ANGELIQUE MINIATURES CELEBRATES 28 YEARS TODAY!

STORE BANNER HORIZONTAL PNG

 

To celebrate this anniversary I thought I would share some pictures of my favourite doll projects from more recent years (since digital cameras and the internet!!!).

From fairies and fantasy to historical characters, I have thoroughly enjoyed each and every one of them. The planning, research and actual creating never fails to excite me and I look forward to each new project that comes my way, so please enjoy my selection:

Anne Boleyn costume for 16 inch fashion doll.

Anne Boleyn costume for 16 inch fashion doll.

Miniature Fairy riding a unicorn.

Miniature Fairy riding a unicorn.

 Princess Diana wedding gown on miniature mannequin.

Princess Diana wedding gown on miniature mannequin.

 Miniature late Victorian Summer Bride.

Miniature late Victorian Summer Bride.

Custom made Aurora Rose tutu for 16 inch ballerina doll.

Custom made Aurora Rose tutu for 16 inch ballerina doll.

Miniature Giselle or Sylphide tutu set.

Miniature Giselle or Sylphide tutu set.

Miniature Fairy Slippers (shown with an English penny and American five cent piece).

Miniature Fairy Slippers (shown with an English penny and American five cent piece).

Miniature Fairy Flower Seller with her unicorn companion and helper.

Miniature Fairy Flower Seller with her unicorn companion and helper.

Miniature Brown silk bonnet with shirred ivory silk lining and matching reticule.

Miniature Brown silk bonnet with shirred ivory silk lining and matching reticule.

Miniature striped cotton walking dress with matching tall bonnet and reticule.

Miniature striped cotton walking dress with matching tall bonnet and reticule.

Something for the Maid. A much plainer miniature cotton house dress and apron along with a little mop cap.

Something for the Maid. A much plainer miniature cotton house dress and apron along with a little mop cap.

18th Century Marie Antoinette style gown modelled by 16 inch Tyler Wentworth. Made in pure silk.

18th Century Marie Antoinette style gown modelled by 16 inch Tyler Wentworth. Made in pure silk.

Miniature Dita Von Teese style gown and hat. one twelfth style.

Miniature Dita Von Teese style gown and hat. one twelfth style.

 Valentine Ball gown for 16 inch fashion doll.

Valentine Ball gown for 16 inch fashion doll.

Miniature Faerie of Spring and New Life.

Miniature Faerie of Spring and New Life.

Miniature Princess Grace wedding gown on mannequin.

Miniature Princess Grace wedding gown on mannequin.

The miniature Elizabeth Bennett Regency wedding bonnet.

The miniature Elizabeth Bennett Regency wedding bonnet.

Front view of the miniature Fairy Harp. The harp stood about six and a half inches tall.

Front view of the miniature Fairy Harp. The harp stood about six and a half inches tall.

Miniature Young King Henry VIII and Katherine of Aragon.

Miniature Young King Henry VIII and Katherine of Aragon.

Miniature Queen Jane Seymour.

Miniature Queen Jane Seymour.

 Miniature King Richard III with his wife Queen Anne Neville.

Miniature King Richard III with his wife Queen Anne Neville.

Miniature King John and his wife Queen Isabella.

Miniature King John and his wife Queen Isabella.

Miniature Elizabeth 1st doll complete in room setting.

Miniature Elizabeth 1st doll complete in room setting.

Miniature Scrooge.

Miniature Scrooge.

Miniature Ross and Demelza Poldark.

Miniature Ross and Demelza Poldark.

Miniature tricorn hat.

Miniature tricorn hat.

Miniature Anne Boleyn and Thomas Cranmer.

Miniature Anne Boleyn and Thomas Cranmer.

Battle of Flodden (c 1513) Scottish Pikeman outfit for action figue (around 12 inches tall).

Battle of Flodden (c 1513) Scottish Pikeman outfit for action figue (around 12 inches tall).

Coronation robes for 17 inch male fashion doll.

Coronation robes for 17 inch male fashion doll.

Victorian underwear for 16 inch fashion doll.

Victorian underwear for 16 inch fashion doll.

'Romanza' ballet costume for 16 inch ballerina doll.

‘Romanza’ ballet costume for 16 inch ballerina doll.

