Friday, April 22, 2016

Cigar Box Instruments

    The Music Man, in my life has been busy building some wonderful instruments.  The cigar box has taken on a whole new meaning, as we look in various shops to find empty boxes for sale.

   So far, seven musical instruments are displayed on our wall.  They are varied in how he strings, frets and how many tuners he uses.

    The first one on the left is one he made for me, a five string banjo.  The next three are guitars, a three string, and two four strings.  The next one over is a 4 string dulcimer, and the last two are 4 string banjos.

   Finding the boxes, and all the various colors, and designs is really quite fun!  Here are a few close-up pictures, I thought you might like to see.

    The fret boards or necks, are made from maple and a red African wood.  Ed also makes the little bridge for each instrument.  The holes are covered with grommets, we find in fabric, and hardware stores.

   The five string banjo, has a really sweet twang, and I love to strum and do some rolls on the little dear!

   Earl Scruggs would probably recommend I need a whole lot more practice.  Steve Martin said, "You just can't be sad when you play banjo!"   Banjos' are loud and fun!!!

     Happy Weekend!         Smile On!     Audrey

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

German Papier Mache Doll

   This is a" papier mache" doll, from Germany.  Her body, legs and arms are stuffed fabric.  She has little metal plates on the bottom of her feet.  The skirt, vest and blouse, were all handmade.  Someone added a cap of lace to her head.

   I am not sure how old she is.  The marks on the back of her neck looked like this, EdK #9.  She measures about 11" tall.

   She has such a lovely face, with just a tiny bit of rubbed away painted areas on her nose, and cheeks.

   When I removed her cap, it was quite apparent she was going to need a new wig.   Her clothes were soiled, and beyond repair.  However, I was able to save her skirt.  I washed and repaired it, and with a new fitting, it worked just fine.

   I painted her shoes on, the little flat metal pieces on the bottom of her feet, worked nicely for the sole of her shoes.  I made a new wig of mohair, adding the little pink roses to the new coiffed look.

   Painting the face, with acrylics, and sealing with a satin poly-, gives her a fresh look.  As this doll came from Germany, I decided on the name "Gretchen".

        "Guten Tag!"     (good day)...Smile On!       Audrey

Friday, April 8, 2016

1899-1915 Composition Boy Doll

    This little angel face is an early composition doll.  His head is very heavy, which means he dates from 1899-1915.  He looks like a German doll, but there are no marks on him to identify the doll company that made him.  His body was filled with excelsior.

    His hands and face were the only things that needed to be restored.  His body was in good shape, and tightly packed with the excelsior.  He measures 20" tall.  He tends to be top heavy because his head is so heavy.

    I decided to give him a completely new look.  I removed the gown that he arrived in, making him a Victorian-style costume, based on the " Little Lord Fauntleroy"  fashion.

       Now, he is all dressed up properly.  His name is still being considered....Fritz....Ricky....?  That is still up for discussion.    I really think he has the face of an angel.  A very sweet little boy!

    Hope your weekend is heavenly.       Smile On!     Audrey

Monday, April 4, 2016

The Garden House

    Sometime this winter, I purchased this little garden house.  The exterior was painted to look rustic.  My husband took out the glass panels and sanded off the rough paint.  He then replaced the glass, once I cleaned it of dust and extra paint.

   This little building measures 12 1/2" wide, 9 1/2" deep and 14" tall.

   The garden house was a joy to fill with plants, and gardening tools.  It sits in the dining room, on the breakfront.  Whenever I pass by, I have a glimpse of a lovely garden, pond included.

   I love how the doors open wide, and the little miniature garden area is reveled.  Let's take a closer look.

   The little pond needed some "hen and chick" plants added to the edges.  The little turtle is a tiny figure that has been living in my jewelry box since the mid-1960's, boy was he glad to finally have a watering hole!

    I made all of the potted plants, from bits of plastic plants.  I used paint on the white flowers to add different colors to the scene.

   Tiny bags of potting soil, tools, including a rake, and the hose to keep everything growing were little treasures I was able to find.

   Oh, yes....where there is greenery, there will be bugs!   Everything seems to be doing very well in my garden house.  Now, until spring finally arrives in the real world, I can at least look at my lovely little garden, right here in the house!  I hope you have enjoyed this little"green" tour!

                      Smile On!         Audrey