Monday, September 9, 2019

Denver Museum of Miniatures, Dolls and Toys

It only comes once a year, the big miniature show. The only one in town, so I plan my year around the Denver Doll museum's miniature show where all our favorite vendors come to show, share, and sell their wares. I usually go early Saturday morning, meeting oldest daughter Heather who lives in Denver at the show and sometime taking her sister Jennifer with me. It's a long drive, 80 miles straight down I-25 all the way through Denver then a few short blocks west to the hotel; however, Denver traffic is miserable. Sometimes slow and grueling all the way from where I get on the interstate near Ft. Collins. I can drive by myself, but it is more fun to take my daughter.

But life gets complicated.

A few years ago we all joined Daughters of the American Revolution, and our first meeting of the season meets the same day as the miniature show, the second Saturday in September. I do have my priorities--the once a year special even is one. I am now recording secretary and while I could miss a meeting, I really can't, so I asked my husband if he would go to with me Sunday, and of course, drive. The big sporting goods store, Cabela's is in the area, so he was willing to go. We had a lovely day, except Heather, because of a family emergency couldn't join us. I called her when we arrived and she said that she was just two minutes away and then seconds later she called again to say that there had been a family emergency and she had to go home.

What was I to do? She didn't want me to join her until she had the details of what had happened, yet I felt awful going in and shopping when I knew how her family was hurting.

But I did. There wasn't anything that I could do for her or family at that moment. I have say that I didn't enjoy myself as much as I wanted.

I was looking especially for two things. One I found; the other I didn't. I am working the Westfield, turning it into an apothecary and hit upon the idea to add an orrery to it, so I started to build one the other night and decided that I would look for a miniature one at the show. I didn't. But I did find some cool things. (click here to see an example of an ornery and go this article in Wikipedia to read a description of an orrery 

First, I wanted a doll's head, as special one. Pat Boldt was there last year who makes beautiful china dolls of all sizes and styles, and I was hoping that she would be there again. Here's the reason:

I have had the life sized china head for decades. It was my mother's sister's doll; in fact I have photo of the little girl with her doll and teddy bear. Marjorie was born in 1901and died at age 16 of a bad heart, as my mother said. So the doll's head is a family treasure that has alway been with me for as long as I can remember. It is now in a little china hutch with other treasures and collectables. The slightly larger head on the left was my first attempt to buy a mini head on Etsy, but as you can see it larger than 1:12, about two inches. And do you see the scowl on that face? What child would want to play with a grumpy doll. Yesterday I was able to buy the one that I wanted. Thrilled, to say the least.

What I did not buy: A bust of William Shakespeare. I was so tempted, but even had I seen it before I spent money on the doll's head, I would have passed because while they were the same amount, I had my heart set on the doll, and I didn't want to spend that much money on just two items. I figured that I could find the bust online, but so far not so.

Why Shakespeare? I'm a geek. I have a Master's in English literature and taught his plays in my literature course. What can I say? Would an Victorian apothecary have a bust of Will? Maybe. Maybe next year. 

She does look nice with a candle stick from my stash and my newly printed books.

She has sort of a Mona Lias smile. Where will put her? I don't know.

While I have a copper tea kettle, I liked this one better. Besides I have more than one house. And there will be a stove in the apothecary, too.

I looked for these tiny airplanes last year for the toy store, but they were very pricey. I find this one for only a few dollars.

And 4 slices of pizza

And a tutu for the dance studio, so nicely made. Better than mine, but I'll display both.
And I cannot resist pink flowers. Ever.

Planters for the outside of a house; however the Brockwood has a solarium attached with nice plant material. I could something with them there. From Dragonfly International

And a Dragonfly International tea chest that I assembled last night. I also bought the tea-towels and a sheet of water slide jar labels for Nathan's little halloween house. You will see them in later posts.

These are other things that I have collected mostly from Hobby Lobby and Michaels as I look for things for my apothecary, Jen's haunted house, and Nathan's Halloween house. I found the hour glass in the steam punk jewelry charms, along with a couple of other cool things, like the green jar. I had the marbles in my collection and they will become crystal balls. I looked all over the skulls and found some skull beads, but I wanted more authentic looking ones and found these at Michaels.

These are by Tim Holtz and come a package of about twelve, or ten with 3 different styles. Perfect.

I also found the tiny cloche dome, half the size of others and the skeleton at Michaels. The skeleton came on a garland of four. Another score. He's not very flexible, but he will do and is scale, standing 4 inches tall.

He may be the sole proprietor of the apothecary.

Back at the show: downstairs the miniature club displays indivuals' projects. I took a a few photos, but most are over the top and so elegant and beautiful, that they really are not something that i would assemble, but this realistic double room box kitchen, caught my attention. The scene is so realistic, and I especially like the messy kitchen at Thanksgiving.  If you look really closely, you see flour on the floor. Messy. Just like me.

A perfectly set Thanksgiving table, too.

And this flower laden patio seems do-able, too, with all of the hand crafted plants. I am thinking that I could pull that one off, as well.

Finally, I have noticed the Denver Museum of Miniatures, Dolls and Toys on some blog lists as a place to visit in Denver. If you do travel to and want to visit the museum, currently it is closed. It lost its lease at its original location, but had has found a new home and hope to be open next year. This show and the Little Show in February that hosts local artisans are it main fund raisers. Visit their web site for more information.

Thanks for visiting. I appreciated the comments that you leave.


  1. It sounds like a full and fun weekend! Lots of great minis to add to your plethora of projects! I hope all is well with your daughter's family!

  2. There is nothing better than a mini show to spark inspiration. Thanks for sharing the kitchen, my Mom had harvest gold appliances in her kitchen many years ago. It brought back some good memories.


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