French (Breton) costume for 16 inch doll.

French (Breton) costume for 16 inch doll.

Alice in Wonderland costume for 12 inch fashion doll.

Alice in Wonderland costume for 12 inch fashion doll.

Miniature Lord Byron Albanian costume.

Miniature Lord Byron Albanian costume.

Miniature Lord Byron Regency tail coat outfit.

Miniature Lord Byron Regency tail coat outfit.

And last but not least:

Medieval style Autumn costume for 16 inch fashion doll.

Medieval style Autumn costume for 16 inch fashion doll.

Miniature Queen Mary 1st (Mary Tudor).

Miniature Queen Mary 1st (Mary Tudor).

I hope you have enjoyed my selection…just a few of the many favourites I have created over the last few years. All of them have given me enormous pleasure and taught me such valuable skills and patience.

 

 

 

 

 

Some Of My Favourite Commissions of 2011 (part one).

Hello Everybody!

Doesn’t time fly? One minute I’m writing about young Henry and Katherine and Christmas is only just on the horizon and then, before I know it, we’re into February!

As some of you know, I write for one of the UK’s leading miniatures magazines ‘Dolls House And Miniature Scene’ (DHMS). I write ‘How To Dress’ miniature dolls articles. For this aspect of my job, I work closely with the editor who commissions me to provide articles on a specific costume theme. I then design and create a doll dressed appropriately for the given theme which will be photographed by the magazine as the finished article, so to speak. I also provide all the pattern pieces needed and the full making up instructions.

As you can imagine, this is no mean task as the doll on its own will take many hours of designing and creating, let alone all the instructions on how to do it!  But I regard this aspect of my work as most important because, for me, it is very satisfying to know that I am sharing my knowledge of this subject with others. It would be so easy to keep it all to oneself but in all honesty, what would that really achieve? Far better surely, to feel the pleasure of sharing.

I have always enjoyed the total doll creation process. But my favourite part has to be the actual costume creation. There is just something about working with fabric and turning it from a flat piece of material into a perfect miniature outfit. It tickles my senses!

My favourite commissions from DHMS last year were the Edwardian dolls based on styles from the popular TV series ‘Downton Abbey’. I was thrilled to be asked to provide articles for a lady and gent in day wear and a lady and gent in evening wear. The late Edwardian period was such an elegant era and, until recently, was nowhere near as popular as it should have been!

Lady and Gentleman in day wear. circa 1914.

 The year I chose was around 1914,  as I was commissioned before the second series began. At this time, ladies clothing was changing rapidly. Gone were the wide, full-legth trailing skirts of the early Edwardian era and the new fashion for slim-line skirts showing shoes and ankles was all the vogue! Bodices were also far more relaxed a less fitted, allowing the wearer much more freedom of movement.

For the lady’s costume, I chose to use a pretty mint green with toning stripe silk as I wanted to portray both youth and those wonderful heady Summer days just before the 1st World War was announced. Here are a few closer pictures of the lady:

1914 Lady on her own.

Close up of her matching shoes and lace stockings.

Close up of the purse.

Close up of the parasol (and lace mittens).

Hat, collar and dragonfly brooch detail.

 This lady’s gentleman friend is equally trendy in his tweed sports suit. Mens’ clothing was also changing to reflect the needs of the more sporty man. Clothing for him had to be comfortable enough to be able to go golfing, shooting or even driving the new motor cars!

The late Edwardian gent showing off his sports suit.

Close up of his real leather, laced shoes.

 Evening wear for gentlemen was still quite formal and hadn’t really changed since Victorian times. A full tail suit was still an absolute must for all formal dining and evening socialising.

Gentleman in full formal evening wear.

Close up of silk waistcoat and jewelled watch chain.

 Ladies evening wear was very elegant and echoed the simple Grecian lines of the Regency era. Skirts were drapy and soft, above ankle and often had tulle or chiffon over-dresses. Hair was dressed softly with fancy combs and feathered brooches and long evening gloves were always worn for formal occaisions.

1914 Lady in evening wear.

Close up of shoes.Close up of jewelled hanging belt.

Hair and necklace close up.
 
