"Gypsy Fortune Teller's Vardo"
The name I gave my room box is The Gypsy Fortune Teller's Vardo. I began by doing extensive research about gypsy wagons, caravans and vardos. Then I searched for all types of built in beds. I chose elements that I liked from many of them, and joined them. The moon is lit from behind by lights from Model Train Diorama Software, LED Lights, Evan Designs. I also used his lights for the crystal ball and the fire kit for the stove. My husband Dan assembled them for me. I chose to do a moonlit window to add to the mystery of the theme, and also because I haven't seen it used in a miniatures before. Two types of lights are used for the crystal ball,1 flashing and 1 not, their wires and switch are hidden under the tablecloth, the lights pulled up to base of the ball (a crown turned upside down) thru a hole in the table,. The false wall is made from foam core. The moon is a printout from Pinterest, glued to the back of the window. The coverlet on the bed is from a sleeve of a thrift store found shirt. The pillows are glued together, filled with sand and bunka trim for fringe. From Dawn Reese at Dolls and Minis, I purchased the lamps, light fixtures, stove kit and wainscoting used for storage door and drawers and the laser cut Victorian porch trim that is on either side of the bed. The dresser set is a Chrysnbon kit that I hand painted. Whatever I didn't make , I purchased from Dolls and Minis. Wood for the ceiling was soaked in water, bent and then dried in a curve. The "crown molding" is fabric trim, as I needed to have it curve below the ceiling. The stove was finished with Perfect Pearls Pewter, from the Aged Patina set. Dolores Martz made the Ouija board, I made the tarot cards from printies from Pinterest. Cookware, household items, furniture and various tchotchkes make it cozy. Both dolls complete the project. Many Thanks to Lynne Rice for offering them to me. They were part of Ede Prendergast's estate that was recently sold to members and are perfect for the vardo. There are 4 signs advertising the gypsy's services: Tea Leaf Reading, Fortune Telling, Palm Reading and The Golden Wheel Fortunes And as always, my signature "Robin's Nest with 3 eggs" is on the roof.
The theme of my roombox is Christmas and dedicated to my love of Santa. Pictures of vintage Santas adorn the walls. My room is furnished from my collection of Princess Furniture . I would probably date the room setting from the 50's to the 60's. I keep a "whatever box" that I purge whenever I need items to finish a miniature room. From this "whatever box" I found my Christmas tree's "ornaments". They are single earrings that I lost the matching pair and broken silver chains. The toys under the tree are from Hallmark ornaments. The doll is from my daughter's ring from 40 years ago that I broke off to use under the tree. The ice skates are also earrings. The little ceramic tree that is lit was a gift from my son many years ago. The shingles and floor are made from craft sticks that I had to cut down . I wore out 2 blades from cutting the craft sticks. I made the wreath around the mirror over the fireplace and the garland decorating the fireplace. The Santa and sleigh on the roof top is an ornament from the 1980's.
"Charles St. Interiors"
A few years ago I purchased the store front online from England. Once I decided to use that piece for my project, electrifying it was a challenge. That is when I started adding the furniture and accessories to the interior. Chuck thought it was a room in someone's home. He had never seen a store that was wallpapered and trimmed in wood like this was. My question to him was, why would I put a store front on a living room ? That is why I named the box... Charles St Interiors. The address on the door is 2017 representing the year in which it was built. Pieces on the inside were from my collection, I made the "china" pieces in a class taught by Rosemary Macedonio in her shop, Miniature Cellar. The Jim Pounder lamp and porcelain bowl were from Carol Pedid's estate. The pink dollhouse was a class by Cynthia Howe and made by Carol Farmer that I purchased from her estate. The large walnut dollhouse in the back is by Bespaq. It is a replica of a full sized liquor cabinet made by Maitland Smith circa 1980. I now own the large piece as well as the miniature. I added the beams in the ceiling to hide the wires for the chandeliers. Originally, I was just going to create the roombox. I thought it would be pretty with just the chandeliers lighting the interior. When I couldn't figure out how to hang the chandeliers, I started filling the box with the items seen inside. The ah ha moment came a week before the show. Several pieces of trim were added to "fill up " the spaces left behind after placing the storefront piece and attaching the ceiling beams.