Pages

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Art Deco House -Undersized Urbanite Dollhouse Update

I have been slowly working on my Art Deco House entry for Christina O's Undersized Urbanite Dollhouse contest. The very best part of the work is exploring new ideas and trying to make the house, the furniture and the future inhabitants for the lowest cost possible. Almost everything I am using in the house, including the house itself, has been transformed from things purchased from a dollar store, a thrift store or eBay.

I previously showed you the ladies I am transforming to Jazz Age/Art Deco sophisticates. They started as these sad looking harlequins I purchased from eBay:


Then they were changed to these:


And here is one of them turned into a polished Art Deco lady:








Her dress is composed of the material from a dollar store fan with a piece of dollar store ribbon around her hips. The boa is borrowed from an Avon doll, but I also created a white "mink" stole from the white fake fur edging from a dollar store Christmas stocking:












My camera is not that great, but you should be able to see the material and ribbon better in this photo:





If my Art Deco lady turns out to be too big for the scale I finally settle on, I will be creating an Art Deco lady using the same process from one of these dollar store mermaids:


I have been experimenting with making stairs from domino beads purchased from the sale bin at Hobby Lobby:





The beads are taped to a dollar store clear acrylic napkin holder that I will be cutting up for window "glass" and the stair well. I will be filling in the bead holes, and I might make the stairs spiral:


Or use the all white side of the bead to make piano stairs:


(Photo from designscraps.com).

I will be furnishing the house with a combination of furniture I am making and vintage 1930s furniture I either have or will find. The room dividers and bookshelves are inexpensive clear acrylic bobbin cases:


Here is some furniture that I recently purchased off eBay that I will be restoring:





What has inspired me as I move forward with Art Deco radio house?
These:





And Hercule Poirot:












And Jeeves and Wooster:








And many others:





























Including these 1920s "people" created in the 1970s for a display of the 1920s Stettheimer dollhouse:




















Wishing you only good things, Neen

(I try to give credit to the photographer and/or source of photos I use. I have been collecting photos for use in my Art Deco house for a long time and the names of the photographer or source of many of the photos have been lost, if that information was available. If I used one of your photos, or you know the source, please let me know and I will be happy to give credit where credit is due.)

28 comments:

  1. Incredible transformation on the dolls! Bravo!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Brae, praise from you is high praise indeed!

      Cheers, Neen

      Delete
  2. Wow you are rich in ideas!!!! All the Deco is so divine. The dolls are fab. I set things that are not perfectly to scale further out, like getting out of a car to the side where they are not right up against the scales they don't match. Or outside on a balcony... etc. Can't wait to see the finished project. CM

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks CM! I could have them sitting in a 1931 Rolls Royce outside the house! I have one that is also a radio; apparently there a lot of them because I bought it for $5 on eBay and there are always about 10 being offered for sale.

      Delete
  3. Neen, your dolls look amazing. What a transformation! I would have never have thought of doing that! I can't wait to see the furniture when you are through with it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Cyd! I don't have your skills with furniture, and I don't do well with power tools, but I am looking forward to creating and restoring furniture. I really am enjoying the process of creating this house!

      Delete
  4. Great work on those dolls. I never would have seen potential there. The furniture looks promising!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Thanks Linda, I hope you are right about the furniture. Sometimes Art Deco is better understated, otherwise it can look cliched and I am trying to avoid that.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I love some of your inspirational images and look forward to seeing your project progress. I recently picked up a book about the Stettheimer dollhouse and love the quirky dolls they made to go in it. I think what you have done with the harlequins is amazing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have that book, it is so amazing to think that the dollhouse was very much a part of the family's famous salon where many famous artists, politicians, poets and philosophers would gather to discuss the world. Thank you for your uplifting comment!

      Delete
  7. the transformation of the `dolls is outstanding! you have some seriously clever ideas-the domino staircase-WOW! go you, cant wait to see it all done x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Max, I love the fact that we miniaturists understand things like domino staircases and transforming miniature dolls to go with the stairs.