This was a wonderful project to work on and to be a part of and I expect you might be wondering what actually happens to the dolls that are created for the ‘How To’s’. Well, thay are kindly returned to me by the editor so that I can find them all new homes. I then put them into my E-bid store. They are all in absolutely pefect  condition but because they have been made for photographic purposes, I often list them at well below their normal retail price.
 
So if you think you would like any of them to come and live in your dolls house or display cabinet, you can see them in my store here.

 Until next time,

Best wishes,

Louise.

 

Summer Solstice Is The Time To See All Things Fairy.

The Fairy Harpist miniature doll with hand customised fairy harp.

Hello everybody!

Each year around the 21st June is the Summer Solstice, the longest day of the year when the sun is nearest to the earth, here in the Northern Hemisphere. It is supposed to be the true start of Summer…..although with all the rain and lower temperatures than April here in the United Kingdom, I am begining to think that Summer has been and gone earlier this year!

The Summer Solstice is also supposed to be a very magical time  according to ancient legend and folklore. On this day at dawn or at dusk, if you are very lucky……you may just be lucky enough to see……….wait for it……….fairies! It is said that at these special times the veil between the world of humans and the world of The Fae  is very thin and you may just be able to glimse them dancing and celebrating, for fairies love to party. And if you see any fairies that need some shoes, please tell them that they can buy some from me in any colour they would like!

Miniature Fairy Slippers, just an inch long. Made in silk, with cotton lining and little leather soles. Shown with an English penny and a US five cent piece.

But just in case you don’t get to see any of them this year, I thought I would share some pictures of some of my own fairies with you instead. But before I do, you may remember a certain little Baby Fairy who donated herself as a prize in my competition in May. Baby Fairy is now enjoying a life of leisure in Wales and if you would like to hear all about her new home and new friends, let me know and I’ll see what I can do……….I’m sure she would be thoroughly delighted to tell you all about it!

I have loved all things FAIRY for as long as I can remember and I really love making them as miniature dolls. Below are some of my favourites made over the last few years.

I once came across a gorgeous artificial rose stem that leant itself perfectly to a mother and baby fairy snoozing together. The baby didn’t need any clothing so she had some tiny dried flowers and greenery in her hair instead. The mother I dressed in little chiffon petals.  The mother fairy just about fitted onto the lower, larger rose while the baby fitted easily into the small bloom:

Mother and baby fairy sleep soundly on separate flowers in 'Rose Dreams'.

 One of my favourite and most recent fairies was ‘The Fairy Flower Seller’, detailed in a previous post. This one took a very long time to make with all the tiny flowers to secure in place but was a very enjoyable project. I chose lavender over pale pink silk for this fairy and dyed the flowers to go with these colours. 

The Fairy Flower Seller with her pet unicorn who carries all the flowers for her.

 One of my most popular fairy ensembles has to be ‘Holding Court’, a miniature Fairy Queen with floral crown, sitting on a golden flower-decked throne. For this fairy I chose a shot (two tone) silk sold as ‘Blackberry’, quite a bold and dark purply pink with black cross weave. To contrast, the under-gown was made in pale pink silk with metalic gold fancy braid and gold criss-cross on the bodice. Again, all the flowers were hand-dyed to match and tone.

'Holding Court' miniature fairy ensemble.

 The throne origianally started as a plain stained wood, high-backed chair. It was hand crafted and bought on an online auction. I customised it by painting it with gold paint and glitter and then decorated it with filigrees, crystals and tiny hand-dyed dried flowers. I then added a little silk cushion (to match the fairy’s dress) with fancy braid and tassels. Here is a picture of the throne on its own:

The 'Holding Court' customised throne.

You may have noticed the ‘Fairy Harpist’ at the top of this page. She came about mainly because of some favourite music on a cd that I love to listen to when I am designing and creating my fairy folk. This is a cd of the beautiful (in my opinion) Victorian harp music, recorded by an equally beautiful harpist, Elizabeth Jane Baldry. The cd is called ‘Harp of Wild and Dreamlike Strain’ and is a collection of fairy-themed Victorian music never before recorded until Elizabeth Jane recorded it in the 1990’s. I believe it is still available and can be obtained from Elizabeth Jane’s web site (see link in blogroll or at the end of this post).

I chose the colours of bluebells for the Fairy Harpist’s gown as it was bluebell time when I created the first doll. Here are some other pictures of her silk dress:

Side view of the miniature Fairy Harpist.

