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

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.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

TOMY Smaller Home Kitchen

Even though the TOMY Smaller Home and Garden house is 1:16 scale, the kitchen somehow feels bigger than my 1:1 scale one. I felt like I had so much space to fill, in what is the last room to furnish in this house (for the first time at least). I posted on the upstairs and living room, and have been meaning to get to the expansive kitchen for a while.

I do love the design of this space and the 70s vibe. I decided to put a work space in the nook under the stairs, and dedicated the other half as kitchen. While I always try to evoke the reality of living spaces in my scenes, this one is a departure...there is no refrigerator, nor a pantry, the orange shelving in between the sink and stove is actually two Bodo Hennig chairs from a nursery set (you can see it here in its intended state), and the light fixture above the sink is a vintage German table lamp that I dismantled. Oh well...these are miniatures after all, folks!

Sunshine yellow has really been an inspirational color for me lately, so you'll see those pops of color around. Perhaps the lack of a refrigerator makes this a summer kitchen, perfect for those lazy afternoons.

Credits: Table is Princess Patti, from the Petite Princess line; chairs are Reac; sink unit and plant are vintage TOMY; oven unit and abstract painting are vintage Lundby; orange counter is made of two vintage Bodo Hennig chairs on their sides; microwave is Miele by Theo Klein; garbage can and desk lamp are AG Minis; desk is from the Villa Sibi; wall board and file boxes are handmade by The Shopping Sherpa; laptop is by Lilu Shop on Etsy; vase is a bead from The Place to Bead; stool is vintage German; cat is Playmobil. Accessories are Re-ment, Mighty World, AG Minis, and many different doll house store finds.

The time it took me: 1 hour, 5 minutes