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Due to a recent down-sizing and move, we are letting go the last of our miniatures at very low prices. This one was a class project we made in 1988. It has a rusted tin roof, is made of old weathered wood, basswod we aged with Bug Juice, and sits on a wooden base. Noel made the hanging scale from bits and pieces.The fruit, baskets and crates are by Gail Wise, a longtime, very talented miniarturist–one of the first great food people. Because the piece is so delicate, it can’t be shipped. If you live near Astoria, Oregon, have a way to pick it up, and want to contact me about price, or have questions, please email me at email@example.com
In 1974, my husband Noel and I began building aged miniature houses for collectors and museums. We were 70's dropouts. We quit our careers in advertising--art director and writer, respectively--and escaped Los Angeles in a VW camper and a Bug for a simpler life on the coast of Washington State. From a tiny studio in our home, we built 64 houses and buildings. Our specialty was aging--making a structure that reflected the scars and wrinkles of time, the elements, and human habitation. In the 80s we began teaching our techniques in workshops around the country, and I began to write our how-to's in Nutshell News and Miniature Collector. In 2000 we migrated across the Columbia to Astoria, OR, where , in 2011, we retired from miniatures. We are Fellows of the International Guild of Miniature Artisans and taught at their annual school in Castine, ME. By avocation I am a writer and poet. The blog is my way of working back into a writing routine, as well as recording what we did, and what we learned along the way.
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It’s just wonderful! Somebody will be very lucky to get such a great treasure!
I was in my early thirties in the 70s when I became acquainted with miniatures. It was then that I first saw one of your very early houses in a library book of miniature houses. It was a square, shingled, two-story shown in black and white.I have been enchanted ever since. I subscribed to Nutshell News and so looked forward to Pat’s articles every other month. The aging of your projects was mesmerizing. I even purchased a bottle of your famous Bug Juice, which I still have because it was too precious to use! (I was afraid I would use it all up.) My fondest dream was to take one of your classes in Castine, but I was never able to work out the logistics. In a downsizing move about 20 years ago, all my boxes of Nutshell News were accidentally taken along with books I was donating. When I discovered the loss, I spent months on ebay buying back only the ones with your articles. And although I no longer actively participate in the hobby, I do get out the magazines from time to time to read the articles again. And drool over the photographs. You have provided me with many, many hours of pleasurable engagement in your 1:12 world. I thank you from the bottom of my heart for that journey.
Mary, What a lovely and kind message you took the time to write. I feel honored to learn how much our work meant to you, and still does. So sorry you never got to take a class! Thank you, from Noel and me.
Do you have any cedar shingles and bug juice left? Or any house walls… You once sent me the parts for the beach cottage.
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We do have a few bags of shingles, I’ll check at the house tomorrow and let you know. No more Bug Juice–we have no place to make it. Check the blog on how to make your own.
Which blog is it.
Go to the blog home page at http://www.smalhousepress.me
At the top of the page you should see Home at the left, then FamousThomas Bug Juice. Click on that and the page should open.
I only have a few left. How many bags did you want? They’re $20.00 each, plus shipping.
Is this still available and what would be the price ?
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Hi Melanie, I’m sorry, it has sold.
Wishing you many happy days in your new home.
Hi Pat and Noel, If you have any bags of shingles left and/or any bits and pieces that I might use to complete an unfinished Castine Gallery from a dear friend’s estate, then I would be very interested in them. Thanks so much for sharing so much of yourselves all of these years through your art, skills, energy and time! Your work throughout the years has been inspirational. The fact that you have been able to share your profession as a husband and wife team has been a road much less traveled, but has been very fulfilling, as you both have chosen it to be. Thank you for being a role model in so many ways! Well wishes to two nuts from another mini – nut
Rhona Lee, Thanks for all the kind words, we had a fun ride through miniatures for many years. Now the ride’s done, the house is sold and emptied, and we’re on a new adventure (pretty much a quiet life of writing and painting). The last of the shingles went out the door with Craig and the Fruit Stand, so I’m afraid you’ll need to contact other people for supplies. I can send you the class supplies list if you want.
Hi Pat, That would be super! I just retired, too, and the transition has been challenging. I think I have the Fruit Stand because it so closely resembles your prototype. Did Noel make the signage for all of the students or were they left to their own devices? Do you plan to continue with smallhousepress? Selling a house and moving is life changing especially during these times. I send you well wishes for healthy, balanced, and satisfying times in your newest life adventure.
Thank you so much! I discovered your work a few days ago via Facebook and have now read every single blog entry with fascination and sometimes astonishment. If I ever visit the USA I shall be sure to hunt down one of the museums containing examples of your work. Or if you write a book, I’ll buy it!