Back view of the Fairy Harpist's gown.

I already had a miniature harp in my dollshouse so this was quickly ‘borrowed’ and customised with gold glittery paint, golden ribbon, filigrees, crystals and tiny dried flowers to match the Fairy Harpist. It took a long time to carefully secure all those flowers into the right places but was worth the time and effort.

Front view of the miniature Fairy Harp. The harp stood about six and a half inches tall.Back view of the miniature Fairy Harp.

 Well that is all for now, but if you have enjoyed this post please leave me a little message as I would love to hear from you.

If you would like to see Elizabeth Jane’s web site please click here.

If you like miniatures please do take a look at the latest AIM (Artisans in Miniature) online free magazine here.

 

THE BELLS ARE RINGING FOR HIM AND HIS GIRL (PART TWO)

There see!……..I told you I’d be back, didn’t I?

 It was just impossible to fit in all the wedding gowns that I wanted to share with you last time in one post, so without further ado, here are a few more:

Remember I told you about Tracie, the lovely lady who has commissioned quite a few very interesting wedding gowns in miniature from me. She is the lady who owns the miniature church and holds exhibitions in it on her blog. (I hope that you were able to go and visit Tracie’s blog and see the wonderful miniature church and exhibits in it). Anyway, amongst Tracie’s interests is the Regency period, (the early 1800’s) that most elegant era at the end of the Georgian period but before the Victorian. Amongst the miniature Regency costumes that I was asked to make for Tracie was  the wedding gown of Lady Byron. I made this costume on a mannequin.

Miniature version of Lady Byron's Regency wedding gown.

 Tracie was lucky enough to be able to visit the costume museum in Bath in order to have a private viewing of Lady Byron’s wedding attire and was even allowed to touch it and take close-up photos of it!!!!!! I don’t usually feel envy but I have to admit I was almost emerald at that one!!

Despite being in quite delicate condition, Tracie was able to take some wonderful photos and the above interpretation in miniature is as a result of the pictures that she took. The real dress was made from light-weight cotton trimmed with cotton lace and is very plain compared to some of the celebrity wedding gowns that we are used to today. However, it was indeed bang on trend in it its simplicity for those times. My moniature version is also made from very fine cotton trimmed with narrow cotton lace that has been cut down from a much too wide lace.

Whilst at the costume museum, Trace was also able to see…….. and touch(……….excuse me while I just flush emerald again!!!) Lady Byron’s wedding pelisse (a pelisse is a type of ladies Regency long coat). The pelisse was made in creamy coloured silk and was apparently quite dirty, especially along the hem. This is probably not too unusual as the Byron’s were married in Winter. The real one had quite a warm lining which of course Lady Byron would have needed for a Winter wedding over that thin little cotton dress.

Here is my interpretation of the Lady Byron wedding pelisse, this time on a miniature doll (faceless to resemble a shop model) This miniature version was made in lovely pure silk satin, in a delicate beigy/creamy shade and made to look as if it is being worn over the dress:

Lady Byron miniature wedding pelisse.

Still on a Regency wedding theme, Tracie also commisioned some general wedding attire of this period including another pelisse, this time on a hanger and also two wedding gowns on mannequins and two Regency wedding bonnets. Here is the other pelisse, made in a beautiful cream silk jacquard edged with tiny braid:

The other miniature Regency silk wedding pelisse on a hanger.

 Here is the first of the wedding gowns and this one is quite fancy with a train and trimmed with plenty of lovely lace. This was made in ivory silk dupion:

A fancy miniature Regency wedding gown and matching bonnet.

 Below is a close-up picture of the matching wide-brimmed bonnet showing the detail on the back:

Close up view of the back of the Regency wedding wide-brimmed bonnet.

 This is the other Regency wedding gown…..much plainer in style but typical of the times. The gown was again made in pure silk dupion with an over-dress of silk jacquard:

Slightly plainer but still as charming miniature Regency wedding gown.

