Woohoo! It's Friday, the end of another week. What a hectic one it was! It'll be rounded off in a few minutes by the arrival of my parents (who have just driven 850 km !!). As if we're not stressed enough by Christmas!
AAAAHHHAAAHhh, vendredi, enfin "Friday night with Jonathan Ross" sur BBC1 (Nous avons des amis fort bien équipés en télé...) - Quand je pense que je paye la redevance pour la télé Française.....au secours!
Et quelle semaine de dingues, on a fait du bateau - on vous racontera - des macarons - vous verrez plus tard - et mes parents déboulent de leur Provence, comme si on était pas assez stressé comme ça avec Noël !
But that's the least of my worries at the moment...my major occupation this weekend will be preparing for Neil's birthday on Sunday. And it's a big one - my Miniman will be 40!!!!
Mais en fait, c'est le dernier de mes soucis pour le moment, puisque j'ai quelques bricoles à faire afin de célébrer dignement l'anniversaire de mon "N%$£*" (c'est privé, les petits noms!)
Et cette fois on ne rigole plus, c'est un qui finit par zéro, celui qui fait péter les plombs (surtout les miens :-), il nous fait le coup des 40....donc pour fêter ça, c'est moi qui ferai le thé toute la journée....
So it's likely we'll be away from the computer over the weekend and into early next week...but before we go, here are a few more Christmas items for which will be heading onto Etsy soon.
Alors bien sûr, les jours qui viennent, et le début de la semaine prochaine, ce sera calme plat sur l'interweb, mais au moins, on a une paire de mignonnes choses à vous montrer ;-)
Another Sunday closer to Christmas and we're still battling our way through orders while trying to juggle Ebay, Etsy and an email in-box that just won't empty! Fortunately we managed to find time to fit in Strictly Come Dancing last night - and whatever happens, we're downing tools for Top Gear tonight!
Another weekend approaches, and many of us will soon be braving the busy streets again in search of gifts, bargains, and the perfect pair of socks for that distant cousin you haven't seen since 1992...
A couple of weeks ago we were in the centre of Paris for the opening of a friend's art display at a Parisian gallery. As the opening wasn't until the evening, we decided to set off early and spend some time wandering around, and if time allowed, visit the "grands magasins", those large Parisian department stores such as Galeries Lafayette, BHV and Printemps.
At this time of year it's practically impossible to walk on the pavement in front of these stores because of the bustling crowds of people staring at the windows. The reason? The Christmas window displays!
All along the Boulevard Haussmann, people jostling to get the best view of the windows collide with people trying to get to wherever, the result is often carnage!
So we were amazed to find that on this particular evening, the street was relatively calm, which meant that we could get close up to those windows!
Below is a selection of photos that you can enjoy from the safety of your computer! And because many of the windows are animated, at the end of this post, you'll find a video of some of the cute animated teddy bear windows...
This pretty shop window was in the Passage Jouffroy...
Another Monday, and another week starts with another new selection of....Christmas miniatures!! Hmmm, that sounds like we had the weekend off....if only!
C'est déjà re-lundi, la vache, enfin, le renne, vu la saison....et qu'est ce qu'on a fait tout le week-end, au lieu de nous vautrer bien au chaud devant un bon blockbuster?! (ah, non, celui là on l'a regardé pour Halloween, zoooool!)...des miniatures, pour changer...que voici à peine sorties du four, encore tièdes , le vernis même pas sec!
The following four items came out of the workshop earlier today...as usual, they'll be listed in our Etsy store very soon! See the listings here.
A decorative Christmas wreath Une couronne de l'avent
A Santa Claus cutting board Une planche à découper
Some seasonal doughnuts Des donuts "de Nöel"
A new selection of Christmas cookies (the Santa cookie matches the cutting board...) ...et une autre fournée de petits gâteaux, tout mignons (ce n'est que mon humble avis ;-)
Yes it's lame, but we're tired! So here are some more Christmas miniatures - now on Etsy...
