Sunday, January 29, 2012

Winner of New Giveaway!

Today is the day to announce the winner of my New Giveaway! The winner will receive all five of my greeting cards (including the "I'm so glad we're friends" card, which is currently out of stock):

The winner will also receive a secret miniature, which I will now reveal. The secret miniature is this beautiful miniature hat-making kit from Dragonfly International:

The hat kit includes beautiful laser-cut silk fabric pieces, blue silk ribbon, gorgeous white flowers, trim--everything but glue and scissors! You know how much I enjoy making miniatures from kits. I hope this kit brings the winner a lot of joy!

And now, I'll reveal the winner. There were 50 qualified entries in the giveaway, and I used RANDOM.ORG to pick the winning number. Drumroll, please.... And the winner is #26:

Congratulations Ascension! I hope you enjoy your prizes! :-) Please email me your address within 3 days, so I can mail your prizes right away! Thank you to everyone who entered this giveaway. There will be more in the next few weeks, as I celebrate my first year of blogging! ;-) xoxo Jennifer


Friday, January 27, 2012

Celebrating a Success!

I recently shared about seeing Maggie Rudy's MousesHouses diorama at Green Bean Books. It was an amazing experience, for several reasons. After viewing the diorama, my husband and I started chatting with the owner, Jennifer Green. She and I both expressed our love for Maggie's book, The House That Mouse Built, and my hubby bought me this adorable plushy finger puppet, Daisy, from Green Bean's plushy-dispensing machine:

Daisy the finger puppet plush

Then my husband whispered to me, "Give her one of your business cards." I resisted a couple of times (too shy!), but finally I sheepishly pulled out my business cards and said something like, "I make plushies too, with little story vignettes, and now they're greeting cards." I'm sure it was more jumbled than that, but by then two people (including Jennifer) had gathered around my business cards oohing and ahhing, and a third person came out of nowhere and said, "Can I have one of your cards too?"

Jennifer Green, owner of Green Bean Books

I was so embarassed that I was blushing, especially after Jennifer said, "I might want to carry your cards in my shop." Wow! I'd sold a bunch of my greeting cards to friends and family, but so far never in a brick and mortar shop. It was the next step I wanted to take with my cards, but I hadn't pursued it. As I left, I said that I would call to set up a time to show her my cards.

One week went by (how embarassing!), and I got an email from Jennifer. She'd looked at my blog and wanted to know if I'd be interested in selling her some cards for her shop AND if I'd be interested in doing a diorama in the store "like the box Maggie Rudy's display was in." OMG!!! A diorama in the box where the MousesHouses diorama just was?! What an honor and a thrill! I think you can imagine how I felt! :-DDD

See my cards?! 

Here's the bottom line: My greeting cards are now available at Green Bean Books, AND my miniature diorama will be featured at Green Bean Books for six weeks starting in March!!! Woohoo!

Daisy and Snoop getting to know each other!

P.S. Daisy now has a boyfriend named Snoop! Aren't they an adorable couple? ;-) Until next time.... xoxo Jennifer

P.P.S. Tomorrow is the last day to enter my New Giveaway! The prize includes a secret miniature and all five of my greeting cards!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Blog Friends Are Real Friends

One of the really special things about blogging is the friends you make. Anna of LITTLETHINGS blog and I "met" when I won an adorable giveaway prize in her recent giveaway. In that process, we exchanged addresses, and we started following each other's blogs.

Blog friends are real friends.

Anna has been tracking my progress in building and decorating my 1920s lovers cottage. When I mentioned in a blog post that I wanted to add a bathtub to the room, Anna was quick to send me this fun photo of her niece's bathroom in Germany:

I love the view from that bathtub--talk about relaxing, right?! And how thoughtful of Anna to think of me!

Then recently Anna sent me these precious gifts in the mail, because she thought they would look lovely in the Lovers Cottage. How sweet! She signed her note "Best wishes and a hug from your blog-friend!"

That reminds me of Sans!' wonderful phrase "Blog friends are real friends." You can see that I borrowed her phrase and put it under a photo of Houndstooth Pup and Raccoon on my blog's right-hand sidebar. Thanks, Sans! ;-) And thank you, Anna! It is a blessing to have such sweet friends. :-)

By the way, there's still time to enter my New Giveaway! The prize includes all five of my greeting cards plus a surprise miniature. The giveaway ends this Saturday, January 28, 2012, and I'll announce the winner the next day. Until next time.... xoxo Jennifer

Saturday, January 21, 2012

MousesHouses at Green Bean Books!

I've been following Maggie Rudy's MousesHouses blog for a few months now (I love her book The House That Mouse Built too), and then I saw that one of her dioramas could be seen at Green Bean Books here in Portland, Oregon. Here's the diorama I saw live: MousesHouses: Winter!