 But for me, one of the most favourite of miniature challenges was the little Regency veiled wedding bonnet, based on the one worn by the character Elizabeth Bennett in the 1990’s BBC TV production of Pride and Prejudice. The base was made in silk-covered card with tiny hand gathered silk tulle along the length of the bonnet, ending in a tiny veil at the back. Decorating the bonnet were bands of narrow braid and tiny hand-dyed dried flowers. The inside of the bonnet was also lined with silk and trimmed with lace:

The miniature Elizabeth Bennett Regency wedding bonnet.

 Not to be left out of the wedding dress fiesta, here are a couple of the larger dolls modelling theirs. First up is the Spring Bride wedding gown and veil modelled here by 16 inch Tyler Wentworth. This gown was made in ivory silk dupion ruched at the hem with little cream and yellow rose buds and worn over a petticoat trimmed with delicate cotton lace. Underneath was a stiff net petticoat to hold out the skirt.

 

Spring Bride modelled by Tyler.

Next is Clea Bella the 16 inch ballerina modelling a One Of A Kind long tutu called ‘Wedding Belle’  This one was made using a small remnant (a lucky find!) of embroidered and beaded organza and was placed over the net tutu layers. I managed to find a lace trim that was very similar to the border of the fabric and this was used both to trim the dress and the tulle veil. 

Wedding Belle modelled by Clea Bella.

Last but by no means least in the wedding own fiesta are two miniature dolls. The first one you have seen before in a previous post last year and this is the Late Victorian Summer bride. Dressed in ivory silk trimmed with cotton lace, this bride’s costume is typical of the 1870’s /1880’s.

Miniature Late Victorian Summer Bride.

Below is the other miniature bride and this time she dressed in a much earlier style based on the crinolines of the mid 1800’s. This is the Winter Bride wearing a coat of ‘fur’-trimmed cream silk jacquard with large bell-shaped sleeves and a matching cream ‘fur’ muff. The coat is worn over a full ivory silk skirt with a deep frill of delicate cotton lace along with a lace-trimmed blouse, embellished with timy crystals. On her head is a small matching bonnet with a dainty little tulle veil that drapes over the back of her hair.

Miniature Winter Bride.

Now before I go, I have one quick question for you. Here it is: Whilst the following creature has nothing to do with weddings (at least I don’t think it has!) what has it got to do with the month of April 

What does this beautiful dragon to do with the month of April?

What does this beautiful dragon to do with the month of April?

 Would you like a clue?……….OK………..the clue is: 23rd April.

If you think you know the answer, just for fun, leave me a message at the end of this post.

In the meantime, you might like to visit Tracie’s blog page to see her lovely costume (and other) displays in her miniature church.

Please also take a look at the latest AIM (Artisans In Miniature) on-line magazine here.

Until next time……bye for now.

THE BELLS ARE RINGING FOR HIM AND HIS GIRL! (PART ONE)

Yes, I know I said it last time but I can’t believe we are already into another month…..just where IS the year going?! All sorts of things are popping up in my garden, including yet more daffodils, more pear blossom and damson blossom too, plus pretty little forgetmenots and cowslips. The birds are singing, the bees are buzzing and Spring is definately springing now.

I recall a very old saying about Spring……. it is ‘when a young man’s fancy turns to thoughts of love’ and with a Royal wedding planned for the end of April, what a good time to share my wedding gown-inspired miniature dolls and doll costumes.

On the subject of Royal Weddings, I had some lovely commissions to do for a very nice lady called Tracie who wanted me to create some royal weddding gowns in miniature for her. I was asked to supply them on  miniature dolls but without the faces painted so that they would look like shop mannequins.

 One of these Royal wedding gowns was Princess Diana’s. Tracie and I discussed the fact that the real dress and veil train was 25 feet long which of course would be 25 inches in one twelfth scale……….quite a challenge to display, so we settled on a little over 12 inches. The dress was made from silk dupion with teeny-weeny micro crystals on the bodice and a veil of pure silk tulle. Tracie has a miniature replica of Princess Diana’s tiara which is not shown in my pictures as I took these before the doll was posted but here are some pictures of the Diana wedding gown (without tiara):

Front view of the Princess Diana wedding gown.

I had to squash the train and veil up a bit to fit it all in the front vew photograph but here is a back view taken looking down on the gown:

The back view of the Princess Diana wedding gown train and veil.

I also decided to take a side view picture, again looking down on the doll from above:

Side view of the Princess Diana wedding gown, showing train and veil extended.