Je ne traduis pas la "blague" elle est adaptée d'un truc du genre "les petits pois sont rouges / les petits poissons verts", mais bon, on est crevés, on ne fera pas mieux!! Les tiroirs de la table sont toujours vides (quelle surprise!) ...et......ça sent le sapin! Le sapin vert, classique, ou le sapin blanc, plus comtemporain, chacun ses goûts...
Mmmm, when the wind's blowing from the west, you can almost smell the roast turkey and yams wafting over the Atlantic...!
Mmmm, vous ne trouvez pas que ça sent bon la dinde rôtie et le gratin de patates douces aux chamallows et autres spécialités made in USA?!, c'est parceque c'est Thanksgiving, comme dans "Friends", trop cool!
I couldn't let today go by without doing something for Thanksgiving (....and therefore NOT taking care of the drawers of my Christmas table!!)
Alors bien sûr, tous les moyens étant bons pour ne PAS remplir les tiroirs de ma table, j'ai fait des cupcakes pour Thanksgiving!
If you're eating turkey today, have an extra nibble for us!
On espère qu'un de ces jours, on aura la chance de faire Thanksgiving en vrai, sur place, et de manger plein de trucs bizarres et de la dinde géante...(à la télé, elles ont vraiment l'air ééénormes, la tête de Monica tient dedans!)
The end of a another wildly productive day approaches, so before we pop off to to make dinner and then settle down for the latest from House MD, here's a quick peak at some of the pieces finished today...
C'est la fin d'une autre journée sauvagement productive, au milieu des flocons de neige (en sucre), des paquets cadeaux (sablés) et des pains d'épices (en fimo, tout ça..!)
...enfin ce sera le moment de dîner en compagnie de ce bel Anglais aux sublimes yeux bleus, je parle bien sûr de "Docteur House"...mais avant cela un coup d'oeil au dernières petites créations de Noël...
All will soon be on our Etsy store. [Update - the Christmas wreath has been sold]
The Christmas baking table is starting to take shape - here's a peak at some of the Christmas cupcakes that will be included... The biggest headache at the moment is the damn drawers, which I want to fill with something coherent, and not just any old tat lying on the worktable. No, we'll have none of that here!! As we don't have Thanksgiving, I guess tomorrow is official "Drawer Filling Day"!
La table est quasiment terminée, en voici un petit aperçu...le plus embêtant maintenant, c'est de remplir les tiroirs de façon cohérente, pas juste histoire de les remplir avec n'importe quelle truc qui traîne sur le bureau et qui rentre dans le tiroir...Aaaaah, non madame, pas de ça chez nous ;-), demain, c'est la journée officielle des tiroirs....
We had a busy week last week so apologies for the lack of posts again. We do have some nice ideas lined up for posts a little later in the week including some seasonal treats from the centre of Paris...
Nous avons été très pris la semaine dernière d'où une petite faiblesse dans la régularité des posts, mais cela va changer, on a plein de trucs sous le coude, y compris quelques douceurs Parisiennes...
The Christmas miniatures seem to be going down very well and we added some new seasonal pieces to our eBay listings over the weekend - here's our pick...
Finalement, le plus dur c'est de s'y mettre, et nous ne cessons d'ajouter de nouvelles miniatures de Noël, avec bûches en tous genres, petits fours, biscuits rigolos et shopping de luxe ....
An ice cream coconut-raspberry "bûche de Noël" or yule log - see it here Bûche glacée coco-framboise. Ici!
A selection of novelty Christmas cookies - see it here Petits sablés de saison. Ici
And of course we will be continuing to create pieces for those not looking for Christmas miniatures. This Ladurée set is one of our favourites from the last few days - I must be in need of the real thing! You can find it here.
