Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Silver Chair

I'm enjoying a few days with a dear friend in Denver, so this will be a quick remote post! Before I left, I had a little fun with a can of Valspar silver spray paint and six CB2 Reed ornament chairs (no longer available from CB2, but I got them at my Crate & Barrel outlet for .50 each). I've been accumulating the chairs, and wanted to try out a new color from the fire engine red. Here are the results!

What do you think?

I set them out on a CB2 shelving unit, which I bought a few months ago on clearance ($23) with aspirations of turning it into a cool beach side apartment complex or a mod townhouse. This project has not yet materialized and sits dormant in my garage, but worked nicely as a perch for these freshly painted chairs. They photograph quite nicely and were a cinch to do.

Have others painted these chairs? What colors?

Credits: Table and arc lamp are eBay finds; pillow is minimodernistas. Accessories are Re-ment and beads from Michaels.

The time it took me: 10 minutes to fully paint all sides; a couple of hours to fully dry

Friday, July 20, 2012

Jennys Home

Is it any wonder I am grooving on my new (vintage) Jennys Home, a neat little room box scaled for 1:16, which was masterminded as a modular set of rooms by Tri-ang (and its subsidiary Spot-On) and the magazine Homes and Gardens in 1965? Apparently every young girl then needed her very own series of Jennys Home rooms, where she could create her own tower of a home, or perhaps a chic, compact apartment, or even a delectable sprawl of rooms by the could be anything you wanted!

Honey, I'm home!

Tri-ang manufactured small and large versions of these plastic rooms from 1965-70, as well as a series of dolls, furniture, and accessories. I've been doing some reading and web searching, and have loved coming across information tidbits about the rooms and, of course, PICTURES!

**By the way, I have to mention that I have been resisting the impulse to add an apostrophe in "Jennys" throughout this post. I am going by the wording on the original box and materials (as difficult as it is!)**

First, an original leaflet, which came with the rooms, from a blog post by Celia of KT Miniatures (warm wishes to her as she undergoes surgery):

Here's another leaflet in color from a blog posting on a V&A site (the links are all sadly broken, but you can still read the main post). This shows some furniture options and is obviously giving us girls the hard sell!

It's no wonder girls wanted to collect up the rooms and decorate them to their heart's content! Here's more images of some of the original boxes from the Spot-On Collector website:

I love the tag lines, "A room of your own! A house of your own!"

This photostream by short_paws is pretty incredible and shows her (or his?) extensive collection of Jennys Homes. Here's a picture of short_paw's dream tower - WOW!

Pretty endless options for layouts and decorating -- I find these charming.

Rebecca of Rebecca's Collections has a Jennys Home, as you can see in this blog post from 2009. I hope she does not mind my sharing some of her photos here of her Erna Meyer dolls keeping house:

My own large, unfurnished Jennys Home was bought with the original box on eBay for less than $25. I have unsuccessfully bid for a number of Jennys Homes on UK eBay over the years, to no avail. This one popped up quite by surprise and I was the only bidder. I really do love when this happens -- it kind of justifies all of those hours spent on eBay late at night looking for a treasure!

How about a little tour? First, the original box. 

Then, the "naked" inside of the box, which looks quite good for its age. There are a few flaws: the original door has a small corner piece cracked off (still to glue), and one of the two roof panels has a crack. The sliding window to the front is a bit scratched, but other than that, it is in nice vintage condition.

Mine did not come with curtains, but it did come with a red/orange rug. The rug helped to set the mood for my first scene in the room, which features an original Jenny lamp that came with the box. I decided to completely cover the three walls to pick up on the rug's color and add some warmth with the wood "paneling," which is actual thick wood paper from the Paper Source.

As I was working on this scene I was reminded of a prior small room box experience, with my Miner Room-in-Miniature set, which is 1:24 scale -- you might remember this:

Same era, too! I love the continuity.

Do you have a Jennys Home...or a few??! Let me know!

Credits: Table is Dol-Toi; chairs are Reac; chair and ottoman are vintage Petite Princess; sideboard is vintage German; plant is TOMY; stool is from; patterned wall is DCWV scrapbook paper, and wood walls are wood papers from the Paper Source. Accessories are Tri-ang, eBay finds, Michaels, Lil' Bratz, and AG Minis.

The time it took me: 57 minutes

Saturday, July 14, 2012

No House is an Island

Well, here's an interpretation of the well-known John Donne quote "no man is an island." I know I cannot thrive without my houses and they likely would miss me too, so...I arranged some of my vintage mini homes in my Citadel and enjoyed playing with them again. I showed some of them in this post back in 2010 and was reminded how fun they can be to photograph. I got most of these from US and German sellers on eBay and always keep my eyes open for them. They were mostly made for railroad scenes, and are HO scale (1:87).

See me in the reflection??

The coffee table is vintage LISA!

This is from a Paper Source 2012 mini calendar -- it's the month of July :)

Incredible detail in the long windows

The fantastic lemon yellow midcentury couch was purchased from Patricia, who is now selling her wonderful German room box; see the photos linked here on the Call of the Small Facebook page. The room box folds and is really lovely.

Pat is the original owner and hates to see it go, but she'd love to find a nice collector's home for it. If you are interested in the house and the remaining furnishings, email me at call-small(at)call-small(dot)com.

In addition to the awesome vintage LISA coffee table (love the pattern!), another new piece making its debut is the round table in the middle:

The table is from an eBay seller based in Israel, Avi of abm.models. His pieces are quite nice and affordable. I will be watching his work!

Alert: Keep your eyes peeled on this space for an awesome giveaway from Safari Ltd! 

I know I have some blogging pals out there who have grooved on TOOBS and other mini replicas by Safari. Their products are high quality and super fun and the nice folks at Safari will be giving away a few goodies to my readers! Stay tuned!!!!

Credits: Couch is vintage German; coffee table is vintage LISA; arc lamp is an eBay find; Barcelona chair and Eames elephant are Reac; plant is AG Minis; all mini homes are vintage eBay finds; bike is Maisto; round table is by abm.models on eBay; carpeting is scrapbook paper from Michaels. Accessories are handmade by The Shopping Sherpa, Miniatures by Annina, and eBay finds.

The time it took me: 52 minutes