Saturday, June 25, 2011

Rooms-in-Miniature: Out of the Box


I took another dip into 1:24 scale, but I had a *really* good reason: a boxed Rooms-in-Miniature set, manufactured by Miner Industries of Japan in the mid-1960s!

You might remember my post from a few months ago on my boxed set of the Miner furniture, which featured dining room, bedroom, and living room pieces.While my set included likely every piece of furniture sold, it did not come with any of the accessories, paneling, or room box that I saw in a 1964 ad from a Sears catalogue. Alas, I found one (yes, also on eBay), and it was actually one of three room sets being offered. I could only afford to bid on one, the living room set, although it was a tough choice. My bid was successful, and I awaited my prize.

A small detour: Tiffany, the seller, is a former Design Within Reach proprietor and mid century modern fan. She knew the boxed sets were special when she was helping a friend with an estate sale. These particular boxes are all marked with Montgomery Ward price tags (marked down to $1.97!!!). Like me, Tiffany could not really find out much about Miner, and may ask her local miniature museum in Denver. I know if she finds out more, she will let us know! You also may enjoy a blog posting about the sets, here. Some familiar names are mentioned. :) Thanks, Tiffany!

Once my set arrived, I had a ball opening all the packaging and photographing everything (you've been forewarned; lots of photos coming).

Here's the timeline of the big unveiling, all through pictures and captions:


Yes, marked down to less than $2.00!



I loved the way everything was tucked snugly in its place

Many of the loose items were in their original tissue

The side chair, while lovely, is yellowed from age on the back cushion.



Not quite sure what this piece is for...perhaps a plain shelf for the wall brackets?



Like the chair, these tables have seen better days...likely warped from age and temperature changes.




I realize that this is a very simple structure, but the directions were so clear and easy.



It looked to me as if all the pieces made it; a few had come loose.

The paneling is reversible!

I chose the wood paneling, which slides easily into the tracks of the bottom.

On goes the top track and the struts for hanging!
Green carpeting goes in...


Time for the hanging pegs to go on the tracks

Done!
Now onto some decorating! The flowers had mostly disintegrated, but I used some intact ones anyway. The painting did not make it in this time around.




The hanging lamp has a special bracket with a longer peg.





Two sheets of acetate are for the ceiling and front and make for a nice way to display your setup!


Happy decorating!

A note about my posts: I do try very hard to post at least twice a week, but this does not always happen. I aim to communicate daily via the Call of the Small page on Facebook and on my Twitter feed, so join in and tune in, and feel free to email me at call-small(at)call-small(dot)com with interesting news and links about our fun modern mini world!

Credits: All pieces and box are from the living room Rooms-in-Miniature set from Miner Industries of Japan. I am always curious to learn more about these pieces or the company, so do let me know if you can shed any further light on this.

The time it took me: 1 hour, 40 minutes.

32 comments:

  1. Wow, what a find!
    Makes me want to get out to estate sales...
    Thanks for sharing!

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  2. Oh you can be very glad to have these! I totally love it (and your Thomy House too, allthough I didn't wrote a comment). I think I saw this chairs and sofa in Amys Miniatures and we all wondered, what brand it was. No idea if she has the information meanwhile.
    The kind of shelvings are nearly the same as I had in my girls-room. I had the idea to build a miniature scene like my room in the 70s for a long time. This gave me inspiration to try out - perhaps only in my mind, who knows.
    Thanks for sharing this wonderful pieces and the cool way you fotograph ist.
    Have a nice sunday.

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  3. ¡Qué maravilla! Ojalá aquí se encontrasen cosas así. Ese conjunto de sofá y sillones me tiene enamorada desde el primer día que los ví. Felicidades por haberlos conseguido. Un beso

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  4. What a wonderful room box, the shelf system is so fascinating in miniature, it reminds me of the vintage Brio office, a favourite of mine, too - congratulations..

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  5. This is glorious. What a gem! I'm so glad you went for it. Really lovely.

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  6. Hi Lee! Yes, there are definitely finds to be had at estate sales...I wish I was the one who found the three sets!! But at least I can share this one ;)

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  7. Hi, Oese! I have a feeling you are working away on your 70s project now!! I'm glad you like this set. Yes, Amy has a few of the pieces, and she got them at an antique shop for a few dollars!!! We helped her identify the pieces, and I think she was happy to find out some information on them. It is beautiful and sunny here, so I think we will have a nice Sunday. Enjoy!

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  8. Gracias, Maru! Me alegro que te guste mi nuevo juguete! También estoy muy contento y sorprendido de haber encontrado también! Yo espero que continúe a compartirla. Tiene un gran día!

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  9. Hi, diepuppenstubensammlerin! Yes, this reminds me of the Brio Mobilia as well, which is probably why I love it too! ;)

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  10. Hey, Beth Lemon! I'm glad I went for it too, and while I would have loved the other two sets, it wasn't in the cards. Maybe I'll be lucky enough to find them at an estate sale one day. A gal can hope, right?

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  11. I loved the living room. The furniture is beautiful. You got a great acquisition. Congratulations!

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  12. Thanks, Eliana! Now I have to pack it all away. Too much doll house clutter for it to be on display :/

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    Replies
    1. Why? I have doll and room boxes all over my house-on dressers, in book shelves, kitchen counters-anywhere they fit.

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  13. Beautiful set! Thanks so much for sharing your information about them^_~

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  14. I LOVE THIS!!! So YUMMY!
    Maryann ;)

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  15. Hi Gigi! Thanks for reading, and glad you like it! I've been enjoying your VERO house very much!

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  16. Thanks, Maryann! It is pretty yummy, that is for sure ;)

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  17. Glad they made it to you. Excellent work-great photos. Enjoy your treasure! Tiffany

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  18. Wonderful! What a thrill!!!
    Jennifer

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  19. Thanks so much, Tiffany! Everything made it to me great, nice packing! I definitely am enjoying the set, although I did pack it all up again. Too nervous about the kids knocking something out and away! Keep in touch!

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  20. Hi Jennifer! Glad you like it!

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  21. This is lesley at Midmodredo.com and friend of Tiffany's. Thanks so much for posting pics of the assembled "room". I was dying to see how they'd look. I love it!

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  22. Hi, Lesley! I'm so glad you stopped over to see the pics! I wish I didn't have to pack them all away, but there are lots of mini pieces! I enjoyed your blog post ;)

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  23. Brilliant find! I am especially attracted to this set for the tiny chairs! And also because our (full scale) living room has a shelving system that is almost identical. I believe it was installed in the early 70's, but it has the same rails and brackets, along with different shelving components (including the one with the sliding door and a shelf inside). It was so funny to see it in my RSS feed in miniature!

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  24. Thanks, hillary! That is so cool that you had the same decor!!! I'm sure it was like a time machine ;) Glad I could help!

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  25. Omg- I found most of the living room set at a dollhouse store for $50 bucks, not knowing what it was. Now I wish I hadn't painted the chair!

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    Replies
    1. I did the same thing Minimoi- regretting it still!

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  26. I have the very same thing,its in a box but its never been put together yet.Your pictures are nice. Im thinking of saleing mind on e-bay what do you think i alt to ask for it..thanks

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