      But I should be telling you " you go, girl!" Congratulations to you and your family on your wonderful, beautiful baby boy!!! Your baby is the real outstanding, incredible creation!!

      Xx

      Delete
  8. Wow, Art Deco is so cool! How tall are those gorgeous dolls? They look so chick!
    Hugs
    Kikka

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Kikka! They are each about 6 inches.

      Delete
  9. Your dolls transformation is amazing wow. I love the domino stairs what a fantastic idea. Thank you for all the wonderful pictures. I cant wait to see more.
    Hugs Maria

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Maria, the beauty of Art Deco is that designers of that time wanted to push the envelope as far as it could go. That gives me a freedom to experiment. The more I research that time period, the more amazed I am. There was such an explosion of creativity then. I think my next project will be futuristic because that would also give me a lot freedom to experiment. Who knows, maybe a house designed to be used on the moon?!

      Delete
  10. Love the 'After' Doll and your other pieces that are set for transformation into Art Deco. You have inspired me to look around the doll house room and see if I can set up an Art Deco photo shoot. Can't wait for the weekend!!
    Susan

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. And I can't wait to see the results! Knowing how well you do things, it will be spectacular!

      Delete
  11. Oh Neen, those dolls! Divine. They must be completely relieved to be let loose from their Harlequin hell! And I just can't believe the domino stairs!! It's going to be completely smashing!! And then there's the bobbin-holder wall dividers!! I think that's v. clever ... they even have a 70s feel about them.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am so glad I am not the only person who thinks the ladies are happier as Art Deco rather than Harlequins, I swear one of them smiled! As I research Art Deco style, I realize how much influence it had on later decades, and the Art Deco streamlined look definitely shows up here and there in MidCentury Modern. I love those bobbin cases, and who knew that they had such interesting lines and would work as room dividers and book cases? Thanks for your great comment!

      Delete
  12. The dolls are amazing, you are so creative, but I can't see how a legless mermaid can be transformed! Would love to see some photos when you start work on them.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, elbey, for such a nice comment! The transformation process is a little more complicated for the mermaids than it was for the harlequins. "Surgery" is involved......(Painless, I assure you!) I will provide photos of the transformation and next week I hope to provide photos of the first stage of the transformation of the vintage radio case into an Art Deco house.

      Delete
  13. if you have a video store near you check out Dr Phibes, it's all done in 1920's art deco..it's more silly than scarey but it has wonderful sets http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0066740/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1

    your dolls look great, they look like society flappers :)

    ReplyDelete
  14. I started laughing the moment I pulled that up! "Love means never having to say you're ugly,". So funny! I have not seen, or heard about, this movie. I definitely will be checking it out. I am always way behind in movie viewing, friends keep telling me that "Midnight in Paris" has Art Deco scenes. I watched the 1974 version of "The Great Gatsby" earlier this month and was unimpressed with the director's version of Flapper costumes and 1920s decor. I believe the new version will be better. Yes, I think my ladies are society flappers since my skills don't extend to short hemlines and legs above the shins (:@)) Thanks for your day-brightening comment!

    ReplyDelete
  15. You really know how to get a girls heart pumping! I would have never thought of using those icky harlequin dolls the way you did!
    I love all of the pictures of the rooms.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think "icky" is right on the money, my mother has some large one which are quite terrifying! I'm with you on the heart pumping, Art Deco and MidCentury Modern, done right, takes my breath away!

      Delete
  16. Your art deco peeps look fantastic but a little part of me wants them to be made from the mermaid tinies too, just to see them really teeny. I love harlequin prints on fabrics and will be using some in my bedroom but I agree the dolls themselves have had no pull. The art deco ladies are much more appealing!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I bet your harlequin prints are probably lovely and whimsical; my harlequin dolls, after all, had lovely faces and that made the transformation much easier. And I love harlequin masks, very theatrical. I will be transforming the mermaids into Art Deco ladies. They will be 4 1/2 inches long, 1 1/2 inches shorter than the Art Deco ladies in this post. I have decided to go with a 1:16 scale, so I will need the smaller ladies. Thanks for your thoughtful comment!

      Delete