That 'Lived-in' Look
By Deb Roberts
It’s often been said that it’s the little things that make a house a home, and that’s just as true in the miniature world as it is in the big world. We’ve asked a lot of miniaturists what they think makes their dollhouse a doll’s home and the answer has overwhelming been, “those little touches of clutter and household items”.
If you look around your home, you’ll see all the touches that give it character and personality... a lamp in just the right place... a favorite framed picture on the wall…..a potted plant in the window... or even a coffee cup on the table or a pile of laundry in the bathroom. These are the same touches that give your miniature house character and personality!
One of the keys to that lived-in look is how and where things are placed. Your miniature rooms don’t have to appear to be ‘magazine picture perfect’. Miniatures imitate real life, so when you’re staging your mini home, make it look as if someone lived there by placing items where they appear to be in use.
Anya skillfully drapes a curtain into the bathtub as it if had been brushed out of the way in a hurry. A towel hanging beside the tub appears to have just been used and the dozens of small bottles and accessories in the bathroom are artfully reflected in the mirrored wall, giving the illusion that there are many more than there actually are. The tiny seashell on the window sill is an attractive and realistic touch.
In this beautiful Glencroft bedroom, Gail distresses the bureau for a natural look that makes us think that this lovely piece of furniture is a cherished family heirloom. She leaves the drawer open with bits of lace draped over the edge as if its owner had been called away quickly in the middle of a search for something special. Perhaps love letters hidden underneath the silky garments?
DianaM presents this stunning bedroom with so many beautiful details that you could gaze at it for hours. From the framed pictures on the wall to the cat napping on the bed, this room gives hints of the personality of the lady who might rest her head there. Diana has created a lovely window treatment with a lace valance that gives dainty detail to the room, while still letting the light shine thru.
Peeking into the kitchen of Gayle’s 1930’s Westville is like stepping back in time. What a busy place for the lady of the house! Gayle uses authenticity to make this room perfectly charming and giving us insight into what life was like during that era. The tea trolley with its tea towel draped over the handle is being called into service as a bread board and one can almost smell the scent of yeast mixed with the delightful aroma of the apples in the open vegetable bin. The ice box is open and awaiting the arrival of the ice man. If you look carefully, you’ll even see the family puppy waiting patiently beside his bowl for dinner to be served.
Michelle puts action and fun into her miniature game room with details that range from the deerhead over the mantle to a couple of hot poker games going on at the gaming tables. I think if we look close enough, we might even be able to tell who is winning! The side tables and bar are stocked with lots of drinks and food and there’s even a tub of ice on the floor under the table. The detailing in this room is remarkable, all the way down to the filled ashtrays and poker chips on the tables.
An important detail that is often overlooked is the use of lights in a miniature home. The soft glow of a lamp or overhead light... or even candles or oil lamps... transform a miniature scene into a picture of warm comfort. Teresa demonstrates how lighting can add a romantic glow to a miniature room.
While it’s true that a lot of tiny details can add up to a very large bill at the local miniature store, not everything that makes a house a home has to be expensive. There are unlimited possibilities for making your own miniature accessories. Dawn found some perfect beads and jewelry fittings to make these beautiful teapots.
Greg shows some wonderful creativity by making this fantastic lamp out of chain pulls and brass washers! Who would have thought that romantic charm and elegance could be found at the hardware store!
These little details can do so much to make your miniature house a miniature home. With a little imagination and a few odds and ends your dollhouse will have the look of a true home.
Return to Newsletter Home Page...