L'incontournable virée shopping chez ladurée (Ici !), d'ailleurs, je commence sérieusement à être en manque, va falloir faire quelque chose ;-)
We have lots more exciting Christmas pieces which we've been working on over the last few days (including that Christmas table that's going to be hard to part with...) and I can't wait to show even more of them to you very soon...
La table de Noël avance bien, je crois je vais avoir du mal à m'en séparer...
Trouver ce post en français après la version anglaise
...and what have we done? To be honest, until recently, in terms of Christmas, we hadn't done very much...
We were busy concentrating on making new pieces for "Paris Création" and hadn't really given Christmas a thought. After the show, we took a couple of days off last week and, while sitting in our local "Quick" burger restaurant, (no it's not all frog's legs and snails over here!) we realised that the tinny sounding music system echoing round the converted car showroom was playing Elvis's "Blue Christmas"! (Listen on Spotify*)
Maybe it was time to get started on Christmas...
And we did! Our first selection of Christmas items is ready...
The ideas are still coming thick and fast, and we look forward to showing you some more great new pieces over the next few days and weeks. We're working on a Christmas table, probably the only one we'll have time to make this year, which should be ready before too long. We'll post some pics soon.
The first few items are now on Etsy. One more thing - we're happy to be able to offer all of today's Christmas items with FREE shipping!
*You'll need a Spotify account to listen. I have a few invites for a free account if you ask nicely!
....et moi qui vient à peine de lâcher la fimo orange et noire pour Halloween....je serais en retard?...encore?!
En fait nous étions pas mal concentrés sur la dernière expo, et Noël est assez loin de nos pensées, vu que Mister Miniman se prend un an de plus un peu avant...
Mais lors de quelques jours de repos bien mérités, célébrés à coups de visites à notre resto Chinois préféré où désormais l'on se délecte de sushis (eh oui, deux en un....si seulement il pouvaient aussi se mettre au tandoori, ce serait parfait!) des notes familières nous sont parvenues...Blue Christmas, par Elvis Presley
...et là, on se dit qu'il faut s'y mettre...Rouge et verte, la fimo!
Voici donc quelques miniatures d'humeur Noëlienne (ça n'existe pas, ce mot, mais ça devrait!) et nous ne manquerons pas de vous en montrer d'autres, en particulier une table complète qui ne devrait pas tarder à être terminée..
Au fait, vous ne trouvez pas ça bizarre, les cloches pour Noël?...c'est probablement le pire sujet de discorde ici..(sérieux!)...Pour moi, les Cloches, c'est Pâques, et ça ne se discute pas...et pour Neil, les cloches, c'est Noël, et aucun ne lâche le morceau, et ça fait des années que ça dure...c'est terrible...:o)
Bref la première série d'objets (sans cloches...) est dispo sur Etsy, et les frais de port en sont offerts, youpiii!
We decided on a whim to change the blog. We'd grown bored with the old layout which we hadn't changed since our first post many months ago. So Neil has prodded and tweaked the code to try and tidy it up a bit. Typical man - had to do it himself! At least now it resembles our website a bit more closely...
Anyway, he had something to say too...
Hello ladies (do any blokes read this? Comment if you do!), so the blog has changed a little, I've tried it in Firefox, Google Chrome, Internet Explorer and Safari (for windows) and it seems to be working fine, but if you do see anything that looks odd or out of place or something that just doesn't work as it should, please do let me know.
There will probably be some more tweaks and changes before too long and I'll add a decent header at the top of the page when I get some more time, so please bear with us!
However, just a quick post to remind you that the new issue of the "Artisans In Miniature" magazine is now available!
If you've yet to discover this magazine, you should know that it's only available on-line, completely FREE, and is packed full of pictures of miniatures and tips and features written by all sorts of miniature makers - including the two whose blog you're currently reading! See pages 52-55 for our light-hearted feature which contemplates a world without coffee! (And pages 72, 86 and 89 for more photos...)
To see the magazine click here (but make yourself a cuppa before getting stuck in - there are 142 pages to get through!)
