Thursday, April 14, 2016
Tiny is TOPS!
The components I use to make jewelry are so small that I need magnifying glasses to see them clearly. Often they will jump off my bench and fall into the void of my workspace, never to be found again or only appear when I'm searching on my hands and knees with a flashlight.
This drives me crazy at times, but I love Tiny Things. Last week my assistant, Jen, and I were reminiscing about our love for all things tiny. How did this start? Surprisingly, we could both trace our fascination back to our first dollhouses. One of my earliest obsessions occurred when I accompanied my mother on her weekly grocery shopping and noticed a toy high atop a shelf on an aisle, prior to Christmas of 1959. This was the original "Dream Kitchen" and came with a working dishwasher and a total of 176 pieces. It included tiny steaks, plates, pots, pans and canned goods. I repeatedly tortured my mother until it arrived that Christmas. I began to create a secret dollhouse in a cabinet in my bedroom where I made curtains and doll clothes with my tiny crank Singer sewing machine. I would work on my cabinet of curiosities endlessly until my mother would come in and force me to go outdoors, into the sunlight. But I preferred my dollhouse, much as I prefer the time spent in my studio today.
This is a dollhouse to top all doll houses. Fairy Castle was commissioned by silent movie actress Colleen Moore in 1928 and now resides in the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago, Illinois. It took many years and countless artisans to create this masterpiece: with its 500-year-old ornaments, pure gold and diamond encrusted chandeliers, it boasts a great hall, a princess's bathroom and a well-manicured courtyard.
Here is my "Girlie Necklace". It features all charms that reference the pin-up girl theme. While I do not often work in non-precious or costume jewelry, I couldn't resist it when I saw these charms. The small binoculars are viewable with a picture of the Brooklyn Bridge. There's a pink-gold plated "Playboy" locket, an expanding cellulose fan with nudie girl pictures and a small disk that rotates viewable girlie pics… The little book expands with picture postcards of Somerset. It is made of copper with silver accents and is truly one-of-a-kind.
The wonders of a Tiny World are infinite: zoom in and you'll see!