Jean Day's "Dolly Sewing Box and Paper Doll Kit." See the little tin dollhouse in the upper right-hand corner of the above photo? Here's the inside of that dollhouse:


So cute! This house was packed full of needle felted critters, including this kawaii girl character that Simona made:


The dollhouse also had these cute kitties inside:


The kitties are moving into Dad's Dollhouse, as pets for the mice. ;-) But wait! There was more inside--these darling teddy bears:


And if that wasn't already enough, Simona also made three beautiful cakes, including two cheesecakes using Angie Scarr's methods, in pretty individual cake boxes with doilies:


Beautiful colorful cake stands for the cakes:


And a darling box of rainbow macarons!


How's that for a thank-you gift!?! Can you believe it!?! Obviously, generous is not a strong enough word for Simona! So thank you ever so much for your beautiful and thoughtful gifts, Simona. You are one of those precious sweet people we are fortunate to meet in blogland, and your generosity knows no bounds! Thank you for your gift of friendship most of all. If you haven't seen Simona's blog, I suggest you check it out right away. Not only does Simona show her gorgeous work on her blog, but she also discusses techniques used, which is a lovely bonus.

I still have gifts from a couple of people to show you, I won a couple of giveaways, Flossy's been baking Easter treats at Cupcake Cottage, and I still haven't shown you photos of a fun new interest, so stay tuned for my next posts! And until next time, keep it fun! xoxo Jennifer

Monday, April 14, 2014

Jane Issues Her Counter-Strike! The Battle Is Over!

That Jane Smith of MiniFanaticus blog has been quite the aggressive competitor in our gift-giving battle! :-) Jane is too much of a fearsome foe for this novice! ;-) She's just way too tough of a competitor for me! :-D Maybe photos of the many recent gifts Jane made and sent will help you see what I mean. First, she sent all of these beautiful spring-themed presents:


See the gorgeous flowered cake with a tiny bee on top:


And Jane even sent a tiny handmade Rufus! Oh, my! I think this might have been the coup de grace in our battle of the gifts :-):


He looks so realistic and is so tiny! What a masterpiece! In the same package, she included these darling kawaii-style cupcake earrings that she made along with tiny holiday-themed nail art packets in the background:


Jane sent the gorgeous gifts above, and then when she learned that it was my "birthday month," she sent even more gifts, including this tiny sweet fairy scene and a big celebratory birthday cake:


Who can compete with all of this?! I give up (waves white flag)! You're the best challenger, Jane, I admit it! :-D Seriously, dear readers, Jane is one of the most generous people in blogland. Thank you so much for all of your gorgeous gifts, sweet Jane. I treasure your friendship, your humor, your talent and your generosity.

Next post, I have one more very generous miniaturist and blogger to share with all of you. Until next time, keep it fun! xoxo Jennifer