Another great job by the editorial team this month and we're glad to have been a part of it.
Anyone wandering the streets of a typical French town this week would be hard-pressed to find any evidence that it's Halloween this weekend. The French don't really "do" Halloween, but are we going to let that stop us joining in the Halloween fun?
We've just finished the final selection of Halloween miniatures for this year. Here are a couple of sneak peaks...
Halloween / Thanksgiving / Autumn Cake
"Table" Teapot shown with a Biro pen nib
We'll post them on eBay later this evening where you'll be able to see more photos of these pieces and the rest of the items we made.
"Chips", "French Fries", "Freedom Fries", "Pommes-Frites", call 'em what you will, nothing goes as well with a grilled steak!
Between making tons of Halloween miniatures and preparations for the upcoming "Paris Création" show, we've been trying to catch up with some commissions this week. It's been nice to work on some savoury items for a change! By the way, if you're still waiting for something, please be patient, we'll get round to you before too long...
One item requested was a "Steak-frites with salad and pepper sauce" which is shown below. Happy to report that the buyer was pleased with the result!
Click for a really close "close-up"!
Talking of satisfied buyers, a big thank you to Rosanna from Genoa who has thoughtfully taken the time to post on her blog about her recent first Ebay win!
Earlier this week, we had the pleasure of meeting up in the centre of Paris with a tour group from America.
This particular "Traveling Together" tour was dedicated to miniatures. With an intense itinerary which, in the space of three days had already taken in Birmingham Miniatura, London, and a trip through the "chunnel", we were delighted to be able to spend an evening with some seriously addicted miniaturists before they continued their tour down through Burgundy and on to Lyon.
We arrived more or less on time in the lobby of the Novotel Hotel situated at Les Halles in the centre of Paris and were greeted by the smiling face of tour organiser Barbara Spohn. After a very welcome drink in the Hotel bar, we were invited to set up in Anita Mills' room. You can find out more about Anita here.
As you can see, the presentation was basic, but with a group of collectors chomping at the bit, installation time was very short! With a knock on the door came, in came the tour party with wide eyes and large, friendly smiles, grateful to have all the time and space they needed to move around and choose. If only all miniature shows could be like this!
It's not very often that we find ourselves in 4 star hotels, so we took full advantage of it to enjoy the views of Paris that the room offered us. Above is one of the entrances to Le Forum des Halles, and below is Sacré Coeur, both visible from the same window of Anita's room. Nice!
Once the group had made their purchases, we took up their kind invitation to dine with them in the hotel restaurant. We enjoyed a lovely three course meal, were looked after by some incredibly helpful staff, while accompanied by some live piano playing. Towards the end of the meal, the intense tour schedule combined with jet-lag was understandably starting to take its toll on some of the party, who returned to their rooms for some much-needed sleep. They had been on their feet since 6 am, and had earned it!
So it was about half the group who decided to go on the short walk towards the Seine and the Pont Neuf bridge. They were delighted when we said we'd join them.
Paris in the daytime is gorgeous, but at night it takes on a whole new look...
You'd probably never notice these apartments during the day, but at night, you can't miss them!
The Samaritaine department store with its art deco architecture looks out over La Seine.
The Pont Neuf metro station entrance.
The rue Pont Neuf with its cobbled surface. That's some of the tour group leaning on the wall.
And the Pont Neuf bridge which spans the Seine river. Off in the distance is...look at the next picture...can you see it?
Look, it's there behind the Bateaux Mouches tour boats too!
Yes, visible from here, at over two mile's distance, is the Eiffel tower!
And to cap it all, at the moment we arrived, it started its hourly flash! We filmed it...
We thoroughly enjoyed our few hours with the group and it was all over far too quickly. At the time of writing they're still in France, enjoying the sights of Old Lyon. Hopefully we'll have the opportunity to meet up with them another time and find out if one particularly sprightly 83 year-old has added to her collection of 250 dollhouses! Go Dolly!