A few weeks ago, I took my niece Little to her very first miniatures show in Kansas City that was put on by T&D Miniatures. Little is 12 now, so I was really excited that she was old enough to fully enjoy and appreciate all of the beautiful minis. Girlfriend has been bitten by the Mini Bug, which makes me very very very happy. Above, you can see Little's "Best in Show" purchase, which is a small metal bench from A Pocket Full of Wishes (no web site). I really love these people because they're incredibly kind and talented, and I've seen them at multiple shows. Good stuff! I taught Little about my "Best in Show" minis, which are the favorite things I purchased throughout a show. If you come out of a show with a "best," you need to go back and keep shopping.
I've built two full dollhouses and one roombox for Little over the years. They all live in her play room, which has no overhead light and therefore has terrible lighting (basically like every single room in my Real Life house), so I had to use the flash/some of the pix didn't turn out very well. No biggie. You can still see the minis, and that's all that matters! Here you can see the Rosedale, which has a light clipped to it so we could see the pigs and one of their adopted meerkat triplets dining at their newly-purchased picnic table. Little has back stories to go with all of her critters, which I love SO MUCH. She's in the process of writing them all down for me. My niece is so awesome:
Little bought many super cool items for her houses. Here you can see a pink rug that she got for the roombox (which doesn't really have a name and that I forgot to blog about -- I made it for Little's birthday this year out of a shell I had from a friend):
The Princess House is where the sheep family lives. They received some excellent new minis to add to the charm of their home:
A few years ago, my sister and her husband did a kitchen reno. In the process, they gave Little one of the old drawers to use for minis. There is a buffalo in that big brown bed. I think the unicorn in the white bed is his daughter, but I'm not 100% sure on that:
Little and I got a bunch of grab bags. Hers had really cool stuff for fairy gardening. This sign was my favorite because that's a killer message that I need to live by:
And Little just so happens to have made her very own beautiful fairy garden for it to go in:
Little's very first purchase was this blue working glider. I can't remember who she got it from, but I can tell you that the metal unicorn (!) came from Mesh Miniatures (no web site):
Little also got this white bed and all of the bedding for the unicorn. She looks so cozy that I want to snuggle in there with her:
I didn't photograph all of Little's purchases, but I did bring home one of them. Little has a heart of gold, so she bought this Kentucky scrapbook for Ma to put in Karu's Kitchen. Ma is from Kentucky, so it's the perfect gift for her. I'm going to shrink down photos of all of us watching the Kentucky Derby together over the years and fill up the book. Ma was so touched, and I loved seeing minis go through three generations of Blonderson hands:
Meanwhile, my sister has always claimed she will never mini. She lied. BWAHAHAHAHA!!! You may recall Llama Drama that I made for Dorothy a few Christmases ago? This build is home to a lovely llama named Esther. Little and I went to the show Friday night by ourselves, but we brought Dorothy with us for Saturday. While she was there, my sister BOUGHT three minis for HERSELF.
Even my friend Ron Chase from D-Tales Miniatures (no web site) snickered when my sister told him she was NOT a miniaturist because he watched her make a few wee purchases for Esther:
She got a set of keys:
And a turtle:
And a sun to hang on the wall:
My sister has not truly been bitten by the Mini Bug yet, but there's still time...
Now on to my own lovely purchases!!!
After this year's Bishop show, I saw that Keli had bought some lovely things from Ron at D-Tales Miniatures. I ended up with a horrid case of The Wants. Luckily, I was able to get the goods from Harlan Schleuter of Miniature World & Toys (no web site) and Ron. Both of these men are my local friends, and they're both incredibly talented. Sweeper, radio: Harlan; Clock: Ron. I'm crazy in love with the card table and chair set. I purchased it from Harlan, who is selling some things for the family of the late Wanda Leighton, who was a member of the Omaha-Council Bluffs Miniature Guild with me. I LOVE Wanda's things, so I was so happy to see Harlan had some of them. I folded up one of the chairs backwards and the hinge popped off, but it's a simple fix with a dab of glue. It's all so lovely. I'm swooning again just looking at this photo:
The squirrel birdbath is from T&D Miniatures, the pots are all from William Cambron Designs, and the two red berry plants are from Minis R Wee. I loooove the plants. They came very close to being Best in Show:
Minis R Wee had some inexpensive items in a little basket. I got the sign and the flamingo whirligigs for .20 cents total. The little frames came together for .50 cents:
I also got this little cake topper pair for .10 cents. Perhaps one day, I'll repaint the girl's hair red and use it for my own wedding.
I couldn't get my camera to focus on this birdfeeder tea cup no matter how hard I tried, but I wanted to share it anyway. It's from A Pocket Full of Wishes:
I also got this cardinal in a birdbath from them. I bought one from them long ago and ended up using it in Karu's Kitchen, and I've always wanted another one for myself. Score:
Here is where I start to get fuzzy about who I got these minis from since it has been a few weeks. I know both bags of peat moss came out of grab bags. The chicken was purchased for me by my beloved Little, but I can't recall the name of the artist. I have a grey parrot by this woman as well that Little also purchased for me at a Kansas City art show. I'm so spoiled by my niece! The artist makes incredible air-dry clay flowers and animals. If her name comes to me, I'll update this post later. The blue flower pot and the bunny flower pot both came from M&M Collectibles. The metal pots and doorknobs came from Mesh. And the garbage can... Hmmm.... No name on the receipt. I really do love that trash can though. It was my first purchase at the show. The chair bench thing was from the Minis R Wee discount section:
Little got the bloody letter and footprints mat in a grab bag that was from some sort of murder-mystery-related previous NAME function. She gave them to me for the Crime Museum -- such a good niece! The mop and pink butterfly are from Suzanne's Dollhouses & Miniatures. The soda, condiments, and coffee are from Magic-N-Miniature / Sir Thomas Thumb. The little pot with the lid is from T&D, and the suitcase (that opens and everything) was in the Minis R Wee sale section. I can't recall where the yellow notepad came from, but a Real Life Editor can never have too many mini notebooks:
And last but not least, my Best in Show mini is this lovely little porcelain figurine by Betty Neiswender signed '98. I had a little mystery mini hunt to track down the maker, which I always love. She's so perfect looking and tiny and sweet. I left her at the show on Day 1 and was so happy to see she was still there on Day 2. I even got a deal on her. WHOOT:
So there you have it. Three Blondersons walk into a miniatures show and have a BALL. I'm very grateful to Little and Dorothy for indulging me.
A HUGE thank you to T&D Miniatures for putting on the show. It was fantastic!!!