Another very famous and royal wedding gown that Tracie commissioned from me was that of Princess Grace of Monarco. I absolutely adored making this one! It took a bit of doing as there is even more work in this than in the Princess Diana gown but I had such a lovely time creating it.

Again, the main part of the gown was made in pure silk dupion with a tiny patterned embroidered lace over-bodice. The veil was made in pure silk tulle edged with tiny cotton lace, cut and applied to create the design. The headdress was quite an elaborate affair with lace and lots of teeny pearls, all individually placed. The whole creation took many, many hours (of wonderful creative bliss!!) to complete but was well worth the time. Here are some full length pictures:

Front view of the miniature Princess Grace wedding gown.

Again I had to squash the train and veil round to show it all in a front view picture but here it is:

Front view of the Princess Grace wedding gown with the train and veil in view.

Here is a back view taken from slightly above to show the back of the gown and  the lace fishtail panel in the gown train. You can also see more detail on the veil in this picture:

Princess Grace wedding gown from the back, showing the lace fishtail panel in the train.

 As I mentioned, the headdress was quite small but very fancy and required a lot of detail and time. Here is a view of just the head and shoulders showing the headdress from the front:

Princess Grace head and shoulders shot showing the bodice detail and the front of the headdress.

 And last but not least, a close up showing the detail at the back of the headdress:

Picture taken from above showing the intricate detail on the back of the Princess Grace wedding headdress.

 In the past, I have also made an adaptation of Queen Victoria’s wedding gown both in miniature and for a sixteen inch doll. The miniature version was made with pure silk dupion and cotton lace. The jewellery was made up of individually applied tiny crystals. This miniature doll was made quite some time ago so I apologise for the quality of the picture (it might be a bit ‘grainy’):

Miniature Queen Victoria in wedding gown.

Here is the one I made for the sixteen inch doll, modelled by Tyler Wentworth. This larger adaptation was made in ivory satin with tulle and lace veil:

Front view of the sixteen inch Queen Victoria wedding gown.

And also a back view of this costume:

Back view of the sixteen inch version. showing train.

 Of course, not all famous wedding gowns are made for royalty. Some wonderful examples exist that were once worn by celebrities on their special days.

Amongst the celebrity wedding dresses that I made for Tracie were also those of Joan Kennedy and her sister in law Patricia. I was asked to make these on display dummies. Here is my miniature version of Patricia’s silk satin wedding gown and silk tulle veil. Patricia’s dress was quite plain in style with a lovely fitted bolero jacket. The plain tulle veil was attached to a little shaped headdress:

Miniature version of Patricia's wedding gown and veil on display dummy.

  Joan’s veil and dress were more detailed. The dress had more fullness than Patricia’s and had sleeves and a fitted pointed bodice. The veil was also more detailed and had quite a bit of lace applied to the tulle so I will show this separately. Here is Joan’s silk satin dress together with the silk tulle and lace veil firstly:

Miniature Joan Kennedy wedding gown with veil on display dummy.

Here is Joan’s veil shown opened out to display the applied lace. Each of the lace motifs were cut and applied separately to the tulle, as was the scalloped (and the plainer) border:

Miniature version of Joan Kennedy's wedding veil.

 Although I was not asked to make Jackie Kennedy’s wedding dress (oooh I would have LOVED to but Tracie already had this one), I was asked to make her veil and it was very detailed indeed. Here are two pictures of Jackie’s veil, made in silk tulle with applied lace:

My miniature version of the Jackie Kennedy wedding veil shown draped here.

Here is a picture of the veil shown opened up to display all the lace detail. Again, as with Joan’s veil, all the lace motifs and borders were individually cut and applied to the plain tulle to create this lavish detailing. The veil was gathered onto a little round lace cap. Although it took quite a long time to achieve, I hope that you will agree that the effect was well worth the effort:

Miniature Jackie Kennedy wedding veil in silk tulle and lace.

 Since this has been quite an epic blog posting, I have decided to come back with part two in a couple of weeks, since I don’t want to bore you all to sleep!

In the meantime, you might like to visit Tracie’s blog page to see her lovely costume (and other) displays in her miniature church.

Please also take a look at the latest AIM (Artisans In Miniature) on-line magazine here.

Until next time……bye for now.