Cute diorama door made from recycled yardsticks

It was so fun to see her work in person. It was inside this cute door in one of the store's bookshelves. You opened the door, and inside, in a mini space of 11 1/2 inches by 11 1/2 inches (29 cm by 29 cm), with a depth of 10 inches (25.5 cm), was Maggie Rudy's adorable scene. I was struck by how tiny her mice were, and after having previously viewed the same scene on her blog, I was really impressed by how much expression she could show on the mouse faces when working in such a small scale. Definitely a thrill!

Giant Yeti in front window at Green Bean Books

A second thrill was discovering Green Bean Books itself. The giant yeti/abominable snowman in the front window (made by owner Jennifer Green) sets the scene for what you will find inside the store. It's an adorable bookstore with so many fun, quirky features. My favorite of them is the vintage cigarette machine that has become a cute plushy-dispensing machine. How fun! I couldn't resist buying a plushy. Her name is Daisy, and she's a finger puppet. More about Daisy later! :-)

Cigarette machine turned fun plushy dispenser!

Jennifer also has a fantastic mustache-dispensing machine!

Oh, to be a kid again!

Doesn't this look fun?! Needless to say, it's a wonderful store, and I had a great time. But there's so much more to tell, and it will have to be in a near-future blog post. In that post, I will show you Daisy the finger puppet plush, and let you in on a huge secret and wonderful surprise! So stay tuned! ;-) Until next time.... xoxo Jennifer

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Mini Book, Big Book

Remember all of those lovely prizes I won in Beautiful Mini Blessings' giveaway? One of the wonderful extras that Kathi sent me was an adorable miniature version of The Dollhouse Book by Stephanie Finnegan.

Just recently, I was visiting Powell's City of Books, a Portland, Oregon institution and book-lover's paradise. Let me digress for a moment.  Powell's is the largest used and new bookstore in the world. It occupies one full city block and stocks more than 1 million new and used books. Its nine color coded rooms house over 3,500 different sections. They even have a map to help you find what you're looking for! Portland has many smaller, boutique-style bookstores too. I'll tell you about one of them, and some adventures I had there, in a future post. ;-)

OK, when I recently went to Powell's, I found the 1:1 scale (real) copy of the book, and it was used--yay! So I used my store credit, from trading in some books I no longer needed, to purchase this book.

By the way, The Dollhouse Book is an enjoyable overview of the dollhouse miniatures hobby. It's full of beautiful color photos and has information from the historic past right up to present images of the dollhouse in the media. I just had to show you some photos of the two books, mini book and big book. :-) Until next time.... xoxo Jennifer

Monday, January 16, 2012

Miracle Miniature Teddy Bears

I have to tell you the story of how these miniature felt teddy bears came to me. Back in late May, I was in Bellevue, Washington when my husband saw a listing for a doll museum. He took me there, and of course, I had to go to the museum's gift shop. I met a wonderful woman running the shop, and when she found out that I was interested in miniatures, she showed me so many things, among them these tiny vintage handmade wool felt teddy bears (one of them fully jointed) with an adorable Victorian-style locket (with bear pictures inside!).

The mini bears were beyond my means at that time, so I left them in the shop, but I never forgot about them. Soon after my visit to the museum shop, however, I became interested in 1:1 scale teddy bears, after never having an interest before. I started following teddy bear blogs (lots of them!), and I started looking for teddy bears at my usual thrift stores. Soon I had a doll crib full of teddy bears and was buying baby clothes to dress the bears in (!). Then I was selling and giving away some of them, because I had too many. There is absolutely nothing wrong with teddy bears--they're great, in fact-- but they were never even my interest before!

Finally, in September, I called the museum shop, spoke with the same lovely woman, and asked if the bears were still there, as unlikely as that might be. Unfortunately, no, they were no longer there, and they hadn't been there for a long time, but the lovely lady on the other end of the phone said that she would be happy to put my request on a list. Perhaps the bears had been sent to a show and would be found. She took my phone number and assured me that she would call me if they came back to the shop.

I never heard anything, not until late October or early November, when I received a call from Sigmunde (the same nice lady) at the shop. She didn't know when or how it had happened, but the bears were back in the shop with their adorable locket. Did I still want them? DID I STILL WANT THEM?! Of course I wanted them!!! It was like a miracle!

