Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Slow day today...

I had a very slow mini day today but - the good news is that I actually did work on minis -- something I haven't been able to do for weeks!!! I am preparing for the upcoming Camp Mini Ha Ha so today I took a mock-up of this year's project that my friend Louise had put together to help with planning her project, and I tried out different sized bases to see what inspiration would come to me.

The project is designed as a 1:24th fairy house with the size being very compact. Since I'm not really into fairy-type things, I am turning mine into a deep woods retreat for a struggling writer. He's rented a very remote and tiny cottage to remove all distractions while he prepares to write the world's next great masterpiece.

So, taking pieces of builder's foam to raise the level of the building itself, I decided to use a base I have for another project to design my landscape that will be used in this project. The base is 12x30 inches. That will leave me room to create the woodland scene I have in my head - although I am sure it will never turn out as well as I can imagine it.

Here is the general idea - but keep in mind that square edges will be carved off, rocks and gravel, sand and trees will be added - not to mention that I recently bought a new laptop mouse and the plastic packaging was perfect to make a little woodland pond out of. Also - THIS IS NOT THE PROJECT - it's just a cardboard representation so I could try out the shape of landscaping.

The dark green/black piece you see on the left side is the little pond area. I will have some cattails in it and will colour the water so it has a greenish tinge around the edges, clearing toward the centre. I see small bushes and maybe irises around this pond. Maybe little dots of yellow to represent buttercups (remember this is 1:24th scale).

I also have a 1:24th scale truck which is in pristine condition but I plan on banging it up, dulling down the shine, and making it kind of rusty because no starving writer could afford a brand new truck.

Now that I see how I can set up the landscaping areas, I am actually getting excited about this project. Only 20-some days to Camp!!!

Sorry it's such a short post today but - I'm heading to bed while the Blue Jays game is tied and I can dream that they will pull out a win! TTFN!!! - Marilyn

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Last call for Tara's Palace and Childhood Museum...

Following on from yesterday's post, here is the 4th side of Tara's Palace - although the angle of the picture isn't great but you can get the idea of the layout of the rooms.

On this side you will find the majority of the household bedrooms as well as servants' quarters, and the working rooms of the palace.

We'll start with the bedrooms. These bedrooms would have been not quite so fancy as the master bedroom seen in the first section - reserved for children or perhaps grandparents. Also - it's hard to tell which bedrooms are which but at least a couple of these plainer bedrooms would have been for servants - although in real life I can't imagine any servant having a bedroom/sitting room as large as any of these.

I don't want to sound like a broken record but -- I can't seem to apologize enough for all of the glare from the sunlight bouncing off the glass fronts on the room. So sorry!:

There is also another sitting room:

I love the bathroom in this set of rooms. Notice there are at least three bathtubs in here. I guess the servants or the children didn't mind the concept of communal bathing!

Then, of course, we have the centre of operations - the Kitchen:

...and, of course, the linen room:

There was also a garage/workshop area. It was difficult to get pictures of it which because, for some reason, this room in particular always had so many people vying for a viewing spot of that room that I couldn't get close enough for a decent shot. But - I persevered. So - here is the last room - the garage:

Now - having finished your tour of Tara's Palace, I do have a few more pictures of other items in the Museum of childhood that you might enjoy.

First, some information about "Shell Park":

And - here is the park:

The Museum also has a lovely selection of antique christening gowns on display:

Collections of dolls and teddy bears, antique miniature carriages and caravans, micro-sized fire engines and emergency vehicles, other small toys and houses, and many other things that would have delighted any child:

Also on display is “Portabello”, built circa 1700, possibly the earliest surviving doll’s house in Ireland. I can't share too many pictures of this one because most turned out so badly because of the extreme glare and reflections of people that you can't make out the items on the rooms.
Here are the few pictures of Portabello that are at least a little viewable:

There were so many things to be seen in this small museum, especially when you consider that Tara's Palace took up all of the largest room in the museum area. But, I think I will close with a few pictures of a delightful, much smaller dollhouse:

So - I hope you have enjoyed this little tour of Tara's Palace and Childhood Museum. Now you all need to buy an airplane ticket and make your way to Powerscourt Estates in Enniskerry, Ireland and see it in person!!! Maybe I'll see you there next time. TTFN!!! - Marilyn

Monday, August 21, 2017

Taking a "walk" through Tara's Palace

Sorry I skipped a couple of days here - we were tied up all weekend with the "Gathering in Gagetown" so I was unable to get back to the postings. However, I didn't forget that I had promised to share the rest of my pictures with you.

These pictures are all kind of crappy because each room is covered by glass and the sun was streaming through the large windows of the room in which it is housed. But ... here goes anyway!

Keep in mind when looking at each of these rooms, that everything you see is completely hand made, by some of the most skilled craftspersons in the world. Paintings are painted, glass items are blown, pottery is made, carpets are incredible display of artistry. The building itself was superbly crafted by Irish woodworkers and craftsmen.

We'll start with the first side and work our way around. Here,again, is the view of the whole side:

On this side you have the chapel, which is two stories high:

We also have the Games Room:

...the cream bedroom:

...the music room:

...the formal dining room:

this is the first room where I also took pictures of the mirrors placed on the floors at the front of the room. These are there to allow viewers to see the beautiful, intricately hand-painted and decorated ceilings reflected in the mirrors...or, as in this case, special light fixtures such as the hand made, lead crystal chandeliers hanging in the dining room. Without the mirrors, you would have to be a contortionist to actually see the wonderfully painted and decorated ceilings:

and, tucked in between rooms, the green marble bathroom:

Moving around the corner to the next side:

We now have the blue room:

...the drawing room:

It's in this room where we find the most expensive piece of 1:12 scale furniture in Tara's Palace - an antique, hand-crafted, leather topped games table which, if I heard correctly, is valued at over 10,000 Euros:

We also have the drawing room:

...the open, two-storey foyer:

...the ivory room, filled with exquisite pieces of hand-carved ivory, and a beautiful painted ceiling to match:

...and, in contrast to these more delicate rooms, we have a dining room furnished with the darker, heavier pieces of a Tudor dining room:

Now let's walk around the corner to the third side (again - my apologies for the reflections - I tried so hard to avoid them, to no avail):

On this side pf the Palace, we have the amazing silver room, where the incredible works of several master silversmiths are on display:

...and the ceiling of the silver room:

...the men's sitting room:

...the library, filled with hundreds of readable books, followed by a view of the library's ceiling:

...the garden room and ceiling:

...this next room is close to impossible to see because of the reflection but I am putting it in anyway. This is the chinoisserie room. The black lacquered furniture and wall panels with incredible hand-painted Asian motifs is breathtaking:

...this side ends with the nursery and a view of part of the nursery ceiling:

With that, I must say, it is getting late and I do need to be up early tomorrow so...we will continue this tour tomorrow with the last side - the functional side where the servants perform the many functions necessary to keep a palace of this size running smoothly. I hope you've enjoyed the tour so far - despite the terrible quality of the pictures. Darn that shiny glass!!! See you tomorrow. TTFN!! - Marilyn