Well it has been over a year since I have written a post here with the last one being all about the KDF online show we participated in back in November 2020.
We had a pretty heart breaking year last year when we found out that Paul (Jans Husband & my grandad) was diagnosed with lung cancer. After a short battle with it he passed away in October 2021. We were overwhelmed by all the lovely messages, kind words, social media posts and thoughts received over this difficult time. They brought so much comfort in the darkest of days. Paul loved being part of the wonderful world of dolls house miniatures and would have been thrilled to know his work was so well regarded. We will treasure his work and his memory always.
Below are some links to the thoughtful words and announcements from the show organisers if you would like to read further. You can also ready more in the 'About' section of the website.
Here is the link to the write up about Paul by Andy, Muriel & Bob (Miniatura).
Here is a link to the write up about Paul by Charlotte (Kensington Dolls House Festival).
You can read a little write up with photographs I did over on my Instagram. www.instagram.com/p/CWvf20cIu4c/
During this difficult time and with my grandparents blessing I decided to keep the Country Treasures name going. I started attending the shows with my partner Jon. The first show back with the new Covid-19 rules in place was Stafford Dolls House Fair in September 2021. It was a difficult show to attend as this is where we first broke the news of Pauls illness. Despite this we still had a lovely time and would like to thank everyone who came to see us that day.
Next up was Miniatura being held at the new venue, the NAEC at Stoneleigh on 2nd & 3rd October 2021. We thought this was a great new venue and are really pleased to hear it will be the same again this Autumn. It was also really lovely to see some old faces and meet some new ones and it was a great feeling to be back at the shows again.
The week after Miniatura Paul took a turn for the worst and we sadly lost him on Sunday 10th October. He spent his last few weeks surrounded by the love of his family at home. It was difficult time but I knew I wanted to keep on with the shows as he would have wanted me to do so.
Just days after Pauls passing we received the information for Kensington Christmas Show and was absolutely thrilled to see my Blackbird Pie setting printed on the flyer! Nan was over the moon and it was lovely to see it bring a smile to her face during such a difficult time.
Next up we heading off to York Racecourse for York Dolls House Fair. We had a great time at the show and again it was so nice to see everyone. Jon was now in full swing in helping me behind the stand which was such a help. We also had some Stitchy Tails mice on the stand made by my sister Rosie! You can check our her work via Etsy @StitchyTails and Instagram @stitchytails.
After a busy weekend at York it was time to get straight back to making with Kensington Dollshouse Christmas Showcase just around the corner! I was busy making Blackbird pies and Christmas baubles and after a quick restock at the ArtBarn in Thornbury we were off to London! I find this show so exciting as its always magical with Christmas just around the corner. It proved to be just that as we were blown away with the amount of people who came to the stand. Not only that but upon opening the show brochure there was a lovely write up about Paul. King of the Copper Pots! He would have loved that title. Thank you to Charlotte and the team at KDF.
After the show was over we spent a quiet Christmas with the family. I would like to thank everyone who visited the stand/Etsy and supported us throughout 2021. Every order, kind word, lovely review and photograph really made a difference!! You all make it worth doing!
After a break over Christmas I was straight back in my work room prepping for Stafford Dolls House Fair January 2022. It's always nice to go back to Stafford show as it is very local to my family so I get to spend time with them as well. At Stafford we also took some more Stitchy Tails mice with us. They were a hit! Below are some photographs taken at the show..
I was also thrilled to be featured in the January 2022 edition of the DollsHouse & Miniature Scene magazine! Back in August 2021 I did a little interview with Sadie for the magazine and eagerly awaited the release of this feature. It was also extremely heartwarming to see the comment she added to the end of the feature about my grandad. Having lost him after completing the interview with her I never thought it would get a mention so it was such a lovely surprise to read. Thank you DHMS!
You can get a digital copy of the magazine here - Dolls House and Miniature Scene January 2022 - Hobbies and Crafts (hobbies-and-crafts.co.uk)
Following a successful show at Stafford and a some lovely feedback from the mag feature I was back working hard on new things. I made a potting shed to display my work in at the Art Barn which I also took to the KDF Summer Show. This was the largest miniature I have ever made so I was really happy with how it looked at the end! I never quite got around to finishing it as before I knew it, it was March! Which meant only one thing - Miniatura at the NEC! I was a little nervous about driving around the NEC to set up as this was always something grandad did in the past but it all went smoothly. Upon arrival I was given our welcome exhibitor pack which also contained a copy of the program. Which was the first thing that caught my eye. I couldn't believe it! There were my little bird boxes on the front cover. I was so happy that I had made it to the cover - another thing I knew my grandparents would be proud of. We had the best ever Miniatura and it was super to be back at the NEC where I have many memories from previous shows. Thank you to Andy & the team at Miniatura.
After such a successful show at Miniatura in March I knew I had a lot of making to do for KDF in May! So the next couple of months were spent squirreled away in my work room making new things and old things that I had not made for a few years. It felt like a blink of an eye and before we knew it me & Jon were off to London! It was our first time setting up the stand the evening before (instead of the morning of) and that made it so much more enjoyable! We had a fantastic time at the show and really enjoyed spending more time getting to know some of the other exhibitors. KDF also had a ‘Unicef for Ukraine’ table raising money for the appeal and I donated a little Blue tit Bird box to the raffle.
We left KDF with smiles on our faces as we had such a lovely time and are now looking forward to York Dolls House Fair in June. So here ends the rather long summary of what has happened over the past year and a half. It's been such a difficult time for many and I just hope people can keep continuing to find that escapism and joy from miniatures! Losing my grandad has definitely been one of the hardest things I have had to face and nothing is the same without him. I just hope I can continue to make miniatures for many years to come and make him and my nan proud.
Thank you for reading, Laura.