We arranged everything by phone, and they arrived in the mail a few days later. Here's the funny part. While we were still on the phone making arrangements, Sigmunde said to me, completely out of the blue, "Imagine how many teddy bears you must have collected when you really just wanted these two bears!" I hadn't told her about the other bears, but she was so right! I'd really wanted these bears, and now I finally had them. :-)

The doll museum in Bellevue, Washington is the Rosalie Whyel Museum of Doll Art. Unfortunately, they are closing March 1, 2012. Go there while you still can. They have beautiful antique and modern dollhouses as well as beautiful dolls, and it is well worth a visit. Until next time.... xoxo Jennifer

Friday, January 13, 2012

New Miniatures Made From Kits

I ordered some fun miniature kits around the holidays so that I'd have plenty of miniature projects to keep me busy this winter. Here are a couple of the kits that I've recently completed.

First, some perfume bottles I made from a kit from The Craft Pack Company. I won't use all of these in the lovers cottage, but the light in the cottage looks pretty for showing off the bottles. This kit has really nice perfume bottle labels. 

I love making something from a kit first, because there are instructions and a plan. Once I've made something from a kit, then I enjoy trying out my own ideas. Soon I'll make some more perfume bottles, this time from the Czech glass beads that I recently purchased at The Knittn' Kitten.

Next, I made a pair of miniature ladies gloves and a matching glove box from two Dragonfly International kits. I'll use these in Dad's Dollhouse in the master bedroom. Each glove has a separate piece for the thumb, which adds to the realism of the final product.

These kits were really fun to complete, and I have several more to do. Do you enjoy making miniatures from kits? Could you recommend any miniature kit companies that you like? I appreciate your comments either way! Until next time.... xoxo Jennifer   

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Lovers Cottage Additions

I'm still playing with ideas and adding pieces to my romantic miniature lovers cottage. I haven't done any more to the structure, although I know I'm going to be using wood putty, more paint, and glue in the very near future!

Instead, I've been playing with the furniture arrangement and making romantic accessories for the lovers cottage. First up is the silk corset I made. It really sets a tone for the room, as does the antique lace handkerchief under it (to get a feel for what a lace bedspread will do for the room). I've made a few of the corsets and really enjoy putting them together and seeing the results of my work. Expect to see a few in my Etsy shop soon. :-)

Ahh, and here is the corset alongside the fireplace, with our 1920s wedding couple as the main focal point of the room. I'm pretty sure I'll be painting the fireplace white to match the walls, but that will be a while yet.

Another piece that I would like to fit in the room is a bathtub. My sweetie and I spent our honeymoon in a remodeled turn-of-the-century cottage with a four-poster bed, a fireplace, and an antique claw-foot tub with running hot springs water. It was so romantic and luxurious--a special treat! Hmm, this miniature lovers cottage is starting to look awfully familiar! ;-)

I'll be creating more accessories for the cottage in the next few weeks, and I'll be sure to show you each piece as it is added. This lovers cottage is turning out to be such a fun project! Until next time.... xoxo Jennifer

Monday, January 9, 2012

How to Add a Photo to Your Blog's Sidebar

I've held a number of blog giveaways, and one of the requirements to enter is often to post a giveaway photo on your own blog's sidebar. I've had quite a few people ask me about how to do this, so here's a little tutorial for you. These instructions are for posting a photo or other image on the sidebar of a Blogger blog using the "Add a Gadget" feature.

I'll use my own current blog giveaway as an example. First thing, go to my blog post and copy the small giveaway photo at the bottom of my post, then save it somewhere easy to find. Here's my blog post: Go there. Find that last smaller photo in the article and right-click on it. Choose the option that says, "Save as" or "Save image." Save the photo where you can find it later, like your desktop, or a place where you always save files or images. Good.

Now open a second window on your computer. Go to your own blog. Now go to the very top of your blog and click "Design," then click "Layout." You'll see the layout of your blog. At the top of the right sidebar in the layout, click "Add a Gadget." Now scroll down a list of choices until you find "Picture." Click the plus sign next to it. Now a "Configure Image" window opens.

In the spot that says "Title," you can type "Plushpussycat's Giveaway," or something like that. In the spot that says "Link," copy this into it: Just highlight the text of the web site url in the first window (my blog in this example), and hold down the "Ctrl" key and the "c" key at the same time. Then go to the "Configure Image" window and hold down the "Ctrl" key and the "v" key at the same time. Or you can type the url/web address in by hand. :-)

One more thing to go! You just need to click the "Choose File" button in the "Configure Image" window. From there, find where you stored the photo on your computer, and click the photo. You'll see the photo in the "Configure Image" window now. Now hit the "Save" button in the "Configure Image" window. Now all you see is the "Layout" page. In the right-hand column, just under the words "Add a Gadget," it says "Plushpussycat's Giveaway," or whatever you typed before. Hit the "Save" button at the top of the "Layout" page, and then hit the "View Blog" button to see your work.

You did it--yay! Congratulations on learning a new skill! It's time to pat yourself on the back! I hope you found this tutorial helpful. Until next time.... xoxo Jennifer

Saturday, January 7, 2012

New Giveaway!

Mouse has stopped in a coffee shop for a piece of cake, but he's in shock!

The wall art in the coffee shop looks as if it might be a photo of him!

2/29/12 update: This giveaway is now closed. The winner has been announced here!

The Big Miniatures Giveaway just ended, and next month I'm going to be celebrating one year of blogging--woohoo! :-) I thought this would be a good time to open up a new giveaway! ;-) Mouse has just noticed that he is a featured character in one of my greeting cards (two of my cards, actually!).

Mouse is featured in both my birthday card and a card that is blank inside. The birthday card reads, "It's your birthday. Time for a treat!"

Then there's Plushpussycat and Tomcat. Tomcat has brought flowers for Plushpussycat on their picnic date. Inside, the card reads, "Oh my! You shouldn't have!" This is a common way of saying "thank you."

Next is my friendship card featuring Houndstooth Pup and Raccoon. Inside it reads, "I'm so glad we're friends." I love to send this card to people who love plushies or miniatures and to other friends too! :-)

Finally, there's the card with Bella the Bride Bunny on the front. It is blank inside and is great for bridal showers, weddings, anniversaries, friends who are struggling with dating, and so on. 

What You Could Win: So, there are five cards total in my greeting card line, and that is exactly what is up for grabs in this giveaway--all five cards! I'll also throw in a miniature surprise. I won't tell you what the surprise is until I announce the winner, either! ;-)

This giveaway ends Saturday, January 28, 2012 at 12 midnight PST, and I'll announce the winner on Sunday, January 29, 2012. I'll pick the winner from the pool of qualified entries using a random number generator. I must hear back from the winner by end of day Tuesday, January 31, 2012. If I don't, I'll pick another winner, again using the random number generator. This giveaway is open to anyone who meets the below criteria. The postage is on me.

Giveaway requirements:

1) Be a follower / member (or become one now) of this blog using Google Friend Connect (on my upper right-hand sidebar). (Required) 
2) Leave a nice comment on this post. (Required)
If you like, please tell me what types of cards you buy most. Examples: birthday, sympathy, wedding, get well soon, etc. (not required, but appreciated).
3) Please help me spread the word about this giveaway by publishing it on your blog (not required, but very much appreciated). :-) Here's the image to use:

For help in how to post the giveaway image on your blog's sidebar, there are instructions here

I hope you like this giveaway! Remember that you could win all five greeting cards plus a miniature surprise! Thank you to all of the friends of Plushpussycat. Good luck in the draw! Until next time.... xoxo Jennifer

Thursday, January 5, 2012

New Winner!

Could it be you? I tried four times to reach the first winner (two emails and two comments on her blog), but to no avail.

The rules on my Big Miniatures Giveaway post state that I must hear back from the winner within two days, or I will pick another winner using the random number generator. It is three hours short of three days now, and I haven't heard back from the first winner (so sorry!). :-(

Fortunately, after some experience running giveaways, I generated a long list of numbers the first time I ran the draw, just in case. So I looked at the second number in the list, and it belongs to:

Irina of NarinaNapertaa !!!

Congratulations, Irina! Get back to me with your mailing address by end of day Saturday at the latest, so I can mail your package right away! By the way, I'm still working on my next giveaway, so stay tuned. Until next time.... xoxo Jennifer

Monday, January 2, 2012

Big Miniatures Giveaway Winner!

First, before I announce the winner, a big thank-you to the long-time friends of Plushpussycat. Some of you have been here since the beginning, and some have been reading this blog for many months. Thank you so very much! I really mean that from the bottom of my heart. It would be lonely writing this blog without all of you there. :-)

And now, a big, warm welcome to all of Plushpussycat's new friends. You may not have been here for a long time, but your friendship means the world to me. I hope you see things here that inspire you AND that make you giggle. I hope you have a lot of fun when you visit Plushpussycat! :-)

As you all know, this has been a big miniatures giveaway. I have had four giveaways in the ten months I've been posting on Plushpussycat. And you know I love giveaways, so keep your eyes on this blog, because I'll be posting my next one VERY soon! ;-)

OK, now it is on to the winner of the Big Miniatures Giveaway! I ran this lottery using, as always. There were 130 qualified entries, and I gave each entry a number, from the first to the last entries. Drumroll, please....

The winner of the cheesecake for two, the silk corset, and the ladies hat is Mindy Max of Mindy Max Miniatures!

Congratulations, Mindy! I will try to contact you, and please email me at pdxjbear (at) with your mailing address, so I can send your prizes right away. For everyone else, don't be sad, because I will host another giveaway very soon! :-) Until next time.... xoxo Jennifer